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Best Samsung Phone for 2022

por Refugio Atkinson (2022-08-08)

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Samsung's phone lineup has something for every budget, from the $1,200 Galaxy S22 Ultra to the $180 Galaxy A12. Whether you want a giant phone with one of the best cameras available or a more affordable device that nails the basics, there's something for everyone. Samsung has already launched several phones this year, but we're expecting to see even more devices debut later this summer. The company typically launches new foldable devices in August, meaning there's a chance we might see a Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Galaxy Z Flip 4 next month. Samsung's nonfoldable phones like the Galaxy S21 FEGalaxy S22 lineup and Galaxy A53 5G are still just a few months old, so they should still feel fresh and new. Samsung also committed to supporting four generations of Android and Samsung operating system updates on these devices.

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But if you can hang on six months or so, you might want to wait before making a purchase. Since Samsung typically launches its new Galaxy S phones within the first couple of months of the year, we're likely to see a successor to the Galaxy S22 in the January through March timeframe. 

Finding the best Samsung phone will ultimately come down to preference. Choosing between so many options can get complicated, so here's how to decide which Samsung phone is best for you.


Biggest screen and best camera

The $1,200 is Samsung's most expensive phone that isn't a folding phone. With its giant 6.8-inch screen and four-lens camera, it's best for those who want the largest screen and best camera possible in a new Samsung phone. Unlike , the Galaxy S22 Ultra also comes with Samsung's S Pen stylus at no additional cost, just like Samsung's older Galaxy Note devices. At 6.8 inches, the Galaxy S22 Ultra is noticeably larger than the 6.6-inch Galaxy S22 Plus and 6.1-inch Galaxy S22. The camera is also one of the biggest reasons you should consider this phone over Samsung's smaller and cheaper devices. While all three new Galaxy S22 phones can take better photos in the dark and have improved color and contrast, the S22 Ultra is the only one with two telephoto lenses. As a result, the S22 Ultra has the closest zoom of any Samsung phone -- and perhaps any phone, period. It also has a 108-megapixel main sensor similar to the one in last year's phone, along with a 12-megapixel ultrawide camera and the two 10-megapixel zoom lenses. The Galaxy S22's high price and large size are probably too much for most people, and its battery life could be better. But for those who love big screens and who really want a superior zoom camera and the S Pen for taking notes, the S22 won't disappoint.

$840 at Amazon

Richard Peterson/CNET

Galaxy S22 Plus

Just the right size

The is the middle child of the Galaxy S22 lineup, but don't overlook it. Its 6.6-inch screen size is just right for most people, it has a sharp new glass-and-metal design and the camera has gotten a major 에그벳 upgrade compared with the S21 generation. Although it's a bit pricey at $1,000, it feels like the right option for those who want a screen that's big but not gigantic paired with one of the best cameras around. Many of the updates Samsung made across the Galaxy S22 lineup are iterative, like the phones' new processors and refreshed designs. But the jump from the Galaxy S21's 12-megapixel camera to the S22's 50-megapixel camera is perhaps the most noticeable improvement. Both the Galaxy S22 Plus and regular Galaxy S22 have this new camera system, along with other internal camera enhancements, which results in better low-light performance, color and detail. The Galaxy S22 Plus also lasted the longest in CNET's battery test of Samsung's Galaxy S22 phones, although battery life still felt average rather than impressive. Overall, the Galaxy S22 Plus is the best choice for those who want a premium phone with a top-notch camera and a large, bright screen.

$700 at Amazon

Richard Peterson/CNET

Galaxy S22

For people who prefer smaller phones

Android users don't have much choice when it comes to small phones, but Samsung is changing that with the . The standard Galaxy S22 has a 6.1-inch screen, whereas many competing Android phones have displays that measure around 6.4 inches or larger.The $800 Galaxy S22 otherwise brings many of the same benefits as the Galaxy S22 Plus. That includes a 50-megapixel camera with better low-light photography, a new processor and a revamped design that feels more elegant than the S21. It's essentially a smaller version of the Galaxy S22 Plus, except the Plus also has a bigger battery, faster charging and support. The Galaxy S22 is the best option for those who want a more compact phone that still has most of the premium features found in Samsung's bigger and more expensive phones. Just keep in mind that the Galaxy S22's smaller size also comes along with shorter battery life than the S22 Plus and S22 Ultra.

