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Samsung Galaxy S21+ overview: Appears like cash nicely spent

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The ‘Plus’ variants of Samsung’s current Galaxy S flagships should strike a steadiness. They should differentiate themselves from each the bottom and the Extremely variants. In any other case, they danger being neither right here nor there, one thing that wouldn’t actually bode nicely for his or her gross sales prospects.

These aren’t low-cost telephones, thoughts you, so any compromises made within the curiosity of differentiation should not decrease the worth proposition. Samsung has achieved job of positioning the Plus variants thus far. On this Galaxy S21+ overview, we’ll discover out whether or not that’s the case for the 2021 mannequin as nicely.

Be aware: This overview relies on the Exynos 2100 variant. 5G networks weren’t used in the course of the overview interval.

Galaxy S21+ design

It’s a on condition that flagship telephones aren’t actually going to be one-handed gadgets. That’s as a result of they should have massive and tall shows with loads of area on the within for the highly effective internals. That is the story of the Galaxy S21+, too. It feels virtually as massive because the Galaxy S21 Extremely so one-handed use goes to be a little bit of a stretch.

Whereas the glass again was sacrificed for the Galaxy S21’s cheaper price tag, the Galaxy S21+ retains it. There’s Gorilla Glass Victus on the again for elevated sturdiness. Mix that with the steel body and also you’ve bought a fairly normal Samsung flagship really feel. That’s to say, it feels each bit the premium machine you’d count on it too.

I notably just like the matte end on the again. It does an important job of hiding the fingerprints and scratches. The brand new colours additionally work nicely with the end. Phantom Silver is my private favourite because it seems merely implausible.

Regardless of its dimension, the cellphone feels fairly gentle within the hand. You additionally get a extra snug and safe grip because of its flat show. Despite the fact that the panel is flat, the bezels are fairly skinny which is an efficient factor. The chance of unintentional touches is decreased by the flat panel.

“Contour Lower” is the signature design aspect for this yr’s flagship lineup. That’s what Samsung calls the easy merging of the digital camera housing with the handset’s body. The housing itself is made out of steel which solely elevates the look even additional.

It’s one other strong effort by Samsung within the design division. The Galaxy S21+ seems and feels good, it’s very nicely made and supplied in quite a lot of gorgeous colours. What extra may you ask for?

Galaxy S21+ show

Like its predecessor, the Galaxy S21+ will get a 6.7-inch Tremendous AMOLED Infinity-O show. Nonetheless, not like its predecessor, the show decision maxes out at FHD+ as a substitute of QHD+. Granted, the Galaxy S20+ couldn’t preserve its 120Hz refresh fee above FHD+ anyway. Alternatively, the Galaxy S21+ has an adaptive refresh fee of 48-120Hz.

The cellphone is able to intelligently adjusting the refresh fee relying on what you’re . This helps enhance battery consumption. Shows with greater refresh charges are only a pleasure to make use of and also you’re by no means going to get sufficient of it on the Galaxy S21+.

Samsung makes a few of the greatest OLED shows available on the market so it’s no shock that this handset’s panel is phenomenal. It will get good and vivid whereas being exceptionally sharp with vivid colours. The viewing angles are glorious, too.

I didn’t expertise the hiccups with the touchscreen that we identified in our Galaxy S21 overview. Maybe all the things is a little more optimized on this machine. There have been no jitters when scrolling by way of apps nor did it really feel just like the scrolling motion was leaving a path behind.

The Galaxy S21+ additionally will get an upgraded in-display fingerprint sensor. It really felt sooner right here than it did on the Galaxy S21 Extremely for some purpose. The complete Galaxy S21 lineup makes use of the identical sensor, although, so maybe it’s one other optimization story. I not often needed to put up with any recognition failures which was a lot appreciated.

Galaxy S21+ digital camera

There’s not a lot to report on so far as the cameras are involved. The Galaxy S21+ has the identical digital camera {hardware} because the Galaxy S20. It will get a 12-megapixel f/1.8 major sensor with Twin Pixel autofocus and OIS. There’s additionally a 12-megapixel f/2.2 ultra-wide and a 64-megapixel f/2.0 telephoto (zoom) digital camera with OIS. A ten-megapixel f/2.2 selfie digital camera can be current. The Galaxy S21 additionally has the very same digital camera setup.

The gist of it’s that the Galaxy S21+ is ready to take vivid and sharp photographs in daylight. Efficiency in low-light or throughout nighttime is sweet sufficient however you’ll really feel that there’s nonetheless room for enchancment. The selfie digital camera tends to carry out nicely in each indoor and out of doors eventualities.

Along with 3x optical zoom, the Galaxy S21+ additionally helps as much as 30x “Area Zoom.” That is achieved by means of a digital crop of a 64MP picture. The zoom high quality is passable up till 10x, going past that leads to photographs that might be overly tender. The brand new Zoom Lock characteristic is an efficient addition, although, because it reduces blur at excessive zoom ranges.

The Galaxy S21+ does have some new methods up its sleeve. It might probably seize 8K video, means that you can change between all rear and the entrance cameras in Director’s View, in addition to reap the benefits of new studio-quality results in Portrait mode.

In the event you’d prefer to learn concerning the digital camera setup’s efficiency in additional element, take a look at our Galaxy S21 overview.

