Best Samsung Phone of 2024

Best Samsung Phone of 2024samsungs.jpg

$1,209 at Amazon

Image of Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra

Best premium Android phone

Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra

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$900 at Best Buy

Image of Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus

Best S24 Ultra alternative

Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus

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$720 at Amazon

Image of Samsung Galaxy S24

Best Android phone for most people

Samsung Galaxy S24

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$1,400 at Amazon

Image of Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5

Best for productivity and entertainment

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5

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$326 at Amazon

Image of Samsung Galaxy A54 5G Image of Samsung Galaxy A54 5G

A great, affordable Samsung Galaxy phone

Samsung Galaxy A54 5G

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$133 at Amazon

Image of Samsung Galaxy A14 5G Image of Samsung Galaxy A14 5G

Best phone for under $200

Samsung Galaxy A14 5G

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The Galaxy S24 series arrived earlier this year. All three models, the Galaxy S24, S24 Plus and S24 Ultra, got new AI features in addition to the regular slew of performance, camera and battery upgrades.

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Looking for a versatile camera setup and a big screen? A great choice may be the $1,300 Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra. A much more budget-friendly option is the Galaxy A14, which carries a price tag of roughly $200. You could buy six of them for the price of one S24 Ultra. Foldable models come in various selections: The Z Fold 5 and Galaxy Z Flip 5 are the newest Samsung devices in this category. As more Samsung phones are tested, we’ll be sure to update this list.

What is the best Samsung phone?

The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra — priced at $1,300 — comes packed with maximum features which, for most people, is more than necessary. For the rest of us, the $800 Galaxy S24 is a standout among its Galaxy counterparts. It has the same Snapdragon customized chip as the S24 Ultra, runs the same version of Android and costs $500 less. The Galaxy S24 has a very capable triple rear camera setup that is versatile in capturing both bright outdoor scenes and candid moments inside under mixed lighting. Overall, the Galaxy S24 is ideal for Android fans who prioritize fast performance, solid cameras and a spacious, bright screen in a compact package. 

How to pick the right Samsung phone for you

Deciding which Samsung phone is right for you comes down to what you want in a phone and how much you’re willing to spend. If you want the largest screen available on a standard Samsung phone, enjoy note-taking with a stylus and need a camera with a significantly closer zoom, the Galaxy S24 Ultra is the right choice. You’ll also have to spend more than $1,100 unless you score a trade-in deal. 

Those who don’t need the stylus, prefer more compact devices and still want a top-notch camera should consider the Galaxy S24 or Galaxy S24 Plus. If you just want the basics, like a spacious screen, 5G and a decent camera, consider the Galaxy A54 5G. Those looking for the flashiest tech around — and who also have deep pockets — should consider the Galaxy Z Fold 5 or Galaxy Z Flip 5. 

It’s also important to consider whether now is the right time to upgrade. If you have a relatively new phone that’s two to three years old and still functions properly, you can probably wait. Samsung committed to supporting seven generations of Android operating system updates for devices like the Galaxy S24 series, which improves their longevity.

Finding the best Samsung phone will ultimately come down to preference. Choosing among so many options can get complicated, so here’s how to decide which Samsung phone is best for you. Check out our phone buying guide for more tips on how to choose the right device. Not sure whether it’s worth upgrading to the Galaxy S23? We have a guide for that too

Best Samsung phones in 2024

With a sharper 5x optical zoom, a faster new processor and that familiar giant display and 100x digital zoom, the Samsung’s “Ultra” phone remains a top choice for mobile photographers that want plenty of screen space. The Galaxy S24 Ultra is also one of the first phones with Samsung’s new Galaxy AI features, which include tools for translating text messages and phone calls instantly and Circle to Search, a new gesture that lets you launch a Google search for almost anything simply by drawing a circle around it. Like the previous two generations, the Galaxy S24 Ultra comes with an embedded S Pen for those who like jotting down notes or doodling. But perhaps best of all, Samsung has committed to updating these devices with new versions of Android for seven years, meaning it shouldn’t feel out of date anytime soon.

