HomeReviewsSamsung Galaxy S23 Ultra vs iPhone 15 Pro Max

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra vs iPhone 15 Pro Max

In the fiercely competitive world of premium smartphones, the battle between Samsung and Apple has always been a headline grabber. This year, the competition has reached new heights with the release of two highly anticipated flagships: the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra and the Apple iPhone 15 Pro Max. In this comprehensive review, we’ll dive deep into every aspect of these two smartphones to find out which one comes out on top in the S23 Ultra vs iPhone 15 Pro Max showdown.

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra vs iPhone 15 Pro Max
Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra vs iPhone 15 Pro Max 2
Apple iPhone 15 Pro MaxSamsung Galaxy S23 Ultra
SoCApple A17 ProSnapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy
Display6.7-inch OLED Super Retina XDR6.8-inch QHD+ Edge, Dynamic AMOLED 2X Display, Super Smooth 120Hz refresh rate (1-120Hz), 240Hz touch sampling rate in gaming mode
Storage256GB, 512GB, 1TB256GB, 512GB, 1TB UFS 4.0
Size146.3 x 70.9 x 7.6mm146.6 x 70.6 x 8.25 mm
Operating SystemiOS 17Android 13 / One UI 5.1
ConnectivityUSB 3.0, 5G, WiFi 6E, Bluetooth 5.3, Thread5G, 4G LTE, Wi-Fi 6E, Bluetooth 5.3
Dimensions159.9 x 76.7 x 8.25mm (6.29 x 3.01 x 0.32 inches)6.43 x 3.07 x 0.35 inches (163.3 x 77.9 x 8.89mm)
ColorsNatural Titanium, Blue Titanium, White Titanium, Black TitaniumCream, Green, Lavender, Phantom Black, Samsung exclusive colors (Lime, Graphite, Sky Blue, and Red)
CameraMain, ultrawide, telephoto200MP f/1.7 wide angle, 10MP f/2.4 2x zoom, 10MP f/4.9 10x zoom, 12MP f/2.2 ultra-wide, 12MP f/2.2 front camera
Weight168 grams188 grams
Charging20W wired, 15W MagSafe wireless45W
IP RatingIP68IP68
Price$1,199Starts at $1,200

Pricing and Availability

The first factor that most consumers consider when buying a new smartphone is the price and availability.

The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra was announced in February 2023 and was available in stores later that same month. The base model, with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of internal storage, is priced at $1,199. However, you may find it at a lower price point with various deals and discounts offered by retailers and carriers.

On the other hand, Apple announced the iPhone 15 Pro Max in September 2023, with preorders starting a few days after the announcement and official release slated for late September. The base model of the iPhone 15 Pro Max also starts at $1,199, but it offers double the storage at 256GB.

Design and Build

When it comes to design and build quality, both Samsung and Apple have always been at the forefront, delivering premium and robust devices that instantly catch the eye.

The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra boasts an elegant and sturdy design, featuring a Gorilla Glass Victus 2 front and back, coupled with an aluminum frame. It’s available in a variety of colors, including Phantom Black, Green, Cream, and Lavender, among others. Weighing in at 234 grams, the Galaxy S23 Ultra is slightly heavier than its Apple counterpart.

Apple, on the other hand, has introduced some significant design changes with the iPhone 15 Pro Max. The device features a sleek and durable titanium alloy frame, available in four color variants: Natural Titanium, Blue Titanium, White Titanium, and Black Titanium. The iPhone 15 Pro Max is also lighter than the Galaxy S23 Ultra, weighing in at 221 grams.

Display Quality

A smartphone’s display quality is a critical aspect that influences user experience, especially for those who spend a significant amount of time on their devices.

The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra sports a 6.8-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X display, supporting a 1440 x 3088 pixel resolution, HDR10+, and a 120Hz refresh rate. The display is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass Victus 2 and can reach peak brightness levels of 1,750 nits.

The iPhone 15 Pro Max comes with a slightly smaller 6.7-inch Super Retina XDR OLED display. However, it supports HDR10, Dolby Vision, and a 120Hz refresh rate. The display of the iPhone 15 Pro Max can achieve an impressive peak brightness of 2,000 nits, giving it a slight edge over the Galaxy S23 Ultra in terms of brightness.

