Samsung announced its new phones with some fanfare, showing off the new 120Hz display that it's going to be equipping those phones with.
Spec hounds were soon to point out that the 120Hz refresh rate - designed to make on-screen content appear smoother - was only available at 1080p resolutions, rather than the higher 1440p resolution that the Galaxy S20 devices offer.
When companies like OnePlus and Oppo are expected to offer 120Hz at full resolution, why isn't Samsung going to offer the same? Samsung, after all, makes the panels that these other manufacturers are going to use.
Well it appears that Samsung might be working on a solution.
Samsung is working on optimizing software for WQHD+ 120hz on the S20 series and should release it in the next 1-3 months if all goes well.— Max Weinbach (@MaxWinebach) February 18, 2020
Max Weinbach has a good reputation for Samsung leaks, having essentially revealed all the details about the Galaxy S20 devices before they were announced, so there's some credence to his input here, saying that Samsung are working on a 120Hz solution for higher 1440p resolutions.
So why didn't Samsung include it in the first place? It's probably because Samsung knows something that we don't. Samsung uses a default resolution of 1080p on its devices, even though they are technically capable of delivering greater, and we suspect that the vast majority of users never increase the resolution.
Pushing a higher refresh rate at a higher resolution might well reduce the battery life and might not, in reality, deliver many visual gains. We don't know, because no one is currently offering this, despite some fans calling for it.
But looking at the recent devices that Samsung has announced, it seems that the company is more aware of the spec battle than ever before. Samsung appears to be giving the mob what they want and in a world where online voices are increasingly calling for higher specs, we do worry that the experience might be tossed out the window just to compete on the spec sheet and appease fan demand.
The Samsung Galaxy S20 series will be available from 14 March, the update to the display could land in the next 1-3 months, we assume via a software update.