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Galaxy S20's 120Hz display may only work at Full HD+ resolution

Samsung Galaxy S11+ Leak
Samsung Galaxy S11+ Leak (Image credit: @OnLeaks/CashKaro)

What you need to know

  • A new leak claims the 120Hz refresh rate option on Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S20 series phones will only work at Full HD+ resolution.
  • When users switch to WQHD+ resolution, the display refresh rate will drop to 60Hz.
  • All three Galaxy S20 models — Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20 Plus, and Galaxy S20 Ultra — are expected to sport 120Hz displays.

Yesterday, a massive Galaxy S20 Ultra leak shed light on the upcoming flagship's impressive camera hardware as well as a few other key tech specs. One of the key highlights of the Galaxy S20 and the other two S20 series phones is expected to be the upgrade to 120Hz panels. However, reliable leaker Ice Universe has now claimed that the 120Hz refresh rate option on Samsung's upcoming flagship phones will only work at Full HD+ resolution.

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In his latest tweet, Ice Universe says Samsung has "cancelled the WQHD 120Hz option", which means users will have to lower the display resolution to Full HD+ in order to experience smoother animations. When using the highest WQHD+ resolution, the refresh rate will drop to 60Hz.

Needless to say, it is quite disappointing that the Galaxy S20 series may not offer the option to have the display refresh rate set at 120Hz when using the highest resolution. While the combination of a high display resolution and refresh rate will no doubt have a negative impact on battery life, there is no harm in giving users the option to choose for themselves.

The information hasn't yet been confirmed, however, so we will need to wait until February 11 to find out if Samsung will indeed limit the 120Hz refresh rate option to Full HD+ resolution. Alongside the Galaxy S20 series, Samsung is also expected to announce its next foldable smartphone at the same event.

Babu Mohan
Babu Mohan
18 Comments
  • That is not good for people that stay on the best resolution like I do 24/7. Guess it's time to wait for the Snapdragon 875 next year, so we can get 120hz with the better resolution. S21 or Note 12 🤔 I'm waiting since I have the Note 10 and it's still running super strong since day 1 in every way.
  • That shouldn't be a deal breaker for most people. The impression I've gotten over the years is that the majority of users leave their phones at 1080p resolution. I always leave mine on 1440p. Regardless,I'm buying the Note 20(PLUS OR ULTRA) in November so I've plenty of waiting time on my hands.
  • True, but you should definitely have the option to turn it on and off at least... IMO
  • Those same people will complain when their battery life suffers as a result.
  • I rather best resolution without hight frame rate. High frame rate really doesn't bother me.
  • Same here. I can use a screen longer without my eyes hurting when the resolution is higher.
  • Hahahahahaha, so Samsung won't be able to get 120hz option on 1440p resolution? While OnePlus will be able to do this no problem with the 8 Pro, Samsung is losing ground to Chinese OEMs like OnePlus now in innovation.
  • With an inferior camera. No thanks 😀
  • Samsung's Cameras aren't the best in the business, or even close. Google, Apple, HTC, and a few others are better than they are. Almost no one chooses a Samsung Phone because of the camera - at least not anyone who values the camera as much as you pretend to, and is informed about what choices are available in this market. 90% of consumers are fairly tech agnostic. They won't pass up a better iPhone camera simply because it runs iOS. They'll use whatever runs on the phone, simply for access to the "better camera." In any case, Samsung's cameras are mediocre. I have a Note 9. The main camera on the Note 10/S10 is basically the. There are 2 year old iPhones and Pixels that take better photos and videos.
  • Couldn't help but notice you completely ignored the Oneplus TJ was comparing the S20 to. And you seem to have missed the news about the S20's upcoming camera improvements.
  • The sheer stupidity in your comment shows you have absolutely no clue what you're talking about. You should avoid commenting in the future.
  • This is great news. I don't care about QHD resolution, besides it's probably better on the battery.
  • "While the combination of a high display resolution and refresh rate will no doubt have a negative impact on battery life, there is no harm in giving users the option to choose for themselves". There is harm and that is the whole pointt of doing this. Word of mouth would be that the S20 has a sorry battery, it wouldn't be "it has a sorry battery when....". I don't agree with the reasoning, but thats what it is.
  • I don't think this is a problem with the capability of the phone or the CPU/GPU being used. I think this is more an issue with the battery. I imagine that using 120hz at max resolution would make the CPU (and the phone itself) heat to a high temperature in a short amount of time when playing graphically-intensive games. If this is the case, it could drastically shorten the lifespan of the phone's battery. As Samsung packs more hardware into a small package, they probably don't have as much flexibility with heat dissipation as a manufacturer like One Plus does. That's just my guess.
  • I want 120hz on any display resolutions i want. Thanks Sammy for limiting us.
  • Folks we are geeking out on specs. You surf the internet, send text and play games for 20-30min blocks of time on 6 - 7in display. I want global standards for connectivity and function at this point. I want to walk down the street and a car approaching the intersection is aware that a pedestrian is at the corner and the driver recieves notification of nearby pedestrian at intersection. I want awareness, because I enabled it, that when I enter a conference room the first page of my presentation is automatically projected on the screen. I want to be able to share Documents with my coworkers that use Apple or some other device/PC other than mine by tapping there names and hitting send when we are at a meeting table. I want to be able to walk into my favorite store no matter the location and it is aware of my shopping list and identify the location in that specific store. Just a few examples of all just because I have my mobile device in my pocket. We get enough face time with our devices, we have the processing capability where is the software and connectivity. My same chip is in laptop PC's now. Let's be honest its getting a little overkill for hardware. The challenges are related to refinement of existing software and hardware capabilities. I'm getting the new device because I am hoping to see this and I live and breathe tech as a hobby and a job. We should be keeping our mobile devices like we do our PC's a minimum of 3 years. We should be expecting upgrades on the software side for a minimum of that long with major enhancements of functionality for existing platforms.
  • I'm perfectly happy with 60Hz.
  • I was going to trade in my OnePlus 7 Pro for the Ultra but if this is true then I won't.