Samsung Galaxy S20 FE review: Getting the price right, finally!
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE review: The smartphone aims to provide the best of Samsung tech at an affordable price tag of Rs 49,999. We have been using it for close to two weeks now and here is our review of the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE review: Who decides what is the right price for a smartphone? Is it the manufacturer who knows the cost of components and other expenses? Is it the customer who eventually has to shell out money from his/her pocket? Well, everyone has their own definitions for the right price. And, the opinion is more divided when it comes to premium line-ups like Samsung’s Galaxy S20 series. A few eyebrows were raised when the smartphone maker priced the top-end S20 Ultra close to Rs 1 lakh and even the most ‘affordable’ Galaxy S20 is currently selling at Rs 70,499 on company website.
Watch Samsung Galaxy S20 FE review:
This is way beyond the reach of most smartphone buyers. So, a Lite model of the phone was inevitable. And, this year, Samsung has dedicated it to the fans. As a result, we have the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE, where FE stands for Fan Edition. The smartphone aims to provide the best of Samsung tech at an affordable price tag of Rs 49,999. We have been using it for close to two weeks now and here is our review of the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE review: Design
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE is one of the most beautiful smartphones to have launched this year. Almost every single person I have showed this phone too, was in complete awe of the device. As a friend said, the most apt word to describe the Galaxy S20 FE is - ‘sundar’. Now, the difference here is the colour options chosen by Samsung. The Galaxy S20 FE comes in Cloud Red, Cloud Lavender, Cloud Mint, Cloud Navy and Cloud White colours.
We had the Cloud Mint colour variant of review purposes which looks gorgeous but so does almost every single colour variant Samsung is offering.
If you know smartphones, you would have guessed by now that the Galaxy S20 FE comes with a polycarbonate rear panel, which is understandable given that helps reduce the overall price. The use of pastel colours and matte finish ensures that the phone is not slippery and resistant to smudges and fingerprints. There is also an IP68 water and dust resistance feature which adds to the durability of the phone.
As with the recent Samsung smartphones, there is no protective case inside the box. While this is a phone you probably won’t want to hide under a case, a bit of protection is always good.
One thing I felt as soon as I held the Galaxy S20 FE for the very first time is that it is extremely lightweight. To my surprise, the phone weighs 190 grams which isn’t less by any means but the weight distribution here is amazing which makes this phone feel lighter than it actually is. Samsung has also managed to keep the phone relatively sleek which ensures a better grip.
The back panel resembles the other S20 series smartphones with a thinner camera module. There is Samsung branding at the bottom. Around the phone, you get a metal frame which houses other buttons and ports.
There is no 3.5mm headphone jack on the phone and it features a Type-C USB charging port.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE review: Display
On the front, the Galaxy S20 FE features a 6.5-inch Full HD+ Infinity-O punch-hole Super AMOLED flat display. By no means is this a small display which makes me highlight the fact that despite this, the phone feels compact. The bezels around the screen are very thin and even the front camera is tiny. However, the latter has a shine around it which can distract you at times.
The biggest move from Samsung is to equip the Galaxy S20 FE with 120Hz refresh rate, which will allow it to compete with both OnePlus 8T and Mi 10T in the Indian market. There is an option switch to 60hz display, if you want to save the battery. However, unlike other S series smartphones, there is no option to change the display quality.
The company is known for making great AMOLED panels and the Galaxy S20 FE is another example of the same. It comes with good viewing angles, sharpness and peak brightness. You don’t face many issues while using the phone even in outdoor light. The only challenge is that Galaxy S20 FE’s screen is slightly reflective which can make it tricky to use.
The screen size and quality are otherwise good for both streaming content as well as gaming.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE review: Camera
The Galaxy S series is known for its extraordinary camera capabilities. Earlier this year, Samsung had equipped the Galaxy S20 Ultra with a 108-megapixel camera and 100x Space Zoom capabilities. This also meant that the price shot up to Rs 97,999. So, the affordable S20 smartphone had to be light on camera as well.
With the Galaxy S20 FE, you get a 12-megapixel primary camera, 12-megapixel ultra-wide camera, and 8-megapixel 3X telephoto camera. Now, while the number of megapixels don’t guarantee a great camera performance, there is notable difference.
What doesn’t change in the S20 FE is the image processing. So, you continue to get great shots across light conditions and landscapes with good auto-focus. The main camera captures good amount of detail but adds some saturation. Some details are lost in the wide shots but the lens does a decent job here too.
The highlight for me is the Night Mode which helps you click really good images in dark. The difference in quality between a normal image and one taken with Night Mode is clearly visible even in basic images. The Galaxy S20 FE also supports Samsung’s highly marketed Single Take feature which allows you capture seven types of images and three videos with a single click.
This phone can also deliver up to 30X hybrid zoom.
On the front, you get a 32-megapixel resolution. Surprisingly, this is an upgrade over the Galaxy S20 which sells with a 10-megapixel selfie shooter. The selfies on Galaxy S20 FE are good as well.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE review: Performance
The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE is powered by company’s Exynos 990 SoC – used on its most premium smartphones like the S20 Ultra and Note 20 Ultra, both priced double than what the Fan Edition costs. The usage of this processor also means that India only gets a 4G model, while other markets had a 5G variant of this phone as well. The chipset is supported by 8GB RAM and 128GB UFS 3.1 internal memory. The latter can be expanded up to 1TB using a microSD card.
A lot of has already been said and written about Exynos chipsets. To sum it up, you don’t get the most powerful performance from them. If you game for more than an hour or shot long videos using the Galaxy S20 FE, it tends to heat up a bit as well.
I played Call of Duty: Mobile on the Galaxy S20 FE to decent results. There were very few frame drops and gaming was largely smooth.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE review: Battery Life
The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE packs a 4,500 mAh battery with a 15W charger inside the box. However, Samsung is giving support for up to 25W fast charging but you need to buy a more powerful charger separately. This is another place where Samsung has done some cost-cutting. The battery easily lasts for a day with medium usage.
Samsung Galaxy S20 FE review: Should You Buy?
There are lot of good things about the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE and a lot than could have been better. The minimalistic design and use of vibrant colour options could be the dealmaker. The display quality continues to impress and 120hz refresh rate makes it even better. On the other hand, Samsung continues to use an average processor and has made cuts in the camera department.
What it has got right though, after multiple attempts, is the pricing of the Galaxy S20 FE. At Rs 49,999, the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE is a lucrative deal for those looking for a lightweight and trendy smartphone.
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