Comparing the Samsung Galaxy S22 against other phones in its price range is an important part of the testing process for my assessment of the gadget. With a starting price of $799, the Samsung Galaxy S22 is comparable to the iPhone 13 and the Google Pixel 6. Even if the iPhone 13 is more expensive than the S22, the Pixel 6’s starting price of $599 still puts it in the same price range as the other two.
A closer look at the Galaxy S22 and Pixel 6 shows that Samsung’s phone wins some and loses some, which isn’t unexpected considering how tightly matched this trio of phones is. There is one area where the Galaxy S22 outperforms both of its competitors, and that is when you turn the phones over and examine their back camera arrays.
A telephoto lens is included in the Galaxy S22. The Pixel 6 and iPhone 13 are the only two that don’t.
As far as camera phones go, we’re focusing on the iPhone 13 and Pixel 6. A phone with a telephoto lens that doesn’t cost more than $800 is rare. Even though the OnePlus 9 didn’t have one last year, and although the OnePlus 10 Pro will have one in the near future, it will likely cost more than the Galaxy S22 when it launches in the U.S. in the coming weeks.
Getting a telephoto lens on your phone’s back cameras is a premium feature that you have to pay for if you want it. One is included with the iPhone 13 Pro, which costs $999. The Pixel 6 Pro costs $899, which is less what Samsung charges for the S22, but it’s still more than the S22 costs.
In other words, if you’re considering buying a smartphone, the Galaxy S22 has a significant hardware advantage over the competition. Samsung, on the other hand, has taken full use of that advantage.
What’s new with the telephoto lens on the Samsung Galaxy S22?
Telephoto lenses have been incorporated in previous Galaxy S versions. S22’s zoom is now much better than before, thanks to a significant upgrade made by Samsung in the flagship phone.
Both the Galaxy S22 and the Galaxy S22 Plus include a 3x optical zoom capability. The Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus could only accomplish a 3x hybrid zoom on their respective predecessors. When you zoom in on a topic, you’ll get clearer, more comprehensive results.
Digital zoom, which employs magnification technology to expand the area of the picture you’re shooting, is less reliant on this feature. As a consequence, you may end up with a lower-quality image than if you had used optical zoom, which reduces the amount of pixels in the photo.
Computational photography is used by Apple and Samsung to clean up digital zooms on their camera phones. Anyone who’s ever zoomed in on a virtually clear image improved by the Pixel’s Super Res Zoom features can attest to this.
Galaxy S22 vs. Pixel 6 vs. iPhone 13: Zoom wars!
Zoom pictures taken by the Galaxy S22 and other top smartphones are stacked to show the effects. Let’s explore whether the Pixel 6’s Super Res Zoom capability can compete with an optical zoom by using it as a starting point.
Does this mean? As long as you don’t zoom in too much, it works. Both phones’ camera apps’ automatic zooms are set to 2x on the Pixel 6 and 3x on the Galaxy S22, and the results are almost identical. The skyline of Oakland is captured crisply by the Pixel 6 without the usual digital zoom fuzziness. I like the S22 shot because the colours seem more realistic, but both basic zooms provide excellent results.
In order to get to a 7x zoom on the Pixel 6, you have to max out the zoom on the Pixel 6. If you look closely, you can see that the strong lines that used to delineate the edges of buildings have grown a bit more fuzzy. For example, in the S22 image, you can still clearly make out the Tribune building’s name.
The Galaxy S22’s Super Resolution Zoom function, which is available on both the Galaxy S22 and Galaxy S22 Plus, allows for zooms of up to 30x. Even though I’m standing on the other side of a waterway that runs through downtown Oakland, the noise in the final picture is much more noticeable. When you’re that close to the subject, it might be difficult to compose the photo. A tripod will assist with some of these difficulties, but don’t anticipate crystal-clear clarity from the Zoom feature of the Samsung Galaxy S22.
Isn’t the iPhone an option? In the same area, we tested the iPhone 13 against the Galaxy S22 and saw results that were remarkably comparable to those of our Pixel 6 vs. Galaxy S22 test. The optical zoom on the iPhone 13 is good, but it lacks the fine detail that Samsung’s phone can capture thanks to computational photography. The iPhone 13’s image quality deteriorates more fast when we zoom in, however the S22 is better able to keep a crisp picture even when zoomed in to 5x.
The future of the Samsung Galaxy S22
Having a telephoto lens alone isn’t enough to convince you to buy the Samsung Galaxy S22. Additionally, the iPhone 13 and Pixel 6 cameras exceed the Samsung Galaxy S9+ in terms of colour accuracy, skin tonality, and self-portrait quality. Although the S22’s low-light photography is much better, we believe Apple and Google still manufacture better camera phones than the Samsung Galaxy S.
Even still, when it comes to zooming in, the Galaxy S22 has a clear edge over these other devices. Samsung’s S22’s zooming skill is another point to consider when deciding whether or not to purchase the phone.