It may have taken Samsung a number of years to become the dominant player in the smartphone market that they are today but there’s no denying their incredible success. The rise of Samsung and much of the brand’s continued success can be attributed to its flagship smartphone lineup, the Galaxy S Series.
From the launch of the very first Galaxy S to the very latest Samsung S22 range, the Galaxy S Series has helped to establish Samsung as the global smartphone manufacturing giant that they are today and solidify the company as a household name.
There have been twelve new versions of the Galaxy S since the first-ever Galaxy S was released in 2010. Each release enjoyed its own trials and tribulations with more versions coming online with the introduction of the Edge in 2015, replaced by the Plus (or ‘+’) models in 2017, the ‘e’ model in 2019, and the Ultra in 2020.
As technology has continued to improve, the Galaxy S Series has continued to boast all of Samsung’s innovations, and we can’t wait to see what the future holds for this flagship lineup.
But first, let’s take a look back at the journey that the Galaxy S Series has been on since it first launched in 2010. Continue reading to learn more about the evolution of the Samsung Galaxy S Series smartphone lineup.
Galaxy S (2010)
Running on Android 2.1, the Samsung Galaxy S was released in June 2010. This groundbreaking handset featured an AMOLED display, a single-core 1GHz processor, and just 0.5GB of RAM. It was a market success, having sold more than twenty million units. The success of the Galaxy S was what essentially set the S Series up to be the predecessor to a new lineup of flagship devices from Samsung.
Galaxy S II (2011)
Given how well-received the Galaxy S had been, many people were skeptical if the S II could do as well as the original. Despite this, it too was a huge success, selling many of both its 16GB and 32GB storage variants.
In just fifty-five days, Samsung sold more than three million units and in the first five months, a staggering ten million devices were shipped all over the world. The Samsung Galaxy S II was also named “Smartphone Of The Year” at the MWC 2012.
Galaxy S III (2012)
Featuring a beautiful display and offering an incredibly fluid user experience, the Samsung Galaxy S III was an extremely capable phone. It was only slightly less well-received than its predecessors for one reason: its plastic build.
What it might have lacked in its presentation, it more than made up for it with a real punch in the hardware and technological capabilities department, however.
The Galaxy S III was also the first-ever S Series phone to offer a 64GB storage option, which was groundbreaking at the time.
Galaxy S4 (2013)
Released in April 2013, Samsung moved away from Roman numerals to launch the faster, more compact S4 with an improved camera and larger display. Many tech fans proclaimed the S4 to be one of the best smartphones of its time. Even later reviews of the phone still claim that its performance and specifications have held up surprisingly well.
Galaxy S5 (2014)
Featuring a more “glamorous” rear cover and robust design, the Samsung Galaxy S5 was designed to be water and dust-resistant and included some useful hardware and software additions. However, the overall feeling was that this version lacked inspiration in its physical design. With regards to its specifications, however, the S5 was highly praised for its brilliant 432ppi AMOLED display, and ISOCELL cameras.
Galaxy S6 / S6 Edge (2015)
After the mediocre body of the S5, Samsung stepped things up to the next level with the Samsung Galaxy S6. With a slim body and featuring glass and metal components, the display on this device was actually crisper than most laptops at the time.
The release of the S6 Edge and its innovative mini edge display in particular, also marked a major evolution in the S Series, positioning Samsung as a genuine trendsetter in the world of smartphones.
Galaxy S7 / S7 Edge (2016)
2016 saw the release of the Galaxy S7 and the curved-screen S7 Edge, the bigger and bolder of the two offerings. After the success of the S6, Samsung didn’t change too much with this release, with the S7’s camera being the only major upgrade. We also saw the return of both water protection and the microSD port, both of which had been absent from the S6.
Galaxy S8 / S8+ (2017)
The S7 lineup was a huge success for Samsung but unfortunately, the S8 range failed to impress in the same way. There were no revolutionary changes, with the only notable change being the movement of the fingerprint sensor from the front to the back to allow for a slimmer bezel on the front of the device.
Galaxy S9 / S9+ (2018)
In 2018, the S9 lineup was launched with an improved camera that offered better results in low light conditions. This lineup was also powered by the most powerful chip available at the time, came with 4GB of RAM, and had 64GB of onboard storage with a MicroSD slot to give the option for expansion.
Galaxy S10 / S10+ / S10e (2019)
The S10 lineup was the first time that Samsung released three different versions of the S Series phone in a single lineup, one of these being the highly praised Samsung S10e, which was dubbed one of the most affordable flagship phones of 2019. The onboard storage was impressive at 128GB and they continued to include a headphone jack, which many other manufacturers had removed the same year.
This was also the year that a new triple-camera system was introduced.
Galaxy S20 / S20+ / S20 Ultra (2020)
The Samsung Galaxy S20 series was all about its camera specs. This was the first Samsung offering to come with a folded periscope lens with 4X native zoom capabilities, as well as a 10X hybrid optic zoom.
Samsung also integrated 5G connectivity and included larger batteries across the range, making the S20 Series one of the most highly capable and high spec generation of S Series across the board.
Galaxy S21 / S21+ / S21 Ultra (2021)
Equipped with the top-end Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 chip, running on Android 11 and fully 5G compatible, the Samsung Galaxy S21 was released in 2021 to immediate high acclaim.
Included in this line are the compact Samsung Galaxy S21, the Samsung Galaxy S21+, which features a larger screen, and the bigger S21 Ultra, which boasted the best camera in the range, and was called the best smartphone on the market in 2021 by reviewers from all corners of the globe.
Galaxy S22 / S22+ / S22 Ultra (2022)
In February 2022, Samsung announced the imminent release of their latest range, the S22 lineup. Featuring significant camera upgrades, as well as glass bodies, this lineup has been met with great excitement.
After Samsung announced this disbandment of the Note lineup, the S22 Ultra is now S Pen compatible and features a slot at the base of the phone so that device users can embed their S Pen for ultimate ease of use, essentially providing the same experience as the Note but without the name.
The Future Looks Bright For The Galaxy S Range
As you can see, Samsung has continuously reimagined and redesigned the Galaxy S range since it first launched in 2010 to take this incredible flagship lineup to where it is today. The future looks bright for the Galaxy S range moving forward, and it will be exciting to see where the next evolution takes this hallmark lineup.