$600 at Amazon

Lisa Eadicicco/CNET

Flagship tech at a more approachable price

The first S20 FE seriously impressed us with its balance of performance and price, and the new takes that further with a solid triple camera, a vibrant display and the same powerful processor found in the flagship S21. It has a 6.5-inch screen, making it an ideal choice for those who want a phone that's larger than the regular Galaxy S22 without the Galaxy S22 Plus' high price. Although it's missing some of the Galaxy S22's bells and whistles -- like improved night photography and a newer processor -- this phone has a sharper front-facing camera for selfies and video calls.The Galaxy S21 FE faces some tough competition from , but if you're after a great overall Samsung phone and don't want to pay top dollar for the flagships, then the S21 FE is well worth considering.

$600 at Target

Lisa Eadicicco/CNET

Galaxy A53 5G

Midrange value

New for 2022, the Galaxy A53 gets you a plethora of Samsung features and power at a fraction of the S-series price. It boasts a far larger screen and more versatile camera cluster than the iPhone SE, though Apple's budget model delivers snappier performance. Still, Samsung fans will appreciate what they're getting here considering the affordable price. The Galaxy A53 5G has an ultrawide lens for taking photos with a broader field of view and also supports night-mode photography. Image quality isn't as good as what you'd get on a more expensive Samsung phone like the Galaxy S21 FE or Galaxy S22, but it's certainly clear and colorful enough for basic shots. Other highlights include a long-lasting battery, four guaranteed generations of Android operating system updates and a microSD card slot for expandable storage.Overall, the Galaxy A53 5G is a suitable choice for those who prioritize having a large screen and long battery life for less than $500. Just keep in mind you might have to deal with some occasional lag, and the camera isn't as advanced as those found on pricier phones. .

$449 at Amazon

Angela Lang/CNET

Galaxy Z Fold 3

Best folding phone

Samsung's original folding phone was a novel idea but the latest generation -- the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 -- refines it further. It's still essentially a tablet that folds in half to become a phone, but this smartphone has an improved hinge, better specs all round, 5G connectivity and a bigger display on the outside that actually makes it usable as a phone. Folding Samsung Galaxy phones may not be to everyone's taste and they certainly come at a premium, but if you're after a futuristic foldable, the Z Fold 3 is the best one to buy.

Read our Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 review.


$1,400 at Samsung$1,800 at Target$1,400 at Amazon

Patrick Holland/CNET

Galaxy Z Flip 3

Samsung's smaller folding phone

If the Galaxy Fold is a tablet that folds in half to become a phone, the Z Flip is a phone that folds in half to become a smaller phone. When open, this Samsung Galaxy smartphone has a big 6.7-inch display, but fold it in half and it becomes a small square that's easy to slide into a jeans or jacket pocket. We like its neat design, along with its decent all-round specs and 5G connectivity and it's a more affordable folding option among Samsung Galaxy phones.

Read our Samsung Galaxy Z Flip review.


$1,000 at Target$850 at Amazon$850 at Best Buy


Affordable, 5G and a big screen

The A42 5G Android phone sits just below the A52, provides less RAM, loses the macro camera and has a lower-resolution front-facing camera. It still has 5G connectivity though, along with a bigger battery and a marginally bigger display, which could make it a great affordable Samsung phone option for those of you who watch a lot of videos on the move.

$400 at Samsung

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Samsung's cheapest 5G phone

If 5G speeds are your top Android phone priority but you don't want to spend much money, Samsung's Galaxy A32 5G is where you should be looking. Its low price makes it one of the cheapest 5G-enabled Samsung Galaxy phones that it's possible to buy right now, and you still get a big 6.5-inch display and a multiple rear camera setup. It's not challenging the overall performance of the S21 line, but it's a solid all-rounder device for the money.

$280 at Samsung


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