With the start of 2021, Samsung has graced our doors by delivering not 1 but 3 of their well-known S-Series. In this article, we will be focusing on comparing Samsung Galaxy S21 and its more polished sibling the Samsung Galaxy S21+5G. If you are wondering which of the two new phones is worth your penny do continue reading.
List of Specifications
While both are noted to be built with the latest technology, there are some minor differences.
|Specifications||Samsung Galaxy S21||Samsung Galaxy S21+5G|
|Dimensions||151.7 x 71.2 x 7.9 mm (5.97 x 2.80 x 0.31 in)||161.5 x 75.6 x 7.8 mm (6.36 x 2.98 x 0.31 in)|
|Weight||169 g||200 g|
|Display||Dynamic AMOLED 2X, 120Hz, HDR10+, 1300 nits (peak)||Dynamic AMOLED 2X, 120Hz, HDR10+, 1300 nits (peak)|
|6.2 inches, 94.1 cm2 (~87.2% screen-to-body ratio)||6.7 inches, 107.8 cm2 (~88.3% screen-to-body ratio)|
|1080 x 2400 pixels, 20:9 ratio (~421 ppi density)||1080 x 2400 pixels, 20:9 ratio (~394 ppi density)|
|Corning Gorilla Glass Victus||Corning Gorilla Glass Victus|
|Always-on display||Always-on display|
|Platform||Android 11, One UI 3.1||Android 11, One UI 3.1|
|Chipset||Exynos 2100 (5 nm) – International||Exynos 2100 (5 nm) – International|
|Qualcomm SM8350 Snapdragon 888 5G (5 nm) – USA/China||Qualcomm SM8350 Snapdragon 888 5G (5 nm) – USA/China|
|Internal||128GB 8GB RAM, 256GB 8GB RAM||128GB 8GB RAM, 256GB 8GB RAM|
|UFS 3.1||UFS 3.1|
|Main Camera||12 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), 1/1.76″, 1.8µm, Dual Pixel PDAF, OIS||12 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), 1/1.76″, 1.8µm, Dual Pixel PDAF, OIS|
|64 MP, f/2.0, 29mm (telephoto), 1/1.72″, 0.8µm, PDAF, OIS, 1.1x optical zoom, 3x hybrid zoom||64 MP, f/2.0, 29mm (telephoto), 1/1.72″, 0.8µm, PDAF, OIS, 1.1x optical zoom, 3x hybrid zoom|
|12 MP, f/2.2, 13mm, 120˚ (ultrawide), 1/2.55″ 1.4µm, Super Steady video||12 MP, f/2.2, 13mm, 120˚ (ultrawide), 1/2.55″ 1.4µm, Super Steady video|
|Selfie Camera||10 MP, f/2.2, 26mm (wide), 1/3.24″, 1.22µm, Dual Pixel PDAF||10 MP, f/2.2, 26mm (wide), 1/3.24″, 1.22µm, Dual Pixel PDAF|
|Battery||Li-Ion 4000 mAh, non-removable||Li-Ion 4800 mAh, non-removable|
|Charging||Fast charging 25W||Fast charging 25W|
|USB Power Delivery 3.0||USB Power Delivery 3.0|
|Fast Qi/PMA wireless charging 15W||Fast Qi/PMA wireless charging 15W|
|Reverse wireless charging 4.5W||Reverse wireless charging 4.5W|
|MISC||Phantom Gray, Phantom White, Phantom Violet, Phantom Pink||Phantom Black, Phantom Silver, Phantom Violet, Phantom Pink, Phantom Gold, Phantom Red|
|Samsung Galaxy 21||Samsung Galaxy 21+5G|
|Gorgeous new design||Nice colour options, standout design, IP68 rating|
|A fairly compact high-end device||A fairly compact high-end device|
|Bright AMOLED display with adaptive refresh rate handling.||Bright AMOLED display with adaptive refresh rate handling|
|Versatile triple camera setup||Very good battery life|
|Improved selfie camera performance||Versatile triple camera setup|
|Improved selfie camera performance|
|Samsung Galaxy 21||Samsung Galaxy 21+5G|
|No microSD support||No microSD support|
|Scant retail package – no charger or headphones||Scant retail package – no charger or headphones|
|No generational advancements in the camera department||No generational advancements in the camera department|
Design and Layout
When it comes to the display, the first minor difference that is noticeable is the size. As noted in the specifications, the S21 has a 6.2-inch screen whereas the S21+5G has a 6.7-inch screen.
The size does not pose a huge issue as preferences differ according to different needs.
For example, those that prioritize ease of navigation might prefer smaller screens as it is easier to tap on the screen. For those that use their mobile phones to read, watch videos or play games, they might prefer a bigger display size.
Unlike previous models, S21 and S21+5G possess completely flat screens which means no curvy edges around the sides of the display.
While some may find the look to be unappealing, flat screens lead to fewer accidental taps which is a plus for most. Speaking about unappealing, S21 is not blessed with a glass rear.
Instead, it gets a polycarbonate rear which produces a matte finish. It is true that many in the past have complained about how the matte finish disrupts the aesthetic look of a premium phone.
The upside to that is, it leaves no room for fingerprints. The S21+5G, you guessed it, has a glass rear that is made from Gorilla Glass Victus, the toughest glass you can currently find on smartphones.
Again, while it looks aesthetically pleasing, if you have butterfingers you might want to avoid purchasing the S21+5G.
Lastly, both devices come in a plethora of colours. For the Samsung Galaxy S21, we have Phantom Gray, Phantom White, Phantom Violet and Phantom Pink. As for the S21+5G, we have Phantom Black, Phantom Silver, Phantom Violet, Phantom Pink, Phantom Gold and Phantom Red.
Many fall under the pretense that paying more equates to better specs. On the contrary, S21+5G actually has a lower pixel density than the S21. The pixel density (PPI) for the S21+5G is at 394ppi whereas for the S21 it is at a whopping 421ppi.
That may be a game-changer to some as a higher PPI allows for a whole lot more detail. This means, better fonts, better images, and smoother lines. In a nutshell, higher quality.
The Samsung Galaxy 21 has a 4,000 mAh battery whereas Galaxy 21+ 5G has a 4,800 mAh battery. More capacity means more usage time. In fact, with one full charge, the S21+5G can last up to 48 hours with moderate usage.
Both models have been equipped with fast wireless charging and are compatible with Qi wireless charging accessories.
Software and Performance
Both models have identical chipsets. For those residing within USA/China, these phones will come with the Qualcomm SM8350 Snapdragon 888. For international buyers, Samsung’s Exynos 2100 chipset will be used instead.
This is definitely a major upgrade compared to its predecessor the Samsung Galaxy S20, which uses an older generation of Qualcomm chipsets. In fact, the new Snapdragon 888 chipset is said to bring a number of enhancements, primarily in gaming, artificial intelligence (AI) and photography.
It is expected that the S21 and S21+5G will not only outperform the S20 series but even narrow the performance gap with the A14 Bionic-powered iPhone 12.
Following their predecessors, the Samsung Galaxy 21 and S21+5G both come with the same triple lens array which are the 12MP main camera, 12 MP ultra-wide lens and the 64MP telephoto lens capable of 3x hybrid optical zoom.
Between the S21 and the S21+5G, the main difference lies in the size of the overall handset. In terms of subtle differences, the S21+5G beats the S21 with greater battery capacity but loses out in the pixel density. Therefore, if you’re looking to save some money, S21 might be the smarter option.