Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra vs S22 Ultra: What’s the difference?

  • Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra - square label

    Samsung / Pocket-lint

    Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

    Our first choice

    $999.99 $1199.99 Save $200

    The Galaxy S23 Ultra offers top-notch performance. It’s smooth and fast, the display is great, and the cameras really deliver. Samsung offers long software support and loads of features. It’s an expensive phone, but it’s one of the best out there.


    • The display is great
    • Impressive camera in all modes
    • Fast and smooth performance

    • Some of the software changes muddy android
    • Charging could be faster
    • Costly

  • Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra - square label

    Samsung / Pocket-lint

    Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

    A good alternative

    $800 $1200 Save $400

    The S22 Ultra was a total departure for the Galaxy S22 series, integrating an S Pen stylus for the first time. There’s a nice curved edge display and a distinctive (and excellent) rear camera arrangement, but only buy it on the S23 Ultra if you can find it much cheaper.


    • Bright, punchy screen with adaptive refresh rate
    • Distinctive and capable camera
    • The built-in S Pen stylus is great

    • Battery life is questionable
    • No microSD card expansion
    • Costly

Samsung announced the Galaxy S23 range in early February 2023, with three phones in its portfolio for 2023. These consist of the standard Galaxy S23, the Galaxy S23+ and the top-of-the-line Galaxy S23 Ultra.

We’ve covered the comparison between the Samsung Galaxy S23, S23+ and S23 Ultra in a separate feature, but here we’re looking at how the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra compares to its predecessor, the Galaxy S22 Ultra. Is it worth the upgrade and which one should you choose if you’re in the market for a Samsung Galaxy Ultra device?

Price, availability and specifications

The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra starts at $1199 in the US and £1249 in the UK, so it’s not a cheap phone. There are a couple of different storage and RAM configurations to choose from, and there are a couple of different color options as well. The S23 Ultra is available in four colors including Phantom Black, Green, Lavendar and Cream. There are also a few extra colors available exclusively on Samsung Online, which include graphite, lime, sky blue, and red.

The Galaxy S22 Ultra, meanwhile, now starts at $949 in the US and £1149 in the UK, so it’s a little cheaper than its predecessor. Like the S23 Ultra, however, there are a couple of different memory and RAM configurations with different color choices. The four color options for the S22 Ultra are Phantom Black, Green, Burgundy and Phantom White.

If you want a quick rundown of how these two phones compare, you can check out the specs table below. We dived into a bit more detail further down, though the specs only tell part of the story.

  • Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra
    Screen 6.8 inch, 2X Dynamic AMOLED, 3088 x 1440, 1-120Hz 6.8 inch, 2X Dynamic AMOLED, 3088 x 1440 pixels, 1-120Hz
    Drums 5000mAh, 45W wired, 15W wireless 5000mAh
    Operating system Android + One UI Android + One UI
    Front camera 12MP, f/2.2 40MP, f/2.2
    Rear cameras 200MP f/2.2 main, 12MP f/2.2 ultrawide, 10MP f/2.4 3x optical telephoto, 10MP f/4.9 10x optical telephoto 108MP f/1.8 main, 12MP f/2.2 ultrawide, 10MP f/2.4 3x telephoto, 10MP f/4.9 10x telephoto
    Dimensions 78.1 x 163.4 x 8.9mm, 234g 163.3 x 77.9 x 8.9mm, 228g
    Colors Phantom Black, Green, Lavender, Cream, Graphite, Lime, Sky Blue and Re Green, Phantom Black, Burgundy, Phantom White
    IP classification IP68 IP68
    RAM and storage 8/256GB, 12/256GB, 12/512GB, 12/1TB 8/128GB, 12/256GB, 12/512GB, 12/1TB

Design and build


The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra shares a very similar design to its predecessor, although the company has reduced the curved edges slightly for more screen real estate. Otherwise, a premium build is present, along with rounded edges and rear camera lenses positioned in the upper left corner, on the outside of the housing.

Like the S22 Ultra, the S23 Ultra also comes with a built-in S Pen, keeping its place as the successor to the Galaxy Note, and as we’ve now come to expect from flagship phones, there’s water and dust resistance IP68.

The S23 Ultra measures 163.4 x 78.1 x 8.9mm, which is virtually identical to the S22 Ultra, which measures 163.3 x 77.9 x 8.9mm, albeit slightly wider and is also heavier. However, you wouldn’t notice it during use. The S22 Ultra comes in a multitude of colors and the S23 Ultra does the same, with black, cream, green and lavender color options as standard for the newer device as mentioned. The S22 Ultra is also available in a range of colours, slightly different from the S23 Ultra, and there are no more online exclusives like with the S23 Ultra.

