Everything you need to know about the Galaxy S21 series

The date has been locked. The venue has been set. And the invites have been sent. Samsung will officially lift the covers from its highly anticipated flagships – the Galaxy S21 series – on January 14. And oh, did we mention that almost everything about the upcoming phones has been leaked already? By everything, we mean high-resolution renders, detailed specifications, pricing information, and even the official protective cases. Interested yet? Here’s everything we know about the Samsung Galaxy S21 series so far: 

When is the official launch?

Samsung Galaxy S21
Samsung Galaxy S21 leaked teaser (Credit: Android Police)

Samsung has already set the date for its next Galaxy Unpacked event, and it will take place on January 14. The event starts at 10 a.m. EST (7:00 a.m. PT / 8:30 p.m. IST) and will be live-streamed on Samsung Newsroom, Samsung.com, and the official Samsung YouTube channel as well. You can watch a short teaser video below:

A trifecta of Samsung flagships

Samsung is not making any wild changes to the core Galaxy S line-up this year. Just like the Galaxy S20 trio, Samsung is launching three Galaxy S flagships this year as well – the vanilla Galaxy S21, the slightly bigger Galaxy S21+, and the Galaxy S21 Ultra. And if you take into account Samsung’s commitment to launching a ‘Fan Edition’ every year, a Galaxy S21 FE might be unveiled down the road. But for the January 14 Galaxy Unpacked event, only the three core Galaxy S21 series members will be making their global debut. 

READ MORE: Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra leak shows the add-on stylus rocking a fresh design

A fresh design approach

Samsung Galaxy S21 (Credit: Evan Blass / Voice)

Fresh design, new colors

The South Korean electronics giant went back to the drawing board for designing its first flagship portfolio for the next decade. And from what we’ve seen so far, Samsung is going to divide opinions again. Samsung has redesigned the camera island and has given it a sloping edge so that it appears to blend seamlessly with the surrounding metallic frame. It looks good at first glance, until you see how wide and ugly it becomes on the Galaxy S21 Ultra.

And of course, the huge camera bump is still there. The dual-tone purple-gold finish of the Galaxy S21 and S21+ actually stands out from the rest of the colors, but the silver trim looks rather bland. The Galaxy S21 will be sold in grey, pink, purple and white shades. The Galaxy S21+ will come in black, purple and silver colors, while the Galaxy S21 Ultra will only be up for grabs in black and silver. 

Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus (Credit: Evan Blass / Voice)
READ MORE: Here’s your first look at the official protective cases for Samsung Galaxy S21 series

Galaxy S21 will be made out of plastic

Now, there is another major difference here. The vanilla Galaxy S21 will reportedly be made out of plastic, while the Galaxy S21+ and its Ultra sibling will be rock a glass-and-metal sandwich design. Now, this appears to be a conscious cost-cutting decision on Samsung’s part, but buyers who are shelling a minimum of $900 dollars on the standard Galaxy S21 definitely won’t be happy about it. I, for one, would be despondent for sure!

Galaxy S21 internals – a bittersweet tale

Now, when it comes to the internal hardware, Samsung appears to have made some weird decisions here. The Galaxy S20 series had a more pixel-dense display with QHD resolution, while the Galaxy S21 is downgrading to FHD+ resolution. The Infinity-O design with a hole-punch drilled in the middle is here to stay, but Samsung appears to be saying goodbye to curved edges this time around. Additionally, all three Samsung devices come with IP68 certification for dust and water resistance. 

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra (Credit: Evan Blass / Voice)

120Hz refresh rate, Gorilla Glass 7 protection

Now, the only difference between the Galaxy S21 and its Plus sibling when it comes to core display attributes is the size. The vanilla Galaxy S21 features a 6.2-inch Infinity-O Dynamic AMOLED 2X display, while the Galaxy S21+ packs a slightly bigger 6.7-inch panel. The rest of the traits such as FHD+ (2400 x 1080 pixels) resolution, 120Hz refresh rate, 1300 nits of peak brightness, and Gorilla Glass 7 protection remain identical. 

READ MORE: Don’t expect the Samsung Galaxy S21 to come with a power adapter

Coming to the Galaxy S21 Ultra, it is said to pack a more pixel-dense 6.8-inch display with WQHD+ (3200 x 1440 pixels) resolution, while the brightness output is also higher at 1600 nits. Notably, Samsung will allow users to operate the Galaxy S21 Ultra’s display at peak WQHD+ resolution with 120Hz refresh rate mode enabled. How big a toll it will take on the battery is a question for another day. From the leaked images, it appears that the Galaxy S21 and S21+ will flaunt a flat panel, while the Ultra sibling will rock slightly curved edges.

