Samsung’s Galaxy S20 FE (LTE), which launched final 12 months, has to date been a strong contender within the low-cost flagship phase. Whereas it carried out nicely in most of our checks, there have been some drawbacks. It did get a bit heat beneath stress, and its battery life was simply common; each issues that the OnePlus 8T (Evaluation) dealt with higher on the identical value stage.
In 2021, Samsung selected launching the 5G model of the Galaxy S20 FE (Evaluation) in India, and it is referred to as the Galaxy S20 FE 5G. It’s principally the identical telephone, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 processor (and X55 5G modem) as an alternative of the Exynos 990. Does the change to a Qualcomm processor deal with the shortcomings we skilled with the LTE variant? Extra importantly, does investing in a smartphone with a year-old processor at this value stage make sense in 2021? Let’s discover out!
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G value in India
The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G is priced at Rs. 47,999 in India. In contrast to the 4G mannequin, it’s accessible in a single 8GB RAM + 128GB storage configuration. Consumers can select between Cloud Navy, Cloud Mint, and Cloud Lavender finishes. With a aggressive value, the Galaxy S20 FE 5G takes on the OnePlus 9 (Evaluation), ASUS ROG Cellphone 5 (First Impressions), and Vivo X60 Professional (Evaluation), all of that are priced beginning at round Rs. 49,999.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G design
There are not any beauty modifications between the 4G and the 5G fashions of the Galaxy S20 FE. The telephone seems equivalent to the 4G mannequin and has the identical button placement, with the facility and quantity buttons on the correct. The first speaker is positioned on the backside, subsequent to the USB Sort-C port and the mic. The earpiece speaker is hidden in a tiny slit on the high finish of the show, and doubles up because the second speaker to supply stereo sound which is loud and clear.
The general design seems clear and minimalist, with a colour-matched digital camera module that hardly protrudes from the rear panel. The Galaxy S20 FE 5G has a steel body that is sandwiched between a sheet of show glass on the entrance and a plastic panel on the again. The rear panel is curved to satisfy the body on all 4 sides and has a clean matte end that feels premium. The glass protecting the show is flat, which could have appeared like an odd selection final 12 months, however feels at house subsequent to the premium Galaxy S21 and Galaxy S21+ (Evaluation) smartphones which even have flat shows in 2021.
My assessment unit got here within the Cloud Mint end, and it showcases a gentle yellow gradient when considered at an angle. The matte texture is non-slippery and is sweet at rejecting fingerprints, however picks up mud fairly simply.
The Galaxy S20 FE 5G, identical to the 4G mannequin, can be rated IP68 for mud and water resistance, which is an enormous deal provided that a number of competing smartphones (which might be priced a bit larger) don’t supply this.
Samsung Galaxy S20 specs and software program
In comparison with different telephones accessible at this value stage right this moment, the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G’s processor is principally a 12 months outdated. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 processor was introduced in 2019 and began displaying up in smartphones within the first half of 2020. It was the flagship processor utilized by practically all smartphone producers who have been trying to push out the primary wave of 5G smartphones in India.
Whereas a year-old SoC is not an enormous deal for the informal person, the leap from the Snapdragon 865 processor to the Snapdragon 888 is sort of large when it comes to efficiency, and different producers supply the latter for under an extra Rs. 2,000.
Nonetheless, Samsung can justify its pricing as a result of the Galaxy S20 FE 5G affords options that different smartphones on this value phase don’t. The IP68 score will allow you to take your smartphone for a dip in a pool, and 15W wi-fi charging is sort of handy. You’ll be able to even reverse cost different smartphones or equipment at 4.5W. Whereas these options may not rely as requirements for many customers, they do enhance the premium smartphone expertise.
