Samsung Galaxy S21 vs Galaxy S20 series: What’s new and different?
After dozens of leaks in the weeks leading up to the announcement, Samsung unveiled its latest Galaxy S smartphone range at an online event on Thursday.
With the radically different design and relatively low prices introduced by Samsung, the new devices attracted a lot of attention, but how did Samsung get there?
From downgrading the display to removing the expandable memory, there are many things that are different from the previous generation. This article compares the S21 and S20 series to keep you up to date on the new features and differences between the two generations of flagship ships in the Galaxy.
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The design of the smartphone has become monotonous as each manufacturer follows the design of the other. But this year, Samsung tried to bring something new to the table with the camera module.
The Korean manufacturer has retained the high-contrast camera module, although the body now appears to have merged with the camera frame.
S21 Ultra, S21+ and S21 (from left to right)
A new matte finish is also available across the line. The smaller S21 also continues the trend of replacing the rear window with plastic. All of last year’s models had muted colors, but reflective glass panels that gave them a shiny, fingerprint-like appearance.
Like last year’s Note 20 Ultra, the S21 series also uses Gorilla Glass Victus, which promises better scratch resistance and drop protection.
The devices are available in the following colour variants:
Galaxy S20 Series
- Galaxy S20: Grey, blue, pink
- Galaxy S20+: Grey, blue, black
- Galaxy S20 Ultra : Grey, black
Galaxy S21 Series
- Galactica S21: Purple, white, pink, grey
- Galactica S21+: Purple, silver, black
- Galaxy S21 Ultra: Black, Silver
In some regions, devices ordered on Samsung’s official website are available in additional colors. These are red and gold for the S21+ and brown, navy and titanium for the S21 Ultra.
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High refresh rate panels are a highly coveted feature of smartphone displays, and last year’s models offered it, but with a caveat.
The S20 series has a QHD+ display, but if users want to use 120 Hz, the resolution must be set to 1080p. In the new S21 and S21+ models, the FHD+ panel (2400 x 1800) has replaced the QHD+ (3200 x 1440).
The S20 series has panels with a resolution of 1440p.
The S21 Ultra retains the QHD+ display and now supports 120 Hz at this resolution – a significant improvement over the S20 Ultra. The software is also now capable of adapting to the content being displayed, along the lines of Apple’s ProMotion technologies in the iPad Pro range.
The S21 Ultra also offers a holder for the S Pen, which is now available as an optional accessory. If you already have one, it will also work with your new smartphone.
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This year’s use of the SoC also offers a significant generational leap. The Snapdragon 888 and Exynos 2100 used in the new devices feature built-in 5G modems, a 5nm manufacturing process for higher efficiency and 25% and 30% improved processor performance over the previous generation Snapdragon 865 and Exynos 990, respectively.
The Samsung S21 is equipped with the Snapdragon 888 in some areas.
For customers, the fact that devices with Exynos processors are still being sold in some regions may be an issue. Samsung claims to have improved its chip, but only time will tell.
In the previous year’s models, these chipsets were powered by the 4000mAh, 4500mAh and 5000mAh batteries of the S20, S20+ and S20 Ultra respectively. For the new devices, the batteries for the S21 and S21 Ultra have remained the same, but the S21+ has been increased to 4800 mAh.
All phones support 25W fast charge, 15W wireless charge and 4.5W reverse charge. The S20 Ultra also supports speeds up to 45W, which has been removed from the S21 Ultra.
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Unlike the slightly different camera system of the S20 and S20+, the newer models, the S21 and S21+, have the same configuration.
The S20 features a three-lens system consisting of a 12-megapixel ultra-wide-angle lens, a 12-megapixel wide-angle lens and a 64-megapixel telephoto lens. The S20+ adds a depth sensor to this setting, giving it a total of four lenses.
The S21 and S21 Plus models have similar features to the previous generation, including a 12-megapixel ultra-wide-angle lens, a 12-megapixel wide-angle lens and a 64-megapixel telephoto lens. So, as before, users can expect better camera performance thanks to updates in digital photo algorithms.
Galaxy S21 Plus
The S20 Ultra features a four-camera system including a 12 megapixel ultra-wide-angle sensor, 108 megapixel wide-angle sensor, 48 megapixel telephoto lens and a depth sensor. But the large 108-megapixel sensor caused focus issues – the solution came when Samsung introduced the laser autofocus system on the Note 20 Ultra.
