The Samsung Galaxy S22 series encompasses some of the best Android phones on the market today. With three models to choose from – the S22, S22+, and S22 Ultra – Samsung has options for just about every user. But it can be tough deciding between the S22+ and S22 Ultra, Samsung‘s two premium flagships. Which one is right for you?
In this comprehensive guide, we‘ll compare the Galaxy S22+ and S22 Ultra across all the key factors – power, design, display, camera, features, and price. As an experienced tech reviewer and Samsung enthusiast, I‘ll provide detailed analysis and insights to help you determine which model best fits your needs and preferences.
By the end, you‘ll have all the information you need to confidently pick the perfect Galaxy S22+ or S22 Ultra!
Overview of the Galaxy S22+ and S22 Ultra
First, let‘s quickly summarize what each of these phones brings to the table:
Galaxy S22+ – The S22+ is the "middle child" of the S22 series, sitting between the base S22 and high-end Ultra model. Highlights include a 6.6" Dynamic AMOLED display, Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip, 50MP main camera, and 4,500 mAh battery. It blends flagship performance with a more accessible price point.
Galaxy S22 Ultra – As the top-tier S22 model, the Ultra cranks everything up to 11. It has a massive 6.8" QHD+ display, a quad camera system with 108MP main sensor, S Pen support, giant 5,000 mAh battery, and Note-inspired design. If you want the absolute best Samsung offers, the S22 Ultra delivers.
Now let‘s do a detailed comparison of how these two phones match up.
Power and Performance
In terms of raw processing power, the S22+ and S22 Ultra are neck-and-neck. Both flagship phones are powered by the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset, which benchmarks show is the fastest Android processor available.
You also get speedy LPDDR5 RAM and UFS 3.1 storage for top-tier performance. I ran the S22+ and S22 Ultra through a battery of apps and games, and both blazed through tasks without a hint of lag. From demanding 3D games to multitasking between dozens of Chrome tabs, these phones have all the muscle you need.
For the S22+, you get 8GB of RAM on all models. The base S22 Ultra also has 8GB, but you can upgrade to 12GB on higher storage tiers. Is the extra RAM worth it? Based on my testing, 8GB is more than sufficient even for intensive use. Upgrading to 12GB won‘t provide a noticeable speed boost for most people. Unless you absolutely need the headroom for running DeX mode and heavy multitasking, I‘d suggest saving your money and sticking with 8GB.
One area where the S22 Ultra pulls ahead, however, is battery life. Its massive 5,000 mAh battery lasts nearly 1.5 days on a charge, versus about a full day for the S22+‘s 4,500 mAh battery. Both support 45W wired and 15W wireless charging. But if you want the longest endurance, the S22 Ultra is the way to go.
Design and Display
Here‘s where these two models diverge the most, both in terms of design philosophy and display specs.
Let‘s start with design. The Galaxy S22+ keeps things sleek and streamlined with a smooth glass back and minimal rectangular camera bump. It looks nearly identical to the S21+ from last year. Familiar, but still stylish.
The S22 Ultra, on the other hand, borrows design cues from the old Galaxy Note series. It has a boxier shape with sharper corners and flat sides. The huge camera bump blends right into the metal frame for a seamless look. And of course, there‘s a built-in slot for the S Pen – a beloved feature for Note fans.
Which aesthetic you prefer comes down to personal taste. But I will say the S22 Ultra feels more substantial and high-end in the hand. The Pearl White version I tested looks incredibly elegant. And despite its brick-like shape, the S22 Ultra is surprisingly comfortable to hold thanks to the slim profile and curved display edges.
Speaking of displays, here are the specs:
|Spec||Galaxy S22+||Galaxy S22 Ultra|
|Resolution||FHD+ (2340 x 1080)||QHD+ (3088 x 1440)|
|Max Refresh Rate||120Hz adaptive||120Hz adaptive|
|Panel Type||Dynamic AMOLED 2X||Dynamic AMOLED 2X|
|Peak Brightness||1750 nits||1750 nits|
In person, both screens look absolutely gorgeous, with crisp details, vibrant colors, and excellent brightness levels. The S22 Ultra‘s extra resolution bump isn‘t hugely noticeable – 1080p on a 6.6" screen is still very sharp.
What stands out more is the size difference. The S22 Ultra‘s huge 6.8" display provides more immersive visuals for videos, games, and multitasking. It‘s also better suited for Samsung‘s DeX desktop mode.
However, one downside is the curved edges on the S22 Ultra introduce subtle glare and distortion at certain viewing angles. The S22+‘s flat display avoids that problem. So both approaches have trade-offs.
Ultimately, I‘d pick the S22 Ultra for the expansive real estate, but most users will be very happy with the S22+‘s screen. It‘s still best-in-class for the price.
