Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra suddenly sounds a lot less appealing

A new rumour suggests that the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra might not be getting the camera upgrade we crave

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra in a woman's hand with rear camera lenses on display
(Image credit: Future)

Anyone waiting for the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, look away now: the next generation of the best Android phone is unlikely to feature the futuristic camera sensor we all want.

It was all looking so good: Samsung announced (opens in new tab) a new camera imaging sensor, the 200MP ISOCELL HP3, which would've taken the Samsung Galaxy S23's camera to the next level. And, considering Samsung itself made the sensor, there were hopes it would make it into the S23 range.

After all, following on from Samsung's 108MP sensor – the one found in the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra – the 200MP sensor looks like it will continue the good work, offering crystal-clear imaging on a smartphone.

But, sadly, it now doesn't seem like the Samsung Galaxy S23 or Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra will be getting the new mega-sensor when they arrive sometime in 2023.

This is because according to very reliable Samsung leaker Ice Universe (opens in new tab), the 200MP sensor isn't destined for the S23 Ultra, although the reasons for that are unclear.

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A 200MP sensor is, without a doubt, an improvement over a 108MP sensor (and, of course, the 50MP sensor in the other Galaxy S22 models).

"The ISOCELL HP3, with a 12 percent smaller pixel size than the predecessor’s 0.64μm, packs 200 million pixels in a 1/1.4” optical format, which is the diameter of the area that is captured through the camera lens," says Samsung.

"This means that the ISOCELL HP3 can enable an approximately 20 percent reduction in camera module surface area, allowing smartphone manufacturers to keep their premium devices slim."

A premium downgrade 

Based on all of the Galaxy S23 rumours we've seen so far, it doesn't look like Samsung is going to offer the game-changing upgrade we want.

While this is probably fine for the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Pro, choosing not to add the 200MP sensor to the Galaxy S23 Ultra – the most high-end model, competing with the iPhone 14 Pro Max – could be a mistake.

Of course, the iPhone 13 Pro Max only has a 12MP sensor (across three lenses) and produces some of the best photos we've seen from a smartphone, so maybe it won't be a big deal, but it's a little disappointing given Samsung has invented the tech.

Max Slater-Robins has written for T3 now on and off for over half a decade, with him fitting in serious study at university in between. Max is a tech expert and as such you'll find his words throughout T3.com, appearing in everything from reviews and features, to news and deals. Max is specifically a veteran when it comes round to deal hunting, with him seeing out multiple Black Friday campaigns to date.