Samsung is set to officially announce their next-gen flagship smartphone in the next few weeks. This will take the form of the Galaxy S21, the successor to 2020’s Galaxy S20.
While Samsung has been releasing new models every year, there is a good reason to be extra excited about 2021’s model, and we’ve compiled some of the rumors we’ve heard so far, as well as a potential release date and price.
Design & Display
Based on the renders we’ve seen, the Galaxy S21 is expected to look roughly like the Galaxy S20, at least on the front. This means that we can expect an edge-to-edge display and the continued usage of the hole-punch cutout for the front-facing camera, but that’s where the similarities end.
The renders show that for the back of the phone, the Galaxy S21 will adopt a different design for its camera module. It seems to be slightly more flushed compared to its predecessor. It still sticks out a bit from the phone, but at least judging from the renders, it won’t be too obvious.
For those who aren’t a fan of massive camera bumps, it looks like this could be an upgrade, but don’t hold us at that since we have yet to see the phone in real-life.
In terms of display, Samsung is expected to launch at least three models this year – the Galaxy S21, the Galaxy S21+, and the Galaxy S21 Ultra.
All three models are rumored to sport slightly different display sizes, with the Galaxy S21 coming in with a rumored 6.2-inch FHD+ display, the Galaxy S21+ with a 6.7-inch FHD+ display, and the Galaxy S21 Ultra with a 6.8-inch WQHD+ display.
With Samsung’s smartphone releases, the company typically releases one model that uses Qualcomm’s chipsets, and another that uses their own Exynos lineup, and 2021 will be no different.
It can be safe to assume that the Galaxy S21 will use the brand new Snapdragon 888 (don’t miss the first Snapdragon 888 benchmarks numbers) across its models, and that they will also use the Exynos 2100 for other regions.
In the past, Samsung’s Exynos lineup has been criticized for not being on par with Qualcomm, which can lead to some customers feeling “cheated”.
However, benchmarks of the Exynos 2100 have shown that it can hold its own, so we can’t wait to see how it performs in real-life when the phone is released next year.
As for RAM, it is expected that the phones will come with at least 8GB of RAM, save for the Ultra model that will come with 12GB.
Based on the renders, it appears that the Galaxy S21 will most likely come with a triple camera setup. This will be the same across all the different models, but with some slight differences.
With the Galaxy S21 and Galaxy S21+, the camera arrangement will be the same, which will include a 12MP ultrawide sensor, a 12MP main sensor, and a 64MP telephoto lens.
However, with the Galaxy S21 Ultra, it will be using a second-gen 108MP sensor found in the Note 20 Ultra, a new 3x optical telephoto sensor, and a 10x optical “super” telephoto sensor.
It has also been suggested that Samsung will be bringing back 100x space zoom. Samsung’s Galaxy S-series has never failed to impress with its camera quality, so hopefully they’ll be able to continue that trend in 2021.
By the way, don’t miss our Galaxy S20 Ultra Camera Review to have a good idea of where Samsung stands today, and guess what leap might be coming. The Galaxy Note 20 Ultra Camera did even better, and both Samsung flagships have some of the most powerful camera hardware on the market.
Both dominate our Camera Hardware benchmark rankings for T-Mobile and Verizon, for example.
S Pen Support
If you have been following the rumors, you might have heard that the Galaxy S21 could finally support the S Pen.
The S Pen stylus has pretty much been an exclusive feature of the Note series, but the Galaxy S21 could finally see Samsung make it available for other phones. It seems unlikely that the S Pen will be bundled with the phone, but the support means that you can buy it as a separate accessory if you want.
There have also been rumors claiming that the reason behind Samsung bringing S Pen support to the Galaxy S21 is because the company is planning to kill off its Note series. Whether or not that is true remains to be seen, but S Pen support on the Galaxy S21 is confirmed at the very least.
In terms of battery life, it seems that the base Galaxy S21 will not be any different from the Galaxy S20 with a 4,000mAh battery. However, it is possible that the efficiency of the Snapdragon 888 or Exynos 2100 could actually improve on battery life.
The Galaxy S21+, however, will come with a 4,800mAh battery, slightly larger than last year’s model, while the Galaxy S21 Ultra has been rumored to be packing a 5,000mAh battery.
Release Date & Price
Samsung is expected to announce the phones on the 14th of January, 2021. Given the company’s past release schedule, there is a good chance that the phone can be purchased on the 22nd of January, 2021. In fact, Samsung is actually accepting reservations for pre-orders, so if you’re really keen you can go and leave your name behind.
As for the price, it seems unlikely that the phones will be cheaper than 2020’s models. There have been some conflicting reports regarding price, where some claim that it could be slightly cheaper, while others claim that it is expected to remain the same.
This means that the base model will be priced at around $999, with prices going up for the higher-end Galaxy S21+ and Ultra models.
Needless to say that this should be taken with a grain of salt for now, but do check back with u in the coming weeks where hopefully we’ll have more details to share with you.