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Samsung Galaxy S24+ vs Apple iPhone 15 Plus

  • Samsung Galaxy S24+

    Bigger screen for Galaxy AI

    $1000 $1200 Save $200

    The Galaxy S24+ is living up to the “plus” part of its moniker this year with a bump up to QHD+ resolution in the display. Other than that, it’s still the bigger Galaxy S that you’ve come to know and love, but with Galaxy AI features that should make your digital life just a bit easier.

    Pros

    • Big, bright screen
    • Galaxy AI seems legitimately useful
    • 4,900mAh battery should last all day and then some
    Cons

    • Hardware hasn’t changed much

  • iPhone 15 Plus

    Apple iPhone 15 Plus

    Reliable, if limited big phone

    The iPhone 15 Plus is in many ways just a larger iPhone 15, but don’t use that to discount the benefits of a larger screen. Not to mention, the iPhone 15 Plus is known for having the best battery life out of any iPhone 15 model. 

    Pros

    • Cameras perform universally well
    • All-day battery life
    • Comfortable and refined to a T
    Cons

    • iOS is lagging in terms of new software
    • A16 Bionic isn’t the newest chip anymore


Samsung’s S24 flagship smartphones have an even bigger focus on software features than they ever have before thanks to new Galaxy AI features. And with those Galaxy AI features, you can do more than just edit photos with features like Circle to Search. Arguably the closest iPhone model to the S24+ is Apple’s iPhone 15 Plus, with its large screen and long battery life.


Samsung’s Galaxy S24+ might not look radically different from its predecessor, the Galaxy S23+, but it has gotten even closer in terms of features and appearance to Apple’s iPhone 15 Plus, an equally big phone that sits somewhere in the middle of the company’s iPhone lineup. The Galaxy S24+ has newer hardware and flashier AI-powered software features, but does that necessarily mean it’s a better buy than the iPhone 15 Plus? Let’s see how they compare to find out.


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Samsung’s newest phones are now available, but you don’t (and shouldn’t) have to pay full price.

Prices, specs, and availability

A few months after release, what’s the better value?

The Galaxy S24+ was introduced alongside Samsung’s other new S-series phones at the company’s first Galaxy Unpacked of 2024 and is currently available to order through Samsung and various other retailers. The Galaxy S24+ comes in four different colors; onyx black, marble gray, cobalt violet, and amber yellow, and two different storage sizes. For $999.99, you can get the 256GB model or $1119.99 for the 512GB model, and both sizes come with the same 12GB of RAM.

The iPhone 15 Plus launched in fall 2023, and is currently available in five different (very pastel) colors: blue, pink, yellow, green, and black. In terms of storage size, Apple charges $899 for an 128GB iPhone 15 Plus, $999 for a 256GB model, or $1199 for a 512GB option. It’s good Apple offers the iPhone 15 Plus at a wider range of prices than Samsung does the Galaxy S24+, but it’s unfortunate that its cheapest model only ships with 128GB of storage.

While better than the 64GB Apple used to offer at the low end, even 128GB is fast becoming too small for the average person’s collection of photos, videos, and downloaded TV shows.


  • Samsung Galaxy S24+ Apple iPhone 15 Plus
    SoC Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 or Samsung Exynos 2400 Apple A16 Bionic
    Display 6.7 inches, Dynamic AMOLED 2X, 3088 × 1440 (509ppi), 120Hz adaptive refresh 6.7-inch, OLED, 2796 x 1290, HDR, 2000nits, 60Hz
    Battery 4,900mAh 4,383mAh, 50% in 30 mins 20W wired, 15W MagSafe, 7.5W Qi wireless
    Ports USB-C USB-C
    Operating System One UI 6.1 w/ Android 14 iOS 17
    Colors Sapphire Blue, Sandstone Orange, Jade Green, Cobalt Violet, Onyx Black, Amber Yellow, Marble Gray Black, Blue, Green, Yellow, Pink
    Material Armor Aluminum 2.0 Aluminium

iPhone 15 Plus viewed from the side with power button visible.