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra (Credit: Evan Blass / Voice)

Another area where the Galaxy S21 Ultra stands out is support for a stylus, a feature that was recently confirmed by the US FCC. Another leak gave us a glimpse of the redesigned S Pen that Samsung will sell separately. Unlike the Galaxy Note series, the Galaxy S21 Ultra doesn’t offer an in-built docking station for the S Pen. However, Samsung will sell flip covers that do have a slot for housing the S Pen.

Separate Qualcomm and Exynos variants

Snapdragon 888 for some markets, Exynos 2100 for the rest

Now, let’s talk about the silicon at the heart of the Galaxy S21 line-up. The variant bound for the US market will come with Qualcomm’s latest-and-greatest Snapdragon 888 SoC. As for European and Asian markets (most of them), Samsung will offer models powered by the in-house Exynos 2100 SoC. So yeah, there will again be a lot of unhappy buyers who rue the lack of Qualcomm SoC and the supposed benefits that come with it. As for the chipset, Samsung has already sent out the invites for an Exynos event on January 12 where it will likely announce the Exynos 2100 SoC.

Galaxy S21 Ultra, the optional S Pen, and the official flip cover with stylus slot (Image Credit: Winfuture)
READ MORE: Samsung Galaxy S21 appears online in a hands-on video, and it looks fantastic

The Galaxy S21 and its Plus variant will pair the Qualcomm/Exynos SoC with 8 gigs of RAM and 128GB / 256GB of onboard storage. It is worth noting here that these two won’t allow storage expansion. As for the Galaxy S21 Ultra, it bumps up the amount of RAM to 12GB and also adds a 512GB storage variant to the mix. Notably, the Galaxy S21 Ultra will be the only member of the upcoming family that will allow storage expansion via a microSD card slot. 

Only the Galaxy S21 Ultra will allow storage expansion

Now, about the battery. The Galaxy S21 fits a 4,000mAh Li-ion unit under the hood, the Galaxy S21+ will draw juice from a 4,800mAh battery, while the Galaxy S21 Ultra comes equipped with a 5,000mAh juicer inside. All three phones are said to support fast charging, wireless charging as well as reverse power share. 

All three phones will support 5G, and Wi-Fi 6 and NFC will be a part of the package as well. Leaks also suggest that the Galaxy S21 trio will support Dual-SIM (nano + e-SIM) functionality.

A little something about the cameras

Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus (Credit: Evan Blass / Voice)

Let’s talk cameras now. The Galaxy S21 and S21+ feature three cameras at the back with identical specifications, while the Galaxy S21 Ultra has four snappers at the back alongside a laser AF module. 

The Galaxy S21 and Plus sibling feature a 12MP (f/1.8, 1/1.76-inch, 1.8µm, OIS) primary camera, a 12MP ultra-wide angle snapper (f/2.2, 120°, 1/2.55-inch, 1.4µm), and a 64MP telephoto lens ((f/2.0, 1/1.76-inch, 0.8µm, OIS) with a 3x hybrid optical zoom output. On the front is a 10MP (f/2.2, 80°, 1/3.24-inch, 1.22µm) selfie snapper. 

Samsung galaxy s21 series camera hardware
Image Credit: Evan Blass / Voice
READ MORE: Samsung Galaxy S21+ and Galaxy S21 Ultra appear in leaked live images

Coming to the Galaxy S21 Ultra, it packs a 108MP (f/1.8, 1/1.33-inch, 0.8µm, OIS) primary camera and a 12MP (f/2.2, 120°, 1/2.55-inch, 1.4µm) wide-angle shooter. There are two telephoto cameras at the back, one of which relies on a periscope or folded lens system. The first one is a 10MP (f/2.4, 1/3.24-inch, 72mm, 1.22 µm, OIS) camera with 3x hybrid optical zoom output, while the second 10MP telephoto camera (f/4.9, 1/3.24-inch, 240mm, 1.22 µm, OIS) offers up to 10x hybrid optical zoom output

Talking about camera capabilities, all three Galaxy S21 series phones will be able to capture 8K videos at up to 30FPS, 4K videos at up to 60fps, FHD videos at up to 120fps, and slo-mo HD videos at up to 960fps. Here’s a detailed breakdown of the Galaxy S21 series’ leaked specifications:

Samsung Galaxy S21 Samsung Galaxy S21+ Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra
6.2-inch Infinity-O
Dynamic AMOLED 2X
FHD + (2400 x 1080 pixels)
120Hz refresh rate
1300 nit peak brightness
421 PPI pixel density
Gorilla Glass 7
6.7-inch Infinity-O
Dynamic AMOLED 2X
FHD + (2400 x 1080 pixels)
120Hz refresh rate
1300 nit peak brightness
394 PPI pixel density
Gorilla Glass 7
6.8-inch Infinity-O
Dynamic AMOLED 2X
WQHD + (3200 x 1440 pixels)
120Hz refresh rate
1600 nit peak brightness
515 PPI pixel density
Gorilla Glass 7
Qualcomm Snapdragon 888
Exynos 2100
Qualcomm Snapdragon 888
Exynos 2100
Qualcomm Snapdragon 888
Exynos 2100
8GB 8GB 12GB
128GB / 256GB 128GB / 256GB 128GB / 256GB / 512GB
12MP primary camera
(f/1.8, 1/1.76-inch, 1.8µm, OIS)
12MP ultra-wide camera
(f/2.2, 120°, 1/2.55-inch, 1.4µm)
64MP telephoto camera
(f/2.0, 1/1.76-inch, 0.8µm,
OIS)
3x hybrid optical zoom
12MP primary camera
(f/1.8, 1/1.76-inch, 1.8µm, OIS)
12MP ultra-wide camera
(f/2.2, 120°, 1/2.55-inch, 1.4µm)
64MP telephoto camera
(f/2.0, 1/1.76-inch, 0.8µm,
OIS)
3x hybrid optical zoom
108MP primary camera
(f/1.8, 1/1.33-inch, 0.8µm, OIS)
12MP ultra-wide camera
(f/2.2, 120°, 1/2.55-inch, 1.4µm)
10 MP telephoto camera
(f/2.4, 1/3.24-inch, 1.22 µm, OIS)
3x hybrid optical zoom
10 MP telephoto camera
(f/4.9, 1/3.24-inch, 1.22 µm, OIS)
10x hybrid optical zoom
4K at 30/60 FPS
8K at 30 FPS
FHD at 30/60/120 FPS
Slo-mo HD at 960 FPS
4K at 30/60 FPS
8K at 30 FPS
FHD at 30/60/120 FPS
Slo-mo HD at 960 FPS
4K at 30/60 FPS
8K at 30 FPS
FHD at 30/60/120 FPS
Slo-mo HD at 960 FPS
10 MP front camera
(f/2.2, 80°, 1/3.24-inch, 1.22µm)
10 MP front camera
(f/2.2, 80°, 1/3.24-inch, 1.22µm)
40 MP front camera
(f/2.2, 80°, 1/2.8-inch,
0.7 µm)
4,000 mAh 4,800 mAh 5,000 mAh
Grey, Pink, Purple, White Black, Purple, Silver Silver, Black
IP68 certified
Wireless PowerShare
Dual-SIM (Nano + e-SIM)
IP68 certified
Wireless PowerShare
Dual-SIM (Nano + e-SIM)
IP68 certified
Wireless PowerShare
Dual-SIM (Nano + e-SIM)
151.7×71.2×7.9 mm 161.4×75.6×7.8 mm 165.1×75.6×8.9 mm
171 grams 202 grams 228 grams
5G, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC,
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax
5G, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC,
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax
5G, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC,
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax
(Note: This table is best viewed in landscape mode on mobile)

How much will the Galaxy S21 series cost?

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra leaked teaser (Credit: Android Police)

Now, on to the pricing part, which is going to be both good and bad news. Samsung is lowering the entry-point for its upcoming flagships by pricing the vanilla Galaxy S21 below the Galaxy S20’s asking price. But on the other hand, the price of the Galaxy S21 Ultra will go even further compared to that of its predecessor. Listed below is the rumored pricing structure of the Galaxy S21 family:

Model Pricing Converted in USD
Samsung Galaxy S21 (128GB) €849 $1,032
Samsung Galaxy S21 (256GB) €899 $1,092
Samsung Galaxy S21+ (128GB) €1,049 $1,275
Samsung Galaxy S21+ (256GB) €1,099 $1,336
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra (128GB) €1,349 $1,640
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra (256GB) €1,399 $1,700
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra (512GB) €1,529 $1,858
Credit: WinFuture

Accessories for Samsung’s next flagships

Leaked Galaxy S21 series case renders (Image: MySmartPrice / Ishan Agarwal)

Samsung will launch a whole range of protective cases with different design and material choice options for the Galaxy S21 series smartphones. As per a substantial leak, the protective case options on the table for Galaxy S21 buyers will include Clear View Cover, Led Cover, Led View Cover, Silicone Case, Leather Cover, Protective Standing Cover, Clear Protective Cover, Clear Standing Cover, and a Clear Cover. Have a look at some of the leaked case renders:

Tap to see full-sized images in a new tab (Credit: MySmartPrice / Ishan Agarwal)
Tap to see full-sized images in a new tab (Credit: MySmartPrice / Ishan Agarwal)
Tap to see full-sized images in a new tab (Credit: MySmartPrice / Ishan Agarwal)
Tap to see full-sized images in a new tab (Credit: MySmartPrice / Ishan Agarwal)

The post Everything you need to know about the Galaxy S21 series appeared first on Pocketnow.



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