The Galaxy S20 FE 5G runs Samsung’s One UI 3.1, which is predicated on Android 11. Mixed with the 120Hz refresh price show, the Galaxy S20 FE 5G felt fairly fluid in day by day use. I felt no hiccups in any respect when working native apps, third-party apps or switching between the 2. There are many preinstalled Samsung apps. The telephone additionally comes with a couple of third-party apps from Microsoft and Fb, however these together with a number of Samsung apps (like Samsung Store, Samsung Members, Samsung World Objectives, Notes, Web and many others.) may be uninstalled if not wanted. In the course of the assessment interval, I used to be not bombarded with adverts or promotional notifications. I did obtain the occasional notification from the Galaxy App Retailer, however these may be turned off within the system settings.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G efficiency and battery life
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 could also be a 12 months outdated, nevertheless it’s no slouch and affords dependable flagship-grade efficiency on the subject of common duties and gaming. The telephone carried out loads higher than the Exynos 990-powered Galaxy S20 FE in our checks (though some scores may not be instantly comparable on account of benchmark updates).
AnTuTu reported a rating of 6,41,038, whereas Geekbench’s single-core and multi-core outcomes have been 560 and three,136 respectively. These are larger than what the Exynos-based mannequin managed (4,62,330 in AnTuTu; 517 and a couple of,573 in Geekbench) however are decrease than the efficiency figures we have seen from Snapdragon 888-powered smartphones in the identical value phase.
Asphalt 9: Legends ran easily, with the graphics set to Excessive High quality and 60fps mode enabled. The telephone warmed up a bit throughout gameplay however didn’t get scorching.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 can be fairly able to dealing with a sport like Name of Responsibility: Cellular when it comes to graphics. The sport ran at Very Excessive graphics and body price with out a hiccup. Nevertheless, I observed some contact sensitivity points and that dampens the expertise in video games that require a excessive diploma of accuracy. There was noticeable lag when enjoying Name of Responsibility: Cellular and it seems that the 120Hz show (with a 180Hz contact sampling price) couldn’t sustain with my fingers. With this incapability to precisely purpose at a goal, I ended up shedding many of the matches that I performed throughout the testing course of.
The 6.5-inch Tremendous AMOLED show showcases oversaturated colors when utilizing the default Vivid display screen mode. Swap it to Pure and the colors look fairly boring however I discovered this loads higher. I want there was a preset between the 2 modes which might have delivered colors that have been a bit extra restrained, particularly for watching motion pictures or exhibits.
The FHD+ decision delivers a crisp 407ppi, which meant that the whole lot from textual content to pictures and movies regarded fairly sharp. Whereas the brightness was adequate indoors, the show was barely legible outside beneath the afternoon solar. Samsung doesn’t point out HDR in its spec sheet, nevertheless it appears to be supported.
Within the show settings, one can alter the display screen’s refresh price, however it could possibly solely be set to 60Hz (for longer battery life) or 120Hz (for a smoother expertise). In the course of the assessment interval, I normally saved the show working at 120Hz.
The Galaxy S20 FE 5G clocked 18 hours and 22 minutes in our HD video loop battery take a look at, which is sort of good for a premium smartphone. The Exynos mannequin, with the identical 4500mAh battery capability, ran the identical video loop take a look at for 12 hours and 44 minutes, which is a bit low. In extraordinary use, which included working social media apps, checking emails, an hour of calls and an hour or two of gaming with the show set to 120Hz, I normally ended the day with about 20-30 % left, which is sort of spectacular.
In 2021, it’s a bit shocking to discover a premium Android smartphone with solely a 15W charger within the field. Nonetheless, charging instances weren’t too dangerous, with the battery charging as much as 33 % in half-hour, 51 % in an hour, and one hundred pc in 1 hour and 38 minutes. The smartphone does help 25W charging, however you’ll have to buy your individual charger.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G cameras
Whereas the digital camera setup stays the identical as on the LTE mannequin, the processor swap from an Exynos 990 to a Snapdragon 865, might result in minor variations in photograph processing and subsequently the top consequence. So, I made a decision to place the Galaxy S20 FE 5G’s cameras by their paces. As anticipated, the outcomes weren’t too completely different from what we noticed in our assessment of the 4G mannequin.
The rear module consists of a 12-megapixel f/1.8 wide-angle digital camera, an 8-megapixel f/2.4 telephoto digital camera (3X optical zoom) and a 12-megapixel f/2.2 ultra-wide digital camera. Selfies are dealt with by a 32-megapixel f/2.2 digital camera that shoots 8-megapixel binned photos.
