Samsung had announced its flagship Galaxy S20 series back in February and at the time there were three devices in the lineup: the Galaxy S20, S20 Plus (review), and S20 Ultra (review). Now, a new addition to the lineup comes in the form of the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE, where FE is short for Fan Edition. While the Galaxy S20 price starts at Rs 66,999, the Galaxy S20 FE has been given a price tag of $699, which is approximately Rs 51,600. Official Indian prices are not out yet but it can be assumed that it will be somewhere around that. You could say that the Galaxy S20 FE has been introduced to bring in a wider audience, mostly the young generation, with new funky colour options and flagship features, but an affordable price tag. I will be reviewing the device in detail to see how good it actually is. For now, here is my first impressions of the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE.
The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE retail box has been slightly changed and so have the contents inside it. Instead of the dark black theme and plain design seen on the original Galaxy S20, the Galaxy S20 FE retail box is completely white with ‘S20’ printed in silver and little icons imprinted on the front. The theme appears to have been utilised for connecting with the youth. Inside the box, you will see that the AKG-branded earphones and a clear silicone case are missing, both of which you can find inside all the other S20 phones. You get the slower 15W charger and the cable is USB A to USB C instead of USB C to USB C. Apart from that there is some paperwork for the warranty and the SIM ejector tool.
Inside, I got the first look at the device and my initial impressions were that the phone is more akin to the Galaxy A51 than to the S20. The Galaxy S20 FE has a small punch hole on the front and a flat screen. On the back is a triple-camera setup with significantly bigger lenses than what I had seen on the original Galaxy S20. I have been given the Cloud Navy version for reviewing and it is this intense shade of blue with a very handsome matte finish. While the phone does not register smudges very easily, the back is made from plastic instead of glass. I also feel the Galaxy S20 FE is slightly heavier than the Galaxy S20. Apart from that, all other aspects of the Galaxy S20 FE remain the same as the original on the design front. I will explore this in more detail in my full review.
The S20 FE does get a bigger 6.5-inch display as compared to the 6.2-inch screen on the Galaxy S20. It is still Super AMOLED and can support up to 120Hz refresh rate. However, the resolution of the Galaxy S20 FE maxes out at FHD+ (1,080 x 2,400) instead of WQHD+ (1,440 x 3,200) which is present on all the other S20 phones. Also, there is only Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection on the front instead of Gorilla Glass 6.
As for the cameras, the Galaxy S20 FE offers a 12MP primary sensor with an f/1.8 aperture, 8MP telephoto with 3X optical zoom, and a 12MP ultra-wide sensor with a 123-degree field of view. On the front, is a 32MP selfie shooter with f/2.0 aperture. My initial impressions with the camera were quite positive, but I will have more clarity when I review the device in full, so stay tuned for that.
Performance-wise you get all the same features as the original Galaxy S20. Both phones are powered by the Exynos 990 SoC in India and come with up to 8GB of RAM, although the Galaxy S20 FE also has a 6GB RAM variant. The storage variants for the Fan Edition model include a 128GB version paired with 6GB or 8GB RAM and a 256GB version paired with 8GB RAM. One thing I did notice on the Galaxy S20 FE is that it comes with faster UFS 3.1 storage rather than UFS 3.0 on the original S20. On the battery front, the smartphone has a bigger 4,500mAh battery that supports 25W wired charging and 15W fast wireless charging. It can also support reverse wireless charge at 4.5W.
Overall, the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE is a slightly toned-down version of the Galaxy S20, that should come in at a lower price point while still offering a flagship-level experience. The Galaxy S20 FE looks like it has been made to connect with the millennials and my first impression is that the device is on the right track. However, I will be waiting for the official Samsung Galaxy S20 FE India price before making judgement. Stay tuned to find out everything else in my Galaxy S20 FE review.