Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro: Which Android phone wins?

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

This Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro face-off could help determine which device can claim to be the best Android phone. After all, both handsets offer premium features designed for people who want the very best money can buy.

On paper, the Galaxy S22 Ultra would seem to hold the advantage. It's got a powerful processor and one of the best zoom features you'll find on a camera phone. It now comes equipped with a productivity-boosting S Pen for getting more done on your mobile device.

The OnePlus 10 Pro can't match that stylus, but it challenges the Galaxy S22 Ultra in other ways, offering cameras that have been fine-tuned by lens specialist Hasselblad. The OnePlus 10 Pro also matches the performance of Samsung's high-end flagship, using the same chipset. However, it does all this while costing hundreds of dollars less.

Does the OnePlus 10 Pro make too many compromises to arrive at that lower price tag? Or can it really go toe to toe with the Galaxy S22 Ultra? Our Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro comparison finds out the answer to those questions.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro: Specs

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Header Cell - Column 0 Samsung Galaxy S22 UltraOnePlus 10 Pro
Screen size6.8 inches6.7 inches
Refresh rate120Hz adaptive120Hz adaptive
CPUSnapdragon 8 Gen 1/Exynos 2200Snapdragon 8 Gen 1
RAM12GB, 16GB8GB, 12GB
Storage128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB128GB, 256GB
Rear cameras108MP main, 12MP ultrawide, 2 10MP telephoto (10x and 3x zoom)48MP main; 50MP ultrawide; 8MP telephoto
Front camera40MP32MP
Battery size5,000 mAh5,000 mAh
Battery life (Hrs:Mins)11:52 (120Hz), 12:39 (60Hz):50 (120Hz), 10:18 (60Hz)
Charging speed45W wired80W wired (65W U.S.)
Size6.42 x 2.91 x 0.34 inches6.43 x 3.07 x 0.35 inches
Weight7 ounces8 ounces

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro: Price and availability

The OnePlus 10 Pro's big edge over the Galaxy S22 Ultra emerges when you compare prices for the two phones. OnePlus charges $899 for its flagship, a $300 discount off the Galaxy S22 Ultra's $1,199. Both base models come with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage.

There's also a 12GB/256GB OnePlus 10 Pro, though that variant isn't available in the U.S. Samsung places no such geographical restrictions on its memory and storage upgrades — you can upgrade to 256GB for an extra $100, 512GB for an extra $200 and 1TB for an extra $400.

The best Galaxy S22 deals can lower the price on the Ultra model to something more reasonable. OnePlus 10 Pro deals have been limited to pre-order offers, as OnePlus' flagship doesn't go on sale until April 14, but you can get a discounted price with trade-in.

T-Mobile appears to be the only wireless carrier offering the OnePlus 10 Pro. That's a sharp contrast to the Galaxy S22 Ultra, which is available from the best phone carriers, including some discount providers.

Winner: OnePlus 10 Pro

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro: Design

OnePlus seems to have mimicked the look of the Galaxy S21 lineup, with the rear camera array blending into the side of the phone much like Samsung's contour cut look. Forget about subtle looking cameras here — the OnePlus 10 features a boxy camera array that juts out from the back of the phone.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs OnePlus 10 Pro

OnePlus 10 Pro (Image credit: Future)

There's no such ostentation with the Galaxy S22 Ultra, where the different camera lenses are pretty flush against the back surface of the device. It's certainly a more subtle look than what the OnePlus 10 Pro has to offer.

Since the phones feature similar screen sizes — 6.7-inches for the OnePlus 10 Pro, 6.8 inches for the Galaxy S22 Ultra — they're roughly the same size, though the OnePlus flagship isn't as wide as Samsung's. The OnePlus 10 Pro weighs an ounce less, too, so it's the more portable of the two devices. The extra bulk on the S22 Ultra appears to be the cost you pay for having a built-in stylus. 

A photo of the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

(Image credit: Future)

I've never really thought of Samsung as being the home of more colorful choices, but that's certainly the case when compared to the OnePlus 10 Pro. You can pick the S22 Ultra in one of four standard colors — black, white, green and burgundy — with additional choices should you buy your phone directly from Samsung. The OnePlus 10 Pro only comes in Volcanic Black or Emerald Forest, though the latter option is a real looker.

