Samsung has finally taken the lid off its 2020 line of Galaxy Note devices. There’s the spec behemoth Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, and then there’s the slightly more cost effective Galaxy Note 20. Excuse the pun, but there’s a lot to unpack here.
These are the first phones with support for Xbox cloud gaming, and they’ve received some serious security upgrades. But, of course, there’s a lot more to them than the headlining features, so let’s take a closer look at all the gory details.
Jump to a section: Standout Features | Dates | Storage | Price | Body | Basics | Software | Skin | Display | Performance | Battery | Front Camera | Rear Camera | Audio | Media Formats | Sensors | Connectivity | Security | Box Includes
The Galaxy Note 20 and Note 20 Ultra will keep all the upgrades Samsung gave the Galaxy S20, including the 120 Hz display and a bigger battery. However, they refined them, improving the autofocus on the 108 MP camera, the screen to body rati0, and various others. It’s one of the first phones to support Xbox cloud gaming, allowing you to play over 100 Xbox games on your phone.
- Announcement date: August 5, 2020
- Preorder date: August 6, 2020
- Release date: August 21, 2020
Only the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra has a microSD tray. Both will use the UFS 3.1 storage standard and F2FS file system.
- Storage available: 128 GB/256 GB (Galaxy Note 20) or 128 GB/256 GB/512 GB (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Expandable storage: no (Galaxy Note 20) or yes (up to 2 TB microSD) (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Standard: UFS 3.1
Price for Everything
- Starting price: $999 (Galaxy Note 20) or $1,299 (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
The speaker and S Pen are in new locations, on the opposite sides of where they were on the Note 10. The S Pen is the same size as its predecessor, but depending on which model you get, you’ll have a vastly different experience. The Galaxy Note 20 Ultra reduces input latency from 42 ms to 9 ms. The Galaxy Note 20 only reduce it down to 28 ms, which is still better than last year.
One thing to be aware of is that the Galaxy Note 20 has a reinforced polycarbonate back instead of glass — but don’t worry, it still has wireless charging.
- Frame: aluminum
- Material: glass (Gorilla Glass Victus), polycarbonate (Galaxy Note 20)
- Finish: mystic grey, mystic bronze, mystic green (Galaxy Note 20), mystic black, mystic bronze, mystic white (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
The Galaxy Note 20 is about the same size as the Galaxy S20+, while the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra is actually smaller than the S20 Ultra.
- Height: 6.36 inches (Galaxy Note 20), 6.49 inches (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Width: 2.96 inches (Galaxy Note 20), 3.04 inches (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Depth: 0.33 inches (Galaxy Note 20), 0.32 inches (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Weight: 6.84 oz (Galaxy Note 20), 7.34 oz (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Dust/water resistance: IP68 under IEC standard 60529 (1.5 m up to 30 min)
- Supported carriers: Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile
- Infrared blaster: no
- Version: Android 10
The Galaxy Note 20 runs the latest version of Samsung’s One UI, 2.5. In this, you get a few features including the new 24 fps cinematic shooting mode for video, audio source control, wireless DeX, and much more. The biggest change compared to One UI 2.0 is the ability to use Android 10’s gestures on third-party launchers, applying the official fix instead of using the workaround.
- Version: One UI 2.5
Like the Galaxy S20 series, the Note 20 Ultra’s 120 Hz refresh rate is limited to 1080p resolution. This is also an adaptive refresh rate, which means it will dynamically adjust between 60 Hz and 120 Hz depending on the app running, current battery life, and heat.
The screen to body ratio is slightly better than the Galaxy S20 Ultra while maintaining the same size screen. The maximum brightness level is also 20% higher at 1,500 nits. For those who dislike the curved display, the Galaxy Note 20 uses a flat screen.
