3 Samsung Galaxy S20 features Apple should borrow for the iPhone 12 (and three it shouldn’t)

Apple fans might think the Galaxy S20 is more eye-roll than innovation, but the fact of the matter is Samsung’s latest phones are packed with cutting-edge features. From the 108-megapixel camera on the Ultra model to the speedy Infinity display, there are more than a few features I’d love to see Apple adopt and improve in the next iPhone— and a few I absolutely don’t want.

Lossless zoom

The iPhone 11 Pro’s telephoto camera is nice and all, but let’s face it: 2X zoom isn’t all that impressive in 2020. Neither is 5X digital zoom. But thanks to a mix of optical zoom, digital zoom, and AI (Samsung calls it “Hybrid Optic Zoom”), Samsung has figured out a way to deliver 10X lossless zoom on the S20—twice what the iPhone 11 can do digitally. Apple made great strides with night mode on the iPhone 11, and it’s time to do the same with zooming on the iPhone 12.

As for that 100X Space Zoom on the S20 Ultra? Yeah, no thanks.

galaxy s20 ultra refresh Christopher Hebert/iDG

if you want to use the new 120Hz refresh rate—and you will—you’ll need to keep the screen resolution low.

120Hz display

Anyone who has used an iPad Pro knows the sheer pleasure than a 120Hz display can bring. That’s the beauty of ProMotion, bringing speedy scrolling and smooth graphics, and making every interaction feel super responsive. Apple has yet to bring it to the iPhone, but the S20 shows how glorious it can be on a tiny screen. One of the only phones with a 120Hz refresh rate on an AMOLED display, once you try it out all other displays will feel like they’re stuck in the mud.

There’s just one problem—you can’t use it in full Quad HD resolution. But if Apple does put a ProMotion display on the iPhone 12, I’m pretty confident there won’t be any frustrating limitations on it.

A giant battery

Even with relatively small batteries, the iPhone 11 and 11 Pro get tremendous battery life, easily getting through a full day of use with some juice to space for the next morning. And that’s with a battery that smaller than 4,000mAh. The S20 lineup has the biggest batteries Samsung has ever shipped, with capacities of 4,000maH, 4,500mAh, and a whopping 5,000mAh. (Editor’s note: Insert exploding Note 7 joke here.)

I can’t help but wonder what Apple could do with such giant batteries. Even if it means the iPhone needs to be a little thicker, a 5,000mAh battery would ensure that it would last two days, even with 5G and ProMotion.

galaxy s20 ultra space zoom Christopher Hebert/iDG

Samsung has done some pretty cool things with the S20’s camera—and some pretty silly ones.

5G compromises

2020 is shaping up to be the year of 5G, so it’s no surprise that Samsung’s entire lineup features 5G capabilities. Except they’re not the same. On the S20+ and S20 Ultra you get full 5G support for the sub-6GHz network T-Mobile has and the mmWave cells Verizon is building. But on the S20, which still costs a grand, you only get sub-6GHz support, so Verizon subscribers need not apply. Instead, Verizon will offer its own version of the phone later this year that will work. So far, Samsung hasn’t been all that clear about the distinction (I only noticed it while digging through the spec sheet), but either way, it’s making a confusing situation even more confusing.