The Samsung Galaxy S22+ is not a breathtaking smartphone, but it can be considered a consistent performer. We don't have a big technological or design jump over the previous generation with this device, just minor fixes and improvements. However, this is not a smartphone without any flaws. Keep reading our Samsung Galaxy S22+ review and find out whether this is the smartphone for you.
- Solid design and excellent materials
- IP 68 certification
- Mature software and great update policy
- Versatile camera configuration
- Limited battery life of only one day
- Slow charging capability
Samsung Galaxy S22+ in a nutshell
Both the Galaxy S22 and the Galaxy S22 Ultra have already been reviewed by us. Now, it's the turn of the intermediate model in the series. The Galaxy S22+ is the perfect example of a complete smartphone! A fully consolidated design, excellent material quality, state-of-the-art hardware and an update policy that guarantees a long term use of the device.
The flagship hit the market with a starting price of $999, but almost three months after its launch, the Galaxy S22+ can already be found with a 25% discount. Perhaps this flagship will not fall by the wayside among the vanilla and Ultra variants.
Let it be clear that this significant drop in the value of the device has no direct bearing to its quality, but is due to existing market dynamics instead. There are many Android smartphone options available and each company uses a particular strategy to sell more. Samsung's strategy seems to be this: to reduce the value by a large margin not too long after the launch of its smartphones.
Design and Screen: Good Just Got Better
With a "Contour Cut" design that is similar to the previous generation, the Galaxy S22+ uses more high-quality materials in its construction, giving the series an even more premium look. Both the display and the back cover now use Gorilla Glass Victus+ combined with its aluminum chassis. In this review, we received the Phantom Black model, but the S22+ can also be found in Phantom White, Green, and Pink Gold shades.
The Galaxy S22+'s grip feels very nice and secure, posing no difficulty at all for one-handed use even with a 6.6-inch diagonal screen. The buttons perfectly distanced from the fingers, and we have IP 68 certification for water and dust resistance. Signs of a true flagship!
What I liked:
- Lightweight and sleek.
- Quality materials.
- IP 68 certification.
- Beautiful AMOLED display with variable refresh rate.
What I didn't like:
Regarding the display, Samsung has opted for a beautiful, flat AMOLED panel with Full HD+ resolution, a variable refresh rate of 120 Hz and touch sampling rate of 240 Hz. As for brightness, the Galaxy S22+ can reach up to 1,750 nits (peak). Like the vanilla variant, the Plus model offers variable refresh rate of 48 up to 120Hz, however, it falls behind the S22 Ultra which can go as low as 1Hz.
In summary, although there is no great leap forward in terms of design, this new generation flagship brings important optimizations to the series. So what was good is now even better. At the end of the day, that's what matters .
Performance: Exynos 2022 or Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, that's the question!
The Galaxy S22+ variant that we reviewed is powered by the Exynos 2200 SoC, but over in the US, the South Korean manufacturer only sells models that come with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 SoC. In addition, the Galaxy S22+ comes in two memory configurations: 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB or 256 GB of storage.
What I liked:
- Good software update policy.
What I didn't like:
- Exynos 2022 performance could be better.
As we shared in our Galaxy S22 series comparison, both processors in the series use the 4nm process and are based on an octa-core layout with one Cortex-X2, three Cortex-A710, and 4 Cortex-A510 cores. However, our benchmark tests show a considerable difference between smartphones powered by the Exynos 2022 and Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 SoC, which suggests that Samsung may have gotten this chipset build wrong .
|Samsung Galaxy S22+||Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra||Oppo Find X5 Pro||Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max||Google Pixel 6 Pro||Xiaomi 12 Pro|
|3DMark Wild Life||
|3DMark Wild Life Stress Test||
As my colleague Zois Bekios Zannikos explained very well at the time of the Galaxy S22 review, the graphics are where the S22+ underperforms. This is related to the thermal throttling of the Xclipse 920 GPU, which leaves no room for improved graphics performance. However, the device's gaming performance is not bad. Games like PUBG: New State can be played for hours without noticeable drops in the frame rate.
- Also read: Learn more about SoC's
So, if on the one hand, many people would not even notice the difference in performance between one processor and the other, on a day-to-day basis what is noticeable however is that the Exynos 2022-packed variant can heat up a bit more than average. However, this does not even affect the performance of the device as we have seen happen with the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra. However, it is noticeable indeed.
On the software side, as you might expect, the Samsung Galaxy S22+ runs on the latest version of One UI 4.1, which is Samsung's Android 12 skin. The user interface is simple to use, intuitive, and rather complete. In fact, newcomers to the Galaxy ecosystem may even find the operating system too complete, with numerous proprietary options and sometimes duplicating native Android functions.