Galaxy S21+ efficiency

Like all the lineup, the Galaxy S21+ additionally will get Samsung’s new Exynos 2100 chipset. Clients in choose markets will get it with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888. The brand new chipset makes a noticeable enchancment in efficiency in comparison with the predecessor. Your Galaxy S21+ will at all times really feel tremendous quick regardless that it has 8GB of RAM.

Apps launch within the blink of a watch, high-intensity gaming is fluid, the adaptive refresh fee by no means lags. The Galaxy S21+ is greater than able to dealing with no matter you throw at it. The handset additionally seems to maintain temperatures in verify, it by no means felt that the machine was getting unbearably sizzling when the chipset was closely strained.

Just like the Galaxy S21 Extremely, the Galaxy S21+ will get help for UWB or ultra-wideband. There’s one factor that the majority clients will dislike. They’ll not be pleased with Samsung’s resolution to take away the microSD card slot. You may both be content material with the interior storage or go for cloud storage. There isn’t a different solution to broaden storage.

Galaxy S21+ software program, audio high quality

One UI 3.1 solely brings a handful of latest options with most of them being restricted to the digital camera app. The bottom OS model is Android 11. A number of the new options that Samsung has launched embrace the power to blur the background in video calls made utilizing third-party apps, a blockchain-based sharing app known as Personal Share, the choice to configure Google Uncover on the house display and the power to take away location information out of your photographs earlier than you share them.

Samsung made a dedication final yr that it will present choose gadgets with three years of main OS upgrades. The Galaxy S21+ is among the many Samsung gadgets that may obtain three Android OS updates.

The software program expertise is identical throughout all the lineup. You may find out about it in additional element by trying out our Galaxy S21 Extremely overview. It additionally offers particulars concerning the audio high quality which is normal throughout all three Galaxy S21 fashions.

Galaxy S21+ battery life

The Galaxy S21+ bought an improve on this division. It has a barely bigger 4,800mAh battery in comparison with the 4,500mAh battery of the Galaxy S20+. I used to be very pleasantly shocked by the display on time of over 6 hours and 12-13 hours on a single cost with reasonable use on most days. The Exynos 2100 is extra energy environment friendly which is mirrored by the ridiculously low idle drain. This was with cell information enabled for a number of hours all through the day. We weren’t in a position to check 5G’s influence on the battery life however you possibly can count on it to shave off a few hours, at the very least.

Nonetheless, it feels that the Galaxy S21+ may use extra optimization to squeeze extra out of the battery. Regardless of being solely barely smaller than the Galaxy S21 Extremely’s 5,000mAh battery, the Galaxy S21+ wasn’t in a position to final me nicely into the subsequent day, not like the top-of-the-line mannequin. The extra environment friendly show of the Extremely might also be an element right here.

The complete sequence helps 25W quick charging solely and Samsung doesn’t present a charger within the field. A whole cost with the 25W brick will take round 75 minutes. The handset helps each quick wi-fi charging and Wi-fi PowerShare (reverse wi-fi charging). Each work as marketed.

Galaxy S21+ verdict

You’re studying this as a result of you have got $999 burning a gap in your pocket and also you need to see if it’s value spending that cash on the Galaxy S21+. The straightforward reply is sure, the Galaxy S21+ is certainly definitely worth the asking value.

What you should resolve is whether or not you worth the luxurious really feel of a glass again, higher battery life and bigger display dimension extra over the compactness of the Galaxy S21. If the reply is within the affirmative then, by all means, get the Galaxy S21+. If the reply is within the unfavorable, maybe the $799 Galaxy S21 might be a a lot better alternative. Each handsets have the very same energy bundle, digital camera setup and software program, in any case.

In the event you’re in search of the closest doable match from final yr’s lineup, then you possibly can most likely choose up the Galaxy S20+ at a reduction as of late. Even the Galaxy S20 FE might be appropriate due to its sufficiently massive display, comparable battery life, and comparable digital camera efficiency.

I perceive that the Galaxy S21+ is tantalizingly near the Galaxy S21 Extremely, which prices solely $199 extra. In the event you can spend that additional bit of money then the Extremely is a no brainer. It has a fair bigger show (which can be curved), has far more highly effective cameras, a much bigger battery and so on.

If $999 is what you’re keen to half with, then the Galaxy S21+ goes to really feel like cash nicely spent.

Professionals Cons
Lovely excessive refresh fee show Cameras, whereas good, are usually not an improve over the Galaxy S20+ or S20 FE
Distinctive, gorgeous design No microSD slot
Foremost 12MP digital camera captures glorious photos, new options like Director’s View are cool 128GB base storage
64MP digital camera captures nice 3x and passable photos until 10x zoom No charger or earphones within the field
Exynos 2100 processor gives improved efficiency, good battery life Samsung Pay doesn’t help MST in some markets
Newer era in-display fingerprint sensor is extra correct Battery optimization could be improved
Will get three main Android OS updates
5G connectivity and UWB


  • Mannequin: SM-G996B
  • Dimensions: Bar: 161.5 x 75.6 x 7.8 mm
  • Show: 6.7 inch / 170.18 mm Dynamic AMOLED 2X
  • CPU: Exynos 2100
  • Digital camera: 12MP
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