- Screen size: 6.7 inches (Galaxy Note 20), 6.9 inches (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Screen resolution: 2400 x 1080 pixels (Galaxy Note 20), 3088 x 1440 pixels (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Total pixels: 2,592,000 pixels (Galaxy Note 20), 4,446,720 pixels (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Pixel density: 393 ppi (Galaxy Note 20), 496 ppi (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Screen type: Super AMOLED PLus (Galaxy Note 20), Dynamic AMOLED 2X (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Curved: yes, Galaxy Note 20 Ultra
- Notch: no
- HDR: HDR10+
- Screen-to-body ratio: 89.2% (Galaxy Note 20), 91.7% (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Aspect ratio: 20:9 (Galaxy Note 20), 24.25:9 (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Minimum brightness: Unknown
- Maximum brightness: 1500 nits (Note 20 Ultra)
- Refresh rate: 60 Hz (60 Hz for touch-sensing) (Galaxy Note 20), 120 Hz (240 Hz for touch-sensing) (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Color temp: Unknown
- Color gamut: Unknown
All variants of the Galaxy Note 20 come with 8 GB of LPDDR5 RAM, while the Galaxy 20 Ultra upgrades it to 12 GB. Both phones will use the latest chipset from Qualcomm, the Snapdragon 865+. This is the same SoC as the Galaxy S20 but with an 11% clock speed increase on the highest core.
- Memory: 8 GB (Galaxy Note 20), 12 GB RAM (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 865+
- Chip size: 7 nanometer
- CPU frequency: 3.1 GHz + 2.42 GHz + 1.80 GHz)
- CPU cores: 4 Gold + 4 Silver
- GPU: Adreno 650
- GPU frequency: 656 MHz
Both phones will support Super Fast Charging with a 25 W charger in the box. Both phones will support Fast Wireless Charging 2.0 as well as Wireless PowerShare for 5 W of reverse wireless charging.
- Battery: rechargeable lithium-ion
- Capacity: 4,300 mAh, 3.85 volts (16.56 watt-hours) (Galaxy Note 20), 4,500 mAh, 3.86 volts (17.37 watt-hours) (Galaxy Note 20)
- Wired charging: yes, Super Fast Charging (25 W)
- Wireless charging: yes, Fast Wireless Charging 2.0 (15 W)
- Reverse Wireless charging: yes, PowerShare
- Resolution: 10 MP
- Aperture: ƒ/2.2
- Zoom: Unknown
- Flash: yes, screen flash
- Image stabilization: Unknown
- RAW support: yes
- Object detection: yes
- Formats: JPEG, RAW
The Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra swaps out the ToF sensor of the Galaxy S20 Ultra for a Laser Auto-Focus, virtually eliminating all the focusing issues plaguing the other Ultra phone. There is also no ToF sensor in the Galaxy Note 20. Additionally, the Space Zoom is limited on the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra to 50x, instead of the 100x found in the Galaxy S20 Ultra.
- Resolution: 12 MP, 64 MP (telephoto), 12 MP (ultrawide) (Galaxy Note 20), 108 MP (12 MP when using pixel binning), 12 MP (ultra-wide), 12 MP(telephoto), (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Sensor size: 1.8 µm, 0.8 µm (telephoto), 1.4 µm (ultrawide) (Galaxy Note 20), 0.8/2.4 µm (primary), 1.4 µm (ultra-wide), 1.0 µm (telephoto) (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Image size: 1/1.76″ (Note 20 – primary), 1/1.33″ (Note 20 Ultra – primary)
- Aperture: f/1.8, f/2.0 (telephoto), f/2.2 (ultrawide) (Galaxy Note 20), f/1.8 (primary), f/2.2 (ultra-wide), f/3.0 (telephoto) (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Zoom: 3x optical, 30x digital (Galaxy Note 20), 10x optical, 50x digital (Galaxy Note 20 Ultra)
- Flash: High CRI LED
- Image stabilization: yes, OIS + EIS (primary)
- RAW support: yes
- Lens cover: sapphire crystal
- Object detection: yes, food, faces
- Formats: JPEG, RAW
Video recording is the same as the Galaxy S20 series and includes the new Video Pro Mode and 8K 24 fps maximum video recording. They also added a 24 fps video recording to 4K and 1080p for more cinematic video. Video Pro mode adds microphone controls, allowing you adjust the direction of audio recording.
