Galaxy S24 Plus Review: Skip the Ultra, buy the Plus

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Galaxy S24 Plus review

Galaxy S24 Plus Intro


Due to one reason or another, Samsung's non-Ultra flagships have always taken a step back when it comes to intergenerational upgrades and novel features, merely existing in the shade of their larger and more enticing siblings. Totally undeserving, as Galaxy S Plus are usually just as great as their more premium brethren, lacking the most exciting features but also way more affordable. 

While this hasn't changed in 2024, the fresh new Galaxy S24 Plus is a phone that gains some serious ground on the Galaxy S24 Ultra and makes the list of advantages the latter has that much shorter. In fact, judging from the significant improvements that the Galaxy S24 Plus has scored in comparison with the Galaxy S23 Plus, it's fair to say that Samsung wants to make the new phone a viable alternative to the S Pen-wielding super-phone. 

And succeeds, for the most part.

Samsung's brand-new Galaxy S24 Plus comes along with a larger display that's just as bright and smooth as the one on the Galaxy S24 Ultra as well as even better battery life than the latter. Fair to say that the only things missing are the titanium design, the 5X periscope and the S Pen. A bit clichéd, but it wouldn't be too outlandish to call this one the best Galaxy S Plus so far, one that is the closest to the proper flagship experience benchmark set by the Ultra counterpart.

Galaxy S24/S24+: save $550-$650 with a trade-in

You can now order either a Galaxy S24 or a Galaxy S24+ model at the official store. The pre-order campaign is over, but you can still claim up to $540 off on the S24 or up to $650 off on the S24+ with a trade-in.
$779 99
$1979 98
Buy at Samsung

Get Galaxy S24 Ultra at up to $750 off with a trade-in

The mightiest of all, the Galaxy S24 Ultra is available at the official store. The smartphone with next-gen AI capabilities can now be yours at up to $750 off with a suitable trade-in credit.
$549 99
$1299 99
Buy at Samsung

Galaxy S24: get at Best Buy now.

Trade in your old phone if you want to claim some savings on your new Galaxy S24 model.

What’s new about the Galaxy S24 Plus

  • Larger new 6.7-inch QHD+ display
  • Superb 2,600-nit peak brightness and super-smooth 1-120Hz display
  • Flat-side display with Armor Aluminum
  • Same triple-camera setup with different camera processing
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 in the US with 12GB of RAM
  • Seven years of major Android/One UI upgrades and security patches

Table of Contents:

Galaxy S24 Plus Specs

Multiple intergenerational improvements

The Galaxy S24 Plus full specs are already official, but a summary usually goes a greater distance, especially in a review. The table below would hopefully refresh your memory as to what makes the brunt of the Galaxy S24 Plus hardware specifications and pricing.



The Galaxy S24 Plus has the same signature Galaxy design that has been used for a couple of generations now, but it would be very fair to say that the Galaxy S24 Plus is mostly similar to the Galaxy S23 Plus when it comes to overall looks. Both follow the same aesthetics and use the same build materials. Unlike the titanium-clad Galaxy S24 Ultra, the Galaxy S24 Plus still relies on Armor Aluminum as well as Gorilla Glass Victus 2, while the Ultra uses the new Gorilla Glass Armor. 

One aspect of the Galaxy S24 Plus that has surely changed is the side frame design. Samsung is going fully flat with the new Galaxy S24 Plus and Galaxy S24, with no convex side frame. Thus, the Galaxy S24 Plus is much more similar to an iPhone in terms of feel than it's to most of its predecessors. In any way, you'd likely want to invest in a case

Size-wise, the Galaxy S24 Plus has become a smidgen taller in comparison with the Galaxy S23 Plus, but you wouldn't notice any stark difference in terms of width, thickness, or overall weight. 


All the buttons and ports are right where they used to be on the Galaxy S23 Plus, so no unexpected changes here. The IP68 water and dust resistance remains on deck as well, which is one of the staples that better go nowhere. 

