Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus vs. S23 Plus: Upgrade time?

It's January 2024, so that means it is time for new Samsung phones. With all three, Galaxy S24 Ultra, S24 Plus, and S24, getting the unveiling treatment, it's a good idea to compare the new devices with the previous models to determine if you should upgrade or keep the trusty phone already in your pocket. 

Here, we will compare the middle child, the Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus, to the S23 Plus from last year. If you were in a similar spot in 2023 where you considered upgrading your Galaxy S22 Plus, then it will be much of the same in 2024. Because, like last year, the new model is very, very close to its sibling from the year before. But that doesn't mean there aren't some new features to consider. So, let's see how now compares to then.

Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus vs. S23 Plus: On the surface

Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus

(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

At a glance, or possibly a good long look, can you tell if the photo above is of the Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus, the S23 Plus, or a mix of the two? To be honest, if I didn't know, I don't think I could tell you. It's of the S24 Plus alone. But this is one of those areas that Samsung decided to largely leave unchanged from last year's model.

The overall look is nearly identical to the well-received Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus, which made a bit more of a departure from the design used with the S22 Plus. But when comparing the two latest models, you still get the flat back and front, each camera module sequestered to its own circle, flattish side rails, and a super slim bezel around the display. 

However, the new Galaxy S24 Plus does slightly refine the familiar look a bit more with the camera modules protruding less from the back glass, the side rails transitioning more smoothly to the glass, and a smidge smaller overall footprint. This happens while also providing a larger display by .1-inch.

Camera housing of Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus against white background

Samsung did give users a refresh in the color department with new hues of Cobalt Violet, Amber Yellow, Marble Gray, and Onyx Black to contrast the Phantom Black, Cream, Violet, and Green from 2023. None of these are the bold and bright colors Samsung used to offer back in the days of the Galaxy S8 days, but it is nice to see some change.

Overall, the design of the Galaxy S24 Plus and S23 Plus are very similar, and it is unlikely to be a reason that someone would opt to upgrade from the older model. It is far more likely to pull an S22 Plus user to the upgrade as it does offer more screen real estate in a smaller package.

Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus vs. S23 Plus: The specs

About device page of Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus

(Image credit: Harish Jonnalagadda / Android Central)

If you were hoping to see a major change between generations of Samsung's Galaxy Plus models, you may be somewhat disappointed. While the changes aren't earth-shattering, the upgrades that did make the cut are worth consideration for both S23 Plus users and, more so, for those coming from the Galaxy S22 Plus. Both of which have been some of the best Android phones in their respective years. So, any improvements are only icing on the cake.

For the Galaxy S23 Plus, Samsung launched it with a special variant of Qualcomm's latest processor and labeled it as Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy. It had a few tweaks to make it work a bit better for Samsung's devices, but one of the primary differences over the standard 8 Gen 2 was that it was overclocked a bit. For the Galaxy S24 Plus, it is getting the new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 For Galaxy chipset.

Along with getting the latest processor from Qualcomm, with custom tweaks, which bring improvements to nearly every facet of the smartphone, Samsung also bumped up the RAM of the new phone. By going from 8GB to 12GB, the Galaxy S24 Plus gets a bit more headroom for processing onboard AI, imaging, keeping apps open in the background, and much more.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
CategorySamsung Galaxy S24 PlusSamsung Galaxy S23 Plus
DisplayFlat 6.7-inch QHD+, AMOLED 2x, Vision boosterFlat 6.6-inch AMOLED (1,750 nits)
Refresh rate120Hz refresh rate (1~120Hz)120Hz (48-120); 240Hz touch sampling
ProcessorSnapdragon 8 Gen 3Snapdragon 8 Gen 2
Memory12GB RAM / 256GB, 512GB8GB RAM / 256GB, 512GB
Camera 1 (Main)50MP (OIS), f1.850MP (OIS), f1.8
Camera 2 (Ultrawide)12MP, f2.212MP, f2.2
Camera 3 (Telephoto)10MP (OIS), f2.4, 3x optical10MP (OIS), f2.4
Selfie Camera12 MP (2PD AF), f2.212 MP (2PD AF), f2.2
Charging45W; 15W (wireless)45W; 15W (wireless)
ProtectionIP68, Gorilla Glass ArmorIP68; Gorilla Glass Victus 2; Armor Aluminum
ConnectivitySub-6/ mmWave 5G; Wi-Fi 6E; Bluetooth 5.3; UWBSub-6/ mmWave 5G; Wi-Fi 6E; Bluetooth 5.3; UWB
Dimensions5.79 x 2.78 x 0.30 in6.21 x 3.00 x 0.30 in
ColorsCobalt Violet, Amber Yellow, Marble Gray, Onyx BlackPhantom Black, Cream, Violet, Green

