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Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra Hands-On First Impressions

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The Galaxy S22 Ultra is the only model in the lineup this year that got a facelift. And that was primarily because Samsung was aiming to make it a Galaxy Note replacement. So in comes the iconic stylings of the Galaxy Note smartphones, including the curved sides, and flat top and bottom. And of course, the S Pen.

But the real question is, whether this is a real Galaxy Note successor, or just a Galaxy S smartphone with an embedded S Pen?

The Galaxy Note normally stood for the best of the best, with a stylus. One could say it was the “Ultra” before Samsung started adding “Ultra” to every single phone line. It came out in the second half of the year, and typically corrected any issues that the Galaxy S series had earlier in the year.

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This time around, Samsung decided to bring the Galaxy Note experience to the Galaxy S22 Ultra, in its entirety. It tried this last year with the Galaxy S21 Ultra, but the S Pen was not included. It was a separate purchase and you needed a case to carry it around. Customers did not like that, obviously. So this year, it’s back to being inside the device. That also means the Bluetooth features are back.

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The Galaxy S22 Ultra has all the bells and whistles

With the Galaxy S22 Ultra, Samsung added in everything, including the kitchen sink. It has the best processor available, the best display available, and it even goes up to 1TB of storage. Now that, is impressive.

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It even has a smaller camera bump than the regular S22 models. That is largely because it does not use the Contour Cut design that the others have. It did keep the matte finish from the Galaxy S21 series last year, and honestly, I absolutely love that. I know, I know, most of you are going to slap a case on the phone. But the matte finish looks better, it keeps the fingerprints off, and makes it distinct from other smartphones on the market.

It’s still a curved display

A curved display looks great, but it doesn’t always perform that well. Samsung has always had issues with accidental touches on its curved display smartphones. Some years, it’s worse than others, but it still happens. However, on the flip side, watching videos on this curved display looks absolutely amazing. So it’s a double-edged sword.

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The display here on the Galaxy S22 Ultra is curved pretty tightly, so there’s less of an issue with accidental touches, and your content still melts off the side. The display is also the brightest ever, and while it’s winter around these parts so there’s not much sunlight available, I’m sure it’ll do just fine outdoors.

This is Samsung’s best display ever. Though that should come as no surprise. Samsung always puts its best display in every new smartphone. I mean, they make the panels, so might as well show off your best on your own phones.

Performance and battery life

It’s a bit too early to tell how well the performance and battery life will be on the Galaxy S22 Ultra. I mean, I have barely finished moving my info over to the phone. But so far, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is performing beautifully, and I’d expect that to continue. Battery life should be similar to the Galaxy S21 Ultra, even with the S Pen silo. That is because the battery is the same size, and now has a more efficient SoC.

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We’ll of course go this in more detail in the full review in a couple of weeks.

You can pre-order your Galaxy S22 Ultra by clicking here. If you pre-order it, you’ll get a free memory upgrade and up to $200 in instant credit for other things like cases and headphones.

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