The phone feels good in the hand, maybe slightly less comfortable than the Galaxy S23 Plus which was a tad more ergonomic, as evident in our size comparison, but beauty surely lies in the eyes of the beholder in this case. The flatter side frame is noticeable the first time you use the phone, but should be no issue after a brief amount of time. 

And what about the available hues? Well, the Galaxy S24 Plus colors will be available in Amber Yellow, Marble Gray, Onyx Black, and Cobalt Violet, while Jade Green, Sapphire Blue, and Sandstone Orange will be exclusively available when you get the phone through Samsung's own store. 

Galaxy S24 Plus Display


The display on the Galaxy S24 Plus has scored the most improvements. Let's break them down one by one.

First up, the sheer size of the panel has increased by 0.1 inches. Sure, that doesn't sound like much, but these days every little bit is important, so the Galaxy S24 Plus having a 6.7-inch screen in comparison with the Galaxy S23 Plus' 6.6-inch display is a big deal.

Next up, the resolution and therefore perceived sharpness have also improved. The Galaxy S24 Plus scores a QHD+ display, a solid return to form in comparison with the FHD+ panels on the most recent Galaxy S Plus predecessors.

Thirdly, we finally get LTPO 3.0 on the Galaxy S24 Plus. What does this mean? Unlike previous Galaxy S Plus phones, this one allows for a super-smooth and dynamically switchable refresh rate ranging between 1 and 120Hz depending on the on-screen content. That's actually on par with the Galaxy S24 Ultra/Galaxy S23 Ultra, and most super-premium phones out there. 

Finally, and most importantly, we also get the ludicrous 2,600-nit display peak brightness on the Galaxy S24 Plus. Surely, this one is likely measured on a minimal portion of the display and the phone will certainly achieve lower maximum brightness in everyday life. Still, the Galaxy S24 Plus will be much brighter than its predecessor.

Display Measurements:



Aside from those, the rest of the display's specs should sound familiar to you: a Dynamic AMOLED 2X with HDR support and Vision booster. When it comes to the displays on Samsung phones, we are rarely disappointed, and this surely is the case here: the Galaxy S24 Plus has one lovely display that's a joy to use and ogle at. 
 
The ultrasonic built-in fingerprint scanner remains a staple, and it's fast and accurate for the most part. You will unlock the phone easily and accurately 9 out of 10 times. You can also rely on picture-based face unlock, but you'd be foregoing the enhanced security of the fingerprint scanner. 

Galaxy S24 Plus Camera

Changes on the inside



The Galaxy S24 Plus camera is mostly similar to the one found on the Galaxy S22 Plus and the Galaxy S23 Plus, without any revolutionary overhauls, but rather token evolutionary updates. A main 50MP camera, a 12MP ultra-wide, and a 10MP telephoto offering 3X optical zoom is what you get on the new phone. At the front, a 12MP wide-angle camera tiptoes inside the punch-hole.

The improvements are on the inside, however. Samsung has reportedly tweaked up the image processing a lot. Image quality is reportedly improved a lot, too. Samsung says the ProVisual Engine available on the new Galaxy S24 series uses AI along with enhanced algorithms to achieve cleaner night shots devoid of noise as well as less camera shake and motion blur. 

Samsung has also thrown in a ton of AI-powered improvements on board. For example, we get Generative Edits, which allow you to fill in the blanks when you rotate an image or move a subject around, as well as Edit Suggestion which will give you tailored suggestions about the possible tweaks you can apply to your photos. 

