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OnePlus 12 vs Galaxy S23: Which should you buy?

Can Samsung's current-gen flagships survive against the fierce competition from OnePlus's next-gen flagship? Let's find out!
By
January 23, 2024
OnePlus 12
MSRP: $799.00
Check price
Positives
Eye-catching green colorway
Bright, sharp display
Blistering-fast charging
Largely excellent performance
Approachable price
Negatives
Hit-or-miss low-light cameras
No AI features at launch
Limited water resistance
Good but not great software support
The Bottom Line.
The OnePlus 12 is a more refined OnePlus 11 in all the right ways. It hangs onto the unique design of its predecessor, but throws in a more powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 processor, a massive 5,400mAh battery, and adds 50W wireless charging to the equation. The OnePlus 12 is a pro phone without the pro name, and it manages all this without pushing up against the $1,000 barrier.Read full review...
Samsung Galaxy S23
MSRP: $799.00
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Positives
Compact size
Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 power
Larger battery
Negatives
No UWB support
Limited charging power
No RAM options
The Bottom Line.
The Samsung Galaxy S23 is a giant among small phones, fixing many of its predecessor's flaws while retaining high standards in every other area. It offers much-improved battery life and more efficient performance to go along with one of the best software commitments in the game and an ever-reliable trio of cameras.Read full review...
Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra
MSRP: $1,199.00
Check price
Positives
Powerful, flexible camera setup
Great battery life with solid charging
Convenient S Pen
Excellent software update promise
Premium materials and display
Great performance
Negatives
Will be too large for some
Limited base RAM for the price
Expensive, especially for extra storage
The Bottom Line.
The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra is on a level all its own in the Android space. It delivers the best of just about everything while demanding a wallet-burning price to match. You'll recognize the design immediately, but the best improvements lie under the surface, waiting to be pushed to their limits.Read full review...

The OnePlus 12 is here. After debuting in China in late 2023, it’s ready to compete with the Galaxy S23 series and newer phones on the global stage. But how does OnePlus’s latest attempt at a flagship compete against Samsung’s tried-and-tested formula for the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus? We pitch the OnePlus 12 vs Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus to find out which phone is better and which one you should finally buy.

OnePlus 12 vs Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus: At a glance

  • The Galaxy S23 is smaller, while the Galaxy S23 Plus is larger, and the OnePlus 12 is the largest in size.
  • The Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus have mmWave on Verizon in the US, while the OnePlus 12 supports Sub6 5G-only.
  • The Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus have better water resistance than the OnePlus 12.
  • The OnePlus 12 has a newer and better processor than the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus.
  • The OnePlus 12 has a bigger battery and has faster wired and wireless charging.
  • The OnePlus 12 has a significantly better camera setup than the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus.

Keep reading to learn more about how the OnePlus 12 compares to the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus.

OnePlus 12 vs Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus: Specs

OnePlus 12Galaxy S23Galaxy S23 Plus
Display
OnePlus 12
6.8-inch AMOLED
Curved display
20:9 aspect ratio
QHD+ resolution (3,168 x 1,440)
120Hz adaptive refresh rate
Galaxy S23
6.1-inch Dynamic AMOLED
Flat display
19.5:9 aspect ratio
FHD+ resolution (2,340 x 1,080)
120Hz adaptive refresh rate
Galaxy S23 Plus
6.6-inch Dynamic AMOLED
Flat display
19.5:9 aspect ratio
FHD+ resolution (2,340 x 1,080)
120Hz adaptive refresh rate
Processor
OnePlus 12
Snapdragon 8 Gen 3
Galaxy S23
Snapdragon 8 Gen 2
Galaxy S23 Plus
Snapdragon 8 Gen 2
RAM
OnePlus 12
12GB, 16GB, 24GB LPDDR5X
Galaxy S23
8GB LPDDR5X
Galaxy S23 Plus
8GB LPDDR5X
Storage
OnePlus 12
256GB, 512GB, 1TB UFS 4.0
No microSD card support
Galaxy S23
128GB UFS 3.1 or 256GB UFS 4.0
No microSD card support
Galaxy S23 Plus
256GB or 512GB UFS 4.0
No microSD card support
Battery and charging
OnePlus 12
5,400mAh battery
100W wired charging
50W wireless charging
10W reverse wireless charging
Charger in box
Galaxy S23
3,900mAh battery
25W wired charging
15W wireless charging
5W reverse wireless charging
No charger in box
Galaxy S23 Plus
4,700mAh battery
45W wired charging
15W wireless charging
5W reverse wireless charging
No charger in box
Cameras
OnePlus 12
REAR:
- 50MP wide, Sony Lytia LYT-808, f/1.6, OIS