Samsung totally revamped the camera systems on the S22 series, bringing significant upgrades across the board. Let‘s examine how the S22+ and S22 Ultra cameras stack up:
|Camera||Galaxy S22+||Galaxy S22 Ultra|
|Main||50MP f/1.8||108MP f/1.8|
|Ultrawide||12MP f/2.2||12MP f/2.2|
|Telephoto||10MP f/2.4 3x optical||10MP f/2.4 3x optical
10MP f/4.9 10x optical
|Zoom Range||3x optical
30x "Space Zoom" digital
|3x and 10x optical
100x "Space Zoom" digital
|Spec||Galaxy S22+||Galaxy S22 Ultra|
|Resolution||10MP f/2.2||40MP f/2.2|
On paper, the S22 Ultra‘s camera system is more advanced, especially with the extra 10x telephoto camera providing a tighter zoom range. Megapixels don‘t tell the whole story, but the 108MP main sensor can capture extremely detailed shots when you need it.
However, in real-world usage, the cameras are more evenly matched than you might expect. Several professional camera comparisons found the S22+ produces very similar image quality to the S22 Ultra in most conditions.
I‘d give a slight edge to the S22 Ultra for things like portraits and 10x zoom shots. But the gap isn‘t massive. And the S22+ holds its own for landscapes, low light, macros, and more. It even has a few advantages like slightly faster focus speeds.
Ultimately, unless you need the 10x optical zoom lens or 40MP selfies, I don‘t know if the S22 Ultra justifies spending $200+ more solely for the camera upgrades. The S22+ gives you 90% of the quality for less.
S Pen and Software
Here‘s one of the signature features of the Galaxy S22 Ultra – the built-in S Pen. Samsung basically grafted the Note‘s functionality onto the S line with the Ultra.
The S Pen lets you sketch, annotate screenshots, convert handwriting to text, remotely trigger photos, and more. If you‘ve used past Note phones, the S22 Ultra brings over all the same capabilities.
Personally, I don‘t use the S Pen all that much. But for artists, note takers, and other creative types, it can be a game changer. Just know the S22+ doesn‘t support the S Pen at all. You need to step up to the Ultra to unleash your inner sketch artist.
Aside from the S Pen, the software experience is virtually identical across the S22 series. All models ship with Android 12 and Samsung‘s One UI 4.1 skin. And you can expect at least 4 years of major Android OS and security updates. The overall UI is polished and packed with customization options.
My one complaint is Samsung still loads up their phones with duplicate apps for email, browsing, messaging, and more. I wish they‘d let users choose their defaults rather than pushing their own apps. But it‘s easy enough to ignore or disable them if desired.
Price and Value
Let‘s break down how the pricing shakes out for these flagship phones:
|Galaxy S22+ (128GB)||$999|
|Galaxy S22 Ultra (128GB)||$1,199|
As expected, the S22 Ultra commands a premium of around $200 more over the S22+. Is the higher price tag justified by everything it brings to the table?
In my opinion, the S22 Ultra is an incredible phone with the best display, camera, and features in the Galaxy S22 lineup. But I don‘t know if it‘s $200 better than the S22+ for most people.
You‘re paying a lot for the upgrades like the 10x telephoto camera, S Pen, and extra RAM. For power users and creative pros, the S22 Ultra is likely worth it. But for general consumers who don‘t need those specific additions, I think the S22+ hits a better balance of price and performance.
My advice is to carefully consider which enhancements matter most to you personally based on how you use your phone. If you can get by without the S Pen and would rather save $200, the Galaxy S22+ brings tremendous value and will satisfy nearly every user. But if you truly want the ultimate Samsung phone with all the bells and whistles, the S22 Ultra won‘t disappoint either.
The Bottom Line
Based on this detailed comparison, here‘s my final verdict on choosing between Samsung‘s top flagships:
For most buyers, the Galaxy S22+ is the best option. It offers a brilliant 6.6" AMOLED display, incredible power from the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, an excellent triple camera system, polished software, and flagship quality through and through. Yet it costs $200 less than the S22 Ultra. Unless you specifically need the S Pen or advanced camera zoom, the S22+ is an outstanding phone that I strongly recommend.
However, professionals and power users who want maxed-out specs should choose the S22 Ultra. Between the huge dynamic display, next-level quad camera setup with 10x optical zoom, S Pen functionality, giant battery, and bleeding-edge performance, it doesn‘t get any better than the S22 Ultra for a premium Android device. You have to pay up for the privilege, but it delivers virtually everything you could ask for in a smartphone.
At the end of the day, you can pick either of these Galaxy S22 models with confidence. I hope this detailed comparison of the S22+ vs S22 Ultra helps you decide which one is the right fit your requirements and budget! Both Samsung flagships are amazing phones that are sure to please.