2022 has been a busy year, and many companies have made significant changes to their smartphone lineup. In 2022, we saw midrangers receive 90Hz, and 120Hz display panels, crazy fast charging technologies, new camera sensors, software optimizations, and more. In this post, I want to take a closer look at some of the technologies I hope to see improve across the board for the most popular low-end, midranger, and high-end flagship phones.
Higher refresh rate displays on midrangers
In 2022, we saw a lot of midranger, and even a few low-end devices equipped with 90Hz and 120Hz refresh rate LCDs. While most smartphones came with the new technology, and the performance to power those pixels, we saw a few devices that infamously lacked such high refresh rate panels. The most notable one is the Google Pixel 6a, which is an excellent device, and one of the best budget phones in its category. However, Google notoriously missed out on one of the key features that we hoped to see in 2022.
POCKETNOW VIDEO OF THE DAY
In 2023, we hope that Google, and other companies can better source their components, and provide adequate display panels for their budget offerings, making them a far better deal than they are today. Samsung deserves some credit here, since it had devices such as the Galaxy A23, M23, M33, and others that come equipped with high refresh rate displays.
OPPO, Xiaomi, OnePlus, and Motorola have all managed to release multiple affordable devices with responsive displays, and we hope to see this trend continue, and reach even lower-priced devices.
Faster charging standards and adoption
Xiaomi Redmi Note 12 Pro Plus, Source: Pocketnow
Fast charging is used to signify that a phone supports faster charging than the current standard. This speed stood at 18W for many years, but this has since become “slow”, when directly compared to the charging technologies used by the likes of OPPO, OnePlus, HUAWEI, HONOR, and Xiaomi. These companies are still using the “fast charging” term on most of their affordable and non-flagship devices, but they also support 65W and 30W charging speeds on most phones.
Xiaomi even went one step further by announcing a new 210W fast charging technology that can top-up the Xiaomi Redmi Note 12 Explorer edition in just nine minutes.
Meanwhile, companies like Apple, Google, and Samsung are all behind the curve, and have since become the slowest adopters on the market. Apple supports 20W fast charging, Samsung supports 45W – which is equivalent of 25W fast charging when it comes to time – and Google only supports 23W fast charging on its latest Pixel 7 Pro.
It’s clear that 65-66W fast charging has become the new standard, by the Chinese manufacturers, and we would love to see other companies adopt the standard. The entire “fast charging” marketing language should be rebranded to include devices that support the new standard, avoiding misinforming consumers about the charging rates and speeds.
In 2023, we expect to see even crazier charging rates by Chinese OEMs, and we could soon even cross the 300W mark, which has the potential to charge phones in less than 10 minutes.
Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) on wide-angle sensors
OIS has been present on modern smartphones for over a decade, yet, the technology has been missing from wide-angle sensors since they took off in 2020. Instead of supporting the physical OIS on wide-angle sensors, most OEMs opt for the digital version, which works well for the most part. While EIS (electronic image stabilization) has gotten better, it still makes us wish for an actual sensor to counteract movements, to smoothen out the image quality.
Better under-display cameras
Under-display cameras have received significant upgrades over the past few years, but they are still far from being able to produce the same quality of photos and videos as sensors placed on or above displays. The Galaxy Z Fold 4 uses the under-display camera, which is notoriously bad for its image quality, and it’s one of the worst cameras when taking photos in low-light. The images are blurry, contain a lot of noise, and are everything but sharp.
In 2023, we would love to see the algorithm powering these cameras receive significant upgrades. While it’s fairly easy to avoid phones with UD sensors altogether right now, that could soon change, as more companies are likely to switch over from 2024 and onwards as the technology improves.
Fortunately, the prices have remained the same, for the most part, in North America. Unfortunately, other parts of the world received significant price hikes, resulting in some devices becoming up to 15-30% more expensive in some markets. For instance, the iPhone 13 Pro used to cost €1,160, whereas the iPhone 14 Pro launched at €1,330. That’s a €170 increase or 15%. Poland saw an even bigger price jump, resulting in a 25% price hike.
While the current inflation and global situation are unlikely to end anytime soon, we hope to see some prices fall slightly in the near future. The prices were already high in recent years as OEMs tried to improve their profit margins, and the pandemic has made sourcing components and materials much harder, adding more fees and costs on top of the already expensive devices.
What else would you like to see improve in 2023? Let us know in the comments down below!
Devices mentioned in the post
If you don’t care about high refresh rate, wireless charging, a glass back and a few other tidbits, this should be your phone. It’s a Pixel, but less expensive. Check out all the deals on the device using the links given below.
Apple iPhone 13 Pro
If you’re looking for a device that ticks all the boxes and has an excellent battery life, high-refresh-rate display, and it can capture breathtaking photos, this is the best iPhone that money can buy.
Apple iPhone 14
iPhone 14 joins the market as the smartphone to pick if you want a high-tier of performance, great cameras, and battery life that will last you through a day of use with ease.
iPhone 14 Pro is the latest premium smartphone from the brand. It features a new pill-shaped ‘Dynamic Island’ notch, 48MP primary camera sensors, an A16 Bionic chipset, and much more.
The latest Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 comes with the most powerful Qualcomm SoC, a wider display, a better hinge mechanism, and many significant upgrades over its predecessor.