Opinion post by
C. Scott Brown

Imagine you’re not a millionaire (hard to fathom, I know). You save up all your pennies and work very hard to put together $1,400 so you can buy the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra. You plug it in to charge it up but you notice something’s wrong: the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra charger that came in the box isn’t charging the phone as fast as you know it should.

Also read: Samsung Galaxy S20 hands-on: Focusing on the competition

You check the phone’s box. Yep, it says right there that this baby charges at 45W, roughly three times as fast as the Samsung Galaxy S10. But wait, you notice something else on the box. According to the fine print, the included charger maxes out at 25W. To get those 45W charging speeds Samsung is advertising, you’ll need to purchase a separate charger.

How much does Samsung charge for this 45W brick? It will set you back $50 if you buy it from Samsung.com. Fifty friggin’ dollars. For a phone charger.

That’s right — you saved up all your money to buy a $1,400 smartphone, and now you need to spend more money just to get the advertised charging speeds? No matter how you slice it, that sucks.

Samsung Galaxy S20 The latest and greatest from Samsung
The Samsung Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20 Plus, and Galaxy S20 Ultra are super-premium 5G smartphones from the South Korean company. No matter what you're looking for, the Galaxy S20 line likely has something to suit your needs.

Samsung Galaxy S20 Blue back

Samsung’s done this before, but primary competition hasn’t

OK, so the previous section might not apply to you as you are a millionaire and blowing $1,400 on a smartphone is no big deal. For most people, though, $1,400 is a mortgage payment. Hell, there are probably people reading this who once paid around that much for a used car.

The idea that Samsung is selling a $1,400 smartphone that doesn’t come with everything you need to achieve its advertised superiority over other smartphones is, frankly, insulting. Things become even more insulting when you find out that this isn’t the first time Samsung has done this.

In 2019, Samsung launched the Galaxy Note 10 series, consisting of the vanilla Note 10 and the superior Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus. Samsung also advertised the Note 10 Plus as having a 45W charging speed, but it didn’t include that 45W charger in the box. Instead, you needed to buy the $50 charger.

Read more: Samsung Galaxy S10 series gets a big $150 price drop

Other phone manufacturers don’t do this. OnePlus has been pushing its Warp Charge (formerly Dash Charge) for years and it’s never forced you to buy an additional charger to get the advertised speeds. The Warp Charger comes in the box with your OnePlus smartphone.

Huawei includes a 40W charging brick with the Huawei Mate 30 Pro; Oppo includes a 65W charging brick with the Oppo Reno Ace; we even expect Xiaomi to include a 65W charger with the Mi 10 Pro. Why doesn’t the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra charger support 45W charging out of the box?

Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra with blue vase

This is Samsung being greedy, plain and simple

Simply put, there is no reason other than greed for Samsung to not include a 45W charger with a $1,400 smartphone. By not including the 45W Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra charger in the box, Samsung saves money. By selling the charger on its site, it stands to make money on top of that money its already saved.

It’s kind of like removing the headphone jack and not including a wired headphone dongle in the box which Samsung is also doing with the S20 line.

Samsung probably assumes that most people won’t even notice… and it’s probably right. The average smartphone buyer likely doesn’t pay much attention to things like charging speeds. In fact, the average user probably doesn’t even know how wattage affects charging speeds. All they will know is, out-of-the-box, the Galaxy S20 Ultra charges faster than their Galaxy S10 device, and they’ll be happy with that.

Full details on the Galaxy S20: Samsung Galaxy S20, S20 Plus, and S20 Ultra announced

What can we do about it? If you want the Galaxy S20 Ultra there’s no way around this: you’re going to need to pay extra for the 45W charger. The best thing you can likely do is hit up the comments below or take things to social media and let Samsung know that this kind of thing isn’t cool. Otherwise, Samsung is likely to try the strategy again with the 2020 Galaxy Note release.

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