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Galaxy Fold, Mate X prices make the Galaxy S10, iPhone XS’ cost almost reasonable – CNET

If you think your Android phone or iPhone is expensive now, just wait. Foldable phones like the Galaxy Fold and Huawei Mate X, and 5G-ready devices, like the Galaxy S10 5G and plenty more, will soon push phone prices well over the $1,000 mark that’s become the ceiling for premium phones. All that’s about to change.…

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Galaxy Fold, Mate X prices make the Galaxy S10, iPhone XS’ cost almost reasonable     – CNET

If you think your Android phone or iPhone is expensive now, just wait. Foldable phones like the Galaxy Fold and Huawei Mate X, and 5G-ready devices, like the Galaxy S10 5G and plenty more, will soon push phone prices well over the $1,000 mark that’s become the ceiling for premium phones. All that’s about to change.
Samsung’s foldable Galaxy Fold starts at $1,980 (roughly £1,500 or AU$2,800) for the 4G version, a price that Samsung justifies by virtue of its foldable phone being a luxury device that’s also a true phone-tablet hybrid. (Samsung hasn’t shown off the Fold in person yet, apart from a presentation piece behind glass.) The company hasn’t announced pricing for either of its 5G products, the Galaxy Fold 5G going on sale April 26, or the Galaxy S10 5G that’s is expected later this summer. 
Meanwhile, Huawei’s foldable phone, the Mate X, will cost buyers 2,300 euros, or roughly $2,600. That’s high for a phone swathed in leather and sapphire crystal, and unprecedented for one made of plastic. Huawei, too, positions the foldable Mate X in this new category of hybrid devices.

Even 4G “candy bar”-shaped phones in 2019 that don’t bend and don’t have 5G are seeing price inflation. The Galaxy S10 ($900) costs 20 percent more than the median price of the Galaxy S9 ($850). Likewise, the budget-minded Motorola G7 ($299) rose 20 percent from the Moto G6 ($249). Even the OnePlus 6T crept up 3.8 percent from the OnePlus 6 ($529) over the course of four months.
And that’s for the starting models. Level up your storage capacity and phones become more costly still. For example, if you want an iPhone XS ($1,000) with 512GB storage capacity, you’ll pay 35 percent more ($1,349). 

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While there are certain conditions nudging prices higher, this triumvirate of rising costs is making most phones explosively expensive in 2019. New technologies and designs like foldable screens and 5G speeds are pushing prices higher in the name of advancement, but they are also positioning brands to create an ultra-high-end segment that can make each sale more profitable. That’s important in a climate where phone sales are slowing, and people hold onto their devices for three years or more. 
The fact that people buy increasingly costly handsets in the top tier underscores the cell phone’s importance as an everything-device for communication, work, photography and entertainment. And as processing power, camera technology, battery life and internet data speeds improve generation after generation, the value people attach to a phone is sure to swell.  
Samsung’s Galaxy Fold at work.
Samsung
“Consumers are prepared to pay a premium for a mobile phone because it is arguably the most important product in their lives,” said Ben Wood, the chief research analyst at CCS Insight.
The data from 13 phone models from 2016 to 2019 shows a pattern of sharp price hikes that we expect to heighten in 2019 and beyond (see chart below). 
Rising prices aren’t unusual on their own. Faster, better components like processors and multiplying cameras cost more to make. The financial load of researching and developing new materials also gets folded into the final product. 
And inflation affects the cost of goods outside of tech, too. But R&D spending and inflation don’t tell the entire story your phone’s creeping expense. 
Read: Galaxy S10 5G and OnePlus 5G phones: 6 things you need to know now

Yep, your phone costs more every year
With few exceptions, phone prices from top brands are on the rise. The uptick is immediately noticeable when comparing phone prices from today with the same model released two or in some cases, three, years ago.
Apple’s prices have risen at a steady rate for both its standard size iPhone along with the Plus and Max lines, making the iPhone XS Max a luxury spinoff. Samsung’s Galaxy S, S Plus and Note prices are swinging upward too for standard models. 
Yes, the Galaxy S10E comes in at a lower $750, but the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10 Plus are more expensive now than their Galaxy S9 equivalents were a year ago.

