Samsung’s Galaxy S20 FE (LTE), which launched final yr, has up to now been a strong contender within the low-cost flagship section. Whereas it carried out properly in most of our assessments, there have been some drawbacks. It did get a bit heat underneath stress, and its battery life was simply common; each issues that the OnePlus 8T (Review) dealt with higher on the similar worth degree.
In 2021, Samsung selected launching the 5G model of the Galaxy S20 FE (Review) in India, and it is referred to as the Galaxy S20 FE 5G. It’s principally the identical telephone, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 processor (and X55 5G modem) as an alternative of the Exynos 990. Does the change to a Qualcomm processor deal with the shortcomings we skilled with the LTE variant? Extra importantly, does investing in a smartphone with a year-old processor at this worth degree make sense in 2021? Let’s discover out!
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G worth in India
The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G is priced at Rs. 47,999 in India. In contrast to the 4G mannequin, it’s out there in a single 8GB RAM + 128GB storage configuration. Consumers can select between Cloud Navy, Cloud Mint, and Cloud Lavender finishes. With a aggressive worth, the Galaxy S20 FE 5G takes on the OnePlus 9 (Review), ASUS ROG Phone 5 (First Impressions), and Vivo X60 Pro (Review), all of that are priced beginning at round Rs. 49,999.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G design
There aren’t any beauty modifications between the 4G and the 5G fashions of the Galaxy S20 FE. The telephone appears similar to the 4G mannequin and has the identical button placement, with the facility and quantity buttons on the correct. The first speaker is positioned on the backside, subsequent to the USB Sort-C port and the mic. The earpiece speaker is hidden in a tiny slit on the high finish of the show, and doubles up because the second speaker to supply stereo sound which is loud and clear.
The general design appears clear and minimalist, with a colour-matched digital camera module that hardly protrudes from the rear panel. The Galaxy S20 FE 5G has a steel body that is sandwiched between a sheet of show glass on the entrance and a plastic panel on the again. The rear panel is curved to satisfy the body on all 4 sides and has a clean matte end that feels premium. The glass masking the show is flat, which could have appeared like an odd selection final yr, however feels at dwelling subsequent to the premium Galaxy S21 and Galaxy S21+ (Review) smartphones which even have flat shows in 2021.
My assessment unit got here within the Cloud Mint end, and it showcases a gentle yellow gradient when seen at an angle. The matte texture is non-slippery and is nice at rejecting fingerprints, however picks up mud fairly simply.
The Galaxy S20 FE 5G, identical to the 4G mannequin, can be rated IP68 for mud and water resistance, which is an enormous deal on condition that a number of competing smartphones (which can be priced a bit greater) don’t supply this.
Samsung Galaxy S20 specs and software program
In comparison with different telephones out there at this worth degree immediately, the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G’s processor is principally a yr previous. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 processor was introduced in 2019 and began exhibiting up in smartphones within the first half of 2020. It was the flagship processor utilized by practically all smartphone producers who have been seeking to push out the primary wave of 5G smartphones in India.
Whereas a year-old SoC is not an enormous deal for the informal person, the leap from the Snapdragon 865 processor to the Snapdragon 888 is kind of massive when it comes to efficiency, and different producers supply the latter for under an extra Rs. 2,000.
Nonetheless, Samsung can justify its pricing as a result of the Galaxy S20 FE 5G presents options that different smartphones on this worth section don’t. The IP68 score will allow you to take your smartphone for a dip in a pool, and 15W wi-fi charging is kind of handy. You’ll be able to even reverse cost different smartphones or equipment at 4.5W. Whereas these options may not rely as requirements for many customers, they do enhance the premium smartphone expertise.