Still, there are still some important downsides to consider. At $1,300, this phone is expensive, so be sure to look for trade-in discounts if you plan to upgrade. And for that high price, I had hoped Samsung would’ve added extra Galaxy AI features that are specific to the Ultra — perhaps some that take advantage of the S Pen. But Galaxy AI is the same on all Galaxy S24 devices, and it’ll be coming to the Galaxy S23 lineup soon too, so you don’t have to splurge on Samsung’s top-of-the-line phone if you just care about those features. Read our Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra review.

After testing the 6.7-inch Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus by playing games, texting and calling in multiple languages, taking photos, recording videos and trying out all that Galaxy AI has to offer, I’m happy to say it’s outstanding. Samsung didn’t reinvent the phone, but it did take a great phone and make it better.

The challenge for the S24 Plus is that Google’s Pixel 8 Pro has the same price and slightly better cameras. I do think the S24 Plus is an overall better phone in nearly every other respect, even software, which has been rock solid in my testing. Read our Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus review.

What impresses me the most about the Samsung Galaxy S24 isn’t the new Galaxy AI features, brighter screens or solid cameras. It’s the battery life. After testing, I can say the larger battery in the Galaxy S24 has no trouble plowing through a long day of use on a single charge.

The S24 is a wonderful, well-built phone that is excellent right out of the box just as the nearly identical S22 and S23 were before it. This similarity to the S22 and S23 can be viewed as either a strength, because the design reflects three years of refinements, or a weakness, because features like the camera hardware are essentially identical to what came out in 2022. But all of this is overshadowed by the great battery life. You’ll never hear anyone complain about getting too much battery life. Read our Samsung Galaxy S24 review.

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 is the biggest leap forward Samsug’s flip phone has seen in years. Samsung has significantly expanded the size of the cover screen located on the outside of the device, meaning you can look up directions, take photos and send messages without opening the phone. It’s this combined with the Z Flip’s solid battery life and sturdy design that makes it a top pick.

The Z Flip 5 may be our favorite flip phone, but there are still some drawbacks. At $1,000, it’s expensive for a phone without a telephoto camera. Not all apps work natively on the front screen as they do on the Motorola Razr Plus. Read our Galaxy Z Flip 5 review.

The Galaxy Z Fold 5 is an incremental improvement that further refines Samsung’s large-screened foldable. If you’re looking for a phone that can double as a tablet for viewing work-related documents, running multiple apps on screen at once or watching movies, the Z Fold 5 is our top choice. The Pixel Fold may have better cameras, but the Z Fold 5’s bright screen makes Samsung’s phone better at its intended purpose: providing a big display that fits in your pocket.

The Galaxy Z Fold 5’s $1,800 price is still hard to swallow and puts it out of range for most people. If you can afford it, the Z Fold 5 is the best iteration of Samsung’s phone-tablet hybrid yet. Read our Galaxy Z Fold 5 review.

Though it’s one of the cheapest phones you can buy from Samsung, the Galaxy A54 still packs great features, like 5G connectivity, a decent multiple rear camera setup, solid battery life and power enough for your everyday essentials. It looks pretty, too, and it’s one of the few remaining phones that lets you expand the built-in storage using microSD cards. 

It’s a great all-round budget phone, although generally we found that the Pixel 6A offers better camera and processor performance, and it costs less than the Samsung. 

The $200 Samsung Galaxy A14 5G is one of the most functional phones under $200 available right now. Although it’s at a budget-friendly price, this Samsung phone includes 5G support for faster data and NFC for contactless payments using Google Wallet. While both of those inclusions are highlights for this price range, Samsung is also planning to support the Galaxy A14 with two years of software updates and five years of security updates, making it a phone that will be safe to use for several years.

You should still keep in mind that the phone does have trade-offs to hit its $200 price. It has a drab design, a slower processor and mixed photography performance. 

Yet despite its issues, the features it does include make it an easy recommendation if you are buying the phone outright or if it’s offered for free with a carrier subsidy deal. Read our Galaxy A14 5G review.

Get more for less with cheap phones: For a fraction of the cost, you can get a solid phone that does almost everything a pricier flagship phone can do. The Galaxy A54 5G packs a good camera and costs only $450 before discounts or trade-in offers.

