Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G Review: A Well-Rounded Low-Cost Flagship
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Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G Review: A Well-Rounded Low-Cost Flagship

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Samsung’s Galaxy S20 FE (LTE), which launched final yr, has to date been a stable contender within the low-cost flagship phase. While it carried out nicely in most of our exams, there have been some drawbacks. It did get a bit heat beneath stress, and its battery life was simply common; each issues that the OnePlus 8T (Review) dealt with higher on the similar worth stage.

In 2021, Samsung selected launching the 5G model of the Galaxy S20 FE (Review) in India, and it is known as the Galaxy S20 FE 5G. It is mainly the identical cellphone, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 processor (and X55 5G modem) as a substitute of the Exynos 990. Does the change to a Qualcomm processor maintain the shortcomings we skilled with the LTE variant? More importantly, does investing in a smartphone with a year-old processor at this worth stage 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. Unlike the 4G mannequin, it’s accessible in a single 8GB RAM + 128GB storage configuration. Buyers 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 cellphone seems to be equivalent to the 4G mannequin and has the identical button placement, with the facility and quantity buttons on the fitting. The main speaker is positioned on the backside, subsequent to the USB Type-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 Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G’s total design is clear and minimalist


The total design seems to be 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 fulfill the body on all 4 sides and has a easy 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 house subsequent to the premium Galaxy S21 and Galaxy S21+ (Review) smartphones which even have flat shows in 2021.

My evaluate 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 sweet at rejecting fingerprints, however picks up mud fairly simply.

The Galaxy S20 FE 5G, identical to the 4G mannequin, can also be rated IP68 for mud and water resistance, which is an enormous deal provided that a number of competing smartphones (which are priced a bit greater) don’t provide this.

Samsung Galaxy S20 specs and software program

Compared to different telephones accessible at this worth stage at this time, the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G’s processor is mainly a yr outdated. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 processor was introduced in 2019 and began displaying up in smartphones within the first half of 2020. It was the flagship processor utilized by practically all smartphone producers who had been seeking to push out the primary wave of 5G smartphones in India.

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The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G includes a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 SoC


While 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 sort of huge when it comes to efficiency, and different producers provide the latter for less than a further Rs. 2,000.

Still, Samsung can justify its pricing as a result of the Galaxy S20 FE 5G gives options that different smartphones on this worth phase don’t. The IP68 score will allow you to take your smartphone for a dip in a pool, and 15W wi-fi charging is sort of handy. You may even reverse cost different smartphones or equipment at 4.5W. While these options may not rely as requirements for many customers, they do enhance the premium smartphone expertise.

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One UI 3.Zero consists of a number of Samsung-branded apps


The Galaxy S20 FE 5G runs Samsung’s One UI 3.1, which is predicated on Android 11. Combined with the 120Hz refresh price show, the Galaxy S20 FE 5G felt fairly fluid in each day use. I felt no hiccups by any means when operating native apps, third-party apps or switching between the 2. There are loads of preinstalled Samsung apps. The cellphone additionally comes with a number of third-party apps from Microsoft and Facebook, however these together with a number of Samsung apps (like Samsung Shop, Samsung Members, Samsung Global Goals, Notes, Internet and so on.) will be uninstalled if not wanted. During the evaluate interval, I used to be not bombarded with adverts or promotional notifications. I did obtain the occasional notification from the Galaxy App Store, however these will 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 outdated, but it surely’s no slouch and gives dependable flagship-grade efficiency in the case of common duties and gaming. The cellphone carried out rather a lot higher than the Exynos 990-powered Galaxy S20 FE in our exams (though some scores may not be straight comparable resulting from benchmark updates).

AnTuTu reported a rating of 6,41,038, whereas Geekbench’s single-core and multi-core outcomes had 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 phase.

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The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE within the Cloud Mint end


Asphalt 9: Legends ran easily, with the graphics set to High Quality and 60fps mode enabled. The cellphone warmed up a bit throughout gameplay however didn’t get sizzling.

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 can also be fairly able to dealing with a recreation like Call of Duty: Mobile when it comes to graphics. The recreation ran at Very High graphics and body price with no hiccup. However, 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 enjoying Call of Duty: Mobile and it seems that the 120Hz show (with a 180Hz contact sampling price) couldn’t sustain with my fingers. With this incapacity to precisely intention at a goal, I ended up shedding many of the matches that I performed throughout the testing course of.

The 6.5-inch Super AMOLED show showcases oversaturated colors when utilizing the default Vivid display screen mode. Switch it to Natural and the colors look fairly boring however I discovered this rather a lot higher. I want there was a preset between the 2 modes which may have delivered colors that had been a bit extra restrained, particularly for watching films or reveals.

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The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G includes a hole-punch show


The FHD+ decision delivers a crisp 407ppi, which meant that all the pieces from textual content to pictures and movies regarded fairly sharp. While the brightness was adequate indoors, the show was barely legible outside beneath the afternoon solar. Samsung doesn’t point out HDR in its spec sheet, but it surely appears to be supported.