- 48MP ultrawide, f/2.2

- 64MP periscope zoom, 1/2-inch, f/2.6, OIS

FRONT:
- 32MP wide, f/2.4
Galaxy S23
REAR:
- 50MP wide, 1/1.57-inch Samsung S5KGN3, 1.0 μm, f/1.8, OIS


- 12MP ultrawide, 1/2.55-inch Sony IMX564, 1.4 μm, f/2.2

- 10MP telephoto, 1/3.94-inch Samsung S5K3K1, 1.0 μm, f/2.4, OIS

FRONT:
- 12MP wide
Galaxy S23 Plus
REAR:
- 50MP wide, 1/1.57-inch Samsung S5KGN3, 1.0 μm, f/1.8, OIS


- 12MP ultrawide, 1/2.55-inch Sony IMX564, 1.4 μm, f/2.2

- 10MP telephoto, 1/3.94-inch Samsung S5K3K1, 1.0 μm, f/2.4, OIS

FRONT:
- 12MP wide
Connectivity
OnePlus 12
5G (Sub6)
Wi-Fi 7
Bluetooth 5.4
NFC support
IR Blaster
Galaxy S23
5G (Sub6 and mmWave)
Wi-Fi 6E
Bluetooth 5.3
NFC support
Galaxy S23 Plus
5G (Sub6 and mmWave)
Wi-Fi 6E
Bluetooth 5.3
NFC support
UWB support
Security
OnePlus 12
Optical under-display fingerprint sensor
5 years of security updates
Galaxy S23
Ultrasonic under-display fingerprint sensor
5 years of security updates
Galaxy S23 Plus
Ultrasonic under-display fingerprint sensor
5 years of security updates
Software
OnePlus 12
Android 14
Oxygen OS 14
Galaxy S23
Android 13
One UI 5.1
Galaxy S23 Plus
Android 13
One UI 5.1
Materials
OnePlus 12
Gorilla Glass Victus 2
Aluminum
Galaxy S23
Gorilla Glass Victus 2
Armour Aluminum
Galaxy S23 Plus
Gorilla Glass Victus 2
Armour Aluminum
Durability
OnePlus 12
IP65 certified
Galaxy S23
IP68 certified
Galaxy S23 Plus
IP68 certified
Dimensions and weight
OnePlus 12
164.3 x 75.8 x 9.15 mm,
220g
Galaxy S23
146.3 x 70.8 x 7.6mm, 168g
Galaxy S23 Plus
157.7 x 76.2 x 7.6mm, 196g
Colors
OnePlus 12
Black
Green
White
Galaxy S23
Phantom Black
Cream
Lavender
Green
Galaxy S23 Plus
Phantom Black
Cream
Lavender
Green

The OnePlus 12 is part of the next generation of flagships with the new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 SoC. OnePlus has also incorporated a year’s worth of extra research and development into the phone. The phone made its global debut on January 23, 2024.

OnePlus 12 on a box
Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

Meanwhile, the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus are flagships from early 2023. They come with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 SoC. While it is still an excellent SoC, there is much to look forward to on the new 8 Gen 3 chip. So, the OnePlus 12 has a good edge here for performance and the likes.

The OnePlus 12 offers two storage options, 256GB and 512GB. Meanwhile, the Galaxy S23 comes in 128GB and 256GB storage options, while the Plus comes in 256GB and 512GB options.

Samsung Galaxy S23 cream and Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus lavender
Robert Triggs / Android Authority

The OnePlus 12 is a bigger flagship with a bigger and better display. The 6.8-inch display is curved and has a QHD+ resolution, which is better than the FHD+ resolution on the Samsung phones. The Galaxy S23 is suited for people who want smaller phones, thanks to its 6.1-inch display, while the Galaxy S23 Plus has a bigger 6.6-inch flat display. Both Samsung phones also miss out on technology, such as the “rainwater touch” technology that lets users operate the OnePlus 12’s display in rain.

