07/30 Update below. This post was originally published on July 28
In a new exclusive, the always-excellent SamMobile has revealed the first details about Samsung’s Galaxy S20 successors (dubbed Galaxy S21/S30) and YouTuber Mauri QHD has flagged what we already know will be their game-changing upgrade.
07/29 Update: Mauri QHD has revealed a further Galaxy S21 upgrade compared to both the Galaxy S20 and upcoming Note 20: a leap in build quality. The YouTuber says Samsung has decided to ditch the controversial ‘glasstic’ (glass and plastic) hybrid chassis used on the entry-level Galaxy S and Note models with the S21. These finishes have been considered cheap by many and an overly aggressive cost cutting exercise, given the prices of these handsets are still close to $1,000. One word of warning: Mauri says this is Samsung’s thinking “atm”, so it is subject to change if pressure on margins increases.
07/30 Update: Further Galaxy S21 news has broken via popular Samsung site SamMobile, which claims the next-gen flagship will have a greatly improved front facing camera. SamMobile states that this will be achieved by increasing the size of the sensor as well as adding optical image stabilisation. Two sensors are being considered: a 1/2-inch 48MP sensor and 1/2.55-inch 12MP sensor, both larger than anything Samsung has used before on the front of its phones. That said, it is the inclusion of OIS which could be of most benefit, given selfies are usually taken at arm’s length with considerably more shake than a standard rear camera photograph. For selfie fans, this could make the Galaxy S21 series your go to smartphone.
Breaking things down, SamMobile says most of what they learned about the Galaxy S21 range will come as no surprise: three models, just like the Galaxy S10 and S20 lineups before it, 5G across the board (with some regional 4G-only options) and 128/256GB storage options as standard. So far so standard, but here’s the head turner: what drives them.
Thanks to Samsung’s own leaked benchmarks, we know the chipset inside the Galaxy S21 is potentially transformative. Based on Samsung’s own roadmap, this is understood to be a Exynos 1000 made in conjunction with AMD using a custom Radeon GPU. And those benchmarks? Gaming performance delivered up to 2.5x the performance of a Snapdragon 865. That’s a multi-generational improvement and means it not only leaves every rival Android smartphone eating its dust, but every iPhone as well.
Of course, the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra will launch in just a few weeks and it is no slouch coming with a Snapdragon 865+, a tweaked version of the 865. It also has an industry-first LPTO display and some essential camera changes. That said, it looks set to be priced close to $1,400 while the $1,000 entry-level Note 20 looks like a dumpster fire you should avoid.
Yes, I expect the Galaxy S21 range will also be expensive but, if you can only afford a Note 20 at this point in time, my advice would be to wait for the S21’s arrival in February. If Samsung’s final product can live up to its early benchmarks, then you will be glad you did.
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