Horizon

7 min read

The best new tech heading your way

1 SAMSUNG GALAXY S23 ULTRA

• From £TBC, samsung.com

It ’s funny. We’d normally be in the mood to excoriate a company that isn’t pushing the boundaries of its hardware hard, but in the case of the new generation Ultra we’re just not that mad. Much of Samsung’s latest feels eerily similar to the S22, and that ’s no bad thing: the S22 Ultra remains an excellent phone. The S23 Ultra is class-leading. To throw the baby out with the bathwater wouldn’t be a sensible thing to do.

Besides, it ’s hard to focus on what ’s similar given the big headline change: Samsung has offered the S23 Ultra a ludicrous Adaptive Pixel 200MP sensor. This isn’t the first time Samsung has produced such a camera, nor is it the first time one has hit a phone – mid-rangers from Motorola and Xiaomi have employed the company’s ISOCELL eye previously – but it ’s the first to benefit from the Korean giant ’s processing nous.

This means better low-light performance, as it can combine data from 16 pixels into one. It means cinematic-feeling 8K30 video. It means faster focus – more pixels to draw reference points from allows it to snap to attention far more quickly – and stronger stabilisation, thanks to an increased optical angle as well as sof tware that subdivides a scene and performs advanced light analysis. And the extra imageprocessing power afforded to it by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset should mean this all happens in an instant.

 

YES, AND

Don’t fancy the Ultra? The 6.1-inch basic S23 packs a 50MP main cam and a 3,900mAh batter y, the S23+ ups the screen size to 6.6 inches and the battery gets a 200mAh boost over the S22+ to 4,700mAh.

GREAT GLASS 

Samsung has tweaked the shape of the S23 Ultra, giving it a greater flat surface area than its predecessor. It’s still curved in that Samsung signature way, just slightly less so – certainly not the top-curved waterfall display that many pundits predicted.

IMAGE SOURCE: SAMSUNG

ECO CREDENTIALS 

Samsung’s sustainability efforts are growing: the S23 Ultra comes in recycled packaging, the phone itself now uses 12 key components made from recycled materials compared to the S22’s six, and even Corning’s new Gorilla Glass Victus 2 contains 22% post-consumer recycled material.

IMAGE SOURCE: APPLE

2 APPLE HOMEPOD (2ND GENERATION)

• £299, apple.com

Apple is so stubborn. We suspected it had put the HomePod line on life support, particularly as the original model had been discontinued; turns out Apple couldn’t let it die. Cosmetically not much has changed, bar the old Space Grey option being switched out for a 100% recycled Midnight fabric. It ’s very slightly shor

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