Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G overview: Samsung’s best S series for $200 less than last year’s model Review Leave a comment

Samsung shifted its annual Galaxy S series launch a few month to the left this yr, and given the challenges all of us confronted in 2020, it’s good to see 2021 begin off with some contemporary telephones from Samsung with a major value drop. We have been despatched a brand new Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G to guage and can be following up this overview with extra articles since there’s a lot to unpack.

Also: Samsung Galaxy S21 5G review: Entry-level flagship drops $200 with few compromises

The Galaxy S21 telephones are the primary to launch extensively with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor inside and 5G help for Sub6, mid-band, and mmWave so consumers are lined throughout the 5G spectrum with any of the three S21 fashions out there from Samsung. We see enhancements throughout the board within the show, cameras, software program, and extra. In addition, the S21 Ultra 5G helps the S Pen and nearly every part we see within the Note series.

Also: Samsung Galaxy Note’s future in question amid Galaxy S21 Ultra launch

The Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G gives all you might need in 2021 and units the bar for Android smartphones this yr. The phone is available for pre-order with every kind of trade-in and launch gives as properly. If you’re contemplating this cellphone and have an older cellphone sitting round then now could be the time to buy it since Samsung’s trade-in offers change considerably after the cellphone launches and the pre-order interval expires.

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G specs

  • Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 888
  • Main show: 6.Eight inches, 3200 x 1440 pixels decision (515PPI), Dynamic AMOLED Infinity-O with adaptive 120Hz refresh charge
  • Operating system: Android 11
  • RAM: 12GB/16GB LPDDR5
  • Storage: 128/256/512GB inside storage choices
  • Cameras: 10MP rear f/4.9 telephoto with 10x optical zoom and a second 10MP f/2.Four telephoto digital camera with 3x optical zoom, 108MP f/1.Eight wide-angle digital camera, and 12MP f/2.2 ultra-wide digital camera (120 levels field-of-view). 40MP f/2.2 front-facing digital camera.
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi 6E, Bluetooth 5.zero LE, GPS/Galileo/GLONASS/Beidou, NFC, UWB
  • Sensors: Accelerometer, Barometer, Ultrasonic Fingerprint Sensor, Gyro Sensor, Geomagnetic Sensor, Hall Sensor, Proximity Sensor, RGB Light Sensor
  • Dust/water resistance: IP68 score
  • Battery: 5000mAh non-removable with quick wi-fi charging. Wireless PowerShare can be out there.
  • Dimensions: 165.1 x 75.6 x 8.9mm and 229G
  • Colors: Phantom Black, Phantom Silver, Phantom Titanium, Phantom Navy, and Phantom Brown

In the previous, customers had to select from a decrease decision to benefit from the highest 120Hz refresh charge, however with the S21 Ultra, now you can toggle on the Quad HD Plus setting and the adaptive 120Hz refresh charge. The show additionally gives 25% extra brightness than any earlier Samsung Galaxy smartphone.

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The show is constructed of Corning Gorilla Glass Victus on each the back and front, so we’ll should see how sturdiness exams maintain as much as the claims.

Also: Samsung’s Galaxy S21 is official: Release date, price, features, specs, and everything else you need to know

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra works with S Pen.



The most hanging new {hardware} characteristic on the S21 Ultra is the brand new Contour Cut digital camera housing that extends the metallic body out from the precise aspect and across the again. The cameras are surrounded by this body piece, offering a reasonably distinctive digital camera array design. Like the S20 Ultra from 2020, instances are prone to be launched to accommodate this digital camera bump and make the again of the machine flat so it would not rock when positioned again down on a floor.

The digital camera on the S20 Ultra was disappointing in some areas however was improved by software program updates. Initial take a look at comparability photographs, take a look at our embedded picture gallery, present that outcomes from the S21 Ultra are clearly higher than the S20 Ultra. With two telephoto cameras, a 108MP digital camera, and enhanced digital camera software program we’ll present a digital camera deep dive article sooner or later as we proceed to check night time mode, portrait mode (Live Focus renamed), and far more.

The different important {hardware} enchancment within the S21 Ultra is help for the S Pen expertise. The S21 and S21 Plus should not have this help whereas the S21 Ultra contains Wacom know-how. I examined out this new S Series functionality utilizing S Pens from the Galaxy Tab Active3, Tab S7 Plus, and Note 10 Plus. All capabilities of the S Pen, together with display screen off memos, work on the S21 Ultra excluding Bluetooth Air Actions. There is not any method to retailer and cost an S Pen on the S21 Ultra so it isn’t anticipated that Air Actions can be supported. Samsung can be providing three equipment for the S Pen expertise, together with an S Pen for the S Series.

The Galaxy S21 Ultra is a beautiful piece of {hardware} with minimal prime and backside bezels, no aspect bezels, and a small hole-punch centered front-facing digital camera. The energy/Bixby and quantity buttons on the precise aspect with nothing on the left aspect. The sides have a little bit of a flat floor so the cellphone feels a bit like a Note with less curve on the perimeters.

The Super AMOLED show is clearly beautiful and I’m positive will earn the best title of any smartphone show quickly. Samsung continues to enhance its show, even when it appears there may be little to enhance since Samsung units the bar for show know-how on smartphones. Higher brightness, improved distinction ratio, and Eye Comfort Shield is integrated within the S21 Ultra.

