Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra Review: The New Standard in Premium Smartphones

Unleash Your Creativity and Productivity Potential

Martin Guay
Martin Guay - Chief Editor
19 Min Read
AI Enabled Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra 5G (Unlocked, CAD Version & Warranty) Titanium Black 256GB, S Pen, 120 Hz AMOLED Display, 200MP Camera, Nightography
4.3 Redefining Android! S24 Ultra boasts stunning display, 200MP cam, & S Pen magic. But is its premium price worth it? Our review reveals all! #Samsung #Android #GalaxyS24Ultra
Review
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The just-released Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra represents a monumental leap forward, cementing Samsung's position as the undisputed leader in premium Android smartphones. As the latest iteration in the company's flagship Galaxy S series, the S24 Ultra packs improvements across the board, from its sophisticated design to its dazzling display to its pro-grade cameras and top-tier performance.

With its combination of bleeding-edge hardware, extensive feature set, and long-term software commitment, the Galaxy S24 Ultra sets a new benchmark that competitors will struggle to match. This is the ultimate expression of just how refined today's smartphones can be. While not inexpensive, the S24 Ultra provides unmatched capabilities that power users, creative professionals, and technology enthusiasts will appreciate.

Unboxing experience of the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra smartphone in Orchid Gray color, showcasing the phone and its packaging elements.

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AI Enabled Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra 5G (Unlocked, CAD Version & Warranty) Titanium Black 256GB, S Pen, 120 Hz AMOLED Display, 200MP Camera, Nightography

★★★★★
Amazon.ca

The Galaxy S24 Ultra excels in every area that matters for a modern flagship phone. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 platform delivers lightning-quick speed, ensuring apps, games, and every interaction feel fast and fluid. The upgraded camera system captures incredible photos and videos in any setting. The expansive screen is bright and beautiful. AI-powered software boosts productivity and creativity. And subtle design refinements like the titanium frame exude elegance and style.

For those seeking the best Android smartphone experience money can buy, the Galaxy S24 Ultra sits at the top of the pile. It's the phone that's easy to recommend for discerning users who want cutting-edge technology, versatility, and refinement. While not inexpensive, it commands its premium pricing by providing an unmatched feature set and user experience. Read on for an in-depth look at how the Galaxy S24 Ultra performs in day-to-day use across all disciplines.

Specs and Features

Samsung pulled out all the stops outfitting the Galaxy S24 Ultra with top-tier specs and capabilities. Key hardware highlights include:

FeatureSpecification
Display6.8-inches Dynamic AMOLED 2X, Quad HD+ resolution, up to 120Hz adaptive refresh rate, peak brightness 1750 nits, HDR10+ certified
ChipsetQualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 Mobile Platform for Galaxy – CPU configuration undisclosed
Memory12GB LPDDR5 RAM, up to 1TB UFS 4.0 internal storage
Rear Camera200MP wide f/1.7 with pixel binning, 12MP ultra-wide f/2.2, 10MP telephoto 3x optical zoom f/2.4, 10MP telephoto 5x optical zoom f/3.4. 100x space zoom, up to 8K 30fps video recording
Front Camera12MP f/2.2
Battery5,000mAh capacity
Charging45W wired charging, 15W wireless charging, wireless reverse charging
DurabilityIP68 dust/water resistance
BiometricsFingerprint sensor ultrasonic under display
ConnectivityWiFi 6E, Bluetooth 5.3, 5G
S PenSupported with Bluetooth, accelerometer and gyroscope

Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra smartphone in Orchid Gray color with S Pen stylus.

On the software side, One UI 6.1 based on Android 14 provides a deep feature set including:

  • Intelligent AI assistant Bixby
  • Flexible window and split-screen multitasking
  • S Pen air gestures and remote functions
  • AI-modeled photo editing in the Gallery app
  • Object eraser and person eraser for clever editing
  • Google Duo live sharing during video calls
  • Quick Share to instantly exchange files with nearby Galaxy users
  • Private Share encrypted file sharing
  • Samsung Wallet for digital cards and ID
  • Advanced Pro camera controls with RAW capture
  • Director's View picture-in-picture camera
  • Super Steady video stabilization
  • Live to Translate and Live Transcribe accessibility features

With top-end specs, extensive productivity features, and cutting-edge camera capabilities, the Galaxy S24 Ultra is extremely well-equipped to handle anything you throw at it. This is a technological tour de force in a striking yet refined package.

