Samsung's S22 Ultra kicks the Galaxy Note to the curb – CNET

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The brand new Galaxy S22 Extremely is actually changing the Galaxy Word in Samsung’s lineup. 


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Samsung hasn’t formally stated the Galaxy Word is gone for good, however it would not must. Simply take one have a look at the Galaxy S22 Extremely, Samsung’s new premium telephone, and you’ll see it is the spitting picture of the Word. 

The Galaxy S Extremely line has been inching in the direction of Galaxy Word standing for years. It was notably clear in 2021 when it added S Pen compatibility. However the latest mannequin, which Samsung introduced at Unpacked on Wednesday, looks as if the ultimate push in that path. 

And it is about time.

Each telephones serve the identical goal in Samsung’s lineup by catering to prospects keen to pay high greenback for an even bigger display screen and extra digicam options. Merely put, there is not any room for the Galaxy Word to face out now that the Extremely exists.

The Galaxy Word helped popularize bigger telephones again when the business was fixated on making devices as small as potential. However that is not the case, and the S Pen alone clearly is not sufficient to maintain the Galaxy Word related.

There is not any place for the Galaxy Word anymore

S21 Ultra vs. Note 20 Ultra

The Samsung Galaxy Word 20 Extremely (left) alongside the S20 Extremely (proper)


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Do not get me fallacious, I used to be a longtime Galaxy Word fan. The gadget’s almost tablet-sized display screen and the old style feeling of jotting down notes by hand intrigued me. 

However the Galaxy Word’s heyday got here at a time when telephones have been nonetheless rising — actually. Smartphone gross sales outsold characteristic telephones for the primary time in 2013, based on Gartner, roughly two years after the unique Galaxy Word’s 2011 debut. The smartphone market was comparatively younger again then, so options like a bigger display screen and a stylus have been thought-about novel on the time. 

Most telephones that have been in style within the Galaxy Word line’s early days, just like the Samsung Galaxy S3, Apple iPhone 5 and Motorola Droid Razr Maxx, had screens that have been smaller than 5 inches. The 5.3-inch Galaxy Word appeared gigantic by comparability, but additionally distinctive. 

But in 2022, the traits that when made the Word really feel recent not appear revolutionary. Nearly each telephone has an enormous display screen that is about 6 inches or bigger, together with gadgets from Apple, Google, Motorola or OnePlus. In different phrases, large telephones at the moment are the norm fairly than the exception. Even finances telephones, like Samsung’s $250 Galaxy A13, usually embody 6-inch screens or greater now.

Learn extra: Galaxy S22 vs. S21 FE: How Samsung’s telephones evaluate

The Galaxy Word undoubtedly performed an enormous position in that shift. However that is precisely the purpose; the shift already occurred, and the Galaxy Word not feels as particular because it as soon as did. Proof of this may be seen within the Galaxy Word 20 Extremely, Samsung’s most up-to-date high-end Word that debuted in 2020. 

Apart from the S Pen, there was little that distinguished the Word 20 Extremely from the Galaxy S20 Extremely, which launched in the identical 12 months. Each telephones had spacious 6.9-inch screens and multilens cameras. The variations have been nuanced and got here to sure {hardware} particulars.

The S20 Extremely, for instance, had a sharper 48-megapixel telephoto lens in comparison with the Word 20 Extremely’s 12-megapixel telephoto lens. It additionally had further reminiscence choices and an even bigger battery, however was $100 dearer than the Word 20 Extremely at launch. 

Learn extra: The Galaxy S22 Extremely fails to excite this professional photographer. And that is an issue

Samsung’s try to keep up two totally different premium telephone manufacturers created confusion for individuals who simply wished to purchase Samsung’s top-of-the-line telephone. In 2019, it was the Word 10 Plus. In 2020, it was both the S20 Extremely or the Word 20 Extremely. Eliminating the Word model from Samsung’s lineup simplifies that construction. It additionally means individuals who choose large telephones not must determine between a stylus or a greater digicam, as they did in 2020. 

Samsung’s foldables at the moment are filling that position

Galaxy Z Fold 3

The Galaxy Z Fold 3 has almost all of the refinements you can ask for however nonetheless really feel prefer it’s lacking a goal.


Patrick Holland/CNET

The Galaxy Word began out as a distinct segment gadget for individuals who wished extra display screen area and energy than the common telephone allowed for. Its giant measurement and excessive value meant it wasn’t for everybody. But it surely nonetheless served as an early indication of the place the business was going.

Within the best-case situation for Samsung, the identical may very well be stated for the corporate’s foldable telephones. Just like the Galaxy Word, Samsung’s foldables are dearer than the usual telephone. And the enchantment of the Galaxy Z Fold 3 is within the additional display screen area it gives, identical to the Galaxy Word. Samsung appears to be hoping that the Z Fold 3 and flip phone-style Z Flip 3 will set the tempo for the place smartphones are headed, simply because the Word as soon as did. 

Who is aware of whether or not at present’s foldables will lay the muse for future telephones. However the Word actually did, and its affect has formed Samsung’s most vital launch of the 12 months. 

For extra, take a look at the whole lot else Samsung unveiled at its current Unpacked occasion together with the Galaxy S22, S22 Plus and Galaxy Tab S8. (This is how one can preorder the gadgets now.) You too can be taught extra about how the Galaxy S22 in comparison with the S21 and nightography

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