The S22 Ultra features a central punch-hole camera on the front of the device, which the S23 Ultra also offers, and the in-display fingerprint sensor also reappears for 2023. Most of the changes this time around are therefore internal rather than external, although that’s not necessarily such a bad thing as both of these devices offer excellent build quality.


Galaxy S23 Ultra screen protector

The Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra has a nice 6.8-inch display that offers a Super AMOLED panel and a 3088 x 1440 resolution. It offers an adaptive refresh rate up to 120Hz and a peak brightness of 1750 nits.

The edges of the S22 Ultra’s display are also curved, creating a nice premium design. While it was initially rumored that the S23 Ultra might see curved edges at the top and bottom of the display in addition to the sides, slightly differentiating it from its predecessor, that is not the case.

You’ll then find the same 6.8-inch display with a 3088 x 1440 resolution and 120Hz adaptive refresh rate as the Galaxy S22 Ultra on the latest model, and again, it’s superb. Peak brightness also remains the same at 1750 nits, which is slightly lower than the Apple iPhone 14 Pro which saw a leap to 2000 nits in 2022.


Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra with Wreckfest Mobile


The Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra runs on Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 or Exynos 2200, depending on the region, but the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra ditches Exynos and runs exclusively on Qualcomm’s latest chip: the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2. It’s a customized version of the chip called Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 Mobile Platform for Galaxy, and has a slightly higher clock speed and overall excellent performance. That said, the S22 Ultra is a very good performer too.

Supporting the chip, you can choose between 8GB RAM with 256GB of storage or 12GB RAM with 512GB or 1TB of storage for the Galaxy S23 Ultra. The S22 Ultra is offered with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, or 12GB of RAM and a choice of 256GB, 512GB and 1TB storage options, so you get double the space of basic storage for the 2023 model. The S22 Ultra lacks microSD support, which the S23 Ultra doesn’t offer either.

The Galaxy S23 Ultra comes with a 5000mAh battery, which is the same as what the S22 Ultra has under the hood, so there’s not much change here. The S22 Ultra has 45W fast charging and 15W wireless charging, which is also the case for the S23 Ultra. Charging speeds could certainly be faster, but battery performance on both models is good, so it’s not a big deal.


Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra camera

The Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra has a quad rear camera setup consisting of a 108-megapixel main sensor, a 12-megapixel wide-angle sensor, a 10-megapixel zoom lens with 3x zoom, and a second 10-megapixel zoom lens with 10x zoom. It had the same resolutions as the S21 Ultra, although Samsung enlarged the main sensor by 23%, and the overall camera experience of the S22 Ultra is great in general use, both in daylight and in the dark.

The S23 Ultra changes things up a bit in terms of resolution from its predecessors, with a 200-megapixel main sensor, which Samsung made the big story of this device. It’s also great in use, so it’s not just a numbers game here.

Along with the 200-megapixel main sensor, there is again a 12-megapixel ultra-wide-angle sensor, as well as two 10-megapixel telephoto lenses. The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra is capable of 3x and 10x zoom, like its predecessor, as well as 100x spatial zoom. There’s also a 30fps option for shooting 8K video and a couple of new features including AstroHyperlapse which lets you take photos of moving stars and ExpertRAW can give you a 50 megapixel RAW file instead of 12 megapixels like the S22 Ultra. The latter two will also be coming to the S22 Ultra, so it’s worth keeping that in mind.


The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra offers a virtually identical design to its predecessor, with only a few minor changes. It also offers the same display size and specs, as well as the same battery capacity.

As you would expect though, there are some differences. These come in the form of double the base memory, along with a chipset upgrade and an upgrade to the main camera sensor.

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra - main image

Samsung / Pocket-lint

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

Our first choice

$999.99 $1199.99 Save $200

The Galaxy S23 Ultra offers outstanding camera performance, although there’s still definitely an argument to wait to upgrade this year if you already have the S22 Ultra. The S22 Ultra also probably makes the most sense for those looking to save even a little cash, although the S23 Ultra is obviously the winner on paper if you’ve got the budget. You can read our Galaxy S23 Ultra review for a full rundown of what we thought, and of course we have a full review on the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra too.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra - main image

Samsung / Pocket-lint

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

A good alternative

$800 $1200 Save $400

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