Regarding the update policy for this model, we have nothing but good news, as Samsung guarantees four years of Android updates, which guarantees the device will receive Google's major operating system updates up to Android version 16! When it comes to security patches, the S22+ will be supported for up to five years.
Versatile and excellent camera
Like the Galaxy S22, the Galaxy S22+ features a triple camera module with a 50MP main lens with f/1.8 aperture, Dual Pixel autofocus and optical stabilization (OIS). There is also a 12MP ultra-wide-angle lens with 120° field of view and a 10MP telephoto lens capable of 3x optical zoom, which also offers optical stabilization for the first time in the flagship series.
What I liked:
- Versatile camera.
- Precise focus and vivid colors.
- Lighting of images at night is fantastic.
What I didn't like:
- Anything above 3x zoom does not look good.
With a larger main sensor than we had in the previous generation, the 50MP camera is able to capture more light. Therefore, the S22+ can generate even brighter and more vibrant images than its predecessor. Soon, the wide-angle camera makes excellent photos, especially in favorable light conditions.
The colorimetry here is consistent. We have beautiful contrasts, and of course, the colors are as vibrant as you would expect from a top-of-the-line Samsung device. The same goes for the ultra-wide camera, but with the expected limitations due to the lower quality of the sensor. The telephoto camera, on the other hand, does a good job up to 3x optical zoom, where the quality drops quite a bit beyond that. However, this triple set is quite versatile and allows you to get creative.
Once again, the fact that the Galaxy S22+'s main sensor has been optimized makes night images even sharper in this generation. In dark environments or at night, we have more details and a brightness that almost reaches the limit of artificial, but without being bad.
The front camera delivers images with vibrant colors and a portrait mode worthy of sharing with others. When it comes to video recording, the front camera allows you to shoot up to 4K at 60fps.
Battery: It won't let you down
The Galaxy S22+ is built with a 4,500 mAh battery , and offers the same charging technology as the Ultra Premium model: wired charging at 45 Watts and wireless charging at 15 Watts. The device can also be used to charge other gadgets due to the reverse charging technology at 4.5 Watts.
What I liked:
- Varied charging options.
What I didn't like:
- Performance is merely satisfactory.
- Relatively long charging time.
- Adapter is not included in the box.
The S22+'s battery life is only satisfactory. This means you can make it to the end of the day with the device, but you'll have to charge it at night if you want to ensure the alarm clock will ring the next morning. Frankly, this is the reality of many flagship Android devices, so, although it is a negative point, the battery performance here can still be considered average.
However, high-performance devices in the same category as the Galaxy S22+ offer fast charging options capable of delivering up to half a day's use in just 15 minutes of charging. Models like the Xiaomi 12 Pro, for example, offer a full recharge in just 20 minutes. And this is where the Galaxy S22+ lags behind, taking an average of two hours for a full charge.
Although we have wired, wireless, and even reverse-charging options. Samsung is known for opting for longer fast charging times for the sake of the longevity of its smartphones. Also, we don't have the charging adapter in the box which will cost you another $35.
Samsung Galaxy S22+ technical specifications
|Dimensions & Weight||75.8 x 157.4 x 7.6 mm / 196 g|
|Screen||AMOLED 2X / 6.6 inch / FHD+ / 120 Hz refresh rate / 240 Hz touch sampling rate|
|Memory||8/128 GB / 8/256 GB / non-expandable|
|SoC & GPU||Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 / 4nm / Adreno|
|OS||One UI 4.1 / Android 12|
|Battery||4500 mAh / wired 45 watts / wireless 15 watts / wireless reverse charging|
|Connectivity||5G / LTE / Wi-Fi 6E / Wi-Fi 6 / Bluetooth 5.2 / NFC|
Should I buy the Samsung Galaxy S22+?
With a sleek, well-built design, state-of-the-art hardware (even if it performs poorly on benchmarks), and an upgrade policy that extends the device's usage time, the Galaxy S22+ is a good smartphone. Three months after its release, the device can be found for 25% off, which makes it even more attractive today.
However, if you are the type of person whose daily smartphone usage is intense, demanding high performance and long lasting battery life, my suggestion is to opt for the Galaxy S22 Ultra if you want to remain within Samsung's ecosystem. Otherwise, devices like the Apple iPhone 13 Pro or Pro Max and OnePlus 10 Pro can be interesting alternatives.
So, is the Samsung Galaxy S22+ a viable option for you today? Why?