Winner: Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro: Display

The displays of the two phones turn out to be evenly matched, which is a bit of a surprise given the obvious effort that Samsung put into the panels of its Galaxy S22 lineup. Then again, OnePlus made display improvements a centerpiece of the OnePlus 10 Pro launch, so it's not like either phone maker is overlooking the importance of an engaging screen.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro

OnePlus 10 Pro (Image credit: Tom's Guide)

For starters, both phones share a key feature — an adaptive refresh rate. When you're scrolling through a web page or watching a video, both the Galaxy S22 Ultra and OnePlus 10 Pro will scale up the refresh rate of their respective screen to 120Hz. When things are more static, the refresh rate slows down — all the way to 1Hz for both phones.

The two phone makers also took brightness into consideration when releasing this year's flagships. The Galaxy s22 Ultra boasts a Vision Booster feature that tweaks colors, contrast, and brightness in bright sunlight so that your S22 Ultra screen remains visible without washing everything out. The OnePlus 10 Pro does something similar, though, thanks to separate color calibrations at 100 nits and 500 nits to keep colors accurate as display brightness varies. Both features are very welcome.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra (Image credit: Future)

Yet, it's Samsung that really nailed the outdoors experience, by bolstering the S22 Ultra's peak brightness to 1,750 nits. We measured a peak of 1,359 nits with HDR enabled; that compares to 715 nits for the OnePlus 10 Pro.

Both the OnePlus 10 Pro and Galaxy S22 Ultra are closely matched in other display measurements. With both phones set to natural mode, the Samsung's phone captures more of the sRGB color spectrum — 137.5% to the OnePlus 10 Pro's 119%. Yet, the OnePlus 10 Pro's display shows off those colors more accurately. Its Delta-E rating of 0.23 is slightly better than the S22 Ultra's 0.25 score. (The closer to zero, the more accurate the colors.)

Winner: Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro: Cameras

It would have been crazy a few years ago to suggest that OnePlus could keep pace with Samsung on the camera front; Samsung routinely made some of the best camera phones in the world. Meanwhile, camera performance was a consistent Achilles' heel for OnePlus and its flagships.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro cameras

OnePlus 10 Pro (Image credit: OnePlus)

That changed with the OnePlus 9 series last year, when OnePlus brought in lens specialist Hasselblad to improve the cameras on its phones. That work continues with the OnePlus 10 Pro in the form of a revamped Pro mode that can shoot in 12-bit color and a new RAW+ format that boosts dynamic range, among other features. The OnePlus 10 Pro may not top the best camera phones list, but it's certainly knocking on the door.

The Galaxy S22 Ultra still has OnePlus outgunned when it comes to camera specs. Samsung's phone features a 108MP main camera along with a 12MP ultrawide angle shooter. There are two telephoto lenses on the Galaxy S22 Ultra, capable of 10x and 3x optical zooms, respectively.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs OnePlus 10 Pro cameras

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra (Image credit: Future)

OnePlus settles for just one telephoto lens on the OnePlus 10 Pro, and at 8MP, it's a little underpowered compared to the dual 10MP sensors handling zooms for the Galaxy S22 Ultra. Still, the 48MP main camera and 50MP ultrawide angle lens on the OnePlus 10 Pro impress.

So how do these two camera phones compare once you start mashing the shutter button? The shot of a produce stand at a local grocery market is certainly colorful in the OnePlus 10 Pro's effort, but the Galaxy S22 does a better job at handling the store's harsh lighting. As a result, the green apples in the foreground have better definition in the Galaxy photo, while the Fiji apples are a more vibrant shade of red.

It's the same story when we move outside to take a close-up of a flower. The surrounding light has flummoxed the OnePlus 10 Pro, and it ends up washing out the flower. The purple petals look much sharper in the Galaxy S22 Ultra's effort, even if the overall image is a bit dark.

The OnePlus 10 Pro tends to favor lighter, more natural colors, which makes for accurate pictures. But the Galaxy S22 Ultra's tendency to heighten colors serves it well. In this photo captured by the phones' ultrawide angle lenses, the S22's effort has deeper blues in the sky and you can see more distinct shadows in the water. The OnePlus 10 shot is fine, but the S22 Ultra photo is simply more detailed.