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US phone prices from 2016-2019

2016 (starting price)

2017 (starting price)

2018 (starting price)

2019 (starting price)

% change of highest price from 2016 to current model

Galaxy S10 E

N/A

N/A

N/A

Galaxy S10E: $750

N/A

Samsung Galaxy

Galaxy S7: $650-695

Galaxy S8: $720-$750

Galaxy S9: $720-$800

Galaxy S10: $900

29.5%

Samsung Galaxy Plus

S7 Edge: $750-795

Galaxy S8 Plus: $785-$850

Galaxy S9 Plus: $840-$930

Galaxy S10 Plus: $1,000

25.8%

Samsung Galaxy Note

Note 7: $834-880

Note 8: $930-960

Note 9: $1,000

Expected Aug 2019

13.6%

Motorola Moto G

Moto G4: $199

Moto G5 Plus (no Moto G5 in the US): $229

Moto G6: $249

Moto G7: $299

50%

LG G series

LG G5: $576-689

LG G6: $600-720

LG G7: $750-790

LG G8: TBD

14.7%

LG V series

LG V20: $672-829

LG V30: $800-912

LG V40: $900-$980

LG V50: TBD

18.2%

iPhone (cheapest)

iPhone 7: $649

iPhone 8: $699

iPhone XR: $749

Expected Sept. 2019

15.4%

iPhone X

N/A

iPhone X: $999

iPhone XS: $999

Expected Sept. 2019

0%

iPhone Plus/Max

iPhone 7 Plus: $769

iPhone 8 Plus: $799

iPhone XS Max: $1,099

Expected Sept. 2019

42.9%

OnePlus

OnePlus 3: $399

OnePlus 5: $479 / OnePlus 5T: $499

OnePlus 6: $529 / OnePlus 6T: $549

Expected June 2019

37.6%

Google Pixel

Pixel: $649

Pixel 2: $649

Pixel 3: $799

Expected Oct. 2019

23.10%

Google Pixel Plus

Pixel XL: $769

Pixel 2 XL: $849

Pixel 3 XL: $899

Expected Oct. 2019

16.9%

We’ve seen steady escalation from OnePlus, whose price jumps up each time a new model arrives. OnePlus is currently on track for two variations per year: the OnePlus 6T launched in Oct. 2018 for $549 for the base configuration. 
The OnePlus 7’s rumored $569 price tag seems like a negligible bump, especially since it’ll still cost almost half the price of a $1,000 phone. Regardless, the cost of ownership to you is on the rise.
“As reliance on smartphones has increased drastically over a short amount of time, the increase in quality and components across the industry required to meet high performance demands has also risen,” a OnePlus representative said last August.
The “5G” in the Galaxy S10 5G will make this phone cost more than a G.
Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
According to LG, “Key [pricing] factors include the cost of components, competitor pricing, carrier incentives, tariffs, etc.,” Ken Hong, LG’s senior director of global communications, said in an email. “Fact is, these input costs are rising so we’re forced to follow suit.”
CNET reached out to all manufacturers mentioned in this story for comment.
Interestingly, the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL cost the same as the Pixel and Pixel XL. However, Google raised the Pixel 3 price 23 percent, without adding a second camera on the back and making minimal design changes. Google has pushed up the price to match the competition.

But making phones is more expensive now, right?
Phones, like all electronics, are composed of parts sourced from various suppliers, and if the cost of those parts goes up, it’s a sure bet the cost of the phones will, too.
Demand for more storage over the past few years has triggered price hikes, pushing up the cost of memory and prompting suppliers to invest in building more factories to meet the demand, according to Wood. 
These five cameras on the back of the Nokia 9 PureView don’t come free.
Sarah Tew/CNET
Adding more sophisticated cameras — like the iPhone XS’ 3D depth sensing front-facing camera — or more lenses, like the Galaxy S10 and Huawei Mate 20 Pro’s three rear shooters or the Nokia 9 PureView’s five rear cameras, costs more too. And so do materials like bendable screens, glass or ceramic for a phone’s backing, or sturdy aerospace-grade aluminum for the frame.
You can bet that the first phone to debut a diamond glass screen or the new, smudge-resistant Vibrant Satin Corning Gorilla Glass won’t be cheap. It’s also expensive for companies like Samsung to build a whole new manufacturing process for elements like the Infinity Flex display used on the Galaxy Fold.

If you generate enough value, then consumers will be ready to pay.
Justin Denison, SVP of Samsung Mobile.
Yet while the cost of all these components — called the Bill of Materials, or BOM — can partially explain why high-end phones cost more each year, many experts say that phonemakers are padding their profits.
“I certainly accept that some elements of the cost came from the components and the manufacturing process… but not to that order of magnitude,” Wood said.
ZTE’s Axon 10 Pro 5G is one of many handsets ready for the 5G era to begin. 
Andrew Hoyle/CNET
Carolina Milanesi, an analyst with Creative Strategies, agrees.
“There is certainly more going into these phones than ever before,” she said in an email. “The BOM is certainly growing for these devices, but I do think that there is a premium margin applied by the brands to their flagship products because they are status symbols.”
The 5G and foldable effect
Apple and Samsung struggled with stagnant sales that dogged their 2018, but that didn’t stop Apple in particular from profiting handsomely.
In August 2018, it became a trillion dollar company, on the back of high iPhone sales margins, even as it slipped to being the third-place phonemaker behind Huawei. Whether interest continues to cool or picks up with 5G and foldable phones is something that industry-watchers keep a close eye on in 2019.
Still, the advent of 5G and foldable phone designs will likely give phone manufacturers more license to prop up costs. 5G phones require completely new technology inside the device, and phones have to be tailor-made to work with a single carrier. That’s at least until 5G networks really get off the ground. In the early days of 5G phones, prices could rise by $200 or $300 per phone, OnePlus told CNET in December 2018. 

