Mere days after the entire Samsung Galaxy S23 range was confirmed by official certification to only offer a maximum of 25W charging, a major new Android phone competitor, the Xiaomi Mi 13 Pro, has been revealed to offer 120W charging.
We first got (opens in new tab) Samsung Galaxy S23 and S23 Plus charging confirmation, followed by (opens in new tab) the S23 Ultra, with all three phones confirmed as limited to 25W maximum charging. In the case of the S23 Ultra, that actually was a decrease in charging speed over the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra, so it certainly raised eyebrows.
But now, as surfaced (opens in new tab) by smartphone leakster Ice universe, eyebrows have been ripped right off as specs for the Xiaomi Mi 13 Pro have broken cover and revealed a monstrous gap in maximum charging speed between it and the incoming Samsung Galaxy phones.
The confirmation of the specs comes from certification documents (opens in new tab) in China, and show that the Xiaomi flagship will be capable of "120WMax" charging, an increase in maximum charging rate of 95W over the incoming Samsung Galaxy S23 range.
The T3 take: Is the Samsung Galaxy S-series now mid-range?
While in of itself the Samsung Galaxy S23 range sticking with 25W maximum charging isn't the end of the world, it does continue what is becoming a clearer and clearer narrative that the Galaxy S-series no longer seems to be the out-and-out technical leader for the Android market.
Samsung has itself kind of flagged, in an indirect way admittedly, that its best foldable phones are now its technical leaders, where the best new smartphone technologies are going to be on offer first. However, for those who have spent years expecting market-leading performance from each year's new Galaxy S-series phones, and certainly from the flagship 'Ultra' model, to see rivals so comfortably outpunch it in areas like charging still feels a bit deflating.
I mean, I personally want to see Samsung Galaxy S-series phones offer bigger battery capacities, faster charging and longer battery lives. And from what I am seeing here, none of the Galaxy S23 phones look like they're going to offer an improvement in those areas over this year's handsets.
And it's not just me, either – just the other day Samsung's leakster-in-chief confirmed that very little is changing (opens in new tab) with S23 from S22.
Of course, how good a phone experience is for a user rests on far more than just charging speeds, but battery life and charging speeds are really important factors for phone users, so to see no obvious improvement here surely isn't going to help Samsung Galaxy S23 appear like an essential upgrade.
And, with the Xiaomi Mi 13 Pro set to launch before the Samsung Galaxy S23 range in December this year, we could well be looking at a phone many previous Samsung Galaxy S-series users might consider upgrading to. And, certainly, if the rest of the Mi 13 Pro package is as impressive as its charging specs are.