The best Samsung phones in 2023: our 8 favorite Galaxy phones

Looking for the best Samsung phones? Samsung’s lines, particularly the well-regarded Galaxy series, include a wide range of models for different types of users, and there’s something to suit every budget. Picking one out on your own can be hard, but we’ve fully tested the entire range to create a list of the best Samsung smartphones you can buy in 2023.

After much debate, we’ve landed on the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra as our choice for the best overall Samsung smartphone because of its impressive screen, excellent camera, and substantial battery life. We’ve got suggestions for the best midrange Samsung smartphone, Samsung’s best foldable, and the best productivity smartphone from Samsung coming up too, among others. Our list of the top Samsung phones includes details on what makes them great, plus links to in-depth reviews for each phone. Check it out below to see which Samsung phone is best for you.

samsung galaxy s22 ultra note interview nick porter in white hand

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Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

Best overall Samsung phone

Pros

  • S Pen is convenient and highly accurate
  • Versatile camera takes great photos
  • The latest processor for power
  • Long software support
  • Beautiful high refresh rate screen

Cons

  • Not very fast battery charging
  • Large and heavy

Why you should buy this: You get a slim, elegant smartphone with a gorgeous screen, a highly capable camera, and outstanding battery life.

Who it’s for: Anybody looking for the most powerful smartphone Samsung has to offer.

The Galaxy S22 Ultra is expensive looking with its sleek, flat design — even though that can mean it’s kind of slippery in the hand — and the raised camera module of its predecessor is gone. It’s also the dearest of the S22 range. It features a stunning 6.8-inch Dynamic AMOLED screen, and weighs in at 229 grams, making it the heaviest in the series too. You can pick it up in a range of sophisticated colors, including Burgundy, Green, Phantom Black, and Phantom White.

The display is stunning, with a 3088 x 1440 pixel resolution, support for HDR10+, and a whopping 1,750 nits of brightness that ensures everything looks stunning, even outdoors under direct sunlight. The adaptive 120Hz refresh rate helps conserve battery life and makes a real difference in the phone’s performance, particularly when playing the latest demanding games.

Dig deeper, and the S22 packs a powerful punch. In the U.S., you’re getting the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor, while in Europe, the U.K., and some other markets, you’ll get Samsung’s Exynos 2200 chip. The base model packs 8GB of RAM with 128GB of storage, but you can upgrade to 12GB of RAM and 256GB, 512GB, or 1TB of onboard storage, though, as with its predecessor, there’s no microSD card slot here. Whichever variant you choose, the S22 Ultra should give you zero performance issues, and it’s an excellent multitasker.

Battery life hasn’t changed from the S21 Ultra: The 5,000mAh battery easily gets you through a day of heavy use, including playing the latest games and watching videos. Lighter use may see you through two days. There’s also faster 45W charging, so you’ll be juiced up again in no time — though you won’t find a 45W charging brick in the box — as well as 15W wireless charging and reverse PowerShare.

The cameras here are impressive too: a 108-megapixel main, 12MP ultrawide, 10MP telephoto (10x optical zoom), and 10MP telephoto (3x optical zoom) plus a 40MP selfie camera and 8K video recording. Samsung’s added some great features like Nightography this time around: the Big Pixel Sensor lets in more light with minimal noise, while the Super Clear Glass and Lens tone down lens flare for excellent shots in low-light conditions. There’s also improved 3x, 10x, and 30x zoom.

But perhaps the main standout feature here is the addition of the S Pen. With the demise of the Galaxy Note, the S22 Ultra steps up with a built-in S Pen ready to tackle your productivity tasks, and do lots of fun things. The S Pen features a new, grippy coating and has a quicker response time than ever before. It stashes handily away in the bottom of the phone when not in use.