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We’re still waiting for pricing on most of the 5G phones that have been announced so far.
“If you generate enough value [in the phone], then consumers will be ready to pay,” said Justin Denison, Samsung’s SVP of mobile, last December when Samsung first discussed its 5G phone.
Even greater burgeoning costs apply to foldable phone designs, which include the Galaxy Fold, Mate X and a rumored foldable Motorola Razr for $1,500. These phones will have bendable plastic screens that open into a larger display, like a tablet, but fold into a device around the same height and width as today’s phones (though thicker).
If you want the best of the best, prepare to part with your cash.
Angela Lang/CNET
Compared to these $1,500 and $2,000 devices, a premium 4G phone for $1,000 seems typical. Yet mushrooming costs on the highest-end can still result in more expensive 4G phones in 2019, that don’t have 5G radios and foldable displays. With today’s Galaxy S10, iPhone XS and Huawei Mate 20 Pro nudging prices skyward, other players have reason to follow suit. Even midtier models can get away with raising their price tags so long as the devices cost relatively less. 
For example, the OnePlus 6T at $549 still costs nearly half of what you’d shell out for the Galaxy S10 Plus and iPhone XS, a relative value that many find easy enough to swallow for a “cheaper” phone with high-end parts.
According to Wood, the analyst, it all started when Apple announced the $1,000 iPhone X. “They did the whole industry a favor,” Wood said. “That gave all the other manufacturers some breathing space and I can imagine there was a certain delight in the corridors of Samsung and Huawei and others.”
OnePlus phone prices are rising, but generally remain about half the cost of the top tier.
Angela Lang/CNET
Lifting the price ceiling has one other consequence. Apple and Samsung both introduced the iPhone XR and Galaxy S10E as a $750 palate-cleanser to the starting prices of the iPhone XS ($1,000) and Galaxy S10 ($900). Comparatively, $750 seems like a downright deal. Lowering the cost of entry to an “affordable flagship” is a play to keep cost-conscious buyers within the iPhone or Galaxy family, respectively.
Midrange phones are still affordable, but may not be immune
Although foldable and 5G phones are blowing buyers’ price expectations out of the water, that may not mean that the cost of every phone will rise at such sharp rates.
We continue to see fierce competition in the middle and low end where phones like the Motorola Moto G7 and E5 families turn out excellent budget handsets. Yes, the prices are rising by percentage, as with the Moto G6 to G7, but since the overall cost is still right about $300, Motorola’s move presents a much less drastic shift than on the high end. Even at that higher-end though, a $1,000 “premium phone” might still cost hundreds less than a cutting-edge 5G device, and possibly half the amount of a foldable phone.
Phones like the Moto G7 and G7 Plus (pictured) remain firmly in the budget range.
Óscar Gutiérrez/CNET
Other brands for wallet-watchers to look for include Huawei’s Honor brand, Nokia, Xiaomi, Sony, Oppo and Asus, which help fill the gap worldwide by quietly cranking out basic, affordable phones for cost-sensitive buyers. They each make premium phones as well as midprice devices, although not every phone will be available in every market. 
So while the shiniest, most powerful devices are still locked on a path to their highest prices yet, there’s still a strong demand for midrange and entry-level phones aimed at people with tighter budgets or more basic needs.
If a $1,000 phone sounds too outrageous, you may need to find beauty in a more modest phone, or get over the sticker shock and accept that the days of a $600 flagship phone are long behind us. $1,000, in fact, is becoming the new normal.
Originally published Aug. 5, 2018 and regularly updated.

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Black Friday Fire tablet deals: Savings on the Amazon Fire 7, Fire HD 8, Fire 7, all Fire Kids tablets and more – CNET

This story is part of Holiday Gift Guide 2020, CNET’s gift picks with expert advice, reviews and recommendations for the latest tech gifts for you and your family. Black Friday is in full swing and at Amazon that means the full range of the company’s hardware devices are on sale. Case in point: Every Fire…

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Black Friday Fire tablet deals: Savings on the Amazon Fire 7, Fire HD 8, Fire 7, all Fire Kids tablets and more     – CNET

This story is part of Holiday Gift Guide 2020, CNET’s gift picks with expert advice, reviews and recommendations for the latest tech gifts for you and your family.

