Galaxy S24 Ultra

Samsung Warns Of Paywalled AI Features In Galaxy S24 Ultra


Samsung recently announced that the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultras will feature several AI features. However, this good news only seems to be for a limited time as Samsung warns of paywalled AI Features in Galaxy S24 Ultra.

In a small footnote at the end of the Galaxy s24/S24+, they mentioned the following: “Galaxy AI features by Samsung will be provided for free until the end of 2025 on supported Samsung Galaxy devices.”

This announcement started a heated discussion among Samsung fans, tech enthusiasts, and the broader tech community. On the one hand, supporters argue that Samsung needs revenue for the upkeep and development of its AI. On the other hand, the critics counter that the paywall goes against the spirit of smartphone innovation.

The “Leaked Memo” Started It All

Galaxy S24 Ultra

Source: Samsung

As we mentioned earlier, the small but significant notice came buried in the small memo leaked a few days prior. In the memo, it states that all AI capabilities of Galaxy S24 Ultra will remain free until the end of 2025. This memo also warns that AI features in Galaxy S24 Ultras may only be accessible via subscription.

Although the details for this remain scarce, the memo implies that AI offerings like facial recognition, scene optimization, speech enhancement, and intelligent assistants could be placed behind the paywall.

Understanding Samsung’s Strategic Move

Galaxy S24 Ultra

Although the decision to make the AI features only accessible via a paywall remains controversial, this is not the first time something like this has happened. In fact, locking features behind the paywall have been going on for a while.

Furthermore, the development and advancement of AI require a wide range of data sets and computing power. Samsung is heavily investing in on-device AI with custom chips like PU (Neural Processing Unit) to avoid cloud computing costs. However, TFLOPS-scale processing still demands extensive R&D budgets. This costs a lot, and even tech giants like Samsung may not be able to support the constant development for a long duration. Recurring subscriptions allow companies like Samsung to generate predictable revenue streams beyond hardware sales. As the device cycles lengthen and competition intensifies, subscription-based plans also help in retaining loyal customers. Some of the successes of recurring subscriptions include competition intensifies; subscriptions also help retain loyal customers. Adobe Creative Cloud, Microsoft 365, and Amazon Prime.

That said, applying subscription-based plans to smartphone features is a new territory. Therefore, there is still a considerable risk if it is mishandled. If this feature is mishandled, Samsung can risk provoking its existing customer base like how Apple did with its Batterygate scandal. Therefore, Samsung will have to take careful steps if the leaked memo is to be true.

Wider Impacts Across Samsung’s Device Ecosystem

Samsung’s subscription market can have ripple effects across its wide range of device ecosystems. The seamless connectivity and compatibility across the Galaxy family are its key selling points. However, if the AI features are to be hidden behind a paywall, it may impact well-known features such as facial recognition across a wider range of working devices after the end of 2025. This can diminish the ecosystem advantage that Samsung has. However, if Galaxy AI remains fully functional across Samsung’s wider hardware range, it could compel users to stay within Samsung’s subscription-based ecosystem.

Consumer Response to Potential Paywall for AI Features

Galaxy S24 Ultra

So far, the customers have grown used to free features on their devices. Therefore, a paywall is deemed to make many of its existing customers dissatisfied. Furthermore, it may also prevent new users from using Samsung devices like Galaxy S24 Ultra. Therefore, Samsung needs to consider its pricing plans carefully to ensure that the existing subscribers do not get off the system. Furthermore, their price for the new AI service must also ensure that it is low enough for the new customer base.

Navigating Competitive Waters with AI Strategy

Although Samsung is a global leader, it operates in a fiercely competitive market. Its AI is one of the major competitive advantages that it has, which it cannot afford to lose.

Chinese manufacturers like Xiaomi and Oppo boast strong AI capabilities with more accessible prices. On the other hand, the popularity of Apple allows it to have more when making controversial decisions.

Samsung must strike a delicate balance between monetizing AI and maintaining the competitive strength of Galaxy devices. If subscriptions usher in perceivably diminished devices, users may jump ship to rivals.

But if Samsung can successfully convince users of the value proposition of continuously updated, cutting-edge AI, subscriptions may represent a strategic opportunity in the smartphone wars.


Samsung Warns Of Paywalled AI Features In Galaxy S24 series. This decision, while controversial, opens the door to a fascinating phase in smartphone innovation. That said, this is still a controversial decision, and the future is still uncertain. Will this decision be the one that Samsung will regret in the future, or will it be a turning point in the smartphone market? The future remains to be seen.

Regardless, we hope you found this helpful. If you want further insights into the world of technology, do check out some of our other blogs. And as always, thank you for reading till the end.

FAQ on Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultras

Does the Samsung S24 have AI?
Yes, it does. Samsung revealed that its latest Galaxy S24 series will have a list of AI features as it attempts to overtake Apple’s newest iPhone.

Will Samsung charge for AI features?
According to the footnote left on the Samsung S24 Ultra page, it seems that Samsung will charge for its AI features starting at the end of 2025.

Will AI features come to the S23 Ultra?
Although the Samsung S23 Ultra does not have Galaxy AI yet, it is planned to get one eventually.

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