The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G reviews mark a new era in smartphone design for the company. But has Samsung chosen to innovate or rest on its laurels if one of its key competitors is challenged by the blocking of Google services?
Last year’s Galaxy S20 range disappointed some fans, especially with price tags attached to the devices and a lack of 5G support. But in a surprise, Samsung released the new S21 range at similar prices to its 2020 devices.
But is it all to attract consumers?
We spent some time with the Samsung S21 Ultra and we found it.
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G reviews Design:
Samsung has definitely improved the game when it comes to the design of its Galaxy S21 series, including the S21 Ultra 5G.
While some people may not look different on the camera body, we preferred it over the excluded design of the previous series. The contrast is done in a way that complements the device’s overall design and highlights it from other unrecognizable rectangles that we increasingly see in the industry.
Also, the color of our review device Phantom Silver was a welcome feature. While not opting for the bright palettes of many of the latest Samsung devices, the color option still offers a bit of flair thanks to its pearl and shimmering finish.
Although it is larger than a regular smartphone, its 6.8-inch display is not heavy. For those accustomed to larger, phablet-inspired devices, this is nothing new. Although people who use smaller devices may need to get used to it.
Galaxy S21 Ultra Camera
The S21 Ultra still delivers the experience of the previous generation of high-quality cameras while slightly changing specifications.
Recall that the S20 Ultra included a triple rear camera with 108MP, 48MP, and 12MP lenses.
However, the S21 Ultra switches it to a four-camera setup consisting of 108MP, 12MP, and two 10MP lenses.
At first, it seems to have a lower resolution, but it actually enhances one important feature – zooming. Thanks to the optional 10MP telephoto lens, the S21 Ultra supports 10X optical zoom, greatly improving the overall zoom quality of images.
While most people won’t really find 100X space zoom, the advanced optical zoom is really useful in everyday use, where the previous model only supported 4x optical zoom.
If you want to shoot in high resolution, the 108MP lens is still available to deliver breathtaking shots that people are familiar with from the range. Samsung’s AI and processor enhancements really combine to deliver a better camera experience than its S21 Ultra predecessor.
Pests of the S20 Ultra camera, such as lagging performance or strange streaks of closer objects in high-resolution images, the S21 Ultra does not. High-resolution images are among the best available on a smartphone.
When it comes to shooting in low light, the camera also works well.
The main drawback of the camera’s performance is that 8K video, with a maximum of 24 frames per second, leaves a bit to be desired. However, this feature seems to be more of a camera feature than a full-featured feature. If you want to record 8K video at a high frame rate, a smartphone is not the answer.
When it comes to regular video recording, the S21 Ultra works great. The inclusion of a director’s view in the S21 series is an incredibly useful feature that makes switching zoom levels and including different viewpoints convenient and smooth.
However, when you release the camera step by step, you should be prepared for the area near the camera body to warm up. It’s not something that becomes unbearable or turns off because of the camera, but it’s noticeable.
So, given all this powerful hardware built into the device, how long does battery life withstand everyday use?
When running the phone via the PCMark for Android battery benchmark, it lasted up to 11 hours and 25 minutes. It places it in a similar area as the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G, OnePlus 8T, and Vivo X51 5G.
This is quite an impressive battery life for such a special phone, especially since we set the screen to the highest refresh rate. The battery benchmark test shows continuous use with the screen running at full length.
Therefore, you can expect the battery to last longer with regular daily use.
S pen compatibility
One of the key game converters that the S21 Ultra brings to the Galaxy S range is support for the S Pen. This is the first non-Note device to support the accessory.
This gives some flexibility to users who want to use the Samsung stylus without purchasing a Note device.
The S pen is supplied separately, either as a separate accessory or included in the S21 Ultra Clear View cap. Although the most expensive option, the Clear View Cover gives you a place to store the accessory when not in use.
Because it doesn’t slip on the device itself, using the S Pen with the S21 Ultra isn’t as smooth as with the Note.
However, it gives a lot of privileges if you are looking for certain trouser features.
One of our favorites is the PenUp app, which lets you draw and share digital artwork. Although it will definitely become an everyday artist, it is also perfect for complete amateurs – allowing you to learn how to draw using a variety of community-based training. You can also use tracking and other tools to create artwork from your photos.
Other styluses also highlight general productivity features, such as the ability to create handwritten notes, send a live GIF message, and use Bixby’s translation features.
So far, we have sung praise for the S21 Ultra 5G – and what are its disadvantages?
We mentioned heating issues while recording the video. Although it is by no means a breaker, it is something that is noticeable to the user and needs to be addressed.
Meanwhile, an 8K video snap seems more like a proof of concept feature than a selling point – so that’s definitely not what we recommend anyone makes based on a buying decision.
Although the lack of a charger is aimed at reducing electronic waste, it seems that it was introduced in a generation too quickly. Most people only upgrade every two years, and the S10 does not support the S21 Ultra maximum charging speed or charging cable.
But the biggest reason for the delay will still be the price for most consumers.
The S21 Ultra 5G is only $69.82 more expensive than its predecessor – with the launch of the S20 Ultra for $1819.46 and the S21 Ultra 5G for $1889.44.
However, for most consumers, the $1889.44 is still a very high phone price.
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G Review Judgment
In many ways, the Galaxy S21 Ultra compensates for the frustration in the S20 range. By managing the price in a region similar to last year’s range, while developing design innovations, the phone offers a more attractive offer to users.