Black Friday is in full swing and at Amazon that means the full range of the company’s hardware devices are on sale. Case in point: Every Fire tablet in the lineup can now be purchased at a deep discount. This effectively brings back the Prime Day deals from October, with some new ones thrown in for good measure for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Here’s a full breakdown of the deals, including one that just went live yesterday.The Fire HD 10 (10-inch tablet) is now $80 ($70 off)The Fire HD 10 Kids Edition is now $130 ($70 off)The Fire HD 8 Plus (8-inch tablet) is now $75 ($35 off)The Fire HD 8 is now $55 ($35 off)The Fire HD 8 Kids Edition is now $80 ($60 off)The Fire 7 (7-inch tablet) is now $40 ($10 off)  The Fire 7 Kids Edition is now $60 ($40 off)Note that the Fire Kids Editions include a case and a year of Amazon’s Kids Plus subscription service, a $36 value. Many tablets have been unavailable or temporarily out of stock, so if you find that, keep checking back as we update this page regularly.

Black Friday 2020 sales and deals

David Carnoy/CNET

Amazon has come a long way from the first Kindle Fire tablet. The Amazon Fire HD 10 is Amazon’s biggest tablet with a 10-inch screen size and powerful speakers (and it now charges via USB-C). Just like its smaller 8-inch sibling, the Fire HD 8, the tablet is packed with benefits for Prime subscribers, making it easy for members to stream and download movies, TV shows and games. The Fire tablets don’t use a pure version of Android, but instead Amazon’s Android-based Fire operating system, and pull apps from the Amazon App Store. You can still get apps from Google Play, but you’ll have to install the store yourself — meaning gaming enthusiasts have access to all of their favorite mobile games for an excellent gaming tablet experience.

Read more.

César Salza/CNET

The Fire HD 8 was updated earlier this year with a faster processor, USB-C charging, better Wi-Fi performance, 2GB of RAM (up from 1.5GB) and a bump from 16GB to 32GB of storage in the base model. Its HD screen is sharper than the entry-level Fire 7, but it’s not nearly as sharp as iPad displays. The HD 8 Plus adds wireless charging and slightly better performance, thanks to 3GB of RAM.

Read our Amazon Fire HD 8 (2020) review.

David Carnoy/CNET

The Fire HD 8 Plus adds wireless charging and more RAM (3GB instead of 2GB), with performance that improves on the standard Fire HD 8. The tablet should charge just fine on most wireless charging pads.

Read our Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus review.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Fair warning: We really think you should pay up for a Fire HD 8, which is a much better, faster tablet than the entry-level Fire 7. But at $40, this non-HD 7-inch model is going to be tempting for a lot of folks. 

Sarah Tew/CNET

This child-friendly version of the Fire HD 8 tablet adds a padded case, parental controls, a two-year warranty and a one-year subscription to Kids Plus (formerly known as FreeTime Unlimited), which normally costs $3 a month and gives you access to a bunch of kid-friendly content. It’s not really suitable for remote learning, but it’s a much more affordable option than giving a young child a full-on iPad.

Sarah Tew/CNET

This has all of the same extras as the HD 8 above, but it’s the childproof version of the smaller, more affordable Amazon Fire 7. You’re getting a 7-inch screen instead of 8, and a less robust processor.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2020

Discover the latest news and best reviews in smartphones and carriers from CNET’s mobile experts.

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Galaxy S20 5G review: Top-shelf specs, but plenty of room for refinement – CNET

Of Samsung’s three new Galaxy S20 5G phones, the smallest, cheapest Galaxy S20 is my favorite. It’s just as stuffed with top-shelf features as the Galaxy S20 Plus and S20 Ultra, from its tack-sharp screen to advanced camera skills. But apart from screen and body size, the differences between S20 models are almost negligible. Of…

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Galaxy S20 5G review: Top-shelf specs, but plenty of room for refinement     – CNET

Of Samsung’s three new Galaxy S20 5G phones, the smallest, cheapest Galaxy S20 is my favorite. It’s just as stuffed with top-shelf features as the Galaxy S20 Plus and S20 Ultra, from its tack-sharp screen to advanced camera skills. But apart from screen and body size, the differences between S20 models are almost negligible. Of course, there are people who will want the S20 Plus and even Ultra instead, but for specific, personal reasons, and not out of a marked advantage in tools or performance. And yes, I do mean the Ultra’s 108-megapixel camera and 100x zoom. (Wait for it…)