Design and Ergonomics

The Galaxy S24 Ultra brings subtle but meaningful design refinements that offer durability and style. The most noticeable change is the new polished titanium frame, providing rigidity while looking appropriately premium for Samsung's flagship model. Titanium offers a 30% higher strength-to-weight ratio compared to stainless steel, so the frame resists bending or warping.

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Gorilla Glass Victus 2 on the display and back panel provide toughness and scratch resistance. The rear glass has a luxurious frosted haze appearance, catching the light beautifully. On the Orchid Gray model, a pearlescent sheen shifts subtly as you move the device. Samsung also offers Phantom Black, Cotton Flower, and Lime Gold colorways to suit different tastes.

Ergonomics benefits from the expansive 6.8-inch display remaining flat this generation, unlike the prominently curved screens on previous Ultras. The symmetrical rectangular shape sits comfortably in hand. Large hands will have an easier time managing this substantial phone, but one-handed use remains possible thanks to One UI's well-designed gestures and interface scaling.

Excellent tactile feedback comes from the protruding power and volume buttons on the right edge. The trademark textured power key is easy to find by feel. Responsive software buttons complement the minimalist physical controls.

On the bottom edge, the USB-C charging port, primary speaker, and SIM slot are neatly lined up. The typical Bixby button has been dropped, streamlining the design.

The exposed metal frame provides important slip resistance while looking sleek compared to bulkier cases. Even so, a case is still recommended to protect the expansive display and vulnerable camera module. The glass back and titanium mid-frame admirably resist fingerprints.

Weighing 233g and measuring 8.9mm thin, the S24 Ultra hits a reasonable size considering its huge screen and robust construction. The weight increase is imperceptible versus last year's model. Those upgrading from smaller phones will notice the heft, but Samsung's excellent ergonomic cues make the Ultra easier to handle than its scale suggests.

Galaxy S24 Ultra 512GB (Unlocked)

AI Enabled Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra 5G (Unlocked, CAD Version & Warranty) Titanium Black 512GB, S Pen, 120 Hz AMOLED Display, 200MP Camera, Nightography
End date: December 31, 2024
Galaxy S24 Ultra 512GB (Unlocked)
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Samsung.com

Display and Audio

The Galaxy S24 Ultra's display is simply sublime. The expansive 6.8-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X panel offers exceptional brightness, fluid responsiveness, and incredible detail. The default Vivid colour profile instantly stands out with bold, vibrant colours optimized for HDR content. Bright blue skies and verdant green foliage pop with intensity.

Switching to the Natural profile produces more accurate and balanced colours for a true-to-life look. Samsung provides extensive customization such as finer white balance adjustments to tailor the display to your preferences. Adaptive colour correction modifies the picture in real time based on ambient lighting conditions.

With a dense 500+ pixel-per-inch resolution, images and text look brilliantly sharp. The crisp details make the S24 Ultra ideal for reading ebooks, browsing the web, or editing photos. Even fine app interfaces and small fonts render cleanly without fuzziness.

HDR video shines thanks to excellent contrast and highlights. With a typical max brightness of 1200 nits and peaks up to 1750 nits, legibility is fantastic even under harsh direct sunlight. For comfortable nighttime viewing, the Extra Dim setting drops brightness down to 1 nit, ideal for dark rooms.

Gaming and video shine with the dynamic 120Hz adaptive refresh rate smoothing out animations and transitions. Scrolling and swiping feel instantaneous and natural. LTPO technology allows the display to scale between 1 to 120Hz depending on the content, preserving battery life.

The centred hole-punch front camera is unobtrusive, especially with Samsung's excellent edge handling. The slender uniform bezels provide a modern aesthetic. Excellent palm rejection minimizes inadvertent touches along the edges.

Dual stereo speakers deliver balanced and immersive sound. Dialogue in movies comes through crisp and clear. The substantial volume and Dolby Atmos support create an enveloping cinematic experience. Bass performance understandably lacks the impact of larger drivers, but the output remains respectable.

Camera, Video, and Productivity

The Galaxy S24 Ultra delivers class-leading camera performance that captures stunning photos and videos in virtually any environment. This versatile system lets photography enthusiasts and casual users alike snap eye-catching shots any time inspiration strikes.

