A fresh set of alleged Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra renders have surfaced — and they tease a radical change of direction for the camera module plus a distinctly Note-like design.
The renders, by the usually reliable OnLeaks and published by Digit, point to a device that is keen to capture the attention of those upset by the Galaxy Note’s non-show in 2021. As well as sporting a design that looks like a tribute to the curved look of the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, the renders come complete with a hole-punch selfie camera and a slot for S Pen docking built in.
- Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 vs. Galaxy Z Flip 3: Which foldable should you buy?
- The best phones you can buy today
- Plus: Samsung Galaxy S22 — wait or buy Galaxy S21 now?
An S Pen dock is a rumor we’ve heard before about the S22 Ultra, and would certainly be more convenient for scribblers than the Galaxy Z Fold 3, which only offers a place for the S Pen with an optional case.
But it’s on the back where Samsung will reportedly take a radical change of direction, with the strangest looking camera array since the Pixel 6’s ‘visor’ leaked. We’re used to raised camera humps, but this eschews a square or rectangular design for something ‘P’ shaped. It’s certainly an acquired taste — although we should caution, as always, that these renders are not official and may not prove to be accurate.
While odd, if you compare this to our pictures of the current Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra, it does look like the lenses are all in the same place, just with the corner cut out.
The Digit report adds that not much is known about the quad-camera setup, other than that it will likely “showcase significant gains” in performance, and that “one of the camera sensors is looking to be a periscope telephoto lens.”
The report adds that the device will maintain the 6.8-inch screen panel size from the Galaxy S20 Ultra, which matches previous reports. It will apparently have dimensions of 163.2 x 77.9 x 8.9mm (rising to 10.5mm with the camera bump.) For reference, the current Galaxy S Ultra model is 75.6 x 165.1 x 8.9mm.
Return of the Note?
Taken together with the recent report of smaller Galaxy S22 and S22 Plus devices, it feels like Samsung may well be blending the S and Note product lines, with the Note replacing the S’ Ultra model.
That feels like a sensible compromise. While the Galaxy Note certainly has evangelical fans, things were beginning to feel more than a little crowded for Samsung, with the company pushing S, Note and Fold/Flip devices at three separate launches in 2020.
I'd therefore be very surprised if Samsung did announce a Note-branded product next year in addition to this — and that will undoubtedly upset some, especially those who favor the cheaper version of the Note without the ‘Ultra’ bells and whistles.
But with Samsung clear that foldables are the future, it would be unrealistic to expect the company to keep supporting two different flat flagships alongside them. This simplification is, to me at least, a fair compromise that should deliver the best of all worlds… if you can afford the Ultra, that is.
- More: The best Samsung phone you can buy