LikeSmall enough to use one-handedExcellent cameraTop-notch features and performance

Don’t LikeExpensiveThick, heavy, unrefinedSupports slower 5G only (except Verizon)

Read more: Motorola Edge Plus is a worthy Samsung Galaxy S20 alternativeHonestly, the Galaxy S20’s $999, £799 and AU$1,349 starting prices are expensive enough for what the phone offers that buying one of the pricier models feels like a waste. Unlike last year, there is no cheaper Galaxy S20E to make the smallest model appear like a value play that justifies the jump in cost as you move up the line. The S20 Plus begins at $1,199, while the unwieldy S20 Ultra will set you back $1,399 for the 128GB version that has disappointing battery life and 95% of the same specs. (The S20 Plus and Ultra also sell in 512GB variants.)

And if you want a “cheaper” high-end Samsung phone? That’s now what the newly discounted Galaxy S10 Plus ($850 at Amazon) and Note 10 Plus are for. 

To me, the S20 pricing is right on the edge of acceptable. Samsung is overreaching. Maybe I’d be less hung up on price if I truly loved these phones. But the S20’s legitimately knockout features and specs never really come together for me the way they do on the Galaxy Note 10 and 10 Plus, and that’s a shame.I’m a big fan of the Cloud Blue color of my review unit, the way its 6.2-inch edge-to-edge display makes the phone feel pocketable, maneuverable and easy to use one-handed. I mostly love the camera results, although I wish I could get closer to my subject, and there are some issues with autofocus that Samsung is addressing. Processing speeds are great, battery life does it job, and bonus features such as ultrafast wired charging, reverse wireless charging and a 120Hz screen refresh rate give me the warm fuzzies.

It’ll feel too small for some, which is the S20 Plus’ main benefit. You also can’t get a 512GB configuration, and most carriers “only” support the slower 5G bands known as Sub-6. (Verizon is a notable exception. Its faster mmWave S20 5G will arrive in Q2.) In some countries, including the UK and Australia, the S20 is the only variant with a cheaper 4G-only option.I’m loving the Galaxy S20 in Cloud Blue.
Angela Lang/CNET
I genuinely enjoy using the Galaxy S20 and its camera. But it’s not the slam dunk for me I was hoping for. If you need a new Android phone now, the S20 is my pick. If you’re sold on its features but can afford to wait, keep an eye out for the most aggressive trade-in deals and discounts, especially around holidays. If you can hold out until summer or fall, I’m also interested in what the Galaxy Note 20 and iPhone 12 will bring. For details on 8k video, Single Take photo mode, and the processor, read my Galaxy S20 Ultra review (these are identical across the S20 family).

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Galaxy S20 vs. S20 Plus: What’s the difference?Size: The jump from the S20’s 6.2-inch screen to the Plus’ 6.7-inch screen makes a difference for me. The Plus absolutely feels larger, and when I have both phones in front of me, I reach for the Plus to watch videos on Netflix and YouTube. Naturally, the Plus is heavier, too (full specs below).Battery: 4,000 mAh (S20) versus 4,500 mAh (Plus). Our lab tests are still running, but both phones lasted from day to night on a single charge. All-day use of the 120Hz screen refresh rate instead of the default 60Hz setting will decrease battery life, so you may find you need to top up before going out for the night.A larger screen on the S20 Plus makes a difference.
Angela Lang/CNET
Camera: The S20 Plus has a time-of-flight sensor that’s meant to help with clearer low-light shots. It doesn’t make a meaningful difference in feature set.5G technology: This one might matter to you. With the exception of an unreleased Verizon model, the Galaxy S20 will support the type of 5G known as Sub-6, which results in slower peak speeds. Download speed will still be faster than 4G, but not as fast as the (theoretical) peak speeds of the approaching tech known as millimeter wave, or mmWave. There are pros and cons to both methods, but if you care about connecting to the fastest 5G on a carrier outside of Verizon, then the S20 Plus will get you there. Your real-world results depend entirely on the network quality where you live.One more thing: The S20 Plus has a 512GB option.Despite thin bezels and an edge-to-edge display, the S20 still feels rather bulky.
Angela Lang/CNET
Galaxy S20 camera is nearly as good as the S20 UltraSamsung earned oohs and aahs for the S20 Ultra’s 108-megapixel camera and 100x zoom features. These are unique to the Ultra, but I found that the times I benefited from them were few and far between. These are features that are cool to have, but entirely easy to live without.This street scene was taken with the 64-megapixel camera setting.
Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
Here’s a deep crop into the image. The picture looks grainy after being processed through our image tool, but it’s good enough to send casually through social media and in a text to friends. 
Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
The same clock face, at 30x zoom. In this case, 4x zoom would have been enough to see the entire clock face.
Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
It doesn’t hurt that the S20 and S20 Plus have their own camera tricks that are slightly diminished on paper, but almost entirely as useful in practice. For example, you can turn on a 64-megapixel setting to capture more detail in a scene and crop into it. That’s the real purpose of this feature — take a photo of something in the near distance, and crop in to retain the detail, as an alternative to zoom.I was happy with photos that I took this way. It was hard finding the sweet spot with the 108-megapixel camera where a deep crop didn’t sacrifice more detail than I wanted. For me, the purpose is still satisfied with 64-megapixel. In other words, it isn’t worth paying $400 more for, while also sacrificing nimbleness.This is as close as I could get to these spring blooms in automatic mode before losing focus.
Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
Here’s a different attempt, cropped in from a 64-megapixel shot. The deeper you crop in, the less detail you retain.
Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
Likewise, Samsung gifted the S20 and Plus with 30x zoom, which is about as far as I wanted to go before image quality took a nosedive. Unless I was taking a picture of something on top of a building or an object in the distance, 4x and 10x zoom typically worked for me, or else a crop from a 64-megapixel shot.The S20 Ultra also has a 40-megapixel front-facing camera, but for me, image quality isn’t especially better than the S20’s 10-megapixel selfie shooter. There’s a limit to how much detail I really want to see of my own face.See our Galaxy S20 Ultra versus iPhone 11 Pro camera comparison for more eye candy.Wonderful colors, detail, and brightness, shot in the London Underground with automatic settings.
Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
A crisp, colorful low light shot of an amusing store window, shot with automatic settings.
Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
This review originally posted earlier this week.Galaxy S20 vs. S20 Plus vs. S20 Ultra specs

