It’s nearly been 6 months since Samsung announced its flagship series Galaxy S23 phones and for the same amount of time, we have also been using the base model in the series, the Galaxy S23. The smartphone has received monthly updates since then which have claimed to improve the overall experience of using it since we last reviewed it, where it also performed exceptionally. However, does it still hold its value after 6 months with a bunch of newcomers in the Indian market or has it gone dull? We are here to find that out.
Build & Display
We already talked in detail about the design of the Galaxy S23 six months back so we won’t delve into that but what we do want to talk about is build quality. The Galaxy S23 employs glass on the back and front with Samsung’s Armor Aluminium frame that is claimed to be stronger and resistant to damage in case of drops.
While we fortunately didn’t drop it once in these six months, we have been using it without a case which has in fact resulted in some scuff marks. The aluminum and glass combo is the ultimate one if you want a premium feel but its not as resistant to scratches as it should be.
The glass on the front and back is perfectly fine, however, the bottom portion has some marks (as shown above) where the paint on the frame has been chipped off, as I am used to putting it in the dashboard of my car. On the positive side of things, the compact form factor should be liked by many, as there aren’t a lot of compact phones currently available in India which offer such a flagship experience
Where I do get to use a lot of big phones with the majority of them having a screen size above 6.5-inches, the 6.1-inch size still feels close to perfect if you aren’t involved in watching a lot of content on your phone.
As for the panel on the front, it still looks gorgeous and is quite sharp with text and other content. The uniform bezels around the panel add to the aesthetic feel. The colours are on point while the brightness and viewing angles look excellent.
Software & Performance
The Samsung Galaxy S23 is powered by the ‘Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy’ Chipset which features higher clock speeds than the regular variant of the same SoC, which is being used by flagships such as the OnePlus 11, Xiaomi 13 Pro and others. There are two variants available for purchase in India, one with 8GB RAM + 128GB storage and one with 8GB RAM + 256GB storage. These are currently priced at 74,999 and Rs 79,999, respectively.
The OnePlus 11 5G and the iQOO 11 5G (Review) sell for Rs 61,999 and Rs 54,999, respectively, that make much more sense if you are on a budget and looking for an Android flagship. The Xiaomi 13 Pro on the other hand, competes with the Galaxy S23 at the same price point of Rs 79,999. However, software is where Samsung’s flagship leaves its competitors in the dust.
With timely monthly updates and a promise of 4 years of major OS upgrades, Samsung once again proves how serious it is when it comes to providing software support to its customers. The competition certainly isn’t behind in these terms, but the way OneUI has been optimised and the features it packs are the aspects that make the Galaxy S23’s experience a better one than its competition.
OneUI has been the only Android skin I have used that hasn’t shown me a lot of bugs. It’s one of the most stable skins out there, and the Galaxy S23 is proof of that. Yes, the phone does get warm at times during the execution of demanding tasks, but that doesn’t make it a struggle. Not once during these six months, I have faced a lag while using the handset.
The S23 is a small smartphone but a mighty package when it comes to software. The animations have been flawless and one of the smoothest in Samsung’s history, in my opinion. I made a statement in the full review of the S23, where I mentioned that “the Galaxy S23 remains the smoothest Samsung smartphone I have used after Galaxy Z Flip4”, and I still stand by it. RAM management has also been impressive for the past six months.
Battery & Cameras
The Galaxy S23 packs a 3900mAh battery which is much smaller compared to its competition. But that doesn’t let it disappoint itself, once again, thanks to the software optimisation and the power-efficient chipset.
The battery backup from the S23 has been consistent for me since it came, not better nor worse, where it ranges between 5.5 to 6 hours of screen-on time with around a day of use. However, its only con is that it charges slowly, taking over 1 hour to charge from 0 to 100 percent. The competitors can do far better by taking close to half an hour for a full charge, or even less in some cases.
As for the cameras, we won’t talk about the specs, but we do want to mention that the experience remains pretty similar to how it came out of the box, minus some bugs. The auto-focus issue plagued the camera experience on the Galaxy S23 and was also frustrating. However, since the June 2023 update, the bug has almost vanished. Apart from that, the cameras perform nicely in most scenarios and do not give a reason to complain.
Overall, after spending 6 months with the Galaxy S23, I can say that the device still holds its value till date. If you are looking for a compact flagship with a budget that matches the price tag of the Galaxy S23, then the handset definitely proves itself as an all-rounder and is considerable over its competition.