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Samsung Galaxy S23 Expected to Launch at Feb. 1 Event

The Galaxy S23 will likely be the star of Samsung's next Unpacked event.

Samsung's invitation for Unpacked
Samsung has announced its next Unpacked event.
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Samsung's Galaxy S23 is expected to be the focus of the phone maker's next Unpacked event, which the company just announced will take place on Feb. 1. This year, a new lineup would compete directly with Apple's iPhone 14 and Google's Pixel 7.

Samsung didn't provide details Tuesday about what to expect from the event, which will be held in person in San Francisco and also broadcast online. But the company typically releases new Galaxy S phones during the first quarter, including the Galaxy S22 last year. The announcement also follows leaks, such as this report from Korean newspaper JoongAng Daily that suggested an early February debut for the Galaxy S23. 

If Samsung follows its previous pattern, we can expect to see three versions of its new phone: the Galaxy S23, Galaxy S23 Plus and Galaxy S23 Ultra. Samsung's invitation includes an image of three spotlights ranging in size from small to medium to large, possibly hinting as much. 

Samsung S22 and S22 Plus and S22 Ultra compared

The Samsung Galaxy S22, S22 Plus and S22 Ultra.

Lisa Eadicicco/CNET

Rumors from well-known leakers Ice Universe and Steve Hemmerstoffer suggest the new phones will have circular cutouts on the back for the camera lenses. The Galaxy S22 Ultra already has a camera like this. But the leak from Hemmerstoffer suggests it could trickle down to the Plus model, replacing the camera module currently found on the Galaxy S22 Plus. The spotlights in the event invitation could be a subtle nod to that design change, if it turns out to be accurate.

Samsung opened up reservations on Tuesday in the US for its upcoming devices. The company will offer $50 in Samsung credit if you ask to reserve one device or $100 for two devices. The offer runs through Feb. 1, and no payment information is required.

The company is expected to announce its new Galaxy S lineup at a time when macroeconomic headwinds have impacted phone sales overall. December reports from market researchers Counterpoint Research and IDC both point to weaker-than-previously-expected growth in global shipments for 2023.  

Other than a slightly updated camera cutout on the new phones, we expect to see Qualcomm's Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor in the Galaxy S23 lineup and possibly Samsung's 200-megapixel camera sensor in the S23 Ultra. 

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