Home / News / Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra First Look: AI Takes Center Stage

Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra First Look: AI Takes Center Stage

160
Samsung-Galaxy-S24-Ultra-First-Look-AI-Takes-Center-Stage

When I recently called a Korean restaurant to make a reservation, I had no issue communicating with the person on the other end even though she wasn’t speaking English. That’s because I was trying out the Galaxy S24 Ultra, one of three new phones Samsung announced on Wednesday, which can translate phone calls in real-time.

This story is part of Samsung Event, CNET’s collection of news, tips and advice around Samsung’s most popular products.

Samsung, like the rest of the tech industry, is enthralled with artificial intelligence at the moment. The Galaxy S24 series is rife with features like the translation example mentioned above that leverage generative AI – or AI that uses large language models to create content or provide conversational (but not always accurate) answers. It’s another sign that tech giants are increasingly using AI to distinguish their devices from the pack and get consumers excited about upgrading their mobile devices in what has been a struggling smartphone market. The Galaxy S24 Ultra launches for $1,300, which is $100 pricier than last year’s Galaxy S23 Ultra, on Jan. 31 alongside the cheaper Galaxy S24 Plus and Galaxy S24.

Read more: From AI to Mixed Reality, CES 2024 Products Imagine A World Beyond Mobile Apps

With the Galaxy S24 series, you’ll be able to have the Notes app format or summarize notes for you, circle any image to launch a Google search for that item and rewrite your text messages in a different tone before sending them. Samsung groups all these tools (among others) together under the blanket moniker known as Galaxy AI, and it’s available on the Galaxy S24, S4 Plus and S24 Ultra. These features will also come to the Galaxy S23 lineup through an update.

galaxy-s24-series-cnet-00-00-10-05-still006.png

Watch this: Samsung Reveals Its New S24 Series Phones and Their AI Chops

06:47

Some of those functions may sound familiar; they’re very similar to other generative AI-powered tools we’ve seen from companies like Google and Microsoft. In fact, Samsung is partnering with Google on the technology behind some of its new AI features, including the ones for rewriting texts, summarizing notes and moving individual objects in photos. 

The Galaxy S24 Ultra also gets a sharper new telephoto camera and a titanium build. All three phones also have Qualcomm’s latest processor and brighter screens.

I briefly got to check out the Galaxy S24 series ahead of Samsung’s announcement, and here are my early impressions of the Ultra.

Galaxy AI on the Galaxy S24 Ultra

The new Circle to Search feature being shown on the Galaxy S24 Ultra The new Circle to Search feature being shown on the Galaxy S24 Ultra

The new Circle to Search feature being shown on the Galaxy S24 Ultra

John Kim/CNET

Samsung’s Notes app can organize text into bullet points and even offers different templates to choose from. Generative Edit, which is a lot like Google’s Magic Eraser, makes it possible to move, erase and manipulate individual objects in photos.

During a demo, a Samsung representative traced the area around a skateboarder performing a trick in a photo and moved the skater to make their jump look even higher. Samsung and Google are pitching features like these as being useful for creative purposes by giving anyone the ability to significantly alter photos straight from their phone with no photo editing knowledge. Still, it’s hard to ignore the potential for misuse, as my colleague Sareena Dayaram has previously pointed out.

One photography feature I’m excited about in particular is the ability to remove reflections in the edit suggestions section. As someone who photographs screens quite often, I can attest to how difficult it can be to avoid glare and reflections. I could also see this being useful for avid travelers who snap photos through car, bus or train windows on vacation.

Samsung is clearly focusing on productivity first and foremost with the Galaxy S24’s AI features, although many of these tools feel familiar rather than new. Galaxy AI has the potential to make accomplishing certain tasks on the S24 family feel more convenient, but it also doesn’t bring anything overwhelmingly new to the table. Maybe I’ll feel differently after I’ve spent more time with the Galaxy S24 Ultra.

Galaxy S24 Ultra specs and design

The back of the Galaxy S24 Ultra The back of the Galaxy S24 Ultra

The back of the Galaxy S24 Ultra

John Kim/CNET

All three phones run on Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 processor, which isn’t a surprise considering Samsung typically puts Qualcomm’s latest chip in its flagship US phones. Qualcomm announced the chip in October 2023 and flaunted its ability to run generative AI algorithms on the device.  The S24 Ultra also has a larger vapor chamber compared to last year’s phone, which Samsung says should keep the device cool while playing demanding games. 

Battery size, storage and memory and storage are essentially the same as those in the Galaxy S23 Ultra.

