Samsung has officially taken the wraps off their main flagship devices of the year, the Galaxy S21, Plus, Ultra.
The devices have been widely leaked, so there is not much to reveal here, but official UK pricing is now confirmed as £769/£949/£1149.
While the design has changed a bit and the new devices use the fancy new Samsung Exynos 2100 chipset, the respective specification for each model has not changed that much.
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra vs Galaxy S20 Ultra
The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra model arguably has the most changes. The display is fractionally smaller at 6.8 inches vs 6.9 inches, but the resolution is the same. Even though it's slightly smaller, it is 5g heavier. This now supports a stylus so it should be good for power users. However, you need a case to attach the stylus to, rather than it fit inside the phone.
The camera has seen a significant change, adopting a similar dual zoom system as the Huawei P40 Pro+.
The 108 MP has the same spec but is a 2nd generation lens so hopefully, there should be some improvement (or at least less issues vs the last one)
They have dropped the 48 MP, f/3.5, 103mm periscope lens in favour of 10 MP, f/4.9, 240mm capable of 10 times zoom. They have then added a second 10 MP, f/2.4, 70mm which offers 3x zoom. This gives you a bit more flexibility with your shooting options. Adding this extra zoom lens means they dropped the TOF sensor.
Finally, they have kept the 12MP ultra-wide lens, and the selfie remains the same.
The battery remains the same, but only the charging seems to have been reduced down to 25W, they have also adopted the new trend of not supplying a charger.
Samsung Galaxy S21 & Plus vs Galaxy S20 & Plus
Oddly, for these two, they have downgraded the display going from 3200×1440 pixels to 2400×1080 pixels. The display does go a little brighter, though. Display sizes remain the same with the S21 being 6.2 inches and S21+ being 6.7 inches
The S21+ should include stylus support, so I guess you could view it as a cheap Galaxy Note
They have also ditched the microSD slot, but the storage goes from UFS 3.0 to UFS 3.1 offering marginally better performance.
Then everything appears to remain the same
Launch price comparison
So, with the two more affordable models effectively-being lower specced than last year and without a charger, have Samsung reduced the price?
Samsung Galaxy S20 Launch Prices
- Samsung Galaxy S20 5G – £899
- Samsung Galaxy S20+ – £999
- Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra – £1,199
Samsung Galaxy S21 Launch Prices
- Samsung Galaxy S21 – £769
- Samsung Galaxy S21+ – £949
- Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra – £1149
The S20 series had a 4G model with a lower starting price, but now the Samsung Exynos 2100 uses an integrated 5G modem.
The Samsung Galaxy S21+ looks the most disappointing, you save £50, and they have only upgraded the chipset while cutting back on other parts. The one exception here, is the stylus support, so if you always wanted a Galaxy Note, this could make an excellent option.
That makes the Samsung Galaxy S21 look like a particularily appealing option with a £130 price difference and at £769 you could argue it is quite affordable for a flagship.
The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra needs no justification; it appeals to those that want the best of the best. The stylus support twin zoom lenses, brighter display and what should be an improved 108 MP makes it feel a bit more like a next-generation phone, and it is £50 cheaper at laugh too.
The big question is how good is the Samsung Exynos 2100 compared to the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888. The Exynos last year was a bit of a shambles with poor battery performance, but Samsung has switched up designs this year and it looks far more promising.
You can pre-order from Samsung now