Design and display

Bigger displays are better? Or are they?

Over time, Samsung has more than proven that people prefer big screens to smaller screens and the design of both the Galaxy S24+ and the iPhone 15 Plus hinge on that basic idea. At first glance, both smartphones are just bigger versions of their non-plus counterparts. They both use a more squared off design with flat edges around the side, primarily flat front displays and back panels (save for raised camera bumps or cutouts), and have IP68 dust and water resistance ratings. The real difference is in the details.

Read our review

Apple iPhone 15 Plus review: A superb choice

I had a lot of love for the smaller iPhone 15 when I reviewed it, but I love the iPhone 15 Plus even more. Let me tell you why.

The Galaxy S24+ has smaller bezels than before, allowing the 6.7-inch Dynamic AMOLED to take up even more of the front of the phone. The improved QHD+ display hits refresh rates up to 120Hz, has a resolution of 1,400 x 3,088, supports HDR10+, and is capable of reaching 2,600 nits of peak brightness outdoors, just a smidge brighter than the 2,000 nits the iPhone 15 Plus can do. Historically, Samsung’s smartphones have been more legible in direct sunlight than most other phones, and it seems like that will continue this year, as well.


Along the sides of the Galaxy S24+ there’s the expected USB-C port at the bottom for wired charging and data transfer, the side button for activating Bixby and other shortcuts, and volume buttons. Samsung has tweaked the sides and back of the Galaxy S24+ to make it even more comfortable to hold, but in general, if you’ve used a Galaxy S23 or S23+, you know what you’re getting into here.

A Galaxy S24+ leaning against desk accessories with its back and cameras facing forward.

The iPhone 15 Plus largely looks like the iPhone 14 Plus before it, and the changes that matter are more subtle. For one thing, while mostly flat, the edges of the iPhone 15 Plus’ display curve ever so gently into the aluminum sides of the phone. The sides themselves are softer, and more comfortable in the hand, to match the soft matte glass of the back of the iPhone 15 Plus too. Apple opted for USB-C for iPhone 15 Plus for charging and faster transfer speeds, and the sides of the phone are unchanged, with volume and side power button on the right side.


Related

Samsung Galaxy S24 vs iPhone 15: Which base model is best?

Galaxy S24 is coming in strong with a larger screen and AI up its sleeve, but is it enough to dethrone the iPhone 15?

The 6.7-inch display on the iPhone 15 Plus is Apple’s Super Retina XDR design, which includes nice features like True Tone for making the screen easier to read at a variety of light temperatures, and HDR to make video content pop at higher brightness. Like the Galaxy S24+, the 15 Plus has a max 120Hz refresh rate, with differently arranged pixels to create the display’s 2,796 x 1,290 resolution. It’s in many ways just as nice a screen as the Galaxy S24+ in terms of performance. It just might not have the longevity of the S24+’s slightly better specs.

The Galaxy S24+'s three back cameras.


Cameras

It comes down to personal preference

The differences between photos shot with a camera on a Samsung phone versus one on an iPhone used to be drastically different in terms of color and overall appearance. Samsung likes the extremes, blowing out light spots, crunching blacks, and making reds and blues pop. Apple, at least initially, preferred naturalism. Over the years, Samsung has mellowed out, and its competitors have started exploring more dramatic coloring and lighting. Now Apple’s smartphone cameras can take photos similar in many ways to Samsung’s, and the differences are much more a matter of taste.

The iPhone 15 Plus has a 12MP f/1.9 selfie camera with support for HDR and automatic image stabilization. The S24+ uses a sensor with the same number of megapixels and a wider aperture at f/2.2, which should mean the S24+ will take better low light selfies.

