Like Samsung’s previous Ultra phones, the Galaxy S24 Ultra stands out with its huge screen, extravagant zoom options for taking photos, and built-in S Pen. But Samsung had the opportunity to further distinguish its $1,300 phone with Galaxy AI, a feature set that can do everything from real-time call translation to the ability to move and manipulate objects on pictures.
If only Samsung had taken this chance.
Galaxy AI is available on all three new Galaxy S24 models and will come to the Galaxy S23 family in a later update. While it’s great that Samsung isn’t forcing buyers to buy its most expensive new phone to get the Galaxy AI, the company could have added additional features just for those willing to splurge on the Galaxy S24 Ultra. It could have taken aspects unique to the Ultra, like the S Pen, and created additional Galaxy AI features that make its $1,300 price tag a little easier to swallow. That’s especially important now that the $1,000 Galaxy S24 Plus has even more in common with its more expensive sibling thanks to its slightly larger screen and battery.
The Galaxy S24 Ultra deserves exclusive software tools and tips that match its premium hardware. Galaxy AI could be the answer.
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Galaxy AI is an umbrella term for the various new AI-based generative features of the Galaxy S24 series. Artificial intelligence is not new to smartphones, but it has become the tech industry’s favorite buzzword following the meteoric rise of ChatGPT in late 2022. OpenAI’s chatbot popularized a subset specific AI known as generative AI, which generates content in response to training-based prompts. data. Galaxy AI is Samsung’s vision for how this technology can be applied to smartphones with features such as:
- Generative Edit, which lets you move or manipulate objects in photos and generates content to fill the frame as needed.
- Instant Slow-mo, which generates additional frames so you can preview any video in the Gallery app in slow motion.
- Circle to Search, which lets you run a Google search for almost anything that appears on your phone’s screen by drawing a circle around it.
- Live Translate, which translates phone calls in real time in the Galaxy S24 phone app.
- Chat Assist, which can rewrite text messages in a different tone before sending them and translate messages into different languages.
- Note Assist for formatting, summarizing, translating and spell checking files in Samsung’s Notes app.
Galaxy AI is largely designed around communication, productivity, and photography/videography tools. This pairs well with the Galaxy S24 Ultra, which Samsung is targeting at those who want a phone with a top-notch camera and a stylus for taking notes.
Given that Galaxy AI is new, it’s reasonable that Samsung would want to deliver a consistent experience across the entire Galaxy S24 lineup. But what excites me most about Galaxy AI’s potential is the idea that Samsung could one day adapt these software features based on the device.
Won-Joon Choi, executive vice president and head of the R&D office for Samsung’s mobile experience business, said this in an interview with CNET ahead of the Galaxy S24 unveiling.
“Rather than just expanding it, we want to deliver very specific experiences… optimized for those form factors,” he said, referring to Galaxy AI. “Not only [a] copy and paste but improving the experience for those specific form factors.
I’d like to see Samsung start with the Galaxy S24 Ultra, especially since the S Pen opens up some interesting possibilities. What about drawing tools that allow users to combine their own sketches with illustrations or patterns created by generative AI?
Since the Galaxy S24 Ultra is a very photography-oriented device, Samsung also has the option to add more image and video tools. Perhaps it could take a page from Google’s book and introduce editing features exclusive to the Ultra, like the Pixel 8 Pro’s Video Boost. This option is only available on Google’s high-end phone and processes video clips in the cloud to apply heavy edits that can be difficult to achieve on the device, such as significantly brightening dark video footage.
But as it stands, the main factors that set the Galaxy S24 Ultra apart from the regular S24 and S24 Plus are the same as they’ve always been, with or without Galaxy AI. These are the additional telephoto lens, which allows the phone to zoom up to 100x digitally, the built-in S Pen and the larger 6.8-inch screen.
Only Samsung knows where Galaxy AI is going. Samsung might even start charging for some Galaxy AI features after 2025, as the fine print on the Galaxy S24 Ultra product page indicates.
But what is certain is that the iteration of Galaxy AI on the Galaxy S24 is just the beginning, according to Choi. Whatever comes next for Galaxy AI, I hope Samsung finds a way to make the Galaxy S24 Ultra stand out more from the pack.
Editor’s note: CNET uses an AI engine to create some stories. To learn more, check out this article.