The Galaxy S20 FE 5G runs Samsung’s One UI 3.1, which is predicated on Android 11. Mixed with the 120Hz refresh price show, the Galaxy S20 FE 5G felt fairly fluid in every day use. I felt no hiccups in anyway when working native apps, third-party apps or switching between the 2. There are many preinstalled Samsung apps. The telephone additionally comes with a number of third-party apps from Microsoft and Fb, however these together with a number of Samsung apps (like Samsung Store, Samsung Members, Samsung International Objectives, Notes, Web and many others.) might be uninstalled if not wanted. Through the assessment interval, I used to be not bombarded with advertisements or promotional notifications. I did obtain the occasional notification from the Galaxy App Retailer, however these might be turned off within the system settings.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G efficiency and battery life
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 could also be a yr previous, but it surely’s no slouch and presents dependable flagship-grade efficiency in relation to common duties and gaming. The telephone carried out so much higher than the Exynos 990-powered Galaxy S20 FE in our assessments (though some scores may not be immediately comparable on account of benchmark updates).
AnTuTu reported a rating of 6,41,038, whereas Geekbench’s single-core and multi-core outcomes have been 560 and three,136 respectively. These are greater than what the Exynos-based mannequin managed (4,62,330 in AnTuTu; 517 and a couple of,573 in Geekbench) however are decrease than the efficiency figures we have seen from Snapdragon 888-powered smartphones in the identical worth section.
Asphalt 9: Legends ran easily, with the graphics set to Excessive High quality and 60fps mode enabled. The telephone warmed up a bit throughout gameplay however didn’t get scorching.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 can be fairly able to dealing with a recreation like Name of Responsibility: Cell when it comes to graphics. The sport ran at Very Excessive graphics and body price with no hiccup. Nevertheless, I observed some contact sensitivity points and that dampens the expertise in video games that require a excessive diploma of accuracy. There was noticeable lag when taking part in Name of Responsibility: Cell and it seems that the 120Hz show (with a 180Hz contact sampling price) couldn’t sustain with my fingers. With this lack of ability to precisely intention at a goal, I ended up dropping many of the matches that I performed in the course of the testing course of.
The 6.5-inch Tremendous AMOLED show showcases oversaturated colors when utilizing the default Vivid display mode. Swap it to Pure and the colors look fairly boring however I discovered this so much higher. I want there was a preset between the 2 modes which may have delivered colors that have been a bit extra restrained, particularly for watching motion pictures or exhibits.
The FHD+ decision delivers a crisp 407ppi, which meant that every thing from textual content to photographs and movies appeared fairly sharp. Whereas the brightness was ample indoors, the show was barely legible outside underneath the afternoon solar. Samsung doesn’t point out HDR in its spec sheet, but it surely appears to be supported.
Within the show settings, one can regulate the display’s refresh price, however it could actually solely be set to 60Hz (for longer battery life) or 120Hz (for a smoother expertise). Through the assessment interval, I often saved the show working at 120Hz.
The Galaxy S20 FE 5G clocked 18 hours and 22 minutes in our HD video loop battery take a look at, which is kind of good for a premium smartphone. The Exynos mannequin, with the identical 4500mAh battery capability, ran the identical video loop take a look at for 12 hours and 44 minutes, which is a bit low. In odd use, which included working social media apps, checking emails, an hour of calls and an hour or two of gaming with the show set to 120Hz, I often ended the day with about 20-30 % left, which is kind of spectacular.
In 2021, it’s a bit stunning to discover a premium Android smartphone with solely a 15W charger within the field. Nonetheless, charging occasions weren’t too unhealthy, with the battery charging as much as 33 % in 30 minutes, 51 % in an hour, and 100 % in 1 hour and 38 minutes. The smartphone does assist 25W charging, however you’ll have to buy your personal charger.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G cameras
Whereas the digital camera setup stays the identical as on the LTE mannequin, the processor swap from an Exynos 990 to a Snapdragon 865, may result in minor variations in photograph processing and subsequently the top outcome. So, I made a decision to place the Galaxy S20 FE 5G’s cameras via their paces. As anticipated, the outcomes weren’t too completely different from what we noticed in our assessment of the 4G mannequin.
The rear module consists of a 12-megapixel f/1.Eight wide-angle digital camera, an 8-megapixel f/2.Four telephoto digital camera (3X optical zoom) and a 12-megapixel f/2.2 ultra-wide digital camera. Selfies are dealt with by a 32-megapixel f/2.2 digital camera that shoots 8-megapixel binned photographs.