Another change that will concern enterprise prospects is the shortage of help for microSD in any Galaxy S21 model, together with the S21 Ultra. Swappable, expandable storage has all the time been a staple of Samsung smartphones and could also be missed by some. For simply $50 extra you may leap from the entry 128GB of storage to 256GB whereas the leap all the way in which to 512GB (and accompanying 16GB of RAM) is $180. I by no means took out my microSD card and $50 additional for 256GB, remember the entry value is $200 less than last year’s S20 line, is an inexpensive technique. Samsung’s built-in storage is the quickest out there on Android so whereas some might lament the tip of microSD I’m not involved with the change.

Wi-Fi 6E help is included within the S21 Ultra, however I wasn’t in a position to take a look at this out since I should not have entry to a 6E community. It’s nice to have because it offers some future-proofing to Samsung’s newest flagship smartphone. UWB can be current and gives a little bit of future-proofing since we’re simply beginning to see purposes for UWB know-how.

Also: Samsung Galaxy S21 starts at $799.99, launches Galaxy S21 Plus, Galaxy S21 Ultra with camera upgrades


The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G launches with Android 11 and Samsung One UI 3. The January 1, 2021, Android safety replace is current on our overview unit. We might obtain extra updates on these analysis items previous to public availability later this month.

I’ve been utilizing One 3.x on a Galaxy S20 Ultra for a couple of weeks and am glad with the consumer interface. One factor I’m happy to see is the replace to the launcher the place Google Discover now seems as an possibility on the far left house display screen panel. You can nonetheless swap to Samsung Free, but it surely’s nice to see Samsung offering customers with choices. In the previous, I all the time turned off this panel as a result of I did not discover Samsung’s providing very compelling. This is similar for me with OnePlus and its previous Shelf house display screen panel.

Facebook is put in by default, however reasonably than simply disable it now you can totally uninstall it, and I definitely did as quickly as I fired up the app launcher. We nonetheless discover some Samsung apps, similar to Internet, Messages, Samsung Notes, Samsung Health, and some others, however you’re given the choice to pick these apps throughout setup so that you should not have to put in all of them and have extra management over your cellphone than you probably did previously.

DeX wi-fi help is supplied so you may join the S21 Ultra to a PC or monitor and luxuriate in a PC-like expertise powered by the S21 Ultra. We additionally see wonderful integration with Microsoft Outlook, To-Do, and Teams, which is ideal for enterprise prospects.

The digital camera software program has been improved with a brand new characteristic known as Director’s View that’s designed to assist with collaboration, particularly throughout these occasions of social distancing and distant work. With Director’s View enabled you may rapidly toggle between the completely different rear cameras on the cellphone whereas having the choice to document your self side-by-side or picture-in-picture format to be able to share data higher along with your groups. This looks like a terrific possibility for my on-site shipyard inspection staff to share fabrication, set up, and testing experiences with me positioned in a house workplace hundreds of miles away.

Daily utilization experiences

The two default S21 Ultra colours, Phantom Black and Phantom Silver, are excellent for enterprise use. The different three colours are Samsung.com exclusives and provide an expert look with a little bit of aptitude. I’m severely contemplating the Phantom Brown colour as brown is considered one of my three favourite colours and it appears to be like sharp on the Samsung web site. The S21 Ultra will launch on Jan. 29, beginning at $1,199.99. There are pre-order gives and trade-in gives out there, too.

Samsung despatched alongside the S21 Ultra with the best specs, 16GB of RAM and 512GB of inside storage, so this beast has been in a position to deal with every part we have thrown at it thus far. I’ve performed CPU demanding video games, opened up a number of apps and plenty of in split-screen mode, watched movies, and extra to see if there have been any impacts on efficiency, however by no means observed any discount in any respect. The audio system sound superior and I’ve loved Star Wars motion pictures enjoying with no related headset.

As I said earlier, I’ve been taking photographs with the S21 Ultra and different telephones, however should spend extra time with it to go ultimate judgment. So far I like what I’m seeing, but in addition benefit from the output from the iPhone 12 Pro Max. Stay tuned for a future article on the cameras of this beautiful cellphone.

I wasn’t attempting to conduct any sturdiness exams, however my daughter set the S21 Ultra down on a e-book and as a result of slippery nature of the cellphone it slowly slid down the e-book after which headed down. The e-book was on a granite island about 4 ft excessive so the cellphone fell down eight inches to a different granite counter and struck that on the aspect (taking out a small chunk of my granite counter) after which one other three plus ft display screen down on the hardwood flooring. There was no harm to the cellphone, besides for a minor scratch on the sting, with extra harm finished to my counter. It appears to be like like Victus glass is holding up properly.

Samsung reigns supreme in the case of mobile reception and name high quality. I’ve solely been out and about to some areas over the previous week so will proceed to check these capabilities, however callers say I sound crystal clear and protection has been rock strong with each LTE and 5G exhibiting up in every single place I’ve traveled.

It’s been a few years since I personally thought-about a Galaxy S series for myself since I’ve been having fun with the Note line and new Z Fold fashions, however the S21 Ultra 5G will get nearly every part proper and is beautiful. I really like that it’s a few millimeters narrower than the iPhone 12 Pro Max and that the zoom cameras present one thing distinctive with strong high quality. The value is true for the S21 Ultra 5G and I do not understand how I’m going to withstand ordering my very own within the subsequent week.

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