The digital camera interface stays the identical as on every other premium Samsung telephone working One UI 3.1. There are simply accessible controls that allow you to alter the facet ratio, timer, and flash, and change between cameras. The checklist of default modes is customisable and the slots may be swapped and personalised as per a person’s necessities.
The video mode enables you to change the video decision with simply two faucets, which is sort of handy. The again panel close to the digital camera module does get a bit scorching when protecting the viewfinder on for about 10 minutes, however cools down shortly when you exit the digital camera app.
Images shot in daylight got here out vibrant, vibrant, and fairly saturated. Whether or not you’re capturing flowers, fruits, and even surroundings, the colors pop fairly a bit, which is typical of most Samsung smartphones. The dynamic vary is sort of good, however HDR processing does go overboard at instances, leading to a dreamy impact. The sharpness and particulars in images are fairly spectacular for a smartphone on this value phase. Picture high quality and white steadiness stay constant even when switching between cameras.
The smartphone includes a telephoto digital camera with 3X optical zoom, which shoots crisp photos in daylight. The identical digital camera additionally doubles up as a macro shooter because it enables you to get nearer to the article in comparison with the first digital camera. That is vital, as there is no devoted macro digital camera.
Portrait images come out fairly clear with good edge detection, however the Galaxy S20 FE 5G falters at instances (with a noticeable halo), when the topic will not be nonetheless.
Submit sundown, images got here out a bit murky with barely lowered dynamic vary within the shadows, however they nonetheless regarded fairly good. The Night time mode takes care of those minor shortcomings and retains streetlights and vibrant spots from getting overexposed, whereas bumping up the brightness and particulars. The telephone shot crisp images in low-light scenes when Night time mode was used with the first wide-angle digital camera, however delivered solely satisfactory images when used on the ultra-wide-angle digital camera.
Selfies in the usual and portrait modes got here out fairly sharp and clear with good edge detection in daylight, however turned out murky and lacked depth in low-light capturing eventualities. The evening mode can be accessible on the entrance digital camera and did job of sustaining element and giving a way of depth to the selfies.
The Galaxy S20 FE 5G guarantees loads when it comes to video, and surprisingly delivers when it comes to high quality as nicely. Movies shot at 1080p and 4K (30 and 60fps) with the first rear digital camera got here out crisp and full of element, and have been additionally nicely stabilised when strolling. My solely gripe was with the ultra-wide-angle digital camera, because it tended to overexpose scenes. The selfie digital camera additionally managed movies fairly nicely and affords 1080p and 4K recording choices. 4K video shot with the selfie digital camera lacked stabilisation and regarded fairly jerky. In low-light eventualities, movies shot at any decision got here out blurry and a bit noisy, however stabilisation was first rate.
To the informal person, Samsung’s Galaxy S20 FE 5G may not seem like a lot of an improve provided that it solely provides 5G help to the spec sheet. This might have been nice if this telephone had been launched alongside the 4G mannequin in India in 2020, prefer it did in different components of the world.
We’ve reviewed the 4G mannequin and it is easy to inform that the Snapdragon 865 silicon makes fairly a distinction when it comes to efficiency, and in addition does not warmth up as a lot as Samsung’s personal Exynos SoC.
The Galaxy S20 FE 5G may be probably the most full low-cost flagship providing when it comes to options in the meanwhile, provided that it affords optical zoom, wi-fi charging, and an IP68 score. These options, together with its vibrant OLED show, nice cameras, good battery life and strong on a regular basis efficiency make it a compelling possibility. Nevertheless, it is laborious to advocate to a gamer given its contact sensitivity points.
In case you are in search of efficiency, there are smartphones just like the Xiaomi Mi 11X Professional (Evaluation) and the iQoo 7 Legend that get you the Snapdragon 888 processor and quicker charging from Rs. 39,990. For those who can stretch your price range by Rs. 2,000, there’s the OnePlus 9 (Evaluation), which affords the Snapdragon 888 processor, a wonderful show that may deal with vibrant daylight, quicker charging, and no contact sensitivity points when gaming.