The digital camera interface stays the identical as on some other premium Samsung telephone working One UI 3.1. There are simply accessible controls that allow you to regulate the facet ratio, timer, and flash, and change between cameras. The record of default modes is customisable and the slots might be swapped and personalised as per a person’s necessities.
The video mode helps you to change the video decision with simply two faucets, which is kind of handy. The again panel close to the digital camera module does get a bit scorching when preserving the viewfinder on for about 10 minutes, however cools down shortly when you exit the digital camera app.
Images shot in daylight got here out vivid, vibrant, and fairly saturated. Whether or not you’re capturing flowers, fruits, and even surroundings, the colors pop fairly a bit, which is typical of most Samsung smartphones. The dynamic vary is kind of good, however HDR processing does go overboard at occasions, leading to a dreamy impact. The sharpness and particulars in images are fairly spectacular for a smartphone on this worth section. Picture high quality and white stability stay constant even when switching between cameras.
The smartphone encompasses a telephoto digital camera with 3X optical zoom, which shoots crisp photographs in daylight. The identical digital camera additionally doubles up as a macro shooter because it helps you to get nearer to the thing in comparison with the first digital camera. That is essential, as there isn’t any devoted macro digital camera.
Portrait images come out fairly clear with good edge detection, however the Galaxy S20 FE 5G falters at occasions (with a noticeable halo), when the topic is just not nonetheless.
Submit sundown, images got here out a bit murky with barely decreased dynamic vary within the shadows, however they nonetheless appeared fairly good. The Evening mode takes care of those minor shortcomings and retains streetlights and vivid spots from getting overexposed, whereas bumping up the brightness and particulars. The telephone shot crisp images in low-light scenes when Evening mode was used with the first wide-angle digital camera, however delivered solely satisfactory images when used on the ultra-wide-angle digital camera.
Selfies in the usual and portrait modes got here out fairly sharp and clear with good edge detection in daylight, however turned out murky and lacked depth in low-light capturing eventualities. The evening mode can be out there on the entrance digital camera and did job of sustaining element and giving a way of depth to the selfies.
The Galaxy S20 FE 5G guarantees so much when it comes to video, and surprisingly delivers when it comes to high quality as properly. Movies shot at 1080p and 4K (30 and 60fps) with the first rear digital camera got here out crisp and filled with element, and have been additionally properly stabilised when strolling. My solely gripe was with the ultra-wide-angle digital camera, because it tended to overexpose scenes. The selfie digital camera additionally managed movies fairly properly and presents 1080p and 4K recording choices. 4K video shot with the selfie digital camera lacked stabilisation and appeared fairly jerky. In low-light eventualities, movies shot at any decision got here out blurry and a bit noisy, however stabilisation was first rate.
To the informal person, Samsung’s Galaxy S20 FE 5G may not seem like a lot of an improve on condition that it solely provides 5G assist to the spec sheet. This may have been tremendous if this telephone had been launched alongside the 4G mannequin in India in 2020, prefer it did in different elements of the world.
We’ve got reviewed the 4G mannequin and it is simple to inform that the Snapdragon 865 silicon makes fairly a distinction when it comes to efficiency, and likewise would not warmth up as a lot as Samsung’s personal Exynos SoC.
The Galaxy S20 FE 5G is perhaps essentially the most full low-cost flagship providing when it comes to options in the mean time, on condition that it presents optical zoom, wi-fi charging, and an IP68 score. These options, together with its vibrant OLED show, nice cameras, good battery life and strong on a regular basis efficiency make it a compelling choice. Nevertheless, it is arduous to advocate to a gamer given its contact sensitivity points.
If you’re searching for efficiency, there are smartphones just like the Xiaomi Mi 11X Pro (Review) and the iQoo 7 Legend that get you the Snapdragon 888 processor and sooner charging from Rs. 39,990. In the event you can stretch your price range by Rs. 2,000, there’s the OnePlus 9 (Review), which presents the Snapdragon 888 processor, a wonderful show that may deal with vivid daylight, sooner charging, and no contact sensitivity points when gaming.