Samsung Galaxy S21 Just Came Out: Is it Worth It?

The phones that have the best features (like advanced facial recognition and high-resolution cameras) are mostly priced around the $1,000 mark. Samsung’s new phone, however, costs only $800. The Galaxy S21 was released on January 14, and it is the entry-level model of a new trio of flagship phones from Samsung. But despite being the smallest and cheapest of the three, it can still compete with other Android phones of the same price. Here are some features to look out for from the new Galaxy S21:


The S21 has a triple-camera setup: a 12-megapixel primary sensor, a 12-megapixel ultra-wide, and a 64-megapixel telephoto. The camera system remains mainly unchanged — the only difference being Samsung updating the processing of photos to improve the quality in certain settings, such as for Single Take and Night Mode. The new bokeh and lighting options in Portrait mode also use AI and 3D depth analysis for better outlines and effects. Aside from achieving certain effects using the lens itself (as is the case with traditional photography), the phone does this through a computational adjustment of the pixels after the picture is taken. The phone offers up to 30x zoom, and there is also a Zoom Lock feature to help minimize shake when you’re zooming in at 20x.


The S21 is suitable for small hands, with a screen of just 6.2 inches. The display is a 2,400×1,800 AMOLED screen that offers better and more natural colors than LCD screens. The S21 also has an Infinity-O screen — which the company explains as “utilizing accurate laser cutting technology to create a cut-out in the upper corner” where the front camera is. This allows the camera to be placed in such a way that it won’t be easily blocked, while preventing the photo quality from degrading.


Phones that claim to have the best features will still have some noticeable trade-offs. In the case of the S21, Samsung prioritized the processor. 5G phones are only used for data connections; you’ll need to connect to the 3G or LTE network in order to consistently deliver phone calls and text messages as well. These multiple connections make 5G phones, like the S21, drain faster.

Fortunately, the S21 is built for such powerful features. Manufacturers know that every great PCB design starts with transistors configured into an astable multivibrator. This component is what allows devices to alternate between two voltage levels, keeping the system charged more efficiently. The Galaxy S21 takes this a step further by using a Snapdragon 888 chip, which has better battery life. The S21 can last about 10 hours of Wi-Fi streaming and approximately 7 hours of 5G usage (both scenarios with full brightness on).

Other models

Aside from the S21, the Galaxy S21 has two other models: the S21+, and the S21 Ultra. These two are more expensive than the S21 — costing $1,000 and $1,200 respectively. These models have more advanced features than the S21. The S21+ is quite similar to the S21 in many ways, except for battery life. Meanwhile, the S21 Ultra not only has better battery life, but also has a quad-camera setup that offers 100x zoom. But if the Ultra is too expensive or big for your needs, the S21 will work just fine.

Samsung has created a new phone that has good cameras, a nice screen, a powerful processor, and long battery life — all while keeping below $1,000. While the S21+ and the S21 Ultra are there for those who want the most premium features, the Samsung Galaxy S21 should be more than enough for someone who simply wants an upgrade from last year’s phones.

For more news on Samsung, check our previous posts on Droid Here.

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