Be ready for Black Friday sales: The holidays usually bring big discounts and sales, even on phones.

Test your phone: It’s worth going to a store and trying out a phone before you shell out hundreds of dollars for it.

Find peace of mind with a case: You spent all this time picking a phone, now protect it from damage with a case.

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We test the battery, screen, performance, cameras and more on every phone we review.

Lisa Eadiciccio/CNET

We test every phone in real-world scenarios focusing on its features, design, performance, cameras, battery life and overall value. We document our findings in an initial review that is periodically updated when there are new software updates or to compare against new phones from competitors like Apple, Samsung, Google and OnePlus.


Photography is a major focus for most phones these days, so we take pictures and videos of various subjects in a variety of settings and lighting levels. We try out any new camera modes such as ProRes Log video that debuted with the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max or the Magic Editor photo tool that launched with the Google Pixel 8 series.

Battery life

Battery testing is conducted in a variety of ways. We assess how long a phone lasts during a typical day of use, and note how it performs during more focused sessions of video calls, media streaming and gaming. We also conduct a video playback test, which isn’t always included in the initial review and is added later in an update.


We perform processor-heavy tasks like editing photos, exporting videos and playing games. We evaluate whether a newer version of a particular phone includes enough features to make it worth upgrading from older models.

We use benchmarking apps to measure the performance, alongside our own anecdotal experiences using the phone for our review. Of particular note are how graphics and animations look. Are they smooth? Or do they lag or stutter? We also look at how quickly the phone switches between horizontal and vertical orientations and how fast the camera app opens and is ready to take a photo.

Read more: How We Test Phones

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Why buy a Samsung phone instead of other Android phones?

The right phone for you depends on a variety of factors, such as your budget, your current phone and whether you own other mobile accessories from the same company, such as earbuds or smartwatches. Many people prefer to stick with phones from the same company because the experience is more consistent and there’s less of a learning curve when switching to a new device.

The same holds true for Samsung; the company’s One UI software (its customized version of Android) can be found across its phone lineup. Samsung’s One UI 6 introduced a more customizable lock screen and the ability to answer a phone call through a text message instead of speaking.

Consistency aside, there are some benefits to choosing a Samsung phone over devices from other Android phone makers. Samsung usually excels when it comes to display quality and brightness, and it typically offers a lot of choices in terms of size and pricing. Samsung phones usually offer decent battery life — especially midsize and large phones — and the cameras are usually among the best, especially on the Galaxy S24 lineup. Samsung also offers seven years of Android version updates for most of its new smartphones, which is longer support than even Google provides for its Pixel phones.

Google’s Pixel devices also have stellar cameras along with specific software features you can’t get elsewhere. The OnePlus 12 is also cheaper than the Galaxy S24 Plus and Galaxy S24 Ultra at regular prices without a trade-in and offers faster charging speeds. It could be a better choice for those who want to pay a little less but still want a giant 6.82-inch screen and triple rear camera.

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Which Samsung phone series is best, Galaxy A or Galaxy S?

Samsung’s Galaxy A and S families serve different purposes, so which one is right for you will depend on your needs and budget. The Galaxy A lineup is Samsung’s mid-tier and budget line, and it’s the best choice if you’re looking for a phone under $500 without a trade-in deal. These phones typically offer core features like a big screen, large battery and multiple cameras at a cheaper price. 

You also get what you pay for; Samsung’s cheapest phones have very limited storage space and poorer cameras compared with the pricier models, and they sometimes struggle with juggling multiple tasks. More expensive phones like the Galaxy A54 5G provide almost everything most people want in a basic phone, although you’ll still have to compromise a bit on camera quality and general performance. 

The Galaxy S series, on the other hand, is Samsung’s flagship smartphone line. Galaxy S phones usually include the best tech that Samsung has to offer and features you’d expect on any high-end phone, such as a premium design, 5G support, screens with high refresh rates and multiple high-end cameras. The biggest updates that launched with the Galaxy S24 lineup, for example, included the bump to a 200-megapixel main camera on the Ultra and bigger batteries for the smaller models. You’ll have to be willing to pay hundreds of dollars more than you would for a Galaxy A series phone in most cases. 

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