The Galaxy S24 family shows that Samsung, along with other tech giants, is learning about how generative AI can be useful on our phones following ChatGPT’s rapid rise. Galaxy AI seems like a promising start, although Samsung may have to do more to make its offerings stand out, especially as Apple is rumored to bring more generative AI-fueled features to the iPhone later this year.

Editors’ note: CNET is using an AI engine to help create some stories. For more, see this post.

Samsung Galaxy S24 series specs vs. Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

Samsung Galaxy S24 UltraSamsung Galaxy S24 PlusSamsung Galaxy S24Samsung Galaxy S23 UltraDisplay size, tech, resolution, refresh rate, brightness6.8-inch AMOLED; QHD+ resolution; 1-120Hz adaptive refresh rate6.7-inch AMOLED; QHD+ resolution; 1-120Hz adaptive refresh rate6.2-inch AMOLED; FHD+ resolution; 1-120Hz adaptive refresh rate6.8-inch AMOLED; 3,088×1,440 pixels; 120Hz adaptive refresh ratePixel densityTBDTBDTBD500 ppiDimensions (inches)6.40 x 3.11 x 0.34 in6.24 x 3 x 0.3 in5.79 x 2.78 x 0.3 in6.43 x 3.07 x 0.35 inDimensions (millimeters)163 x 79 x 8.6 mm158 x 76 x 7.6 mm147 x 71 x 7.6 mm163.3 x 78 x 8.9 mmWeight (grams, ounces)233 g (8.22 oz) 197 g (6.95 oz)168 g (5.93oz)234 g (8.25 oz)Mobile softwareAndroid 14Android 14Android 14Android 13Camera200-megapixel (wide), 12-megapixel (ultrawide) 10-megapixel (3x telephoto) 50-megapixel (5x telephoto)50-megapixel (wide), 12-megapixel (ultrawide), 10-megapixel (telephoto)50-megapixel (wide), 12-megapixel (ultrawide), 10-megapixel (telephoto)200-megapixel (wide), 12-megapixel (ultrawide) 10-megapixel (3x telephoto) 10-megapixel (10x telephoto)Front-facing camera12-megapixel12-megapixel 12-megapixel 12-megapixel Video captureTBDTBDTBD8KProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for GalaxyStorage and RAM12GB RAM + 256GB, 512GB, 1TB12GB RAM + 256GB, 512GB8GB RAM + 128GB, 256GB8GB RAM + 256GB; 12GB RAM + 256GB, 512GB, 1TB Expandable storageNoneNoneNoneNoneBattery5,000 mAh4,900 mAh4,000 mAh5,000 mAhFingerprint sensorUnder displayUnder displayUnder displayUnder displayConnectorUSB-CUSB-CUSB-CUSB-CHeadphone jackNoneNoneNoneNoneSpecial featuresTitanium frame, 2,600-nit screen; 7 years of OS and security updates; 5G (mmWave); IP68 water resistance; wireless PowerShare to charge other devices; integrated S Pen; UWB for finding other devices; 45W wired charging (charger not included); Galaxy AI; Wi-Fi 72,600-nit screen; 7 years of OS and security updates; 5G (mmWave); IP68 water resistance; wireless PowerShare to charge other devices; 45W wired charging (charger not included); Galaxy AI; Wi-Fi 6E2,600-nit screen; 7 years of OS and security updates; 5G (mmWave); IP68 water resistance; wireless PowerShare to charge other devices; 25W wired charging (charger not included); Galaxy AI; Wi-Fi 6E5G (Sub6, mmWave); IP68 water resistance; wireless PowerShare to charge other devices; integrated S Pen; 100x Space Zoom; 10x optical zoom; UWB for finding other devices; 45W wired chargingUS price starts at$1,300 (256GB)$900 (256GB)$800 (128GB)$1,200 (256GB)UK price starts atConverts to £1,020 (256GB)Converts to £710 (256GB)Converts to £625 (128GB)£1,249 (256GB)Australia price starts atConverts to AU$1,960 (256GB)Converts to AU$1,360 (256GB)Converts to AU$1,205 (256GB)AU$1,949 (256GB)

!function(f,b,e,v,n,t,s) {if(f.fbq)return;n=f.fbq=function(){n.callMethod? n.callMethod.apply(n,arguments):n.queue.push(arguments)}; if(!f._fbq)f._fbq=n;n.push=n;n.loaded=!0;n.version=’2.0′; n.queue=[];t=b.createElement(e);t.async=!0; t.src=v;s=b.getElementsByTagName(e)[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(t,s)}(window, document,’script’, ‘https://connect.facebook.net/en_US/fbevents.js’); fbq(‘set’, ‘autoConfig’, false, ‘789754228632403’); fbq(‘init’, ‘789754228632403’);

Comments