The S22 Ultra is one of the most forward-looking phones you can buy right now, with its powerful processor, excellent cameras, and gorgeous display. However, keep in mind that the Samsung Galaxy S23 is just around the corner, so unless you can find a fantastic deal, it’s worth waiting to see what comes next.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

Best overall Samsung phone

Purple Samsung Galaxy S22 front and back.

Andrew Martonik / DIgital Trends

Samsung Galaxy S22

Best Samsung phone runner-up

Pros

  • Pleasingly compact and sturdy build
  • A gorgeous flat OLED screen
  • Best-in-class Android OS upgrade policy
  • Reliable cameras
  • Fluid performance

Cons

  • Small battery that drains quickly
  • Charging speeds really need a boost
  • Ultrawide camera has a distortion quirk
  • Runs hot quickly under load

Why you should buy this: The Samsung Galaxy S22 is a pocketable powerhouse that includes everything most smartphone owners need.

Who it’s for: Anybody looking for a powerful mainstream smartphone for everyday use.

If you can’t quite justify the price of the S22 Ultra, the Galaxy S22 is an excellent alternative that will save you $400. It’s a whole lot more compact than the S22 Ultra, with a 6.1-inch screen, yet it boasts the same processor. Battery life is a bit disappointing, though, with its 3,700mAh battery seeing around four to five hours of screen-on time with fairly demanding usage. It should last through a full day with lighter usage, but don’t expect to use it for gaming or watching long movies unless you have a charger or battery pack nearby.

Charging is also slower than the S22 Ultra, at 25 watts, and there’s no charger in the box. Finally, the rear camera packs a triple rather than a quad lens, but it still takes great shots that will more than satisfy the casual smartphone photographer. Most importantly, it’s noticeably lighter than the S22 Ultra, weighing in at 168 grams, making it an excellent choice for those who prefer their phones pocketable or like to use them one-handed.

Samsung Galaxy S22

Samsung Galaxy S22

Best Samsung phone runner-up

samsung galaxy s22 plus review  13

Digital Trends / Andy Zahn

Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus

Best large Samsung phone

Pros

  • Large, durable, and beautiful screen
  • Excellent camera system
  • Powerful hardware
  • IP68 weather resistance

Cons

  • Price is a bit steep
  • Doesn’t do much to set itself apart

Why you should buy this: The Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus offers an expansive and gorgeous screen, great battery life, and top performance at a reasonable price.

Who it’s for: Anybody who wants a smartphone with a larger screen and power to spare.

If you’re looking for a larger screen but don’t need all the bells and whistles that the Galaxy S22 Ultra has on offer, then Samsung’s Galaxy S22 Plus has you covered. It’s kind of the sweet spot between Samsung’s ultra-powerful flagship and the very capable but much more pocketable Galaxy S22.

In most ways, the Galaxy S22 Plus is simply a larger version of the S22 with the same processor and camera specs. However, it sports a 6.6-inch Dynamic AMOLED screen that gets it much closer to the S22 Ultra, making it a great pick for anybody who likes the bigger display but doesn’t want to spend an extra $400 to get it. To be clear, the S22 Ultra has a higher pixel density, but most folks aren’t likely to notice that in everyday use.

Like most smartphones, the larger size of the S22 Plus means it gets to pack in a bigger battery — 4,500mAh in this case — and Samsung has tucked another surprise in here with faster 45W charging. This means the Galaxy S22 Plus should easily get you through a day of normal use, and if you do find yourself running low on a busy day, you’ll be able to top it up much more quickly.

Samsung Galaxy S22+

Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus

Best large Samsung phone

samsung galaxy z fold 4 review open on table

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4

Best Samsung phone for productivity

Pros

  • Usable cover screen
  • Excellent multitasking features
  • Inner screen is great for games and video
  • Reliable and fun camera
  • Water resistant and durable materials

Cons

  • Heavy use kills the battery
  • Slow charging

Why you should buy this: Now the Galaxy Note is no more, the Galaxy Z Fold 4 is a productivity buff’s dream, with its dual display, up to 1TB of storage, and robust yet light Armor Aluminum frame.

