Samsung Unveils Smartphones, Laptops at Unpacked Event

During Samsung’s Galaxy Unpacked event in San Francisco, the company introduced its $1,200 Galaxy S23 Ultra smartphone, featuring a 200-megapixel camera sensor, an updated form factor, a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, and major jump in storage. Samsung also announced updated Galaxy S23 and S23 Plus models with the same floating camera design of the S23 Ultra and pricing that matches last year’s offerings. The company’s new Galaxy Book3 Ultra laptop touts a 16-inch, 120Hz OLED screen and offers an Intel H-Series Core i7 or Core i9 processor and an Nvidia RTX 4050 or 4070 GPU. The Book3 line features Samsung’s Dynamic AMOLED 2X display and an Nvidia RTX 3070 GPU.

“While last year’s focus was on the addition of an S Pen slot to the Ultra variant and saying hello to the Note replacement,” Engadget writes of the new phones (below), “the biggest update to the S23 Ultra is a new 200-megapixel rear camera, enhanced selfie shooter and a few software updates.”

Incremental changes to the S23 Ultra include a reduction to “the screen edges’ curvature to make it easier to use with the S Pen,” while “the display can hit up to 1,750 nits of outdoor peak brightness.”

Meanwhile, sustainability has become a new focus. “Materials like pre-consumer recycled aluminum and glass, as well as post-consumer plastics from discarded fishing nets went into the handset,” reports Engadget, adding that increased durability is promised with the introduction of Gorilla Glass Victus 2.

“The high-res camera is the big story on the S23 Ultra, making the jump from 108 megapixels to 200 megapixels,” explains The Verge. The company “claims that the main camera’s optical image stabilization is more robust this year, correcting for 3 degrees of shake versus 1.5.”

The S23 Ultra “still offers a huge 6.8-inch OLED with a 120Hz top refresh rate and 1440p resolution.”

According to The Verge, the “other three rear cameras remain unchanged: a 12-megapixel ultrawide, plus a 3x telephoto and a 10x telephoto, both with 10-megapixel cameras. The selfie camera is also now 12 megapixels, a drop down from 40 megapixels in the S22 Ultra.”

Samsung’s updated S23 line “will go head-to-head with Apple’s iPhone 14, which launched last September,” reports CNBC. The Ultra model features an “adaptive sensor that combines 16 pixels into one larger pixel for brighter, more detailed shots in low light settings.”

The new Galaxy Book3 models (above) will ship February 17. The “Book3 Pro starts at $1,450, and will be available in Graphite and Beige in both 14-inch and 16-inch variations,” explains CNN. “The 16-inch Book 3 Pro 360 starts at $1,900 in the same colors, while the 16-inch Book 3 Ultra will run you at least $2,400 and comes only in Graphite.”

In addition, Samsung is developing new extended reality devices and experiences. While Samsung’s first XR product was not unveiled at Unpacked, the company is currently working with partners. “We’re getting there, but we’re not too far away,” TM Roh, head of Samsung’s mobile experience business told The Washington Post. “For the chipset, it is going to be a strategic collaboration with Qualcomm. The hardware will be us,” he said, and the software will be provided by Google.

Galaxy S23 and S23 Plus Unveiled: Bigger Battery, Better Selfies and a Faster Chip, CNET, 2/1/23
How to Pre-Order the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra and the Rest of the S23 Series, Engadget, 2/1/23
The Galaxy Book3 Ultra Is Samsung’s Shot at the MacBook Pro, The Verge, 2/1/23

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