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Bummer: Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra’s RAM downgrade looks like it's happening

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra front and back with S Pen
(Image credit: Evan Blass)

We're all but certain to get our first real look at the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra next week when Samsung holds its Galaxy Unpacked 2022 event. But someone claiming to inside information is confirming some bad news about the base model of Samsung's showcase phone.

A person who claims to be a Verizon sales representative is answering Galaxy S22 Ultra questions on Reddit after having been briefed on the unannounced phone in advance of it going on sale later this month. We can't verify whether that Reddit poster is who they claim to be, but it's certainly not out of the realm of possibility that wireless carriers sales reps would know about smartphone features before shoppers. Typically, they are briefed in advance so they can better handle customer questions that crop up once the device goes on sale.

To that end, most of the details dropped by this alleged Verizon sales rep on Reddit mirror many of the Galaxy S22 Ultra rumors that we've heard thus far, so you won't find any earth-shattering disclosures in the thread. You will, however, get confirmation of a disappointing downgrade involving the Galaxy S22 Ultra's RAM.

Galaxy S22 Ultra reportedly has less RAM

Specifically, the leaker claims that the base model of the Galaxy S22 Ultra will ship with 8GB of memory to go with its 128GB of storage. That's a step back from the Galaxy S21 Ultra, which shipped with 12GB of RAM in its base model.

If you want 12GB in the Galaxy S22 Ultra, the Reddit tipster claims, you'll need to upgrade to a 256GB or 512GB model of the phone.

We already heard rumors that the Galaxy S22 Ultra base model would feature lass RAM than its predecessor, so this can serve as some level of confirmation, depending on how much stock you put into anonymous Reddit posts. The move will likely disappoint power users who would appreciate the extra oomph 12GB of RAM would lend to multitasking and app switching; it will be an even harder decision to swallow should the Galaxy S22 Ultra see a price hike from last year's model as has been rumored.

Then again, Samsung may have no choice but to ship the Galaxy S22 Ultra with less RAM than before. There's a global component shortage, and faced with the decision of pushing back the launch of its phones or rolling out the devices with less memory, Samsung could be opting for the latter.

Galaxy S22 Ultra = Galaxy Note

Other details in the Reddit chat seemingly confirm what we've already heard about the Galaxy S22 Ultra. The Verizon rep compares the upcoming phone to the Galaxy Note 20 in its look and feel — something Samsung essentially confirmed when teasing its February launch event.

While the Galaxy S22 Ultra is supposed have flat edges similar to the Galaxy Note, the Verizon rep noted that the phone has a curved screen that's "very subtle like on the [Galaxy S21 Ultra]." The rear camera array is supposedly flush with the surface of the phone.

"The camera doesn’t stick out," the Reddit poster says of the Galaxy S22 Ultra. " It’s almost all flat."

Galaxy S22 camera and battery

As for the cameras themselves, there's not much detail in the Reddit post about the specs. The only information provided suggests that the sensors will be bigger on this model to let in more light. The front camera is expected to be a 40MP sensor. These claims match earlier rumors.

Another claim about the Galaxy S22 Ultra's battery — it will reportedly be a 5,000 mAh power pack — is in line with earlier reports. The Verizon rep also hints that batteries in the Galaxy S22 and Galaxy S22 Plus models may be smaller than the ones in their S21 counterparts, as those phones are rumored to be shrinking slightly in size.

We'll find out just how accurate this report is in a week, when Samsung's Galaxy Unpacked event begins on February 9. (We've got a guide on how to watch the Galaxy Unpacked live stream if you're so inclined.) At that time, we're expecting to see all the Galaxy S22 models, highlighted by the Galaxy S22 Ultra, which is said to have improved cameras, a new processor and a built-in S Pen among other features.

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.