When it comes to the best Android phones, Samsung has been at the top long enough to be considered a mainstay. Their flagship range – most recently consisting of the Samsung Galaxy S22, the Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus and the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra – is arguably the most recognizable Android handset on the market, and has been for years.
That kind of status doesn’t come without good reason. For years, the Samsung Galaxy range has been innovative and pushed the boundaries of what could be expected from a smartphone. I remember being impressed when the S3 had wireless charging back in 2012, for example.
More recently, however, that consistent innovation has declined. Don’t get me wrong, Galaxy phones are still solid and reliable devices. They just aren’t breaking new ground like they once did.
At the same time, a host of other manufacturers have started to really push the boundaries in terms of what’s possible. We’ve seen the Google Pixel 7 Pro use AI and machine learning techniques to dramatically improve the quality of zoomed images.
Then there’s the Vivo X90 Pro+, which has one of the best cameras ever seen on a phone, with a 1-inch sensor and some magic from Zeiss to help color balance. The results are truly astonishing.
Even more budget-friendly phones push the boat out. Last year I wrote about the Redmi Note 12 Discovery Edition, which uses 210W charging to take your battery from 0-100% in just nine minutes.
Time and time again, smaller manufacturers improve on the formula without achieving the commercial success such innovation deserves. That is partly up to the consumer. People associate the Samsung brand with their historic success and stick to what they know.
In the past, that wasn’t such an issue. Regardless of how little had changed, Samsung’s offering really was still one of the best choices available. But that may not be the case this year. There’s so much more quality on the market now, so chances are the Samsung Galaxy S23 won’t even make it into the top three.
If Samsung is going to push for a change of tact and return to the innovative company they used to be, consumers should respond. Blind acceptance is no longer enough and could have detrimental effects on the wider industry. After all, if innovation isn’t the commercially viable option, why bother with it?
The Samsung Galaxy S23 range will launch in early February, so expect confirmed details soon.