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Galaxy S20 FE vs. Samsung's rivals: iPhone, Pixel and OnePlus

We compare Samsung's new Galaxy S20 Fan Edition to three comparable phone competitors made by Apple, Google and OnePlus.

Sareena Dayaram Senior Editor
Sareena is a senior editor for CNET covering the mobile beat including device reviews. She is a seasoned multimedia journalist with more than a decade's worth of experience producing stories for television and digital publications across Asia's financial capitals including Singapore, Hong Kong, and Mumbai. Prior to CNET, Sareena worked at CNN as a news writer and Reuters as a producer.
Expertise Huawei, Oppo, smartphones, smartwatches Credentials
  • More than a decade of journalism experience
Sareena Dayaram
2 min read

Samsung took the wraps off its latest Galaxy phone, the S20 Fan Edition, earlier this fall in an online-only event. The S20 FE is Samsung's response to the coronavirus pandemic: A premium phone that aims to offer a well-rounded experience at a more attractive price. Pricing starts at $700 (£599, AU$999). The 6.5-inch S20 FE features a 2,400x1,080-pixel, AMOLED display with ultrafast refresh rates (120Hz) for smooth scrolling. It also has the most advanced Snapdragon 865 processor (allowing it to support  5G ), a large battery and three rear cameras complete with a telephoto lens.

But it's hardly the only value-for-money option in the premium phones  category. The S20 FE joins the  OnePlus 8  and one-generation-old  iPhone 11  and  Pixel 4  in this segment. Google's Pixel 4 launched at $799, making it the most expensive of the pack (though you can find it cheaper now that it's been discontinued), while the rest started at $699 for varying levels of RAM and storage. (The Pixel 5 and iPhone 12, both also announced this fall, start at $699 and $799, respectively.) See the chart below for variant and international prices.

Read more: Here's how the Galaxy S20 FE compares to the Pixel 5, iPhone 12 and other major rivals. And here's how the S20 Fan Edition compares to the other phones in Samsung's Galaxy S20 line.

One key feature that sets the S20 FE apart is the option to expand storage by up to 1TB -- you won't find that on any of the rivals mentioned here. It's a feature that'll likely prove useful, especially if you plan on buying the base 64GB variant.

While all four phones have premium looks, the S20 FE uses a polycarbonate (plastic) back in lieu of glass, which is found in its three rivals. Samsung likely made that decision to drive down costs. 

Read more: The best phone to buy for 2020

All four phones also have two or three camera lenses on their backs, but only the Galaxy 20 FE and the Pixel 4 come equipped with sought-after telephoto lenses. The S20 FE sports a 12-megapixel main shooter, a 12-megapixel ultra-wide lens, and an 8-megapixel lens. 

Galaxy S20 FE vs. rivals

Samsung Galaxy S20 FEiPhone 11Google Pixel 4OnePlus 8
Display size, resolution 6.5-inch super AMOLED; 2,400x1,080 pixels6.1-inch LCD Liquid Retina; 1,792x828 pixels 5.7-inch OLED; 1,080x2,280 pixels6.55-inch AMOLED; 1,080x2,400 pixels
Pixel density 405ppi326ppi444ppi402ppi
Dimensions (Inches) 6.29x2.97x0.33 inches5.94x2.98x0.33 inches2.7x5.7x0.3 inches6.3x2.8x0.31 inches
Dimensions (Millimeters) 159.8x75.5x8.4mm150.9x75.7x8.3 mm68.8x147.1x8.2 mm160x72.9x8.0 mm
Weight (Ounces, Grams) 6.7 oz; 190g6.84 oz; 194g5.7 oz; 162g6.35 oz; 180g
Mobile software  **at launch Android 10iOS 13Android 10Android 10
Camera 12-megapixel (standard), 12-megapixel (ultra-wide), 8-megapixel (3x telephoto)12-megapixel (wide), 12-megapixel (ultra-wide)12.2-megapixel (standard), 16-megapixel (telephoto) 48-megapixel (standard), 16-megapixel (ultra-wide), 2-megapixel (macro)
Front-facing camera 32-megapixel12-megapixel 8-megapixel16-megapixel
Video capture 4K4K4K4K
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 (5G) Samsung Exynos 990 (4G)A13 Bionic2.84GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 855Qualcomm Snapdragon 865
Storage 128GB64GB, 128GB, 256GB64GB, 128GB128GB, 256GB
RAM 6GBNot disclosed6GB8GB, 12GB
Expandable storage 1TBNoneNoNo
Battery 4,500 mAhNot disclosed, but Apple claims it will last 1 hour longer than iPhone XR2,800 mAh4,300 mAh
Fingerprint sensor In-screenNone (Face ID)NoIn-screen
Connector USB-CLightningUSB-CUSB-C
Headphone jack NoNoNoNo
Special features 5G enabled, IP 68 rating, 120Hz screen refresh rate, support for 30W fast charging,15W fast wireless chargingWater resistant (IP68); dual-SIM capabilities (nano-SIM and e-SIM); wireless chargingSoli motion sensing and touchless gestures; 90Hz display; water-resistant (IP68); dual-SIM capabilities (nano-SIM and e-SIM); wireless charging5G enabled; Warp Charge; 90Hz refresh rate
Price off-contract (USD)     **at launch $700 for sub-6 5G; $750 for Verizon model with mmWave 5G$699 (64GB), $749 (128GB), $849 (256GB)$799 (64GB), $899 (128GB)$699 (8GB RAM/128GB), $799 (12GB RAM/256GB)
Price (GBP) **at launch £599 (4G) £699 (5G)£729 (64GB), £779 (128GB), £879 (256GB)£669 (64GB), £769 (128GB)£599 (8GB RAM/128GB), £699 (12GB RAM/256GB)
Price (AUD) **at launch AU$999 (4G), AU$1,149 (5G) AU$1,199 (64GB), AU$1,279 (128GB), AU$1,449 (256GB)AU$1,049 (64GB), AU$1,199 (128GB)UK converts to: AU$1,180 (8GB RAM/128GB), AU$1,370 (12GB RAM/256GB)