We may not see the Samsung Galaxy S22 FE until 2023, much later than we expected.
This is what leaker yeux1122 on Korean blogging site Naver (via Dohyun Kim on Twitter) may have discovered. According to the leaker's "domestic source," there's no development firmware for a Galaxy S22 FE model, nor software analysis packages (AP) for the phone, which they claim should be around by now if the phone was coming in 2022.
They compare it to how we first learned that the Galaxy Note line was ending early last year, but yeux1122 still thinks the S22 FE is coming in 2023.
We love the Galaxy S22 series, including the cheapest $800 model. However ,that may still be too costly for many users, which is where the entry-level FE editions come in. The first of this new generation of FEs, the Galaxy S20 FE, was excellent, while we found the latest Galaxy S21 FE to be underwhelming.
Where the S21 FE went wrong was in its pricing. The Galaxy S20 FE started at $300 less than the costly Galaxy S20 series, making for a very tempting discount. The gap between the cheapest Galaxy S21 and the S21 FE is only $100, the same as between the Galaxy S22 and the S21 FE. While that's good news for phone buyers, it does make the S21 FE a bit redundant.
The timing could be problem — again. The Galaxy S20 FE launched seven months after the Galaxy S20 and three months before the Galaxy S21. That gave it plenty of breathing room to be Samsung's latest phone with the most recent generation of internal hardware. The Galaxy S21 FE launched almost a year after the regular S21, and just over a month before the Galaxy S22 arrived, meaning users had little time or incentive to choose it. In a fast-moving smartphone market where models get yearly refreshes, timing can be just as important as specs.
If the Galaxy S22 FE is coming, it sounds like it will arrive just before the Galaxy S23 next year, which is arguably far too late again for the phone to be appealing. What it therefore needs to do is get the pricing right, dropping another $100 or so from its list pricing (even if that means reduced specs) in order to prove it has a place in Samsung's crowded line-up.
Fortunately, one rumor may help Samsung do this. The Galaxy S22 FE could apparently use a MediaTek Dimensity chip instead of Samsung's usual Snapdragon or Exynos ones. This could help make the phone cheaper. But that is only a rumor.
If next year is too far away to be excited for, there's something else coming up to look forward to. The next big phone launch from Samsung is probably the Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Galaxy Z Flip 4, which we expect to arrive in late summer.