Both OnePlus and Samsung have put a lot of effort into low-light photography, and those efforts were on display when we tested out the various Night modes on either device. The OnePlus 10 Pro captures a softer image that's a little more pleasing to the eye, even if the outline of the vodka bottle blends into the background of the photo. You see more color peaking out of the Galaxy S22 Ultra image, even if the photo is overly warm.

Samsung equips the Galaxy S22 models with AI Stereo Depth Maps for improved portrait shots, and these dueling photos of my colleague Mark Spoonauer shows how that effort pays off. The Galaxy S22 Ultra adroitly separates him from the background and the blur behind him is particularly stylish. Once again, Samsung's tendency to boost colors serves the image well here, while the OnePlus 10 Pro takes a light hand. It's not a bad photo but the more muted colors don't catch the eye the way the Galaxy S22 Ultra photo does.

I think the OnePlus 10 Pro fares better when we switch to its 32MP front camera. On these selfies of Mark, the Galaxy S22 Ultra's tendency to call out dark colors winds up losing Mark's eyes in the shadows. Those peepers are more visible in the OnePlus 10 Pro selfie, even if the photo software got overly aggressive in smoothing his skin. While Mark looks a little paler in the OnePlus 10 Pro's effort, it's a better composed shot.

In terms of video, both phones can capture 8K video, though the OnePlus 10 Pro can do it at 30 frames per second; the S22 Ultra records 8K at 24 fps. In these video samples shot on a shoreline, the zoom lens on the Galaxy S22 Ultra lets you get a lot closer to the action.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra video sample:

OnePlus 10 Pro video sample:

The Galaxy S22 Ultra clearly takes better pictures then than the OnePlus 10 Pro, though the match-up is certainly closer than it would have been a few years ago. A more vibrant approach to color by the OnePlus 10 Pro, and it might have toppled Samsung, though the Galaxy S22 Ultra's zoom lenses put the phone in a class by itself.

Winner: Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro: Performance and 5G

There's not much separating the OnePlus 10 Pro from the Galaxy S22 Ultra when it comes to performance. Not only do both phones feature 8GB of RAM in their base models, they also run on the same system-on-chip. That's the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, which figures to be the best-perform silicon for Android phones this year, so you can expect top-of-the-line performance from either phone.

To that end, the Galaxy S22 Ultra has the better Geekbench 5 single-core score — 1,240 vs. 995 for the OnePlus 10 Pro. In Geekbench's multicore test, however, it was the OnePlus device's time to shine as its 3,482 result outpaced the S22 Ultra's 3,392. The OnePlus 10 Pro turned in a better result in graphics testing, yielding 61 frames per second to the S22 Ultra's 57 fps result in 3DMark's Wild Life Unlimited benchmark.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs OnePlus 10 Pro 3DMark benchmark

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra (Image credit: Future)

The Galaxy S22 Ultra showed more of an edge in a real-world test in which we timed how long the phone took to transcode a 4K video using Adobe Premiere Rush. The Galaxy S22 Ultra needed 47 seconds to complete the task, a full 15 seconds faster than the OnePlus 10 Pro.

On 5G, the Galaxy S22 Ultra has a clear edge. It works with the 5G technology available on any network, including Verizon's new C-Band 5G. Verizon and OnePlus are working to certify the OnePlus 10 Pro for that carrier's 5G network, and the new OnePlus device works just fine with T-Mobile. But AT&T says its 5G network isn't compatible with the OnePlus 10 Pro.

Winner: Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro: Battery life and charging

Perhaps the biggest gap in our Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro face-off comes when looking at how long the phones last on a charge and how quickly it takes to refill their batteries. In both cases, the OnePlus 10 Pro runs circles around Samsung's flagship.

It's not for lack of trying on part of the Galaxy S22 Ultra. Samsung equipped its phone with a 5,000 mAh battery, and when we put the S22 Ultra through our battery test in which the phone surfs the web over cellular until it runs out of power, we saw OK results. 

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10

Samsung galaxy S22 Ultra (Image credit: Samsung | YouTube)

Specifically, the S22 Ultra lasted 10 hours and 18 minutes on our test, but that was with its adaptive display feature turned off. With fast refreshing enabled, battery life fell to 8 hours and 50 minutes, around an hour less than the average smartphone.

