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Samsung Flagship Face-off: Galaxy Note 20 Ultra VS S20 Ultra

The two flagships go head-to-head!

Samsung’s new flagships are official tonight, and there are already a lot of folks wondering if they should spring for the Korean brand’s new hotness or spring for the Galaxy S20 Ultra instead. Let’s take a look at the two phones side-by-side before you pull the trigger on either of them:

Design

Both phones are incredibly premium and well-made, which is naturally what you’d expect from a household name like Samsung. Both phones are made of glass, though the Note 20 Ultra holds the distinction of being the first production phone to get Gorilla Glass Victus, the newest version of Corning’s scratch-resistant glass technology for phones.

Both devices still have IP65 ratings, which makes them water and dust resistant. Both have the same wireless and reverse wireless charging speeds.

Physical dimensions are slightly different, with the Note 20 Ultra being a smidge wider but honestly, you probably won’t notice it unless both phones are in your hands.

The Galaxy S20 Ultra is only available in two colors in the Philippines: Cosmic Grey and Cosmic Black, while the Note 20 Ultra is available in Mystic Bronze and Mystic Black.

And like other Galaxy Note smartphones, the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra comes with Samsung’s new and improved S-Pen.

Display

Samsung makes the best displays on smartphones, bar none, and they do it so well that other companies buy displays from them for their own phones. It’s not surprising then that both phones have really good displays.

S20 Ultra

The Galaxy S20 Ultra comes with a 6.9-inch WQHD Dynamic Super AMOLED panel with a 120Hz refresh rate, while the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra comes with a similarly sized 6.9-inch WQHD+ panel.

The main difference here is that the Note 20 Ultra comes with a Dynamic AMOLED 2.0 panel, which is an improvement over the prevous generation. It’s around 25% brighter than the one on the S20 Ultra.

Cameras

Unsurprisingly both phones have very similar imaging sensors being Samsung’s top of the line models.

Galaxy S20 Ultra uses a 108-megapixel main shooter with an f/1.8 aperture lens, which is paired with an ultra-wide-angle 12-megapixel sensor with an f/2.2 lens, 48-megapixel f/3.5 telephoto camera that can do optic zooms up to 10x, and a ToF camera.

The Galaxy Note 20 Ultra has a similar camera arrangement, using a similar 108-megapixel f/1.8 aperture main camera with OIS and a 1/1.33″ sensor size. The phone also uses a 12-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera with an f/2.2 aperture as well as a new 12-megapixel f/3.0 zoom camera.

The Note 20 Ultra ditches the ToF camera for a laser AF module.

The biggest change this year is that Samsung’s mostly gimmicky digital zoom dubbed “Space Zoom” gets capped at 50x on the Note 20 Ultra, VS 100x on the S20 Ultra.

Processing package and battery

Samsung typically uses the same processor for both the Galaxy S and Galaxy Note series each year, and 2020 is no different.

The Galaxy Note 20 Ultra uses the same Exynos 990 chipset that’s found on the Galaxy S20 Ultra.

The biggest difference now is that Samsung is offering a 5G version of the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra in addition to the LTE variant.

You get 12GB of RAM for the 5G variant and just 8GB for the LTE version.

You get more storage with the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra as there’s 256GB on tap VS 128GB on the S20 Ultra.

As far as battery life goes, the Galaxy S20 Ultra has a higher battery capacity, coming in with 5000mAh VS the Note 20 Ultra’s 4500mAh.

Charging speeds stay the same though, as both have fast charging capabilities of 45W. Similarly, both have wireless and reverse wireless charging capabilities.

As for price, the Galaxy S20 Ultra is still priced at Php 69,990, while the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra is priced at  Php 67,990 for the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra.

Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra

  • CPUExynos 990
  • RAM12GB RAM
  • Storage256 GB Internal Storage
  • Display6.9" edge Quad HD+ Dynamic AMOLED 2X Infinity-O Display (3088x1440),496ppi, HDR10+ certified 120Hz refresh rate
  • Camera108MP Wide, 12 MP Tele, 12MP UW+ Laser AF Sensor
  • OSAndroid 10
  • Battery4,500 mAh
  • FeatureS Pen, IP68,Ultra Sonic Fingerprint, Dolby Atmos, Stereo Speakers, Wireless Powershar, Wireless DEX
  • Front Camera10MP Front Camera
  • CommunicationLTE, 5G

Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra

  • CPUExynos 990
  • RAM12GB LPDDR5 RAM
  • Storage128GB UFS 3.0 expandable storage
  • Display6.9-inch WQHD Dynamic Super AMOLED Infinity-O display, 3040 x 1440 resolution, dual curved edge, HDR10+, 120hz refresh rate
  • CameraQuad rear cameras: 108-megapixel f/1.8 main camera with Dual Pixel PDAF and OIS; 48-megapixel telephoto camera with 10x optical zoom, OIS, and PDAF; 12-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera with AF and Super Steady video; ToF sensor; with 100x Space Zoom, LED Flash, 8K video recording
  • OSAndroid 10 with OneUI 2.0
  • Battery5000mAh battery with 45w wired charging and wireless charging
  • FeatureUltrasonic Fingerprint scanner, facial recognition, IP68 certification, USB Type-C port, stereo speakers, Bixby AI, 3D Emojis
  • Front Camera40-megapixel front camera; Dual Pixel PDAF, 4K video recording
  • Communication3G, LTE, 5G

 

John Nieves

John is a veteran technology and gadget journalist with more than 10 years of experience both in print and online. When not writing about technology, he frequently gets lost in the boonies playing soldier.

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