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Samsung galaxy s24 ultra 1

Samsung Galaxy S24 First Look: ‘Cutting Edge’ AI Unveiled

Anyone who thought Samsung’s supremacy within the foldable smartphone category would see the Korean tech giant take its eye off the ball when it comes to the flagship Galaxy S series has just had quite the reality check. Kicking off its latest Unpacked event in San Jose, California, Samsung has just announced the Galaxy S24, Galaxy S24+, and Galaxy S24 Ultra devices, and with a little help from an impressive suite of artificial intelligence-powered features—collectively known as Galaxy AI—Samsung has well and truly kickstarted the AI smartphone era.

Saying that, there’s so much more to the new Galaxy S24 range than the highly practical and useful AI-powered tools that seem to have stolen the show. In a brief chat with Samsung Australia’s director of mobile experience, Eric Chou, he affirmed this for us, explaining that “the Galaxy S series is synonymous with having the best camera, the best performance, and the best in mobile gaming. Those alone are a big enough leap from S23.” So it seems the cutting-edge Galaxy AI suite is just some very welcome icing on the cake. 

More: Samsung Galaxy Z Fold5 Review: The Most Premium Foldable Smartphone Money Can Buy

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An AI-powered trio. | Image: Samsung

However you frame it, Samsung’s latest devices are an uber-premium smartphone offering from top to bottom, inside and out. So read on as we break down the key features of this smartphone masterclass, from its industry-leading camera and the brightest Galaxy screen yet, to a fancy new cooling system and the S24 Ultra’s exclusive eye-catching titanium casing. 

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Samsung offers a wide range of cases and accessories. | Image: Samsung

Galaxy AI: Artificial Intelligence Done Right

The S24, S24+, and S24 Ultra use the potential of AI like no smartphone before them. Powering a range of features, AI helps these phones deliver intuitive and practical tools that will make a genuine difference in users’ day-to-day lives, along with more niche but no less impressive features that will be particularly handy for those prone to international travel. 

Starting with the features that are beneficial from one day to the next, the S24 range boasts Circle to Search, a tool which effectively enables you to hold down the home button and then circle (with an S Pen or your finger) anything that appears on your screen. This triggers a highly accurate search within mere moments – we tried it and it works exceptionally well.

Similarly impressive are the S24 range’s A!-powered photo and video editing. These enable you to seamlessly move or remove objects and elements from within a frame, adjust a picture’s orientation without having to crop it (AI fills in the gaps around the edge that this creates), or add slow-mo to a video you’ve already shot by having AI add extra frames by analysing movement within the video. 

Arguably less fun but no less useful are the S24 range’s Chat Assist and Note Assist functions. Chat Assist uses AI to tweak messages you’ve written for a particular recipient by suggesting a selection of tones—for example, you probably wouldn’t speak to your boss the same way you speak to your friends. As one might expect, Note Assist can be found in Samsung Notes and helps in several ways, including keeping you organised via AI-generated summaries of your notes, along with transcriptions, translations, and more of your voice notes. As mentioned, these aren’t the most thrilling applications of AI, but don’t be surprised if they’re the ones you use most. 

Finally, in an exciting development for those who frequently travel abroad, the S24 devices boast a range of translation tools that can be deployed whether speaking to someone in person, via text, or over the phone. For more details of this wizardry check out our in-depth breakdown of the Galaxy S24 range’s incredible AI-powered functionality. 

More: Samsung’s Galaxy Z Flip5 Retro Channels the Slick Style of a Ruthless ’80s Executive

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Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra. | Image: Rob Edwards / Man of Many

Enhanced Camera and Screen

The Ultra device within each generation of the Galaxy S range has long been Samsung’s most potent photographic force and the S24 Ultra is no different. This time it features a new 5x optical zoom lens and 50MP sensor, which Samsung claims enable optical-quality performance at zoom levels of 2x, 3x, 5x and 10x magnification. Plus, Samsung also promises clear image capture while zooming in up to 100x with enhanced digital zoom. While impressive, we’ve previously found zooms of this type to be impractical regardless of their quality, but we’ll be sure to test this in our forthcoming review. 

As always, the S24 range packs Samsung’s signature Nightography functionality with the Ultra leading the pack courtesy of new upgrades that include additional light capture in low-light conditions, courtesy of a 60 per cent larger pixel size (over previous models) of 1.4 μm. In addition, a wider optical image stabiliser is designed to reduce blur, while improved noise reduction and image stabilisation also enhance photo and video clarity. 

As for your means of viewing the images captured by these upgraded specs, the displays across the Galaxy S24 range are Samsung’s brightest, reaching peak brightness of up to 2,600 nits, and boasting a Vision Booster function designed for optimum outdoor visibility.

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The titanium build is very slick. | Image: Rob Edwards / Man of Many

Premium Titanium Construction

While Samsung may not be the first smartphone brand to offer a titanium frame, once you hold the Galaxy S24 Ultra in your hand, you’ll care not one jot. This is as premium as smartphones get—outside of those absurd third party outfits that add precious metals and stones to your device—and it’s weighted perfectly, finding that sweet spot between the reassuring weight of quality and effortless portability, while also boasting a thinner form factor than its predecessor.

As for the S24 and S24+, despite the fact they don’t share the same titanium frame as their larger sibling, their “Armor Aluminum” frame ensures they remain undeniably high-end devices with immaculate styling, even if they feel a little on the lighter side when compared with the S24 Ultra. 

When it comes to the range’s colourways, the S24 Ultra boasts Titanium Grey, Titanium Black, Titanium Violet and Titanium Yellow, with online exclusive colours that include Titanium Blue, Titanium Green and Titanium Orange. As for the S24+ and S24, colour options include Onyx Black, Marble Grey, Cobalt Violet and Amber Yellow, with Sapphire Blue, Jade Green, and Sandstone Orange also available exclusively online.

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The Galaxy S24 Ultra can handle intense gaming. | Image: Samsung

Optimising Performance

None of the features listed above would matter much if the S24 range wasn’t capable of handling a heavy task load. Gaming, video recording, and photo editing all take their toll, but Samsung has worked to ensure each of its devices is optimised for peak performance. 

Naturally the S24 Ultra leads from the front in this regard, with a Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 Mobile Platform for Galaxy and the introduction of its optimal thermal control system with a 1.9 times larger vapour chamber, Samsung’s flagship is designed to tackle the most formidable tasks while  ensuring its surface temperature remains entirely cool.

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Triplets. | Image: Rob Edwards / Man of Many

Pricing and Availability

Australian pre-orders for Samsung’s Galaxy S24 series will start from January 18, 2024, with availability starting from February 7, 2024. Pricing is as follows:

Samsung Galaxy S24AUD$1,399 (256 GB)
AUD$1,599 (512GB)
Samsung Galaxy S24+AUD$1,699 (256GB)
AUD$1,899 (512GB)
Samsung Galaxy S24 UltraAUD$2,199 (256GB)
AUD$2,399 (512GB)
AUD$2,799 (1TB)

Keep an eye out for Man of Many’s in-depth review of Samsung’s latest flagship smartphone. In the meantime, discover the full Galaxy S24 range at Samsung via the link below.

Disclaimer: The author of this article, Rob Edwards, was invited to attend Unpacked 2024 as a guest of Samsung.