I’m excited about the Galaxy S23 FE, but I bought the Pixel 8 instead.

samsung galaxy s23 fe purple in hand

samsung galaxy s23 fe purple in hand

Ryan Haines / Android Authority

After months of speculation, Samsung finally announced the Galaxy S23 FE last week. The announcement coincides with the release of the Pixel 8 series, which almost looks like Samsung is planning to steal Googles Thunder. It’s not hard to see why, at least on paper. Like the basic Pixel 8, the Samsungs Fan Edition offers the closest class features at an affordable price. In fact, the S23 FE is even more attractive as it sells for $ 100 less than both the previous model and the Pixel 8. But the devil in the details and as a long-time owner of the Galaxy S21 FE, I did not see the S23. FE is a viable upgrade path compared to the Pixel 8. Let me explain.

When Samsung launched its flagship Galaxy S23 earlier this year, I wrote about my excitement over the rumored S23 Fan Edition. I appreciated what my latest S21 FE offered at the time, but regretted its mid-range performance, heavy battery life, and up-to-date camera hardware. If Samsung only solved those issues while leaving the entire package unchanged, Id would have lined up to buy the S23 FE.

The new Galaxy S23 FE is slightly lower than its predecessor.

Unfortunately, Samsung made some strange choices with the Galaxy S23 FE. Worse, it dropped the entire ranking of my favorite aspects of the series. Take for example a screen that is slightly brighter than this generation but has thicker bezels than its predecessor.

Normally I do not complain about the big shell or thick chin, but there is a big difference between my nearly two year old S21 FE and the new S23 FE. Not only that, Samsung also downgraded the screen protection from Gorilla Glass Victus to Gorilla Glass 5 on new phones. Curiously, you will see similar bezels and the same screen protector on the Galaxy A54 5G, a remarkably cheap phone that does not pretend to be in the top league.

Samsung also uses Gorilla Glass 5 on the back of the S23 FE. While that is an upgrade on paper, the phone also weighs 209 grams! That’s 32 grams, or 18% heavier than the latest generation S21 FE. You do not get bigger batteries or displays on the S23 FE, so I can only imagine its different elements that contribute to this budget increase. The larger (but more expensive) Galaxy S23 Plus is 11g lighter.

The Galaxy S23 FE is 18% heavier than the phone it replaces.

Back in early 2022, the Galaxy S21 FEs screen and lightweight design beat me almost immediately. At the time, the Google Pixel 6 had a similar screen size, but its dual-glass design was made for a 30g pack rather than the S21 FE. However, the Pixel 8 also offers a lighter design and a larger battery than the Galaxy S23 FE.

To everyone’s surprise, Samsung has also opted to revive the Qualcomms Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip for the S23 FE. This is another update on paper, but the same chip was responsible for the Galaxy S22 family thermal shutdown controversy last year. I find it potentially wasteful because the S23 FE could incorporate a more efficient Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 SoC. That mid-year update worked great for Samsungs’ foldable smartphones, offering better battery life and cooler performance.

While it’s too early to call, reviews show that the Google Tensor G3 SoC in the Pixel 8 looks really functional and more efficient than previous versions. Is Samsung really capable of losing in another key area? Have to check the heat and battery life closely in our full review, but I can not help but feel that Samsung can easily win here.

I’m not sure why Samsung made so many bizarre changes with the S23 FE, but the price tag is almost $ 599. As a contributing factor. The thing is that the new Samsungs smartphones are not in space. Sure, Google has raised the price of the Pixel 8s to $ 699 this year, but it also put the free Pixel Buds Pro package for $ 200 at retail until October 16th. Meanwhile, Samsung has not included its $ 99 Galaxy Buds FE with the S23 FE.

Google offers better value for money with the Pixel 8, even though it costs more than $ 100.

All in all, I do not believe that Samsung is offering an attractive price proposal with the Galaxy S23 FE. I did not even mention some of the smaller features of the Pixel 8s, such as eSIM support, a three-year Android app update, added app AI functionality, and a brighter and longer-lasting screen. Meanwhile, the S23 FE does not boast much, except for the lower price. Samsung upgraded the primary camera to a 50MP camera this year. And the S23 FEs 3x telephoto camera is something you won’t be able to find on the Pixel 8, though I’m not interested in the 8MP sensor performance on the latest Galaxy S21 FE.

Which do you want to buy more than Pixel 8 or Galaxy S23 FE?

203 votes

As Ive enjoyed my time with the Galaxy S21 FE, Ive decided to jump shipping and buy a Googles affordable smartphone instead. While I like the larger device, the Pixel 8 builds on almost every other component, from its lightweight 187g stand to the impressive 2,000 nits screen. If you have a higher budget and can wait for the sale, we also saw the Galaxy S23 Plus drop to $ 749 and $ 699 on that occasion. And with that in mind, I find it hard to recommend the S23 Fan Edition to anyone, especially not to Samsung fans.

See prices at Samsung

Samsung Galaxy S23 FE

Samsung Galaxy S23 FE

Slightly larger than S23
Good battery size.
Competitive price

#excited #Galaxy #S23 #bought #Pixel
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