Samsung Galaxy S24+
PhoneArena Camera Score
BEST 153
149
PhoneArena Photo Score
BEST 160
154
Main (wide)
BEST 85
85
Zoom
BEST 27
20
Ultra-wide
BEST 25
20
Selfie
BEST 30
29
PhoneArena Video Score
BEST 147
144
Main (wide)
BEST 79
79
Zoom
BEST 21
16
Ultra-wide
BEST 23
22
Selfie
BEST 28
27

Main Camera - Day



A very realistic and, for the most part, rather natural image-processing is taking place here, with lovely images coming out of the Galaxy S24 Plus camera. Gone is the excessive over-sharpening, and we have softer detail in comparison with the previous generation, but that's a good thing. Overall, we are perfectly happy with the way Galaxy S24 Plus' camera works. 

Main Camera - Low-light



When the light goes down, you'd have little to no excuse not to take to use this phone, as it takes excellent low-light photos. Details are ample (and not excessively over-sharpened), while dynamics are superb. There's ton of detail and information in the shadows, while lighter areas and especially artificial lights are not burnt out, which was often an issue with last year's Galaxy S23 Plus

Zoom Quality



The same general image-processing has arrived to the telephoto camera as well. While the zoom quality is mostly similar to last year's Galaxy S23 Plus, we get much more natural images out of the newer device. 

Ultra-wide Camera



Generally, the same is true of the ultra-wide camera as well. A more natural and less intrusive image quality along with richer colors is in the Galaxy S24 Plus' playbook, something which we are rather happy with. Galaxy S23 Plus ultra-wide shots looked particularly drab, so this change is welcome. 

Selfies



Nothing particularly new and exciting on the selfie front, but was it needed in the first place? Great-looking selfies is what you get and that's what's important.

Video quality


Video Thumbnail

Check out the video quality differences between the Galxy S24 and the Galaxy S23 in the comparison video above.

Galaxy S24 Plus Performance & Benchmarks

Exynos makes a return


At least in the US, the Galaxy S24 Plus is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset. It's not the normal version, mind you, but a fine-tuned Made for Galaxy iteration of the chip. This 4nm affair manufactured by TSMC offers improved performance and power efficiency in comparison with last year's Galaxy S23 Plus which was powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy.

However, outside the US, we get the Exynos 2400 flavor of the Galaxy S24 Plus in most markets. This one delivers decent performance, mostly on par with the Galaxy S24 Ultra's Snapdragon 8 Gen 3. Samsung's own chipset slightly struggles in graphics processing, but nothing too severe or easily noticeable in real-life gaming scenarios. 

We have the Exynos version of the Galaxy S24 Plus on us, and here are the performance benchmarks.

Performance Benchmarks



Geekbench 6 SingleHigher is betterGeekbench 6 MultiHigher is better3DMark Extreme(High)Higher is better3DMark Extreme(Low)Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy S24+2119
6823
4345
2691
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra2187
6669
4960
2710
Google Pixel 8 Pro1720
4268
2382
1622
OnePlus 122243
6767
5047
2744

Samsung has paid a lot of attention to gaming. Not only does the phone score quite highly in gaming-related benchmarks, but optimization has taken a front row as well. Samsung's cooperation with some industry-leading gaming entities, some of the most popular games out there will be perfectly optimized for the new Galaxy S24 Plus. The phone gets a little warm during prolonged gaming sessions, which is totally normal, but we can't say that it gets unbearably hot, which is a great thing to know. 

In terms of storage and RAM, we get 12GB of fast RAM on the phone, along with two storage tiers, 256GB and 512GB. As is tradition, don't expect expandable storage on deck. If you want to have more storage at your fingertips than the maximum 512GB, then the way pricier Galaxy S24 Ultra 1TB version should be in your sights.

Galaxy S24 Plus OS / Android version


The big deal about the Galaxy S24 Plus is the super-long software support of seven years (!). This is a major move that mirrors Google's latest pledge to such a long support period for the Pixel 8 series. This means that Galaxy S24 Plus adopters will be able to enjoy software updates until the end of the decade and will receive all future One UI versions up to Android 21. A major development that surely works in the Galaxy S24 series' favor! 

