Samsung Galaxy S23 FE could get a 50MP main camera – but you might have to wait for it

Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G
The Samsung Galaxy S21 FE (Image credit: Future)

After the Galaxy S22 FE was a no-show last year, the prospects for a Samsung Galaxy S23 FE seemed uncertain at best. But, while the South Korean phone maker hasn't confirmed its existence, evidence continues to mount that a new FE is coming – and this latest leak suggests it'll pack a nice camera upgrade too.

An anonymous source who's apparently familiar with the device told GalaxyClub that the Galaxy S23 FE's camera system will be fronted by a 50MP primary sensor. That would be a notable upgrade over the 12MP main snapper found in the previous entry in the FE series: the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE, which shared the same sensor tech as the standard Galaxy S21.

If this info is accurate, we'd assume that the S23 FE would sport the same 50MP f/1.8 Samsung S5KGN3 1/1.57-inch sensor that leads the standard Galaxy S23 (and Galaxy S23 Plus') camera system, which is also the same sensor that's used in the Samsung Galaxy S22.

With the same hardware at work between generations, Samsung focused on image processing, low-light optimization, and adding full-resolution raw capture to this year's S23 line – improvements that would all presumably make their way to the S23 FE as well, if and when it does arrive.

Other rumors suggest the S23 FE will be packing the Exynos 2200 chipset first seen on the Galaxy S22 series, a 4,500mAh battery, up to 8GB of RAM and up to 256GB of storage.

Samsung really needs to work on its timing

Samsung Galaxy S23 back

That S23's floating camera design would likely carry over to the Galaxy S23 FE (Image credit: Future / Lance Ulanoff)

The 'FE' in product names like Galaxy S21 FE stands for 'Fan Edition' and such devices are aimed at distilling flagship features that fans want into a device at a lower price. However, the S21 FE's protracted release schedule, and the absence of an S22 FE, have meant that fans have consistently had better options to turn to by the time the company was ready to get a new FE on store shelves (or not, in the case of the S22 FE).

Rumblings about the Galaxy S21 FE began as far back at as August 2021, and yet the phone didn’t arrive until January 2022, by which time the standard S21 – with its superior spec sheet – had dropped enough in price that the S21 FE was no longer the noteworthy affordable offering that Samsung had planned for it to be.

It was a similar story the following year, before Samsung eventually confirmed that there wouldn't be an S22 FE, with the cost for more capable Galaxys having dropped to around or below its expected price tag.

And it looks as though history could again repeat itself with the Galaxy S23 FE, with recent reports pointing to a late-2023 launch, potentially even spilling into early-2024, meaning it'll likely have fierce competition from more capable entries already on sale, including some of the best Samsung phones out there.

Alex Walker-Todd
Senior Phones Editor

Alex joined as TechRadar's Senior Phones Editor in June 2022, but brings over a decade's worth of experience to the role, with an expertise in smartphones, tablets and wearables. He's covered keynotes hosted by the biggest brands and attended the launches for some of the most influential mobile products of the last few years. His experience was amassed at some of the most reputable consumer technology publications out there, including GSMArena, TechAdvisor and Trusted Reviews.