At a time when the front of a smartphone is covered almost entirely by the display and black bezels around it, it’s only around the sides and the back where the color of a phone comes into play. Last year, the Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10+ dazzled us with the Aura Glow finish, and a year later, Samsung has another winner on its hands with the Mystic Bronze Galaxy Note 20 and Galaxy Note 20 Ultra.
Mystic Bronze is absolutely stunning and the classiest color I’ve ever seen on a Galaxy smartphone, and the photos you see here don’t do it justice. The best thing Samsung has done is opt for a matte finish this time around. That makes all the difference in the world in my opinion: The back is no longer reflective and shiny, which is what gives it an understated look. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t mind the reflective and gradient paint jobs that Samsung has been experimenting with in the last couple of years, but
Matte Mystic Bronze looks a lot more premium.
What further enhances the beauty is the contrast added by the darkened camera glass (the scary camera bump notwithstanding). Also, those concentric circles around the camera sensors put me off when I first saw leaked renders of the Note 20/Note 20 Ultra, but they might just be one of the boldest design decisions Samsung has taken in recent years, and I think it has paid off now that I have seen the phone in person.
Now, I understand that not everyone will find the Mystic Bronze shade alluring. Perhaps I’m also a little more awed by it than I would have been if the Galaxy S20 Ultra hadn’t been my primary phone these last few months. I found the choice of colors for the Galaxy S20 series quite boring, and the Cosmic Grey option (which is the one I was using) is the dullest of them all, so the Galaxy Note 20 lineup comes as a breath of fresh air.
Watch out for our review of Samsung’s new flagship phones in the coming days to find out whether it’s only the design that’s amazing or if the things that really matter — performance, camera quality, battery life, S Pen experience, etc. — are worthy of praise as well. In the meantime, check out our Note 20 and Note 20 Ultra hands-on for our first impressions of the two phones.