The Korea Herald


Artificial intelligence powers Samsung Galaxy S22 series

Fastest chips, crisp night photos, tougher frames: Samsung Galaxy S22 out with no price hike

By Son Ji-hyoung

Published : Feb. 10, 2022 - 10:01

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This photo shows Roh Tae-moon, president and head of mobile experience at Samsung Electronics, showcasing the latest Galaxy S22 series smartphones during the Unpacked event held early Thursday local time. (Samsung Electronics) This photo shows Roh Tae-moon, president and head of mobile experience at Samsung Electronics, showcasing the latest Galaxy S22 series smartphones during the Unpacked event held early Thursday local time. (Samsung Electronics)
Cameras that take lens flare-free photos at night, sunlight-readable displays and enhanced durability with tougher and lighter frames: all are included with the newest flagship 5G smartphones unveiled by Samsung Electronics at a virtual Galaxy Unpacked event held late Wednesday, at midnight Seoul time.

The world‘s largest smartphone maker by shipments said its premium Galaxy smartphones S22, S22+ and S22 Ultra, as well as the Galaxy Tab S8 tablets, will be available worldwide starting Feb. 25. Their prices remain unchanged from the preceding S21 lineup.

What enables the new phone’s cutting-edge features are the fastest chips in the industry.

According to Samsung, its newest gadgets will feature the cutting-edge 4-nanometer 64-bit octacore processor chips, whose neural processing units are up to 73 percent faster than their predecessors.

The new chips, including Qualcomm‘s Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 system-on-a-chip, aim to boost streaming speed, address greater productivity needs and power the phones’ artificial intelligence capability used to detect sunlight and optimize photos taken in low lighting.

The new technology has helped Samsung’s brand new “nightography” features set sail. Unveiled Thursday, Samsung’s advanced camera sensors for all three S22 variants will capture more light and colors and optimize details in the dark, making videos taken at night more stable.

The AI-powered “Detail Enhancer” technology renders objects or scenes in an image with higher accuracy to elevate image quality. AI can also be used to detect the light intensity of the device‘s surroundings to automatically adjust the brightness of the display, under its “Vision Booster” mechanism.

For the S22 Ultra, which gets an embedded S Pen stylus support, AI is used for more precise point prediction when writing or drawing on the screen.

Supporting a high processing speed, the gadgets’ battery can last for about a day on a single charge, which takes at least an hour for the S22+ and S22 Ultra, or 1 1/2 hours for the S22.

Furthermore, its phones have heat transfer technology to cool themselves, using a gel-based thermal interface material that is 3 1/2 times more efficient than its predecessors.

Samsung also said its S22 series will sport enhanced durability.

The devices will be protected by a tough Armor Aluminum frame, with Corning Gorilla Glass Victus on the front and back of the devices. Also, the gadgets have obtained IP68 waterproof approval, meaning they are fit to resist dust and submersion in water.

The phones will also be supported by fourth-generation Android operating system upgrades like its predecessor S21 series.

The newest smartphones got a bit lighter. Two of the variants -- S22 and S22+ -- have become slimmer, while their screens have gone smaller. Metal frames of both phones are 7.6 millimeters thin, resulting in lighter form factors.

S22 Ultra’s weight, thickness and size remain largely unchanged from the S21 Ultra, if the S Pen stylus that weighs 3.04 grams is embedded. The predecessor S21 Ultra supported S Pen functionality, but had no built-in mechanism to store the stylus.

As for the Galaxy Tab S8, its form factor is the thinnest with the largest-ever screen among all Samsung tablets, Samsung said in the Unpacked event.

SK Securities analyst Nate Lee expects over 40 million S22 phones to be shipped this year, roughly double recent predecessors S20 or S21, in line with its annual gadget shipment goal of 330 million units by the end of 2022.

“Samsung is confident of high S22 sales to achieve the annual shipment goal,” Lee said in a note to investors. “Samsung has set aggressive goals in terms of S22 series shipment, but it could take some more time to see tangible outcomes.”

The S22, S22+ and S22 Ultra will be priced worldwide at a minimum of $799, $999 and $1,199 each, the same price as the S21 models. The price may vary depending on data storage and which carriers customers choose. Preorders started Wednesday, by US time.

With the S22 series being the first major update of flagship smartphones announced, Lee of SK Securities expects a new release of Samsung‘s updated foldable phones in July.