Home Smartphone Why it was Samsung's most essential cellphone of 2020

Why it was Samsung’s most essential cellphone of 2020

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Samsung Galaxy S20 FE in hand 2

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE

Credit score: David Imel / Android Authority

A little bit over half a decade in the past, OnePlus spearheaded the introduction of the worth flagship phase. The premise was easy. Provide top-tier specs at a worth that’s reasonably priced to a a lot wider set of patrons. That technique, nevertheless, isn’t infinitely sustainable and not using a wider portfolio of gadgets to maintain development and revenue margins. The corporate’s fixed trajectory up the pricing ladder and the introduction of the Nord collection is additional proof of the identical.

Samsung has historically been at both finish of the worth spectrum. Whereas the corporate thrived within the entry-to-mid-range segments in addition to flagships by means of its Galaxy S and Galaxy Word households, it has historically been a bit shy about going up towards the likes of OnePlus within the $500-700 phase.

All this modified with the arrival of the Word 10 Lite and S10 Lite in 2019. The 2 telephones noticed Samsung taking child steps into the world of worth flagships. Whereas the telephones made some compromises to hit a cheaper price level, they garnered favorable opinions and have been typically well-received. The one-off Galaxy S10e was yet one more beloved cellphone aimed in direction of individuals on the lookout for a extra pocketable smartphone with out main sacrifices on energy or options.

Associated: The most effective Samsung telephones you should buy

Blame it on slowing improve cycles, lack of differentiation, or just, an unsure financial system, patrons are on the lookout for worth. The resounding success of the iPhone SE has additional proved the significance of a tool that straddles the wonderful line between efficiency, options, and worth, although for these used to true flagship experiences Apple’s price range cellphone was maybe a step too far down the ladder.

Some 2020 telephones just like the Google Pixel 5 and LG Velvet bridged the hole between the mid-range and premium market by providing flagship-style telephones with weaker processors, however these didn’t ship the uncooked energy many fanatic patrons crave. With OnePlus seemingly preoccupied with its new price range Nord line and an elevated give attention to the premium tier, the reasonably priced flagship market was left vast open for Samsung — it simply wanted the fitting cellphone.

Enter the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE.

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE in hand

Credit score: David Imel / Android Authority

Just like the Word 10 Lite and the S10 Lite, the premise of the Galaxy S20 Fan Version (or simply Galaxy S20 FE for brief) is comparable: construct a cut-down model of a well-liked high-end mannequin. Besides this time round, the additions far outweigh the omissions. Having spent a couple of month with the cellphone, I’m pretty assured that the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE, sure even with the Exynos 990 chipset in my model right here in India, is the sleeper hit of 2020.

Let’s discuss design and end. It’s arguably probably the most distinguishing options of a premium smartphone. Polycarbonate isn’t perceived as essentially the most premium materials in a world of glass and metallic sandwiches. Nonetheless, it affords a variety of putting pastel shades that look downright attractive. The shades spoke to me when Samsung introduced the cellphone, and the minty inexperienced hue of the Galaxy S20 FE was positively refreshing to see within the flesh. My colleague C Scott Brown not too long ago took the purple model for a spin and was equally enamored with the brilliant and daring look.

However it’s not simply colours. The very fact of the matter is that polycarbonate, when performed proper, is usually a unbelievable materials for a smartphone. Regardless of how good-tempered glass will get, polycarbonate will maintain up higher towards drops and scratches.

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE in hand 1

Credit score: David Imel / Android Authority

Then there’s the flat show. Name it a cost-saving measure, or Samsung listening to person suggestions. The 6.5-inch dimension and flat display screen merely make the cellphone higher for usability. Furthermore, Samsung makes a number of the finest AMOLED panels within the enterprise. The Galaxy S20 FE isn’t any exception. It sports activities a unbelievable one. The 120Hz panel is completely gorgeous to take a look at with not one of the show points usually discovered on rival OnePlus {hardware}.

Stripping away pointless design thrives to make a cellphone extra ‘premium’ can really make a cellphone higher. Who’d have thought?

Even on the imaging entrance, the Galaxy S20 FE wins by focusing extra on picture high quality than gimmicks or megapixels. In comparison with the OnePlus 8T, the obvious competitor, the Galaxy S20 FE’s stellar 12-megapixel digital camera wins out over the 48MP sensor on the competitors. Samsung’s coloration science pulls forward of the 108MP camera-equipped Xiaomi Mi 10T Professional as properly, which targets the identical reasonably priced flagship phase.

Learn extra: Samsung Galaxy S20 FE vs iPhone 12 digital camera comparability

Actually, we pit the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE towards the iPhone 12 and got here out stunned simply how shut the 2 telephones have been — test it out by way of the hyperlink above. Moreover, whereas it’s down to private choice, a extra conventional trio of a large, ultra-wide, and telephoto ought to be much more helpful than the macro and depth sensors obtainable on alternate choices.

However hey, that’s the fundamentals. The place Samsung actually hits it out of the park is the sheer variety of worth additions. Need microSD enlargement? You bought it. How about wi-fi charging? That’s included too. The big 4,500mAh battery additionally lasts a day and a half with out breaking a sweat. It makes the dearth of 30W or 65W charging speeds much more tolerable.

The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE packs a laundry record of {hardware} differentiators like an IP68 ranking and wi-fi charging.

Then are options like Samsung Pay. As soon as saved apart for extra premium choices, Samsung has been bringing its cost answer additional down the lineup. The Galaxy S20 FE advantages from it as properly. The true benefit right here is help for MST or magnetic stripe readers that are nonetheless exceedingly well-liked in markets like India. It makes the concept of a totally digital cost future much more possible.

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE front and center

Credit score: Eric Zeman / Android Authority

Even on the software program entrance, the cleaned-up One UI is a step above most smartphone skins. I do know, I do know, Oxygen OS is the darling of Android followers. Nonetheless, there’s a case to be made for the sheer variety of helpful function additions that Samsung has made to One UI — be it Good Lock or the superb Dex Mode.

Samsung telephones additionally combine fantastically with Home windows PCs. My private favourite? Twin Bluetooth connectivity to share your audio stream with a number of audio system or headphones.

See additionally: Samsung Galaxy S20 FE vs Galaxy S20 — which must you purchase?

Priced the identical because the OnePlus 8T, the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE affords a really completely different expertise. For these unfortunate sufficient to solely get the Exynos variant (like me), the Snapdragon 865 within the OnePlus 8T affords much more grunt for efficiency seekers. Elsewhere, it’s nice to see true flagship energy in an reasonably priced Samsung cellphone. Nonetheless, efficiency isn’t the be-all and end-all of a smartphone.

Whereas lovers will, clearly, search efficiency, the common person is as a rule, on the lookout for quality-of-life options. And in a world of alternate options that don’t usually add a lot to boost usability, the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE is a shining instance of {hardware} and options that make a direct affect in everyday utilization.

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE Back side

Credit score: David Imel / Android Authority

The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE democratizes all the important thing options of the Galaxy S20 at a worth level that’s extremely aggressive and that’s no small factor.

That is Samsung realizing that with comparatively diminishing good points within the top-tier flagship phase, it’s time to give attention to distilling the improvements to one of many fastest-growing market segments.

Between a highly-competitive worth flagship, and pushing the gamut with its foldable telephones, Samsung has all the fitting items in place to make strides throughout two of an important verticals in 2021.

Learn our full verdict: Samsung Galaxy S20 FE evaluation

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