Samsung Galaxy S20

Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus

Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra

Display size, resolution

6.2-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X

6.7-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X

6.9-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X

Pixel density

563 ppi

525 ppi

511 ppi

Dimensions (inches)

2.72×5.97×0.311 inches

2.9×6.37×0.30 inches

2.99×6.57×0.35 inches

Dimensions (millimeters)

69.1×151.7×7.9 mm

73.7×161.9×7.8mm

76.0×166.9×8.8mm

Weight (ounces, grams)

5.75 oz.; 163g

6.56 oz.; 186g

7.76 oz.; 220g

Mobile software

Android 10

Android 10

Android 10

Camera

12-megapixel (wide-angle), 64-megapixel (telephoto), 12-megapixel (ultrawide)

12-megapixel (wide-angle), 64-megapixel (telephoto), 12-megapixel (ultrawide), time-of-flight camera

108-megapixel (wide-angle), 48-megapixel (telephoto), 12-megapixel (ultrawide), time-of-flight camera

Front-facing camera

10-megapixel

10-megapixel

40-megapixel

Video capture

8K

8K

8K

Processor

64-bit octa-core processor (Max 2.7GHz + 2.5 GHz + 2.0 GHz)

64-bit octa-core processor (Max 2.7GHz + 2.5 GHz + 2.0 GHz)

64-bit octa-core processor (Max 2.7GHz + 2.5 GHz + 2.0 GHz)

Storage

128GB

128GB, 512GB

128GB, 512GB

RAM

12GB

12GB

12GB, 16GB

Expandable storage

Up to 1TB

Up to 1TB

Up to 1TB

Battery

4,000 mAh

4,500 mAh

5,000 mAh

Fingerprint sensor

In-screen

In-screen

In-screen

Connector

USB-C

USB-C

USB-C

Headphone jack

No

No

No

Special features

5G enabled; 120Hz refresh rate; water resistant (IP68)

5G enabled; 120Hz refresh rate; water resistant (IP68)

5G enabled; 120Hz refresh rate; 100x zoom; water resistant (IP68)

Price off-contract (USD)

$999

$1,199

$1,399 (128GB), $1,599 (512GB)

Price (GBP)

£799, £899 (5G)

£999 (5G)

£1,199 (128GB), £1,399 (512GB)

Price (AUD)

AU$1349 (4G), AU$1,499 (5G),

AU$1,499 (4G), AU$1,649 (128GB), AU$1,899 (512GB)

AU$1,999 (128GB), AU$2,249 (512GB)

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Best holiday gifts under $250 for 2020 – CNET

This story is part of Holiday Gift Guide 2020, CNET’s gift picks with expert advice, reviews and recommendations for the latest tech gifts for you and your family. Just like everything else in 2020, the holidays are going to be weird and different this year — and a lot of us will be avoiding trips to…

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Best holiday gifts under $250 for 2020     – CNET

This story is part of Holiday Gift Guide 2020, CNET’s gift picks with expert advice, reviews and recommendations for the latest tech gifts for you and your family.

