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Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra Feels Like Galaxy S24+ After One UI 6.1: First-hand Report

Samsung released the One UI 6.1 update for its Galaxy S23 series earlier yesterday and here’s our initial impression about the update.

Samsung just released the One UI 6.1 update for its Galaxy S23 series, Z Fold 5, Z Flip 5 and the Tab S9 series. It’s one of the major updates from Samsung, considering it brings Galaxy (first seen on Galaxy S24 series) and other bunch of optimisations to previous flagships from the brand. After using One UI 6.1 on the Galaxy S23 Ultra for about 24 hours, we have our opinions concreted and here’s what we think.

Galaxy S23 Ultra on One UI 6.1: First Impression

We reviewed the Galaxy S24+, Galaxy S24 as well as the S24 Ultra a few weeks back and I precisely tested the former two, which gave me a decent idea of what level of optimisations Samsung has done with its software and how impressively the animations have been refined.

After the One UI 6.1 update, I can confirm that the Galaxy S23 Ultra is now offering the same level of performance as the Galaxy S24+ in terms of daily use and the minor refinements I saw the Galaxy S24+ and the S24 excel at. While it does miss out on a couple of features over the S24 series, such as full-screen Wallpaper AOD and the Photo Ambient wallpapers, most likely due to hardware limitations, the overall experience has been exactly replicated.

The Galaxy S23 Ultra was already a powerful yet smooth device, but after the Galaxy S24+ came in, I could clearly notice the obnoxious difference in the animation style. Fortunately, all of this has now arrived on Samsung’s most powerful flagship of 2023. The S23 Ultra on One UI 6.1 flies through everything with as much fluidity as possible. The handset not only feels more responsive but also smoother, thanks to the newer animations while closing or opening an app.

The transitions feel seamless and effortless. Despite missing a couple of features, the major selling point of the Galaxy S24 series, called Galaxy AI, has now also been brought over, and I don’t feel there’s any kind of difference between the speeds of these features on the Galaxy S24+ and the Galaxy S23 Ultra.

Samsung’s decision to bring Galaxy AI to its older flagships highlights the brand’s commitment to providing the latest experiences to its older customers. This move is significant because Galaxy AI was the major selling point of the Galaxy S24 series, and bringing it to older models may impact the sales figures of the brand’s latest flagships since people now have the option to consider the older models at a lower cost. In other words, if the Galaxy AI feature is what users are looking for, the Galaxy S23 series may cannibalize the sales of the S24 series.

Not only that but adding the same amount of fluidity as the S24 series to the S23 series is highly impressive, too, especially when there are reports that brands like Apple intentionally slow down their older iPhones to make customers switch to the newer ones.

I haven’t had the chance to test battery life on the Galaxy S23 Ultra since the recent update, as it could take a while for it to calibrate before I start getting stable results. However, from my initial impressions, I can say that One UI 6.1 makes the Galaxy S23 Ultra feel brand-new and significantly refreshes it.

The Galaxy S23 Ultra 256GB model is currently selling for Rs 89,999 (exclusive of bank offers) on Flipkart, its lowest price since launch. This makes it a deal not worth missing if you are looking for a flagship handset. The One UI 6.1 update makes it that incredible.

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra
  • ChipsetSnapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy
  • RAM (GB)8, 12
  • Storage (GB)128, 256, 512, 1TB
  • Display6.8 inch, 1440 x 3088 pixels
  • Front Camera12MP
  • Primary Camera200MP + 12MP + 10MP + 10MP
  • Battery5000mAh
  • Operating SystemAndroid 13

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