- Resolution: 720p, 1080p, 4K, and 8K
- Max frame rate: 720p at 30fps, 1080p at 60 fps, 4K at 60 fps, 8K at 24 fps
- Slow motion: 720p at 960 fps, 1080p at 240 fps, 4K at 120 fps
- Time-lapse: yes, 1080p
- Photos: yes, 33 MP still photos during 8K recording
- Zoom: yes, see above
- Flash access: yes, see above
- Image stabilization: yes, OIS
- Object detection: Unknown
- Autofocus: tracking
- Audio: stereo
- Formats: H.264 (AVC), H.265 (HEVC)
Dual Audio is available on both devices, allowing you to stream audio to wireless speakers or headphones simultaneously. The speakers are calibrated by AKG, as are the USB-C earphones. Ultra high-quality audio playback is available, up to 32-bit PCM and DSD64/128.
- 3.5 mm headphone jack: no
- Stereo speakers: yes, top firing and bottom-firing
- Mics: Unknown
- Max speaker volume: Unknown
- Sensors: Ultrasonic Fingerprint sensor, Accelerometer, Barometer, Gyro sensor, Geomagnetic sensor, Hall sensor, Proximity sensor, Ambient Light Sensor
The Galaxy Note 20 will once again support dual-frequency GNSS.
- GPS: yes, L1 + L5
- aGPS: yes
- Glonass: yes, L1
- BeiDou: yes, B1
- Galileo: yes, E1 + E5a
- QZSS: no
Both the Galaxy Note 20 and 20 Ultra support 5G in both Sub 6 GHz and mmWave ranges. We currently don’t know exactly which bands they’ll work on, but expect the same broad coverage as the Galaxy S20 Ultra. The Note 20 Ultra adds ultra-wideband (UWB) to help improve Nearby Share. By pointing your phone in the direction of another UWB-equipped Galaxy device, the phone lists that person higher on the share sheet.
- Wi-Fi: 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax (Wi-Fi 6)
- Bluetooth: 5.0
- NFC: yes
- Cellular: nano-SIM, eSIM
- Port: USB Type-C (USB 3.1 Gen 2)
In an interview with GregglesTV, Ross Young confirmed both phones are expected to use the second-generation ultrasonic in-display fingerprint scanner known as 3D Sonic Max. The sensor is 17 times larger than the previous version and can read two fingerprints at the same time. It can also determine the material of the object it is interacting with, which should improve accuracy. This will decrease the possibility of a false positives to the same level as Apple’s Face ID.
The other possible significant upgrade is to the dedicated security chip, Secure Element (S3K250AF), that Samsung debuted in the Galaxy S20 series. The Note 20 and 20 Ultra are rumored to be equipped with the second-generation, S3FV9RR, though we haven’t confirmed this yet. This chip received the highest security certification of a mobile component, includes twice the storage space, and supports device authorization. Samsung Knox will be on board with all its protection.
- Fingerprint scanner: yes, in-display (3D Sonic Max)
- Face scanner: yes
- Iris scanner: no
- Manual authentication: password, PIN, pattern, swipe
- Dedicated Security Chip: yes, Secure Element (S3FV9RR)
The Galaxy Note 20 and 20 Ultra should come with the same accessories and paperwork as the Galaxy S20, including the 25 W Super Fast Charging adapter, USB-C cable, and AKG-tuned earbuds with a USB-C connector. Both devices will likely have a screen protector pre-applied.
- Samsung Galaxy Note 20 or Note 20 Ultra
- Data Cable
- Travel Adapter
- Ejection Pin
- Earphones sound by AKG
- Quick Start Guide
- Clear Cover Protective Film
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