While the OnePlus 12 can be used in the rain, it probably isn’t a great idea to do so. The phone comes with IP65 dust and water resistance, which means the phone can handle light jets of water. In contrast, the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus come with IP68 water resistance, letting the phones handle freshwater submersion up to 1.5m for up to 30 minutes.

samsung galaxy S23 plus display
Ryan Whitwam / Android Authority

Another point of differentiation between the phones is that in the US, the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus on Verizon support mmWave 5G. Unlocked versions of the Galaxy S23 series and those from T-Mobile and AT&T stick to Sub-6GHz 5G, though. The OnePlus 12 also does the same in China, as there is no mmWave support on the phone, and the situation is unlikely to change on this end when the phone launches in the US.

The OnePlus 12 comes with an IR Blaster, which the other two phones miss out on. The Galaxy S23 Plus comes with Ultra-Wide Band tech for precise positioning, which Samsung has not added to the Galaxy S23, and OnePlus has also skipped on the OnePlus 12.

The OnePlus 12 will receive updates for longer since it is a new phone, even though the Galaxy S23 series has the same update promise.

The Samsung Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus launched with One UI 5.1 based on Android 13 and have since been updated to One UI 6 based on Android 14. The OnePlus 12 is a newer device, and it has launched with Oxygen OS 14 based on Android 14.

Both sets of phones come with an update promise of four Android platform updates and five years of security updates. However, since the OnePlus 12 is a newer device, it will be updated to Android 18, while the Galaxy S23 series will only be updated to Android 17.

OnePlus 12 vs Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus: Size comparison

OnePlus 12 back panel
Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

The OnePlus 12 is a large phone, even taller and thicker than the Galaxy S23 Plus.

A hand holds the samsung galaxy s23 plus as it displays settings for the buds 2 pro.
Lily Katz / Android Authority

Meanwhile, the Galaxy S23 is the smallest phone in the lot, and it’s small enough to be comfortably held in most people’s hands.

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra vs Galaxy S23 notification shade
Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

The OnePlus 12 measures 164.3 x 75.8 x 9.15mm, compared to the Galaxy S23 Plus’s 157.7 x 76.2 x 7.6mm and the smaller Galaxy S23’s 146.3 x 70.8 x 7.6mm. You will notice the taller aspect ratio on the OnePlus 12 as it isn’t as wide to hold in the hand.

The OnePlus 12 is the company's biggest glass-slab flagship, and it's bigger than the Galaxy S23 Plus.

In terms of weight, the OnePlus 12’s 220g is heavier than the Galaxy S23 Plus’s 196g, while the Galaxy S23 is the lightest at 168g.

OnePlus 12 vs Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus: Camera

samsung galaxy S23 plus camera
Ryan Whitwam / Android Authority

As far as the cameras are concerned, there are two opposing philosophies at play. Samsung has stuck to the tried-and-tested setup on the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus, foregoing big numbers and newer tech in the process. On the other hand, OnePlus isn’t afraid to stand on the bleeding edge of hardware and back it up with a continued collaboration with Hasselblad.

The primary camera on the OnePlus 12 is the new 50MP Sony Lytia LYT-808, which is similar to the LYT-T808 sensor seen on the OnePlus Open. The OnePlus Open had great results with its sensor, though we will have to test the OnePlus 12 extensively to arrive at a conclusion for this phone.

On the other hand, Samsung does not even properly disclose the 50MP S5KGN3 primary sensor on the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus. The results speak for themselves, though, as the camera gets good results across scenarios for average users.

Galaxy S23 Plus: Primary camera

The OnePlus 12 has a 48MP ultrawide angle camera, while the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus stick with a 12MP ultrawide angle camera. The OnePlus 12 extends its lead with the telephoto camera, as it uses a 64MP periscope zoom lens for 3x optical zoom and 6x in-sensor zoom. The Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus have a modest 10MP telephoto camera for 3x optical zoom.

Galaxy S23 Plus: Secondary cameras

The OnePlus 12 also has a 32MP selfie camera. The Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus come with a 12MP selfie camera.