Who it’s for: Anybody who wants a productivity punch and top-notch specs bundled into a foldable format.

Put simply, the Galaxy Z Fold 4 is the best Samsung phone for productivity on the market right now, sporting a cool foldable form factor. You can pick the phone up in Gray Green, Phantom Black, Beige, or a Samsung-exclusive Burgundy color. The first thing you’ll notice is the productivity-focused dual screens: The 6.2-inch front display and 7.6-inch main display both boast a 120Hz variable refresh rate that adapts depending on what you’re doing. There’s a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, and a robust yet lightweight Armor Aluminum frame with Gorilla Glass Victus+ on the cover screen and back, for added durability.

With the Z Fold 4, you’re getting the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 chip in both the U.S. and the U.K., with 12GB RAM and up to 1TB of onboard storage (though there’s no microSD card slot). The 4,400mAh battery should see you through most days with plenty of change, and there’s up to 25W wired charging and 15W wireless charging, though there’s no charger in the box.

On the camera front, there’s a 50MP main sensor, a 12MP wide-angle lens, and a 10MP telephoto with 3x optical zoom and digital 30x Space Zoom mode. There’s also a 4MP Under Display Camera.

But where the Galaxy Z Fold 4 stands out is its productivity features. There’s support for the S Pen, but no storage slot, though you can pick up a case with included storage. The Z Fold 4 is running Android 13 which gives you the Taskbar. This works like a Windows PC taskbar to allow quick switching between apps, yet handily disappears when you don’t want it — for example, when watching full-screen videos.

You can use up to three apps on the unfolded screen and add a fourth app over the top, which can be used as a floating window. Altering the shape and size of each app window is a breeze, and it’s really easy to activate multitasking. The Galaxy Z Fold 4 also works with Samsung’s DeX mode, turning your smartphone into a desktop computer as well as providing access to Microsoft’s Xbox Games Pass. You’ll also get 5G connectivity and four Android OS updates, as well as five years of security updates, ensuring this phone will last for years to come.

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4

Best Samsung phone for productivity

samsung galaxy z flip 5 leak larger cover display crease less visible 4 review 16

Joe Maring/Digital Trends

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4

Best foldable Samsung phone

Pros

  • Flatter design looks and feels fantastic
  • Bespoke customization is unmatched
  • Excellent main display
  • Blazing fast performance
  • Good, fun cameras

Cons

  • Battery still only lasts a day
  • Limited cover screen functionality

Why you should buy this: It’s the follow-up to Samsung’s best-selling foldable, the Z Flip 3, with a bigger battery, faster performance, slimmer hinge, and many more subtle — but important — improvements.

Who it’s for: Those who simply must have the latest and most popular foldable.

The Z Flip 4 takes everything the Z Flip 3 offers — cute, compact design, a durable hinge, and excellent performance — and supercharges it. This time around, you’re getting an improved, refined design, with a slimmer hinge that feels just as satisfying to flip open and closed. The Z Flip 4 also boasts a flatter frame, giving it a sleeker, more appealing aesthetic compared to the rounded frame of the Z Flip 3.

There’s a 1.9-inch AMOLED cover screen with 260 x 512 resolution. Samsung has kept the cover screen the same size, but it’s still great for managing notifications or checking your calendar. Flipping the phone open reveals a 6.7-inch AMOLED display with a 2640 x 1080 resolution and variable 1Hz to 120Hz refresh rate.

The Z Flip 4 packs Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 chip, with 8GB of RAM and up to 512GB internal storage. This phone is fast; really fast. It flies through every task, handling multitasking with ease, and the processor combined with the variable refresh rate means everything is super smooth, too.

The Galaxy Z Flip 4 boasts improved battery life compared to its predecessor, courtesy of a beefier 3,700mAh dual-cell battery. You also get 25W wired charging, taking you from 0-50% charge in around 30 minutes. There’s even support for fast wireless charging and wireless PowerShare.