That means that the phone will get security support as well as the following Android versions:
  • Android 15 in 2024
  • Android 16 in 2025
  • Android 17 in 2026
  • Android 18 in 2027
  • Android 19 in 2028
  • Android 20 in 2029
  • Android 21 in 2030

The other major development with the Galaxy S24 series is the growing reliance on AI with a ton of new AI features sprinkled all over the One UI 6.1 interface. Samsung has invested quite a lot into the AI capabilities of the phone, which rightfully are the biggest new feature on the Galaxy S24 series.

Probably the most intriguing new feature is the AI-powered website summarizer, which does a superb job at squeezing out the essence of any webpage and presenting it in a clear and concise manner. It works very well, but only with the Samsung Internet browser, which by the way is not half-bad!

Another intriguing new feature is Chat Assist, which in a ChatGPT-like fashion will intelligently suggest rewriting your text and suggest a different tone depending on who you're communicating with, providing you with options. This feature is built right into the Samsung keyboard, so it will be compatible with any messaging app you might have on your Galaxy S24 Plus.

Speaking of translation, a Live Translate feature built-into the Phone app allows for two-way, real-time voice and text translations of phone calls in real-time thanks to on-board AI. Another similar new Galaxy feature is Interpreter, allowing you to make a conversation with another person in split-screen mode and have your conversations instantaneously translated from one language to the other.

Circle to Search is also another new AI-powered feature that allows you to simply press your home button (or the general area where it should be if you have gestures enabled) and then circle anything on your screen to invoke a relevant Google search. 

You can also remove reflections from photos with the power of on-device AI. There's nothing worse than seeing your reflection in glass when you take a picture through a window, but that would no longer be an issue thanks to Galaxy AI. Remastering pictures is also part of the same package, and so is a seemingly vastly improved Object Eraser, which does a much better job at removing unwanted objects from your photography masterpieces.

Galaxy S24 Plus Battery

A larger battery does the trick

Aside from the screen size, the Galaxy S24 Plus battery has also grown in comparison with the Galaxy S23 Plus series, and this time around, it actually manages to eke out a surprising win against the larger Galaxy S24 Ultra, which comes along with a 5,000mAh battery at the back. 

Yes, that's right, in the custom PhoneArena battery web browsing test which aims to recreate a regular browsing experience with the display set at 200 nits, the Galaxy S24 Plus lasts for 20 hours and 41 minutes, roughly half an hour longer than the more expensive and more exciting Ultra. 

Moreover, in both the PhoneArena video playback and 3D gaming test, the Galaxy S24 Plus outlasts the Galaxy S24 Ultra by two and 12 minutes, respectively, but outlasts it nonetheless, which is a testament to the great battery endurance. Finally, an important redeeming feature of the Galaxy S24 Plus, which comes forward as a surprising battery champ. 

PhoneArena Battery Test Results:


Video StreamingHigher is betterWeb Browsing(hours)Higher is better3D Gaming(hours)Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy S24+8h 20 min
20h 41 min
6h 40 min
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra8h 18 min
20h 6 min
6h 28 min
Google Pixel 8 Pro10h 32 min
15h 51 min
6h 42 min
OnePlus 1213h 37 min
18h 14 min
7h 46 min

Galaxy S24 Plus Charging Speeds


Charging-wise, the Galaxy S24 Plus supports 45W wired and 15W fast wireless charging, which is similar to both the Galaxy S24 Ultra and last year's Galaxy S23 Plus. There's reverse wireless charging as well, but don't expect to see a charger in the box. You will have to use a third-party one, and Samsung's chargers are usually a safe bet when it comes to topping up your Galaxy. 

PhoneArena Charging Test Results:


Charge%reached in 15 minsHigher is betterCharge%reached in 30 minsHigher is betterCharging time(hours)Lower is better
Samsung Galaxy S24+30
61
1h 9 min
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra40
68
1h 9 min
Google Pixel 8 Pro26
47
1h 31 min
OnePlus 1247
89
0h 37 min


How fast does the Galaxy S24 Plus charge up with Samsung's stock 45W charger? Quite predictably - it takes an hour and some change to fully juice up the device to 100%. A half-hour charge would net you 61%, which is mostly average. 

