Samsung is reviving its flagship Galaxy S20 lineup after announcing an all-new entry called the Galaxy S20 FE. The suffix stands for Fan Edition and you can see how the device could appeal to the heart fans of the Samsung brandnew. They are receiving the most recent performance updates, a flagship-grade camera installation, and among the best displays you’ll be able to get on a smartphone.
All of this is available for a starting price of Rs 49,999, along with the apparatus even has some funky new colour options that are bound to win the younger audience it is targeting. So why if you purchase the Galaxy S20 FE over something such as the OnePlus 8T (review)? What compromises are made in the original S20 to adapt this reduced price point? I will attempt to shed some light on some of the most important questions regarding the S20 FE inside this thorough review.
The Galaxy S20 FE appears to get it covered when it comes to the list of prerequisites of an affordable flagship at 2020: a typical size 6.5-inch 120Hz Total HD+ Super AMOLED screen, a flagship SoC (Exynos 990 for the 4G variant, along with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 for your 5G version ), enough RAM and storage, high-spec cameras (with the principal camera raised from the Galaxy S20 and the Galaxy S20+), a big battery capacity (4,500mAh), rapid wired and wireless charging, IP evaluation, microSD card slot, and a palatable price tag. But it will miss out on a glass rear (which might be a plus or a minus), a Quad HD+ Dynamic AMOLED screen, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and also super quick wired charging supplied from the box.
The phone also must contend with a field of competitors that’s getting more crowded by the day. For the same or similar price bracket as the Galaxy S20 FE, you could find the OnePlus 8T, OnePlus 8 Guru, Xiaomi Mi 10T, Mi 10T Pro, along with the Mi 10, ASUS ROG Phone 3, Realme X50 Pro, Apple iPhone 11, and others. A few of those competitors may also have greater specifications in a few locations, but at the close of the day, the execution of specifications matters more than the specifications themselves.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE — Layout
This is because of a few aspects. The phone has a thin aluminum frame and a matte plastic rear rather than using glass. For durability, this is a plus, as plastic will not shatter as glass does. There’s a potential for becoming more scratches with plastic, but mercifully, Samsung has eschewed its conventional glossy coating in favor of a soft-touch coating, which should reduce the probability of scratches. The aluminum frame is lean because of the harshly curved sides, but it’s durable as well.
The front is where the durability will not strike a roadblock. The screen is protected by Corning’s Gorilla Glass 3, which is four generations old now. The Galaxy Notice 20 Ultra (inspection ) gets the latest Gorilla Glass Victus, and while trusting for its inclusion in the Galaxy S20 FE could have been a bit overly optimistic, Gorilla Glass 6 should have been showcased in an inexpensive flagship for improved drop resistance. As it is, users are advised to utilize a case to protect their phone.
Its 6.5-inch display-diagonal is not too large, both sides and the rear are comfortably curved, and the phone’s volume does not present an issue, since the thickness (8.4mm) and weight (190g) are kept at acceptable levels. The phone is considerably lighter than the OnePlus 8 Pro, but the Samsung Galaxy S20+ handles to maintain the weight even lower (186g) even with the use of a glass back and a bigger 6.7-inch screen.
The matte coating of the polycarbonate back feels a lot better than the glossy plastic Samsung utilizes in its more economical M-series and A-series phones. In itself, it feels premium. But a shiny glass back as seen on the Galaxy S20+ appears and feels much more superior, although they get a whole lot more fingerprints. At the top of the mountain are brightly colored glass backs, as noticed on the OnePlus 8 Guru, Samsung Galaxy Notice 20 Ultra, along with others. All of the phone’s competitors utilize glass backs, so in terms of texture, the Galaxy S20 FE is admittedly at a small disadvantage here. Ultimately, it’s up to users to ascertain which build material and coating they prefer.
The front design of this Samsung Galaxy S20 FE is where Samsung lets us down. The phone features a small centered hole-punch front camera cutout, which will be good to view in itself. The cutout has a chrome ring around it, which might become distracting in specific kinds of lighting. It was not a big issue for me, however. The central area of the front camera is appreciable as it means primary status bar icons aren’t affected. On the other hand, the 84.8% screen-to-body ratio is perplexing to view, as it signifies an unsatisfactory regression from Samsung’s own previous affordable flagships, not to mention the price competitors in the marketplace.
The bezels on all four sides will be homogenously bigger than what is seen on the Samsung Galaxy S20+, which has a 90.5% screen-to-body ratio. Its device quantity is greater despite having less screen estate. The phone also does not compare favorably against rivals like the OnePlus 8T (inspection ) along with the Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro (hands-on preview).
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE — Display
The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE has a horizontal 6.5-inch Full HD+ 1080p (2400×1080) Super AMOLED display with a 20:9 aspect ratio and 407 PPI. The display comes with a 120Hz high refresh rate, which Samsung describes as large motion smoothness. Contrary to the Galaxy Notice 20 Ultra’s adaptive variable refresh speed execution, the Galaxy S20 FE’s 120Hz execution is carried over from the Galaxy S20 series, as it uses two discrete screen refresh speed modes: 60Hz and 120Hz. Samsung ships the telephone with 120Hz mode allowed out of the box, unlike the Galaxy S20 collection. The absence of a curved screen can be a plus or a minus, based on users’ perspectives. For many users, a flat-screen represents a better compromise.