The OnePlus 10 Pro faced no such issues with its adaptive display feature. With that mode enabled, the OnePlus 10 Pro lasted 11 hours and 52 minutes, placing it on our best phone battery life list. Turning off the adaptive display improved battery test time to just over 12.5 hours. There's no mistaking who makes the longer-lasting phone.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro web browsing

OnePlus 10 Pro (Image credit: Tom's Guide)

It's pretty clear whose phone charges faster, too, thanks to the 80W charging speeds that the OnePlus 10 Pro is capable of supporting. In the U.S., that number is capped at 65W, as U.S. A/C standards can't support the faster charging speed. But even then, the OnePlus 10 Pro's battery tops off fairly quickly.

We recharged a fully drained OnePlus 10 Pro in the U.S., and saw its battery percentage indicator reach 93% after 30 minutes. A similar test in the U.K. turned in a 98% result, so there's no real speed difference no matter where you recharge the OnePlus 10 Pro.

The Galaxy S22 Ultra offers 45W wired charging — fast compared to most phones, though not the OnePlus 10 Pro. Charging times reflect that, as after 30 minutes of charging, the Galaxy S22 Ultra had reached a 67% charge.

Winner: OnePlus 10 Pro

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro: Software and special features

OnePlus phones had previously won raves for their Oxygen OS, an unobtrusive take on Android where the phone maker's additions really enhanced the experience. With OnePlus merging with sister company Oppo, there were fears that software on the OnePlus 10 Pro might suffer, but the OnePlus 10 Pro's interface remains clean with some helpful tweaks. We still prefer it to the OneUI interface Samsung uses on the Galaxy S22 Ultra.

But Samsung is more aggressive with software updates than OnePlus is. Starting with the Galaxy S22 Ultra, you can now expect four years of Android updates for your Samsung phone, plus an additional year of security support. OnePlus features just three years of software updates, along with that additional year of security updates.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra with S Pen

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra (Image credit: Future)

That would be enough to push the Galaxy S22 Ultra ahead of the OnePlus 10 Pro in this category, but Samsung layers on the extras. Start with that included S Pen which helps you take notes, edit photos and even remotely control your S22 Ultra. Samsung's DeX mode — in which you can plug your phone into a monitor, turning it into a mini laptop — continues to be a bonus for productivity-minded users.

Winner: Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro: Verdict

The OnePlus 10 Pro is certainly a great phone, especially for Android fans who want a clean experience from their handset. But the Galaxy S22 Ultra is just a little bit better in a lot of different ways, giving it the edge in this Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs. OnePlus 10 Pro face-off.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Header Cell - Column 0 Samsung Galaxy S22 UltraOnePlus 10 Pro
Price and availability (10 points)78
Design (10 points)98
Display (15 points)1413
Camera (20 points)1715
Performance and 5G (20 points)1716
Battery life and charging (15 points)1115
Software and special features (10 points)97
Overall (100 points)8482

Samsung's phone boasts a slightly better design and a superior display (though OnePlus does a very good job closing the gap with the S22 Ultra's screen). The lack of AT&T 5G support hampers the OnePlus 10 Pro on the performance front, and it's hard to overlook the Galaxy S22 Ultra's built-in S Pen. At the end of the day, though, it's the S22 Ultra cameras that vault the Samsung flagship to the top.

If a long-lasting device is what you look for in a phone and you're fine with very good though not quite great cameras, the OnePlus 10 Pro is a fine choice. But Samsung still sets the bar for Android devices, and the Galaxy S22 Ultra remains the phone to beat.

If you want to see another OnePlus match-up, check out our OnePlus 10 Pro vs. iPhone 13 Pro Max comparison and now that the OnePlus 10T has launched, you can check out our full comparison between OnePlus 10T vs. OnePlus 10 Pro as well.

If you want to see how the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra compares against other phones, check out our detailed Pixel 7 Pro vs Galaxy S22 Ultra comparison.

Philip Michaels

Philip Michaels is a Managing Editor at Tom's Guide. He's been covering personal technology since 1999 and was in the building when Steve Jobs showed off the iPhone for the first time. He's been evaluating smartphones since that first iPhone debuted in 2007, and he's been following phone carriers and smartphone plans since 2015. He has strong opinions about Apple, the Oakland Athletics, old movies and proper butchery techniques. Follow him at @PhilipMichaels.