Finally: cameras. You’re getting a 12MP primary lens with optical image stabilization and dual pixel autofocus, a 12MP ultrawide camera, and a 10MP selfie camera. The main camera’s sensor allows for 65% brighter shots, meaning improved performance in low-light conditions. Added features like FlexCam, which lets you partially fold the phone, prop it up, and take photos at different angles, are a nice touch, and you can use this feature in Instagram, WhatsApp, and Facebook, as well as in the main camera app. There’s also Quick Shot mode, which lets you take portrait mode selfies and preview the results in the phone’s actual ratio.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4

Best foldable Samsung phone

samsung galaxy s21 fe 5g review hero image

Adam Doud/Digital Trends

Samsung Galaxy S21 FE

Best mid-range Samsung phone

Pros

  • Powerful specifications
  • Solid cameras
  • Impressive 120Hz display
  • Priced well for a flagship

Cons

  • Touchscreen issues
  • Battery just OK
  • Too much competition at its price point

Why you should buy this: You get flagship specs, including an impressive 120Hz display, powerful performance, and a solid camera, plus it now has Android 13.

Who it’s for: Anybody who wants flagship specs and a gorgeous 120Hz screen for playing the latest games, without the S22’s price tag.

The S21 FE launched at a bit of a strange time, almost a year after the S21 series landed (and its predecessor, the S20 FE) and right before the S22 reveal in February 2022. But that doesn’t mean it’s not worth your time. It may be nothing to write home about design-wise, but it features a stunning 6.4-inch dynamic AMOLED screen with a 120Hz refresh rate that’s great for gaming, and comes in Graphite, Olive, Lavender, or White, depending on where you’re buying the phone.

With a 2400 x 1800 pixel resolution, the 1080p display may not have the highest resolution, but this actually helps battery life, great for those lengthy gaming sessions. The phone is comfortable to hold one-handed, whether you’re grinding in Genshin Impact or playing CoD: Mobile with friends. The display’s extremely bright, too, so you’ll rarely need it set at full brightness, another boon for battery life.

Under the hood, the S21 FE packs the same chip as the S21 Ultra: the Snapdragon 888 — though it’s a little disappointing Samsung didn’t pack in the newer Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor. That said, performance is great, and this phone should be able to handle the latest games and multitasking with ease, although you may notice the occasional stutter with some more demanding games. You get 6GB or 8GB of RAM and 128GB or 256GB of storage too, but no microSD slot.

Heavy gamers might feel a little let down by the 4,500mAh battery. Yes, it should see you through a full day (unless you’re spending the entire day on Genshin Impact), but you’ll almost certainly need to top up come evening. Speaking of topping up, the phone has 25W fast charging and 15W wireless charging, the same as most of its competitors, so you’ll be back up and gaming quickly.

The cameras here aren’t anything particularly special and are very similar to the S20 FE. There’s a triple camera sensor with a 12MP main, 12MP ultrawide, and an 8MP telephoto, though the S21 FE can capture 1080p at 240fps. Results are great in daylight, but you’ll need some ambient light to get anything good at night. Portrait mode does a brilliant job of picking out your subject’s edges while nicely blurring the background, but the zoom isn’t fantastic on this phone.

Overall, the S21 FE may seem like a strange buy when the S22 series is available, but for gaming enthusiasts looking for a phone with a bright 120Hz display and solid performance, it’s a solid pick.

Samsung Galaxy S21 FE

Samsung Galaxy S21 FE

Best mid-range Samsung phone

samsung galaxy a53 5g review back

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Samsung Galaxy A53 5G

Best value Samsung phone

Pros

  • Pretty design
  • IP67 water-resistance
  • Camera is great for social media
  • Vibrant screen
  • Two-day battery life

Cons

  • Performance can be sluggish
  • Not an upgrade to the A52 and A52S

Why you should buy this: As well as excellent battery life and a 6.5-inch 120Hz screen, the A53 5G packs a range of useful features, including a microSD card slot and IP67 water resistance.