Just like everything else in 2020, the holidays are going to be weird and different this year — and a lot of us will be avoiding trips to the store and instead looking online for the perfect gift for friends and family.The $100 to $250 range could be a sweet spot to find a thoughtful present for your loved ones that sparks joy without wreaking havoc on your gift budget this holiday season. Whether it’s a cool new device or gadget, or a sweet accessory, there’s some good stuff here — even for that difficult-to-shop-for-person in your life (everyone’s got one, and that person is the bane of their Christmas gift list). In this holiday gift guide, you’ll find a wide range of ideas in our picks for the best gifts under $250 for any holiday occasion.

Solo Stove

Backyard fire pits have been a keystone for social activity during the COVID-19 era — and this is the best of them, hands-down. Built from durable stainless steel, and with a vented design that promotes air flow, the Solo Stove produces a beautiful and deeply warming fire with very little smoke or airborne ash. (Perhaps best of all, your clothes do not reek of smoke the morning after.) Available in three sizes and prices, this is a slam dunk holiday gift for any fire pit enthusiast. 

Kammok

It wasn’t until I discovered the opening in the center of the Bobcat backpacking quilt that its true potential was revealed. Yes, this 600-fill duck down insulated blanket is plenty warm and, weighing a mere 20 ounces, light enough for camping (or couch surfing). But it’s the quilt’s poncho mode that makes it the ideal accessory for hanging outside at the fire pit. This quilt will go on sale for 20% off on Dec. 1.

Grouphug

There are plenty of less expensive solar panels that serve the same purpose as this one — capturing (and storing) the sun’s energy and making it accessible to your phone, tablet or other device via a USB-C connection. But Grouphug’s version is worthy of display, with its tasteful bamboo frame, transparent design and handmade aesthetic. The integrated 3,400-mAh rechargeable battery takes a good long while to charge — about 10 hours in direct sunlight — but who’s in a rush these days, anyway? 

David Carnoy/CNET

If you’re looking to maximize your visibility while riding a bike, scooter or another personal transportation device, the Lumos Matrix certainly does a good job making sure you’re noticed. This smart helmet not only has a light on the front but an LED matrix on the back that’s fully customizable via a companion app. You can have everything from standard flashing red triangles to eye-catching patterns to short messages scroll across the back of your head in ticker-tape fashion. There’s even a PacMan animation (pictured), as well as a variety of color options.Additionally, the helmet includes a small remote that allows you to let you activate a turn signal (on the back display), letting those behind you know what your next move is. Available in black or white, the Matrix is a little heavier than your typical bike helmet. It fits head sizes from 22 to 24 inches (56 to 61cm) and has an impact-resistant EPS foam liner and ABS shell that offers decent protection. This is Lumos’ current flagship model. The Ultra, a new, more affordable smart helmet with more limited lighting is available for preorder now for $84 (it’s set to ship in April). It’s available in youth sizes.

Traxxas

If you’re looking to get your kids offline and out of the house — or want to feel like a kid yourself again — the Traxxas Stampede is cool (and fast) enough to get anyone to look up from their phone. With a top speed in the 30-mph range, this high-performance remote control monster truck can roll over a variety of terrain and, courtesy of its waterproof electronics, through any mud puddle. I laughed and howled like a 10-year-old during my first few test rides.Though there’s a little bit of a learning curve — you’ll need to bone up on lithium polymer batteries and recharging peripherals — it’s no more complicated than setting up a new smartphone. (An entry-level LiPo battery and charger combo will run you another $60 or so.) And beginners will benefit from the truck’s “training mode,” which cuts its considerable speed in half to help you cultivate your handling skills. I will admit to having crashed this car repeatedly — but it still performs flawlessly, with only a few cosmetic nicks to show for it. And if you do wreck your rig, it’s OK: Traxxas is known for its reasonably priced replacement parts and repair fees.

David Carnoy/CNET

New for 2020, Bose has just released its second-generation Frames. Yes, they are sunglasses with wireless headphones built-in. They also sound incredibly good. We really like the Tempo style shown here, but you can also opt for the Tenor or Soprano styles instead.

Read our Bose Frames review.

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Since dropping in price during Amazon Prime Day, the Apple AirPods are easier to recommend as a killer pair of wireless in-ear headphones. With a winning design and fit, solid sound quality and bass performance, and very effective noise canceling, they’re excellent for making calls and listening to music — even during a workout. They also now offer an amazing spatial audio feature when used with compatible Apple devices — something you won’t find on other true wireless headphones.

