Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra camera leak shows phone ready to fight iPhone 14 Pro

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra exclusive colors
(Image credit: Samsung)

Update: The 200MP camera on the Galaxy S23 Ultra may have weirdly limited resolution choices.

Just as the dust is settling from the September Apple event that saw the launch of the iPhone 14 series, leaks on Samsung’s upcoming Galaxy S23 lineup have started rolling in. And while we have heard multiple rumors about the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra sporting a 200MP camera, one leak now gives us some more details on the phone maker's potential camera plans.

In a tweet, leaker Ice Universe mentions that it is apparently “100% confirmed” that the S23 Ultra will have a 200MP camera.

You would think that a camera with those many megapixels would have a very large sensor, but Ice Universe mentions it is “impossible to use a much larger main sensor” and they go on to detail the sensor size and aperture of the lens — it could have 0.6μm sized pixels along with a larger aperture of f/1.7 for capturing more light. 

To put that into perspective, the 108MP camera on the Samsung Galaxy S22 has a 1/1.33-inch sensor with 0.8µm pixels and an f/1.8 aperture. If true, that is an insignificant increase in the sensor size on the S23 Ultra which would be only slightly bigger than the sensor that powers the 48MP camera introduced for the iPhone 14 Pro.

This could be good news for users, since larger sensors would mean much larger and potentially distracting camera lenses on the back of a phone. To keep sensor sizes small, companies have been using a unique pixel binning technology that merges pixels to take a large image but combine it into a smaller one while preserving details. 

Companies would soon have to increase sensor sizes though, as megapixels on cameras increase. But for now, according to this rumor, Samsung doesn’t have plans to do that on its next flagship and we will have to see if the S23 Ultra makes it to our best camera phones list.

Ever since Samsung launched the 200MP HP1 sensor, it has been one of the most prominent rumors for the S23 Ultra. More recently, rumors have suggested that the 200MP lens is pretty likely but that it could be based on Samsung's HP2 sensor.

 Samsung’s S23 series design

Another Galaxy S23 leak has suggested that next year's flagships will look similar to the current S22 lineup. We had heard that the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra could look nearly identical to the Galaxy S22 Ultra, but tipster Ice Universe has also leaked the possible dimensions of the S23 phones. Apart from very minor height and width changes, they seem almost identical to the S22 phones.

Besides the dimensions, even the apparent screen sizes and resolution of the S23 phones will be very similar to their predecessors. It seems like Samsung is taking a page out of Apple’s book this year in which we saw the iPhone 14 look similar to last year's iPhone 13 in its design and size.

According to the leak, the Galaxy S23 will feature a 6.1-inch 1080x2340 display, the Galaxy S23 Plus has a 6.6-inch 1080x2340 display, and the S23 Ultra will have a 6.8-inch 1440x3088 screen. For comparison, this is exactly what the Galaxy S22, S22 Plus and S22 Ultra currently offer. 

Other rumors have hinted at Full HD+ resolutions for the display on the S23 series and the Galaxy S23 has been tipped to ditch Samsung's Exynos chip in favor of Qualcomm's upcoming Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset. We should know more about the phones closer to the launch that is expected to take place in January 2023.

Sanjana Prakash
News Editor

Sanjana loves all things tech. From the latest phones, to quirky gadgets and the best deals, she's in sync with it all. Based in Atlanta, she is the news editor at Tom's Guide. Previously, she produced India's top technology show for NDTV and has been a tech news reporter on TV. Outside work, you can find her on a tennis court or sipping her favorite latte in instagrammable coffee shops in the city. Her work has appeared on NDTV Gadgets 360 and CNBC.