Samsung Galaxy S24 In-depth Review: A Mini Marvel or a Missed Opportunity?
The regularized Samsung Galaxy flagship phones have always been a topic of excitement among tech enthusiasts. In the case of the Samsung Galaxy S24, the anticipation was even higher, promising numerous upgrades, AI-related features, and a return to the Exynos chipset.
After a week of using the Galaxy S24 as the primary device, this review aims to provide a thorough analysis of its design, AI features, display, audio, performance, and camera capabilities.
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The design of the Samsung Galaxy S24 remains true to the brand’s identity, offering a compact and pocket-friendly 6.2-inch display. In a market dominated by larger phones, the S24 stands out as one of the last compact options available in 2024.
The slimmer bezels contribute to a comfortable one-handed usage experience, although some users may find the resemblance to an iPhone design a drawback. The matte finish and Gorilla Glass Victus ensure durability, but the susceptibility to light scratches calls for the use of a screen protector. The inclusion of IP68 water and dust resistance adds to the device’s practicality.
Software and AI Features:
Running on One UI 6.1 atop Android 14, the Samsung Galaxy S24 offers a familiar software experience. While some appreciate the improvements in fonts and aesthetics, the heavy inclusion of Samsung’s apps may be divisive. The review emphasizes the abundance of AI-related features, ranging from a recorder app with an excellent summary tool to a quick image search tool that proved surprisingly useful during travel.
The AI-powered message politeness tool and upgraded Samsung keyboard, while entertaining, are noted to have room for improvement. Despite occasional connectivity delays, the overall software experience is solid. Samsung’s commitment to seven years of OS updates and security updates is commendable.
Display and Audio:
The Galaxy S24 sports a 6.2-inch Dynamic AMOLED screen with a Full HD Plus resolution. Despite not reaching the sharpness of its larger counterparts, the display impresses with HDR10+ streaming support and a variable refresh rate ranging from 120Hz to 1Hz. The Always On Display, reminiscent of iPhone styling, can be customized.
The screen’s brightness is suitable for outdoor use, although the absence of the Ultra’s Gorilla Glass Armor results in occasional reflections. The stereo speakers deliver satisfactory audio quality, with clear and powerful sound even at high volumes. The inclusion of Bluetooth support and the absence of a headphone jack are worth noting.
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Performance and Gaming:
The Samsung Galaxy S24, powered by the Exynos 2400 chipset and 8GB of RAM, faces skepticism in the smartphone market due to the absence of the Qualcomm Snapdragon. Despite benchmark results that may not match its larger counterparts, the day-to-day performance is smooth, with minimal lag noted.
The phone exhibits a tendency to warm up under intensive usage, though it doesn’t significantly impact performance. Gaming capabilities are discussed, with the review acknowledging some limitations, especially in comparison to the Plus model or the Ultra. Wi-Fi 6E support ensures fast and reliable connectivity, but the absence of Wi-Fi 7 is a missed opportunity.
Battery Life and Charging:
The Galaxy S24 houses a 4,000mAh battery, raising concerns about its longevity, especially with the power-hungry Exynos chipset. While power users may find it challenging to stretch beyond 4 to 4.5 hours of screen-on time during demanding tasks, average usage yields a more satisfactory 7 hours. The charging capabilities are criticized for being slow, with 25W wired and 15W wireless charging options. The review suggests overnight charging for convenience.
The camera setup on the Samsung Galaxy S24 consists of a 50MP main sensor, a 10MP telephoto lens with 3x optical zoom, and a 12MP ultra-wide-angle shooter. The AI enhancements are acknowledged for improving low-light performance and providing creative tools like the recorder app. The camera excels in capturing everyday family moments and portraits, with sharpness and natural tones.
The telephoto lens performs well up to 10x zoom, beyond which quality diminishes. The video capabilities, including 4K at 30 or 60 fps and AK at 30 fps, receive positive feedback. The review emphasizes the effectiveness of the AI-driven photo editing tools, making photo enhancement accessible even for casual users.
Reasons to Go for the Samsung Galaxy S24:
Impressive Camera System:
The camera system, enhanced by AI features, delivers sharp and natural-looking photos. The portrait capabilities and versatility of the lenses contribute to a satisfying photography experience.
- AI Features and Software Updates:
- Samsung’s commitment to seven years of OS updates and security updates ensures longevity for the device. The AI features, including the recorder app and image search tool, add practical functionality to daily use.
Solid Display and Audio Quality:
The Dynamic AMOLED display with HDR10+ support provides vibrant visuals, and the stereo speakers offer clear and powerful audio, enhancing the multimedia experience.
- Durability and Water Resistance:
- The durable aluminum design with a matte finish and Gorilla Glass Victus front and back contributes to the phone’s smart aesthetics. IP68 water and dust resistance add an extra layer of durability.
Camera Editing Tools:
The AI-driven photo editing tools provide an easy way for users to enhance their photos without needing advanced editing skills, making it accessible for a wide range of users.
Reasons Not to Buy the Samsung Galaxy S24:
Battery Life and Charging Speed:
The 4,000mAh battery may not provide sufficient longevity for power users, and the slow 25W wired and 15W wireless charging options can be a drawback for those who prioritize quick charging.
- Performance Limitations:
- The choice of the Exynos 2400 chipset has raised concerns about performance, especially in comparison to the Snapdragon counterparts found in other flagship phones. Gamers may experience limitations in demanding applications.
Storage Capacity and Lack of Expandability:
With only 128GB of storage and no option for microSD card expansion, the Galaxy S24 may fall short for users who require ample storage for media, apps, and files.
- AI Features’ Dependence on Connectivity:
- Some of the AI features, particularly those requiring an online connection, may suffer from delays, impacting the user experience. The need for language packs to speed up translations may be an inconvenience.
Limited Gaming Experience:
Hardcore gamers may find the regular Galaxy S24’s performance lacking, especially when compared to the Plus or Ultra models. The phone can get warm during intensive gaming sessions, impacting the overall gaming experience.
In conclusion, the Samsung Galaxy S24 impresses with its compact design, capable camera system, and a range of AI features. While the Exynos chipset may not match the performance of its Snapdragon counterparts, the everyday experience remains smooth.
The battery life and charging speed may be areas of concern for power users, urging them to consider the Plus or Ultra models. Despite its minor drawbacks, the Galaxy S24 stands out as a viable option for those seeking a compact flagship device with a reliable camera system and a range of AI-driven features.
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