The Galaxy S20 FE includes a Super AMOLED screen, instead of having a Dynamic AMOLED panel. The old terminology means the display is not HDR10+ accredited, unlike the flagship screens of this Galaxy S10, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy S20, and Galaxy Note 20 series. It supports routine HDR10, as anticipated.
The Galaxy S20 FE’s screen does lack QHD+ resolution. But it should be considered that even the Galaxy S20 and Galaxy Note 20 series does not let you use the 120Hz mode with QHD+ resolution, as it may only be used with complete HD+ resolution (and the main reason for that still remains cloudy ). It is usually agreed that 120Hz using complete HD+ resolution is a better experience than 60Hz using QHD+ resolution, so the absence of QHD+ is not a large problem on the Galaxy S20 FE as if it did possess it, you would not have been able to use it with the 120Hz mode. Yes, text and graphics won’t seem as sharp as seen on the OnePlus 8 Pro (which does comprise 120Hz support with QHD+ resolution), however, the FHD+ resolution remains acceptable thanks to subpixel anti-aliasing.
The screen of this Galaxy S20 FE features High Definition Mode (HBM), which means sunlight legibility isn’t a problem, since the phone will have the ability to reach ~700 nits in 100% APL. The panel is not the latest-generation Samsung screen, which means it’s an older emitter. Subsequently, this implies it won’t have the ability to go quite as bright as the displays of this Galaxy S20 and Galaxy Notice 20 series, but usability even in direct sunlight shouldn’t be a problem as Samsung also switches to a particular display mode with reduced gamma and enhanced display contrast whenever HBM is activated. When utilizing manual brightness, the business proceeds to tune items conservatively since the maximum manual brightness is restricted to ~350 nits at 100 percent APL. The minimum brightness of this cellphone is positive as it can get really low, lower than the OnePlus 8 Pro, for example.
The contrast of the display is simply as great as another AMOLED display. The viewing angles, however, are unsatisfactory since the display still features observable angular color changing to blue as well as a rainbow out interference effect at extreme angles. Newer Samsung OLED panels have eliminated the rainbow out interference effect and additionally reduced off-axis color shifting by a substantial amount. The Galaxy S20+’s viewing angles, as an example, are better because the color shifting is considerably lower. Strangely, even the cheaper Galaxy M51 (review) doesn’t feature the interference effect issue (that’s probably a result of the polarizer).
It’s also worth mentioning the display does not feel as laminated to the glass since the Galaxy S20+’s display does. On the flip side, the oleophobic coating that Samsung uses has been excellent here, which means swiping and tapping on the screen feels excellent.
The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 4G is powered by Samsung’s very own Exynos 990 SoC, while the 5G version of the telephone includes the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 processor. We have compared both of these chips’ implementations in our OnePlus 8 Pro vs. Samsung Galaxy S20+ inspection comparison post back in July. We did a comprehensive deep dive on the Exynos 990 within our Galaxy S20+ review and took a brief look at its gaming performance in our Galaxy Notice 20 Ultra review. Readers interested in knowing more about the Exynos 990 piles from the Snapdragon 865 gold standard in the Android SoC marketplace can check the above links.
It Includes ARM’s Mali-G77MP11 GPU.
I conducted a set of benchmarks to see if there was any discrepancy in the scores relative to the Exynos 990’s execution in the Galaxy S20+. It turns out there’s, at least in some benchmarks. PCMark scores were slightly lower but in the margin of error, although the Geekbench 5 scores were indistinguishable. Even the 3DMark scores, however, were significantly lesser than what I got on the Galaxy S20+. The CPU Throttling Evaluation benchmark denied initially to even complete a 15-minute run since according to these applications, it was heating up the telephone much too much. I had to do this again. The Speedometer score was somewhat lower (59.9 vs. 61.7). The GFXBench results were largely similar to those acquired on the Galaxy S20+, and they revealed the exact same GPU throttling issue that occurred after running a series of tests one after the other. Finally, in AndroBench, the Galaxy S20 FE was able to post a few excellent characters, although it doesn’t possess the latest generation storage specification (UFS 3.0 vs. UFS 3.1).
To test how smooth the Galaxy S20 FE 4G runs, we run a modified version of Google’s open-source JankBench benchmark. This routine simulates a handful of common tasks you will see in regular apps, such as scrolling via a ListView with text, scrolling via a ListView using pictures, scrolling through a grid view with a shadow effect, scrolling via a low-bitrate text leave perspective, scrolling via a high-hit rate text render view, inputting and editing text using the keyboard, replicating overdraws with cards, and snapping bitmaps. Our script displays the draw period for every frame during the test, eventually plotting all the frames and their draw occasions in a plot along with several horizontal lines representing the target frame draw occasions for the four common screen refresh rates (60Hz, 90Hz, 120Hz, and 144Hz.)