Who it’s for: Anybody looking for a capable, great value 5G phone offering two-day battery life.

For $450, the Galaxy A53 5G is a no-brainer. It looks more expensive than it is, packs a gorgeous 6.5-inch super AMOLED screen and 5,000mAh battery, and comes in white, black, or two eye-catching shades, a sky blue or pale peach.

Weighing in at just 186 grams, this phone is a little lighter than its predecessor. The 6.5-inch screen has a 120Hz refresh rate you can easily lock at 60Hz to save battery life. Everything looks great, with vibrant colors and excellent contrast levels.

Under the hood is the octa-core Exynos 1280 chip with 6GB or 8GB of RAM, so the A53 5G should be able to power through most tasks. There’s up to 256GB of onboard storage and, notably, a microSD card slot to add more. You can also allocate up to 6GB of internal storage to use as virtual RAM — great for multitasking.

The battery here is a stand-out. The 5,000mAh cell gives you two-day battery life with general use at 120Hz, though this will likely drop with heavier usage or gaming. If you’re fed up having to charge your phone at the end of every day, this is the device for you. You also get 25-watt wired charging, but there’s no wireless charging, and no charger in the box, either.

If we had to say anything negative about the A53 5G, it’s that the 3.5mm headphone jack has sadly gone the way of most other Samsung phones.

For the price, the A53 5G packs a ton of features, including an IP67 water resistance rating, microSD card slot, and 5G. This is also the first A series phone to offer four Android OS updates and five years of security updates, making it an excellent, future-proof choice.

Samsung Galaxy A53 5G

Samsung Galaxy A53 5G

Best value Samsung phone

Promo image for the Samsung Galaxy XCover 6 Pro.

Samsung

Samsung Galaxy XCover6 Pro

Best rugged Samsung phone

Pros

  • Rugged phone withstands drops up to 5 feet
  • IP68 rating
  • Replaceable battery
  • MIL-STD-810 certified
  • Expandable storage

Cons

  • Rugged style might not be for everyone
  • No satellite connectivity

Why you should buy this: It’s a rugged, military-grade phone with an IP68 rating against sand, water, dust, and dirt that can withstand falls up to 5 feet — and it boasts a replaceable 4,050mAh battery.

Who it’s for: Those who want a rugged phone for outdoor adventures or work in the field.

Although it’s designed for industrial use, the Samsung Galaxy XCover6 Pro is a great choice for anybody who’s tough on their phone. It can withstand falls up to five feet, has an IP68 rating, making it resistant to dirt, dust, water, and sand, and is MIL-STD-810 certified, meaning it won’t pack up at high altitudes or in hot conditions. There’s more to this phone than its rugged features, though — it boasts a 6.6-inch 1080p edge-to-edge display with Gorilla Glass Victus+ and a Snapdragon 778G octa-core processor with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage (that can be upgraded with a microSD card). The screen boasts Enhanced Touch capabilities so that you can use it with wet hands or gloves, and the phone runs Android 12. There’s also both 5G and Wi-Fi 6E support, although Samsung hasn’t thrown in any emergency satellite connectivity features yet.

Its best feature is its replaceable 4,050mAh battery that supports 15W fast charging and can be swapped out, not to mention the pogo pin connectors for docked charging or connecting accessories like scanners and card readers — the XCover Pro is EMV Level 1 certified, so you can also use it as a point-of-sale terminal.

There are two cameras on the back — a main 50MP camera and a secondary 8MP ultrawide one — plus a 13MP front-facing camera and a headphone jack, so you don’t need to worry about losing your wireless earbuds at work. You can pick up the XCover6 Pro for $600 on Amazon right now.

Samsung Galaxy XCover6 Pro 5G

Samsung Galaxy XCover6 Pro

Best rugged Samsung phone

Editors’ Recommendations