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Samsung S24 Review: Compact, Beautiful, Expensive

This is my first time in a long while using a tiny device. A few years back calling a 6.2 inch screen small would sound so funny. But right now with devices having very tiny bezels, the overall form factor of something that’s 6.2-inches diagonally means a very tiny device on hand. This is the Galaxy S24, the base model. It is great. It is beautiful, and the number one comment from everyone seeing it is that it looks like an iPhone. For me, it is the first time using the base model of the S-Series in a while. There’s the Plus and the Ultra above this. 

Let’s talk about the S24 in detail! 

Samsung S24 Review: Compact, Beautiful, Expensive

Design:

Compared to last year’s base S23, Samsung has only subtly enhanced the Galaxy S24’s aesthetics. But those subtle changes have a huge effect on the feel and look of the phone. The device has a sleek, flat-edged frame reminiscent of the iPhone 15. This new frame boasts a finish that’s fingerprint and smudge resistant. The phone’s build quality is robust, with Gorilla Glass Victus 2 front and back, as well as sturdy Armor Aluminum framing the device. What’s impressive is how light it is on the hand. I love how it feels, and throughtout my use, I’ve not been tempted to slap a case on it. 

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Display:

Samsung S24 Review: Compact, Beautiful, Expensive

The Galaxy S24 features a 6.2-inch Dynamic LTPO AMOLED. This is only slightly larger than last year’s model thanks to tinier bezels. And they are tiny! The screen gets exceptionally bright, reaching a peak of 2,600 nits for incredible outdoor visibility. There’s not a time – even under scorching sun – where I’ve wished that the display got a little brighter. 

The LTPO display tech used allows the phone to have adaptive refresh rates from 1Hz to 120Hz. This used to be a preserve for the Ultra model, and now allows this small phone to enjoy remarkable power efficiency, extending battery life.

The resolution is still 1080p, and that’s perfect for this screen size and for the distance you’ll be viewing the screen from your eyes. 

Samsung says the ultrasonic under-display fingerprint sensor has also received an upgrade, promising faster and more reliable unlocking. To me, it is still as quick and reliable as it has always been. Being ultra sonic means you don’t get those bright light flashes on other devices when unlocking the phone – those need light to shine your prints to the camera underneath the display. 

Camera:

The Galaxy S24 comes equipped with the same triple-lens camera setup as the S23: a 50MP main sensor, a 12MP ultrawide, and a 10MP telephoto with 3x optical zoom. However, Samsung has concentrated its efforts on refining the image processing. The results are immediately noticeable.

Samsung S24 Review: Compact, Beautiful, Expensive

Images captured by the S24 exhibit improved color accuracy and a marked reduction in the over-sharpening that was a characteristic of previous models. Tones are more balanced, lending a natural feel to photos that was often lacking before. These improvements extend across all three lenses, making for a more consistent shooting experience.

This is the first time I’ve been confident to shoot my TikToks with the Galaxy S-series. Normally I use an iPhone as I’m assured of video quality and stability – even in uncertain lighting conditions. The new tech on the S24 has made me a lot more confident of the output in videography. However, I believe there still needs to be improvement with camera reaction when lighting conditions change while shooting. 

Performance & Software: 

Under the hood, the Galaxy S24 is powered by the Samsung Exynos 2400. The model I’ve been using has 8GB RAM and 128GB storage. For me, everythign has been snappy, and tackling daily tasks hasn’t been an issue. I am not a gamer, but other reviewers focusing on that have had no issues. My only issue has been with Android Auto not working okay with GPS and with overheating when using it outdoors or when having a hotspot connection. I’ve talked about this on the 24Bit Podcast – which you should watch linked down below. 

Samsung S24 Review: Compact, Beautiful, Expensive

The phone ships with Android 14 and Samsung’s One UI 6.1 interface. Samsung has woven AI features throughout the system, calling it “Galaxy AI”. I think it is time to list down these AI features:

  • Live Translate: Breaks language barriers with real-time voice and text translations
  • ProVisual Engine: Enhances the photography experience with AI-driven image capturing and editing tools.
  • Circle to Search with Google: A gesture-driven search tool that allows users to search for information directly from their screen. This is coming to other Android devices too. 
  • AI-Powered Editing: Offers innovative editing tools for photos and videos, making content creation more intuitive and efficient.

Samsung stands out by promising an impressive seven years of software updates for the Galaxy S24, exceeding the update support of most Android rivals. Let’s hope they keep the promise. 

Battery & Charging: 

The Galaxy S24 ships with a 4000mAh battery. There’s still no charger in the box. And the phone only supports 25W wired fast cahrging. Wireless charging is 15W. You will need to buy those accessories separately remember. 

I’ve had no issues with battery life though. It’s a full day of use type of device. And this is with social media, web browsing and light camera work. I am not a very heavy user. If you’re a heavy user, you may have a worse battery life experience. And charging the device will take you quite a while. I wish Samsung went with at least 45W fast charging. 

24Bit Podcast Deep Dive: Is the Samsung Galaxy S24 Worth It?

Conclusion:

The main problem with Samsung’s offerings is pricing – these phones are expensive. However, right now, prices are much cheaper than what was announced at launch. This is thanks to Kenyan Shillings gains over the US dollar. But, we still lack what we see in other countries when there are massive price drops or offers. Here, a particular price point can stay like that for a long while. 

Here’s the thing though, at the prices Brandcart is quoting, and for the number of years the phone will be supported, one can argue that you’re getting good value for money. But someone getting it in a few months when it is even cheaper, re-used or refurbished, will argue they’re getting an even better deal. 

What are your thoughts? Would you consider this phone? Let me know. 

Review Summary

Design - 9.5
Display - 9.5
Cameras - 8.5
Performance - 9
Software - 9.5
AI Features - 8
Battery and Charging - 7.5

8.8

Overview

The performance of the device, the display, the design, the build, and the cameras are great. However, there's no charger, and the phone charges slowly compared to competition. The win is the 7 years of updates.

User Rating: 3.88 ( 2 votes)

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