Samsung sticks with a sizable 200MP 1/1.3-inch sensor for the primary camera, using pixel binning to output 12MP photos with enhanced detail and low-light performance. Images show excellent sharpness, a wide dynamic range, and vivid but natural colours. The advanced processing produces faces with natural skin tones, avoidance of blown-out highlights, and excellent shadow detail. Shooting in the full 200MP resolution retains an astonishing amount of zoomable detail.

Ultra-wide photography excels thanks to the 12MP sensor capturing sweeping vistas or unique architectural perspectives. Barrel distortion is apparent but reasonably controlled. Low light performance understandably falls short of the main sensor but remains very solid. Even challenging mixed indoor lighting is handled admirably.

Reach faraway subjects cleanly using the twin telephoto lenses. The 10MP f/2.4 sensor provides 3x optical magnification, transitioning smoothly from the 1x main camera. Stepping up to the 10MP f/3.4 telephoto enables a nice portrait-friendly 5x optical zoom. At these factors, images retain superb clarity free from the excessive processing required for high digital zoom ranges.

Space Zoom pushes to an astonishing 100x super-resolution using AI techniques to combine the high-res sensors. Quality understandably diminishes past 30x, but being able to distinguish faces or read text from such extreme distances remains impressive. The 10x hybrid zoom produces usable social media-worthy shots.

Computational photography adds versatility, from the AI-powered portrait mode enhancing facial details to the capable Night mode illuminating dim scenes. The fun Photo Remaster tool stylizes images with artistic filters. For creative control, the Expert RAW app outputs RAW files with lossless compression retaining extensive flexibility.

8K 30fps video provides incredible detail and resolution to capture cinematic-quality footage. Steady recording comes courtesy of advanced OIS stabilization even when moving. 4K offers flexible 60fps and 120fps slow-motion options. The front-facing camera shoots crisp 4K video ideal for vlogging.

The S Pen stylus expands productivity via precise on-screen control. Handwritten notes auto-convert to text in Samsung Notes and Microsoft Office apps. Screenshots are annotated cleanly with the S Pen's fine tip. The Bluetooth remote functionality provides helpful camera and media controls. Air actions allow navigation, app switching, and more by gesturing with the stylus.

DeX mode transforms the S24 Ultra into a makeshift desktop by connecting an external display, keyboard and mouse. Resizeable windows and a full taskbar offer a familiar computing experience powered by your phone. This flexibility helps unlock the S24 Ultra's phenomenal multitasking capabilities from anywhere.

Performance and Battery Life

Blazing fast speed comes courtesy of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 processor tailored for Galaxy devices. The undisclosed CPU configuration rips through apps and games with incredible alacrity. Even extended gaming sessions maintain solid 60fps gameplay without throttling or slowdown.

The S24 Ultra benchmarks as one of the fastest Android phones ever, even beating Apple's latest iPhone 15 Pro Max in certain tests. While synthetic benchmarks should not guide purchasing decisions, this level of elite performance provides fluidity across the interface and apps.

The 120Hz display refresh rate matches perfectly with the phone's raw power, creating seamless scrolling and visuals. Demanding productivity apps like Photoshop run impressively well on the S24 Ultra. Multitasking juggling social media, email, messaging, and more happens instantly thanks to the 12GB RAM.

Storage is speedy too thanks to the UFS 4.0 flash providing rapid access times to your files and apps. The roomy base of 256GB gives plenty of onboard capacity, expandable to a massive 1TB. Transferring huge photos and 4K videos is a cinch.

All this performance does cause some heat buildup under load. The new vapour cooling chamber manages thermals well, but the S24 Ultra can get warm running processor-intensive apps and games for extended periods. It never reached concerning levels in our testing though.

Despite the immense power on tap, the 5000mAh battery still delivers excellent longevity thanks to AI-assisted battery management. With the default Adaptive power setting, the S24 Ultra consistently exceeds 1.5 days of mixed usage including web browsing, messaging, social media, streaming, and photography.

Over 9 hours of screen time is achievable for lighter users. The intelligent algorithm learns usage patterns, routing juice only where needed. Enabling the Extreme power saving mode can stretch up to a week on standby. Recharging the huge battery predictably takes a while – expect around 1.25 hours with the included 45W charger. 15W wireless charging comes standard.

Software and Special Features

Samsung's One UI software aims to differentiate the Galaxy experience from vanilla Android. One UI 5 based on Android 14 offers extensive style and feature customization matched only by iOS. While Samsung's heavy hand has drawbacks, the rich functionality rewards long-term users.