There's also a bump in the display category as well with the new Galaxy S24 Plus. Aside from being a bit larger, it also gets improved high refresh rate variability and a bump from FHD+ resolution to QHD+. Last year, the display could automatically adjust from 10Hz to 120Hz based on what was happening on the screen. Now, with the S24 Plus, it can drop even lower to 1Hz to offer even more power savings. However, if you're outdoors, that drain will be quicker with a brightness rating of a blindingly high 2600nits. This is an improvement over the 1750nits seen on the S23 Plus.

The Galaxy S23 Plus uses the latest Gorilla Glass Victus 2 in order to protect the back of the phone as well as the display. This year, we're getting a new variety of tough glass in the form of Gorilla Armor glass, which Samsung says is the "most scratch and impact-resistant glass we've ever used on a Galaxy smartphone."

Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus

(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

Ok, camera time. This is another area where there is going to be a lot of repetition because Samsung opted to use the same hardware found in the Galaxy S23 Plus in the new S24 Plus. While it may seem like a downer, it really isn't, considering it was all new last year and wasn't bad. So, we've got an "if it isn't broke, don't fix it situation" it seems.

So you can expect high-quality images from the Galaxy S24 Plus with a 50MP main camera with OIS, which is joined by a 10MP 3x optical zoom telephoto lens that has OIS and a 12MP wide-angle camera. On the front side, there's a new 12MP selfie camera with autofocus. Samsung continues to offer a variety of shooting modes for its smartphones, including night mode, Pro mode, portrait, and more. For a more in-depth discussion regarding the cameras and an idea of what to expect, be sure to check out the Galaxy S23 Plus review.

Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus vs. S23 Plus: Worth the upgrade?

Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus

(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

Samsung has been on a path of refinement over the past few years, making minor changes in the design of its phones and, in some cases, just a few changes to the hardware. However, these things don't negate the fact that the Galaxy S24 Plus will be one of Samsung's best phones in 2024. By default, this will also mean it will be on many lists for the best phone overall for the year.

To some users, these minimal updates year over year can be seen as money grabs. But regardless of how it's viewed, the Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus will be a high-performing phone that will last for many years. Because it is launching with Android 14 and OneUI 6.1, it is already slated to be supported longer than the Galaxy S23 Plus — and even longer than the S22 Plus.

If you're in the market for a new phone, the new Galaxy S24 Plus is well worth your consideration. Should you own an S23 Plus and are wondering if you should upgrade to the latest model? Probably not. You won't gain so much in any department that I'd say it's worth the money. Unless Samsung basically gives the phone away. However, for Galaxy S22 Plus users, yes, it is time for a change, and the new S24 Plus is a solid choice.

Chris Wedel
Smart Home Writer
Chris Wedel is a fan of all things tech and gadgets. Living in rural Kansas with his wife and two young boys makes finding ways to get and stay online tricky. By utilizing his years of experience with the tech and mobile communications industries — success is assured. When not conquering connectivity challenges and testing new gadgets, he enjoys cruising a gravel road in his UTV with some good tunes.