In the show settings, one can modify the display screen’s refresh price, however it may solely be set to 60Hz (for longer battery life) or 120Hz (for a smoother expertise). During the evaluate interval, I normally saved the show operating at 120Hz.

The Galaxy S20 FE 5G clocked 18 hours and 22 minutes in our HD video loop battery check, which is sort of good for a premium smartphone. The Exynos mannequin, with the identical 4500mAh battery capability, ran the identical video loop check for 12 hours and 44 minutes, which is a bit low. In strange use, which included operating social media apps, checking emails, an hour of calls and an hour or two of gaming with the show set to 120Hz, I normally ended the day with about 20-30 p.c left, which is sort of spectacular.

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The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G gives higher battery life than the Exynos-based Galaxy S20 FE


In 2021, it’s a bit shocking to discover a premium Android smartphone with solely a 15W charger within the field. Still, charging occasions weren’t too dangerous, with the battery charging as much as 33 p.c in 30 minutes, 51 p.c in an hour, and 100 p.c 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

While 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 picture processing and subsequently the top end result. So, I made a decision to place the Galaxy S20 FE 5G’s cameras by their paces. As anticipated, the outcomes weren’t too completely different from what we noticed in our evaluate 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 pictures.

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The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G’s digital camera setup stays the identical as on the LTE mannequin


The digital camera interface stays the identical as on some other premium Samsung cellphone operating One UI 3.1. There are simply accessible controls that allow you to modify the side ratio, timer, and flash, and change between cameras. The record of default modes is customisable and the slots will 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 sort of handy. The again panel close to the digital camera module does get a bit sizzling when conserving the viewfinder on for about 10 minutes, however cools down shortly when you exit the digital camera app.

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G daytime picture samples. Top to backside: Ultra-wide, customary, 3X zoom (faucet to see full measurement)


Photos shot in daylight got here out shiny, vibrant, and fairly saturated. Whether you might be capturing flowers, fruits, and even surroundings, the colors pop fairly a bit, which is typical of most Samsung smartphones. The dynamic vary is sort of good, however HDR processing does go overboard at occasions, leading to a dreamy impact. The sharpness and particulars in photographs are fairly spectacular for a smartphone on this worth phase. Image high quality and white stability stay constant even when switching between cameras.

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G daytime picture samples. Top: 1X zoom, backside: 3X zoom (faucet to see full measurement)


The smartphone includes a telephoto digital camera with 3X optical zoom, which shoots crisp pictures in daylight. The similar digital camera additionally doubles up as a macro shooter because it helps you to get nearer to the article in comparison with the first digital camera. This is vital, as there is no devoted macro digital camera.

Portrait photographs come out fairly clear with good edge detection, however the Galaxy S20 FE 5G falters at occasions (with a noticeable halo), when the topic will not be nonetheless.

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G Night Mode digital camera samples. Top: Wide (1X), backside: Ultra-wide (0.5X) (faucet to see full measurement)


Post sundown, photographs got here out a bit murky with barely lowered dynamic vary within the shadows, however they nonetheless regarded fairly good. The Night mode takes care of those minor shortcomings and retains streetlights and shiny spots from getting overexposed, whereas bumping up the brightness and particulars. The cellphone shot crisp photographs in low-light scenes when Night mode was used with the first wide-angle digital camera, however delivered solely satisfactory photographs when used on the ultra-wide-angle digital camera.

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G selfie samples. Top: Auto mode, backside: Night mode (faucet to see full measurement)


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 night time mode can also be accessible on the entrance digital camera and did a great job of sustaining element and giving a way of depth to the selfies.

The Galaxy S20 FE 5G guarantees rather a lot when it comes to video, and surprisingly delivers when it comes to high quality as nicely. Videos shot at 1080p and 4K (30 and 60fps) with the first rear digital camera got here out crisp and full of element, and had been additionally nicely 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 nicely and gives 1080p and 4K recording choices. 4K video shot with the selfie digital camera lacked stabilisation and regarded fairly jerky. In low-light eventualities, movies shot at any decision got here out blurry and a bit noisy, however stabilisation was respectable.


To the informal person, Samsung’s Galaxy S20 FE 5G may not seem like a lot of an improve provided that it solely provides 5G assist to the spec sheet. This would have been wonderful if this cellphone had been launched alongside the 4G mannequin in India in 2020, prefer it did in different components of the world.

We have 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 does not warmth up as a lot as Samsung’s personal Exynos SoC.

The Galaxy S20 FE 5G is perhaps probably the most full low-cost flagship providing when it comes to options in the mean time, provided that it gives optical zoom, wi-fi charging, and an IP68 score. These options, together with its vibrant OLED show, nice cameras, good battery life and stable on a regular basis efficiency make it a compelling choice. However, it is laborious to suggest to a gamer given its contact sensitivity points.

If you might be on the lookout 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. If you’ll be able to stretch your funds by Rs. 2,000, there’s the OnePlus 9 (Review), which gives the Snapdragon 888 processor, a superb show that may deal with shiny daylight, sooner charging, and no contact sensitivity points when gaming.

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