The S21 Ultra implements the improvements of Note 20 Ultra and offers a four-camera configuration consisting of a 12 MP ultra-wide-angle lens with autofocus, a 108 MP wide-angle lens and two 10 MP telephoto lenses, one of which offers a 3x optical zoom and the other a 10x optical zoom.
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While the S21 series has seen price drops in key Western markets, smartphones have seen a slight price increase in India – likely due to the inclusion of 5G-compatible hardware that was missing from last year’s models.
Also, if you’re a consumer who prefers Samsung because of its expandable memory, the S21 series comes off sadly.
The prices according to the storage options for the different models are shown below.
Samsung Galaxy S20 Series
- The S20 boots are available with 66,999 INR or 999 USD for 8 GB RAM (12 GB in the US) and 128 GB internal memory.
- The S20+ boots on INR 73,999, or $1,199 for 8GB of RAM (12GB in the US) and 128GB of internal storage.
- The S20 Ultra boots at 92,999 INR or $1,399 USD for 12GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage.
Samsung Galaxy S21 Series
- The S21 boots on 69,999 INR, or $799 for 8GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage.
- The S21+ starts at 81,999 INR or $999 for 8 GB RAM and 128 GB internal storage.
- The S21 Ultra boots at 1,05,999 INR, or $1,199 for 12GB of RAM and 256GB of internal storage.
|Category||Galaxy S20 series||Galaxy S21 series|
|show||S20 : QHD 6.2-inch + AMOLED InfinityO
S20+ : 6.7-inch QHD + AMOLED InfinityO
dynamic display S20 Ultra : 6.9-inch QHD + AMOLED InfinityO
dynamic display (120Hz only used with FHD+ resolution)
|S21 : 6.2 inch FHD + AMOLED Infinity-O dynamic display (120 Hz adaptive, between 48 Hz-120 Hz)S21 + : 6.7 inch FHD + AMOLED Infinity-O dynamic display (120 Hz adaptive, between 48 Hz-120 Hz)S21 Ultra : 6.8 inch QHD + AMOLED Infinity-O dynamic display (120 Hz adaptive, between 10 Hz-120 Hz)S21 Ultra : 6.8 inch QHD + AMOLED Infinity-O dynamic display (120 Hz adaptive, between 10 Hz-120 Hz)S21 Ultra : 6.8 inch QHD + AMOLED Infinity-O dynamic display (120 Hz adaptive, between 10 Hz-120 Hz)|
|Processor||Snapdragon 865, Exynos 990
(chipsets vary by region).
|Snapdragon 888, Exynos 2100
(chipsets vary by region).
S20 : 12MP ultra-wide + 12MP wide angle + 64MP telephoto
S20+ : 12MP ultra-wide + 12MP wide angle + 64MP telephoto + depth sensor
S20 Ultra : 12MP ultra-wide + 108MP wide-angle + 48MP telephoto (3X zoom) + depth sensorFace
S20 : 10MP
S20+ : 10MP
S20 Ultra : 40 MEGAPIXEL
S21 : Lens 12MP Ultra Wide + 12MP Wide + 64MP Telephoto
S21+ : 12MP ultra wide + 12MP wide angle + 64MP telephoto
S21 ultra : 12MP ultra wide + 108MP wide + 10MP telephoto (3x zoom) + 10MP telephoto (1x zoom) + laser autofocus sensorSilk
S21 : 10MP
S21+ : 10MP
S21 Ultra : 40 MEGAPIXEL
|Storage||S20 : 128GB
S20+ : 128GB, 256GB, 512GB
S20 Ultra : 128GB, 256GB, 512GB
(options may vary by region)
|S21 : 128 GB, 256 GB
S21+ : 128GB, 256GB
S21 Ultra : 128GB, 256GB, 512GB
(options may vary by region)
|RAM||S20 : 8GB, 12GB
S20+ : 8GB, 12GBS20 Ultra : 8GB, 12GB, 16GB
(options may vary by region)
|S21 : 8GBS21+: 8GBS21 Ultra : 12GB, 16GB|
|Battery||S20: 4000 mAh
S20+: 4500 mAh
S20 Ultra: 5000 mAh
|S21: 4000 mAh
S21+: 4800 mAh
S21 Ultra: 5000 mAh
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A 20-year-old young man with an interest in technology and video games. If you have nothing to do with it, you’ll find it in his books, educational or otherwise.
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