The rear cameras of the iPhone 15 Plus breakdown into a 48MP f/1.6 wide, 12MP f/2.4 ultra-wide, and a 12MP f/1.6 2x telephoto. The iPhone’s ultra-wide has a 120-degree field of view, and both the wide and telephoto have OIS enabled through sensor shifting. The Galaxy S24+ uses a higher 50MP f/ 1.8 wide, 10MP f/2.4 3x telephoto, and a 12MP f/2.2 120-degree ultrawide. In terms of raw numbers, both Samsung and Apple see eye to eye. The major improvement the Galaxy makes, outside the AI-powered software optimizations Samsung is including, is the more powerful zoom and higher megapixel count on the S24+.


The bottom half of a Galaxy S24+ screen with app icons visible being held in a hand.

Internals and performance

Performance on either phone won’t be an issue

We’re blessed in the sense that you’ll get smooth, stutter-free performance from all of Apple or Samsung’s flagship phones, regardless of which model you choose. In the case of the Galaxy S24+, Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 is powering things under the hood. It’s supposed to be 30 percent more performant than the previous generation, and 20 percent more efficient.

The main focus of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 is enabling on-device generative AI features, which is right at home with what Samsung has planned for the S24 line and its use of Google’s AI models, and its own Gauss AI model.


Apple chose to use the A16 Bionic on the iPhone 15 Plus, which enables features like the phone’s computational photography, voice isolation, and other software elements that use machine learning and artificial intelligence. The A16 Bionic is generally a more powerful chip than the iPhone 14 Plus used, but not nearly as capable as the A17 Pro chip in the iPhone 15 Pro. You’re getting older hardware on the iPhone 15 Plus than you are on the Galaxy S24+, and even though it doesn’t show now, it might show later.

The iPhone 15 Plus also technically ships with less RAM at 6GB, in comparison to the 12GB in the S24+. But iOS is a different operating system than Android is, and Apple is generally able to run things more efficiently since it designs both the hardware and the software. Where an actual difference might play out is in another key internal component: the battery. The Galaxy S24+ uses a 4,500mAh battery in contrast to the iPhone 15 Plus’ smaller 4,383mAh one. This difference is negligible in the short term, but could be meaningful as both batteries age.


A dynamic island timer on the iPhone 15 PlusSoftware

Ah yes, Android versus iOS

The Galaxy S24+ runs One UI 6.1, which is effectively a skinned and tweaked version of Android 14. It carries all the accessibility improvements and customization options of Google’s vanilla version, just implemented Samsung’s way. In a first for Samsung, the Galaxy S24+ and all other S24 phones are guaranteed to receive seven major Android updates, which equates to around seven years of software support. That’s not an insignificant amount of time, especially as smartphones get more expensive, and the desire to keep them longer grows.

In contrast, the iPhone 15 Plus is expected to get around five major iOS updates from Apple. The company doesn’t typically commit to a specific time frame other than it tends to offer support longer than Android phone makers, but five is the average. The iPhone 15 Plus shipped with iOS 17, which continued Apple’s expansion of the customization options across the operating system, and introduced new machine learning enabled features like Live Voicemail.


Verdict: Which one is right for you?

It’s not an easy choice, but we’ll break it down

Both phones are great options, and your decision will likely be swayed by whether you’re already invested in Android or iOS. In terms of sheer performance, especially in the camera department, Samsung’s Galaxy S24+ could very well be in the lead. Between the raw hardware power and all the new software tricks Samsung is throwing at the camera app, you’re going to be able to do things with the S24+ that you just won’t be able to on the iPhone 15 Plus.

A pair of violet Galaxy S24+ phones with one with a screen facing forward and another with its back facing forward.

Samsung Galaxy S24+

A promising large screen option

$850 $1000 Save $150

In terms of the all-around experience, there’s still a strong argument for the iPhone 15 Plus, though. Apple’s software and hardware are highly polished and work incredibly well together. The iPhone 15 Plus is good enough in terms of specs, but it gets taken over the edge by just feeling better and easier to use day-to-day. That’s harder to quantify, but it is meaningful.

Apple iPhone 15 Plus

Apple iPhone 15 Plus

Still the best option for most people

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