Galaxy S20 FE vs. other S20 phones: How is the new Fan Edition so much cheaper?

Galaxy S20 FE vs. other S20 phones: How is the new Fan Edition so much cheaper?

Samsung

Samsung has officially added a new member to its premium Galaxy S20 family in the form of the Galaxy S20 Fan Edition. The device, unveiled Wednesday, costs $700 (£599, AU$999), handily stealing the crown from the $1,000 Galaxy S20 and making it the most affordable phone in Samsung’s premium S20 line. That raises an obvious question: What compromises were made to drive down the cost, and therefore the starting price, of the S20 FE? 

On paper at least, there don’t seem to be many core differences between the phones. The 6.5-inch S20 FE retains many of the top-shelf features found in its flashier siblings. Along with a sharp AMOLED display coupled with ultra-fast refresh rates, it has a large battery, an IP68 rating (for water and dust resistance) and multiple cameras on its rear, including a telephoto lens. 

galaxy-s20-fe-all-colors-2

Samsung’s Galaxy S20 FE line comes in six colors.


Samsung

Where Samsung does make compromises is in its choice of material. The S20 FE, unlike its fancier siblings, has a back made of plastic instead of glass. It has less RAM and storage than its family members, and there are some concessions on its rear camera setup, but you might not even miss them. 8K video recording and 100x space zoom are absent, but 30x zoom is available (like what’s featured in the S20 and S20 Plus) and so is 3x optical zoom. 

The S20 FE is available for international preorders starting today, with in-store sales in the US starting Oct. 2 (and it’s already $100 off at Best Buy). Keep in mind that the $700 price is for the low-band 5G variant, while the Verizon model with superfast millimeter-wave 5G starts at $750 (currently discounted to $700). To learn more about the differences and similarities of Samsung’s S20 flagship line, take a look at our specs chart below. 

Galaxy S20 Fan Edition vs. other Galaxy S20 phones

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE Samsung Galaxy S20 Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra
Display size, resolution 6.5-inch super AMOLED; 2,400×1,080 pixels 6.2-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X; (3,200 x 1440) 6.7-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X 6.9-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X
Pixel density 405ppi 563ppi 525ppi 511ppi
Dimensions (Inches) 6.29×2.97×0.33 inches 2.72×5.97×0.311 inches 2.9×6.37×0.30 inches 2.99×6.57×0.35 inches
Dimensions (Millimeters) 159.8×75.5×8.4mm 69.1×151.7×7.9 mm 73.7×161.9×7.8mm 76.0×166.9×8.8mm
Weight (Ounces, Grams) 6.7 oz; 190g 5.75 oz; 163g 6.56 oz; 186g 7.76 oz; 220g
Mobile software (at launch) Android 10 Android 10 Android 10 Android 10
Camera 12-megapixel (standard), 12-megapixel (ultra-wide), 8-megapixel (3x telephoto) 12-megapixel (wide-angle), 64-megapixel (telephoto), 12-megapixel (ultra-wide) 12-megapixel (wide-angle), 64-megapixel (telephoto), 12-megapixel (ultra-wide), time-of-flight camera 108-megapixel (wide-angle), 48-megapixel (telephoto), 12-megapixel (ultra-wide), time-of-flight camera
Front-facing camera 32-megapixel 10-megapixel 10-megapixel 40-megapixel
Video capture 4K 8K 8K 8K
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 (5G) Samsung Exynos 990 (4G) 64-bit octa-core processor (Max 2.7GHz + 2.5 GHz + 2.0 GHz) 64-bit octa-core processor (Max 2.7GHz + 2.5 GHz + 2.0 GHz) 64-bit octa-core processor (Max 2.7GHz + 2.5 GHz + 2.0 GHz)
Storage 128GB 128GB 128GB, 512GB 128GB, 512GB
RAM 6GB 12GB 12GB 12GB, 16GB
Expandable storage 1TB Up to 1TB Up to 1TB Up to 1TB
Battery 4,500 mAh 4,000 mAh 4,500 mAh 5,000 mAh
Fingerprint sensor In-screen In-screen In-screen In-screen
Connector USB-C USB-C USB-C USB-C
Headphone jack No No No No
Special features 5G enabled, IP 68 rating, 120Hz screen refresh rate, support for 30W fast charging,15W fast wireless charging 5G enabled; 120Hz refresh rate; water resistant (IP68) 5G enabled; 120Hz refresh rate; water resistant (IP68) 5G enabled; 120Hz refresh rate; 100X zoom; water resistant (IP68)
Price off-contract (USD) *at launch $700 for sub-6 5G; $750 for Verizon model with mmWave 5G $999 $1,199, $1,349 $1,399 (128GB), $1,599 (512GB)
Price (GBP) £599 (4G) £699 (5G) £799, £899 (5G) £999 (5G) £1,199 (128GB), £1,399 (512GB)
Price (AUD) AU$999 (4G), AU$1,149 (5G) AU$1349 (4G), AU$1,499 (5G), AU$1,499 (4G), AU$1,649 (128GB), AU$1,899 (512GB) AU$1,999 (128GB), AU$2,249 (512GB)
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