Read our Apple AirPods Pro review.

Casper

The Glow lamp is a highly portable, rechargeable nightlight that’s undeniably beautiful, easy to setup and pleasant to use. It’s become integral to my family’s bedtime routine, and we now have two of them. We use them every night and take them with us wherever we go. (And that’s another thing — they’re surprisingly tough.) Thanks to its built-in gyroscope, you flip the Glow over to turn it on and off, twist it to dim it up or down or shake it to trigger the low nightlight setting. The lamp produces a pleasant ambient glow — hence the name — that dims gradually over 15 to 60 minutes. You can control the span using Casper’s streamlined iOS and Android-compatible app, and set the light to come on in the morning — a reverse nightlight, of sorts.

Read our Casper Glow preview.

Sarah Tew/CNET

When it comes to gaming consoles, your entry point for the new, cool stuff is basically $300 — that’s the price tag for the Xbox Series S, the Oculus Quest 2 or a full-featured Nintendo Switch. But you can get in on our sub-$250 budget here with the Nintendo Switch Lite, which drops the detachable controllers and the TV-out functionality of its older sibling in exchange for a more wallet-friendly $200 price point. You’ll still be able to play nearly all the same games, including Nintendo-only exclusives from the Animal Crossing, Zelda and Mario series. After disappearing from (virtual) store shelves early on in the pandemic, the Switch Lite is increasingly, though still intermittently, available from multiple national retailers.

Read our Switch Lite review.

With a lot of families working, learning and streaming from home, household wireless networks are being tested like never before. We installed a Google Nest Wifi system at our house this spring and have been impressed with its speedy performance. The connection is perceptibly faster, more expansive and more robust than our prior setup, and the $169 router will likely be sufficient for most homes. That said, the range-extending Wifi point — which doubles as a Google Assistant smart speaker — may be worth the extra dough. Also keep an eye on the Eero mesh networking set. The older three-node version sometimes drops as low as $200, with a freebie Echo speaker thrown in, and the company just debuted a new model for 2020 that folds in support for the Zigbee home automation wireless standard.

Read our Nest Wifi review.

Vanessa Hand Orellana/CNET

The most affordable Apple Watch ever released, the Apple Watch SE boasts a more powerful processor, a Retina display that’s 30% larger than the Series 3’s display and support for Apple’s new Family Setup plan. Currently, the watch is going for $230, but its price tends to fluctuate this time of year. If the SE is a little too pricey for you, the Apple Watch Series 3 is currently selling for $169, making it the least expensive option in the current lineup. Read our Apple Watch SE review.Strike price: Any discount of $30 or more

Read our Apple Watch SE review.

Monos

Having spent hundreds of dollars on lousy suitcases over the years, I can say that the Monos Carry On is worth the money, and it’s the perfect gift for travel lovers. With a similar aesthetic and price point as Away’s lineup of modern suitcases (which you may have seen on Instagram), Monos delivers everything you want in a roller bag: a lightweight but durable shell, a nice variety of compartments, pockets and straps and a well-engineered retractable handle. Plus, it comes with a 100-day free trial and lifetime warranty.

Nixon

Made from recycled ocean-bound plastic bottles, this fantastic duffle bag has exactly the right amount of storage capacity, with handles on every surface, and it can be worn on the shoulder or as a backpack. Personally, I love the Olive Dot Camo design.

Swiss Army

I’ve been using this beautiful Victorinox chef’s knife for the past year and it’s become one of my indispensable kitchen tools. The blade is fluted, so it won’t stick to what you’re cutting, and the elegant wooden handle gives it the perfect amount of heft. It’s sharp enough to make cutting meat, fish, fruit, vegetables and cheeses an absolute pleasure.

Williams Sonoma

Having gone through a series of overcomplicated food processors, the simplicity of this Cuisinart model is appealing. There are two paddle buttons — on and off, which doubles as a “pulse” option — and the large 14-cup bowl is sturdy and easy to clean. It comes with three blades and discs — do you really need more than that? — and the 720-watt motor is strong enough to power through whatever you throw at it.

Tyler Lizenby/CNET

I have a small, simple one-zone home, where the thermostat controls only the furnace. Last year, I bought several different top-rated smart thermostats and, with the assistance of my neighborhood electrician, installed and tested them one at a time. The Nest was the one I kept. It’s a snap to set up and it totally delivers on the few features I wanted: scheduled temperature adjustment, appealing aesthetics, an intuitive interface and absolute control via iPhone or Android. That noted, CNET’s current top pick for best smart thermostat, the slightly pricier Ecobee Smart Thermostat is definitely worth a look.

Read our Nest Learning Thermostat Third Generation review.

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