Visual personalization starts on the home screen. Pick between standard layouts or canvas modes with fun animations. Vibrant wallpapers and themes liven things up while custom icon packs transform your home screen aesthetic. Animated wallpapers are particularly mesmerizing.

Every system screen and menu is ripe for modification – change system fonts, icon shapes, and colour schemes, and enable tweaks like reducing animations if you prefer efficiency over flair. No other Android skin matches this design flexibility.

Helpful widgets place at-a-glance information right on your home screen. Stack widgets creatively and resize most widgets to your liking. Handy keepalive widgets like a music controller persistently overlaid make multitasking easier.

One UI's system-wide split-screen multitasking is invaluable on the expansive display. Running multiple apps simultaneously boosts productivity. You can run three apps simultaneously by adding a pop-up window. Customize aspect ratios when multitasking to optimize the view.

Many duplicative Samsung apps accompany the stock Android versions, which clutter the experience somewhat. However, Samsung's apps boast strong functionality advantages in some areas. The Internet browser enables extensive ad blocking and encryption convenience services. The SmartThings ecosystem integrates home appliances and IoT gadgets.

Bixby Voice Assistant offers capable smart home control, dictation, and information lookup. New Bixby Text Commands parse plain text requests like “text Mom I'll be 5 minutes late” seamlessly. Just don't expect the conversational competence of Google Assistant.

One UI 5 introduces “Modes” that tailor groups of home screen pages and settings for different contexts like work, entertainment, driving, and more. This proactive profile switching makes your phone fit each moment's needs. Helpful AI-powered automation further simplifies your experience.

Top-notch security comes standard with Knox protection encrypting sensitive data. The Secure Folder creates an isolated vault for private files and activity. Samsung Wallet stores digital ID cards. Private Share enables fully encrypted file sharing with other Samsung users.

The Bottom Line…

The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra exemplifies just how refined today's top-tier smartphones have become. No other device matches this intersection of cutting-edge hardware, deeply customizable software, and versatile productivity features.

While the tremendous capabilities come at a steep price, power users will appreciate the S24 Ultra's unmatched feature set and state-of-the-art industrial design. From the gorgeous dynamic AMOLED display to the pro-calibre camera system to the unique S Pen stylus, everything that makes a premium flagship great is present here.

That said, buyers who don't need every bell and whistle should consider the more affordable Galaxy S24 and S24 Plus models that retain the core strengths in a more digestible package. However, if you desire an uncompromising experience at the bleeding edge of technology, the Galaxy S24 Ultra delivers.

The perishable nature of consumer technology means holding the title of “best smartphone available” is fleeting. But here in early 2024, the Galaxy S24 Ultra wears the crown proudly. It handily outflanks rivals from Apple, Google, and other Android makers to provide an exceptional end-to-end user experience.

For Samsung devotees or newly-minted converts ready to embrace the best Galaxy yet, your next obsession awaits. The S24 Ultra forges new ground and represents the state of the art.

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AI Enabled Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra 5G (Unlocked, CAD Version & Warranty) Titanium Black 256GB, S Pen, 120 Hz AMOLED Display, 200MP Camera, Nightography
Review
Redefining Android! S24 Ultra boasts stunning display, 200MP cam, & S Pen magic. But is its premium price worth it? Our review reveals all! #Samsung #Android #GalaxyS24Ultra 4.3
Design - Refined aesthetics, premium titanium frame, flat screen (user preference), but may feel bulky. 4.5
Display - Stunning AMOLED display, high brightness, reduced reflections, ideal for various uses. 5
Camera - Excellent camera capabilities, vast improvements, but zoom quality beyond 30x diminishes. 4
Performance - Blazing-fast processor, 12GB RAM ensures smooth operation, even for demanding tasks. 5
Software - Extensive customization, long-term software updates, but some bloatware present. 4
Battery Life - Long-lasting battery with AI optimization, but charging speed hasn't improved. 4
Value - Premium features come at a premium price, consider deals or alternative models if needed. 3.5
S Pen - Valuable for productivity and creativity, but not everyone utilizes it. 4
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By Martin Guay Chief Editor
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I write, talk about technology, gadgets, the latest Android news as much as any other fellow geek, nerd, or enthusiast does. I work in the IT field as a System Administrator, and I enjoy gaming when possible. I'm into plenty of things, and you can usually find me around Ottawa, Canada!For all business inquiry email business-inquiry [@] cryovex [dot] com.
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