Galaxy S23 Plus: Selfie camera

OnePlus 12 vs Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus: Battery life and charging

Samsung lags behind the competition regarding battery and charging, and the differences are even more accentuated with the OnePlus 12, which is towards the front of the pack.

The OnePlus 12 comes with a sizeable 5,400mAh battery. This puts the Galaxy S23 Plus’ 4,700mAh battery to shame. The vanilla Galaxy S23 is a smaller phone, so we won’t judge it as harshly for its smaller 3,900mAh battery.

We’ll have to use the OnePlus 12 to determine how good its battery life translates out of the spec sheet. On the Galaxy S23 Plus, we could get about an easy full day’s worth of life, and even two days would have been possible with some care. On the smaller Galaxy S23, a full day is doable, and you could push it to a day and a half if you tried.

samsung galaxy S23 plus port
Ryan Whitwam / Android Authority

As for charging, the OnePlus 12 leads the pack once again. The 80W charging spec faces no competition from the Galaxy S23 Plus’s 45W and Galaxy S23’s 25W charging spec. On the Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus, a full charge takes about an hour, while the Galaxy S23 takes an hour and 20 minutes for the same, despite the smaller battery.

The OnePlus 12 has insane specs for battery and charging, and the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus stand no chance here.

The OnePlus 12 comes with a compatible charger in the box. Meanwhile, the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus do not have any charger in the box, so you must buy a charger separately.

The wins continue for the OnePlus 12 for wireless charging. It supports up to 50W wireless charging through its proprietary charger and 10W reverse wireless charging. On the other hand, the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus only support 15W wireless charging through Samsung’s proprietary charger and 5W reverse wireless charging.

OnePlus 12 vs Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus: Price and availability

  • OnePlus 12 (12GB/256GB): $799.99
  • OnePlus 12 (16GB/512GB): $899.99
  • Samsung Galaxy S23 (8GB/128GB): $699.99
  • Samsung Galaxy S23 (8GB/256GB): $759.99
  • Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus (8GB/256GB): $999.99
  • Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus (8GB/512GB): $1,049.99

The OnePlus 12 launched in the US and Canada on January 23, 2024. Pre-orders went live the same day, while open sales commence on February 7, 2024. The phone is offered in two configurations. The 12GB/256GB version starts at $799.99, with the 16GB/512GB model demanding $899.99. A trade-in offer allows users to trade in any phone in any condition for an additional $100 off that list price.

In contrast, the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus have been on sale in the USA for almost a year. The phones had a starting price of $799 and $999, respectively, but you can easily spot them for significantly lower during sales and with trade-ins. Samsung has also cut the Galaxy S23 pricing in response to the Galaxy S24 launch. You can now find it for $699.

OnePlus 12 vs Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus: Which should you buy?

OnePlus 12 angled view
Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

It’s abundantly clear so far that the OnePlus 12 is superior to the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus. And it should be, for it has launched about a year after these Samsung phones.

As for what phone you should buy, the answer depends on what you want. The OnePlus 12 offers a list of bleeding-edge hardware, so it’s optimal for power users. However, it’s larger, heavier, and less durable than the Samsung duo.

The Samsung Galaxy S23 series is not the latest line from Korea. The Galaxy S24 series is now available and brings plenty of worthwhile improvements to the outgoing models, including a seven-year software support period, larger displays, upgraded chipsets, and bigger batteries. However, Samsung has discounted the Galaxy S23, so you can now grab one for $100 less. This makes it slightly more attractive, but it’s not enticing enough, given the OnePlus 12’s already low starting price.

Samsung Galaxy S23 and S23 Plus colorways
Robert Triggs / Android Authority

If your need is immediate and urgent and you’re on a tighter budget, you can go with the Galaxy S23. Alternatively, we’d recommend the Galaxy S24 Plus if you don’t mind a larger flagship. But, for those who put hardware first, OnePlus has won this battle.

See price at Amazon
OnePlus 12
OnePlus 12
Bright, sharp display
Blistering-fast charging
Approachable price
See price at Samsung
Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus
Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus
Large AMOLED display
Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 power
Bigger battery

Which phone would you prefer, the OnePlus 12, the Galaxy S23 or the Galaxy S23 Plus?

142 votes