Such a charging speed actually is a slight downgrade in comparison with last year's Galaxy S23+ despite the mutual support of 45W charging. Last year's flagship charged much faster: 1 hour to 100% and a whopping 74% after a 30-minute charge. 

PhoneArena Wireless Charging Test Results:


Wireless Charge%reached in 15 minsHigher is betterWireless Charge%reached in 30 minsHigher is betterWireless Charging time(hours)Lower is better
Samsung Galaxy S24+15
31
1h 57 min
Samsung Galaxy S24 UltraNo data
No data
No data
Google Pixel 8 Pro11
21
2h 38 min
OnePlus 12No data
No data
No data

When it comes to wireless charging, the Galaxy S24 Plus comes with 15W fast charging. Using Samsung's recommended fast wireless charger, we fully topped up the phone in 117 minutes, which is noticeably slower than the wired charging, but nothing too out of the ordinary. 

Galaxy S24 Plus Audio Quality and Haptics


With dual speakers, the Galaxy S24 Plus will likely deliver more than decent sound, with solid base but clear mids and crisp highs, making for a very enjoyable audio experience. Although subjective, we'd say the Galaxy S24 Plus sounds better than its immediate predecessor, which is a small but important win. 

In terms of haptics, Samsung has traditionally delivered excellent results, and we're pleased to report the Galaxy S24 Plus doesn't deviate in any way. You get strong and precise hapitcs with perceived multiple levels of intensity and depth, which surely adds up to the overall satisfactory usage experience.  

Galaxy S24 Plus Models


The Galaxy S24 Plus is the middle-sized device released in Samsung's flagship roster for 2024. Of course, it's joined by the smaller Galaxy S24 and the S Pen-wielding Galaxy S24 Ultra.

Read more:


Galaxy S24 Plus Competitors


What other device could you possibly consider instead of the Galaxy S24 Plus? Tons of options, with both some notable strengths and weaknesses in comparison with the latest Samsung phone

Starting at $999, the Galaxy S24 Plus resides in a rather congested bracket, with numerous exciting rivals, with the most exciting and notable ones being Samsung's own Galaxy S24 Ultra, the Google Pixel 8 Pro, and last, but surely not least, the fresh OnePlus 12


Learn more here:


Galaxy S24 Plus Summary and Final Verdict




So, the Galaxy S24 Plus is shaping up to be quite a decent Android phone that inches closer and closer to its big bad brother, the Galaxy S24 Ultra. Surely, it loses the specs-to-specs race as it's clearly lacking in some areas, but overall, we are seeing some very decent hardware and software updates that surely go a long way and greatly improve the user experience. The significant battery life bump is worth mentioning here, a rather important aspect 

It wouldn't make sense to update to the Galaxy S24 Plus if you're using a Galaxy S23 Plus or a Galaxy S22 Plus, but anyone using an older Galaxy phone looking to upgrade without breaking the piggy bank will probably have reasons to consider the new mid-sized Galaxy, which is steadily 

With a starting price tag of $999, the Galaxy S24 Plus surely is a premium phone, but it seemingly offers more than enough to justify its price tag. Considering the Galaxy S24 Ultra price hike, the Galaxy S24 Plus shapes up to be a modern 2024 flagship offering excellent value. 


Pros

  • Seven years of software updates
  • Very bright and super-smooth display
  • Superb battery life, surpassing even the Galaxy S24 Ultra
  • Camera finally takes great and not ultra-processed photos
  • Samsung's One UI is certainly in its best state ever

Cons

  • Flat design is not that ergonomic
  • Performance on the Exynos model not that good
  • That camera package is getting a little stale
  • Some forgettable AI features
  • Slightly slower charging speeds than Galaxy S23+

PhoneArena Rating:

7.4

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