Performance and Software

The performance of a smartphone is primarily determined by the chipset that powers it, and both Samsung and Apple have equipped their flagships with the latest and most powerful processors.

The Galaxy S23 Ultra is powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy, a 4nm chipset that offers robust performance and efficiency. The device runs on Android 13 with Samsung’s One UI 5.1, providing a smooth and feature-packed user experience.

On the other hand, Apple’s iPhone 15 Pro Max is powered by the all-new 3nm A17 Pro chipset, expected to deliver superior performance and energy efficiency. The device runs on iOS 17, which introduces several new features and improvements over its predecessor.

Camera Performance

The camera setup is another crucial factor that differentiates premium smartphones. Both Samsung and Apple have equipped their flagships with impressive camera systems, capable of capturing stunning photos and videos.

The Galaxy S23 Ultra features a versatile quadruple camera setup, consisting of a 200MP primary sensor, a 10MP 3x telephoto lens, a 10MP 10x periscope telephoto lens, and a 12MP ultrawide lens.

The iPhone 15 Pro Max, on the other hand, comes with a triple camera setup, including a 48MP main sensor, a 12MP ultrawide lens, and a new 12MP periscope telephoto lens that offers 5x optical zoom.

Battery Life and Charging

Battery life is an essential consideration for any smartphone user, and both Samsung and Apple have made significant strides in this area.

The Galaxy S23 Ultra packs a 5,000mAh battery, offering extended battery life. When it comes to charging, the device supports 45W wired charging, allowing for quick recharge times.

The iPhone 15 Pro Max features a slightly smaller 4,422mAh battery. However, thanks to the efficiency of the A17 Pro chip, it’s expected to deliver comparable battery life to the Galaxy S23 Ultra. Charging speeds are a bit slower, with the device supporting 20W wired charging.

Additional Features

Both the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra and the iPhone 15 Pro Max come with a host of additional features that enhance the user experience.

The Galaxy S23 Ultra stands out with its inbuilt S Pen stylus, which can be used for note-taking, drawing, and more. The device is also equipped with Samsung DeX, which allows for a desktop-like experience when connected to a monitor.

The iPhone 15 Pro Max introduces a new Action button, which can be customized to perform various actions. Furthermore, the device offers Face ID for secure unlocking and Apple Pay for seamless transactions.

Technical Specifications

Here’s a quick rundown of the key technical specifications of the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra and the iPhone 15 Pro Max:

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

  • Display: 6.8-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X, 1440 x 3088 pixels, 120Hz refresh rate
  • Processor: Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy
  • RAM: 8GB/12GB
  • Storage: 256GB/512GB/1TB
  • Cameras: 200MP main, 10MP 3x telephoto, 10MP 10x periscope telephoto, 12MP ultrawide
  • Battery: 5,000mAh
  • OS: Android 13 with One UI 5.1

iPhone 15 Pro Max

  • Display: 6.7-inch Super Retina XDR OLED, 1290 x 2796 pixels, 120Hz refresh rate
  • Processor: Apple A17 Pro
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 256GB/512GB/1TB
  • Cameras: 48MP main, 12MP ultrawide, 12MP 5x periscope telephoto
  • Battery: 4,422mAh
  • OS: iOS 17


When comparing the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra vs iPhone 15 Pro Max, it’s clear that both devices offer top-tier features and performance. They are packed with cutting-edge technology and deliver exceptional user experiences, making them worthy contenders for the title of the best smartphone of 2023.

The choice between the two largely depends on personal preference. If you’re a fan of Android and value features like the S Pen, the Galaxy S23 Ultra might be the better option for you. On the other hand, if you prefer iOS and appreciate Apple’s ecosystem, the iPhone 15 Pro Max is an excellent choice.

Final Thoughts

In the end, the S23 Ultra vs iPhone 15 Pro Max battle boils down to the personal preferences of the user. Each smartphone brings its unique strengths to the table, offering users a range of options to cater to their specific needs. Whether you’re a photography enthusiast, a power user, or someone who prefers a simple yet powerful device, both the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra and the iPhone 15 Pro Max have a lot to offer. Choose the one that best aligns with your lifestyle and needs, and you won’t be disappointed.

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