Samsung Galaxy S21 $0 at Samsung

Samsung Galaxy S21 vs Galaxy S20

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Samsung Galaxy S21 vs Galaxy S20
With the Samsung Galaxy S21 series now unveiled, you may be curious whether there are any solid reasons to upgrade to the new Galaxy S21 from your Galaxy S20. We can help with your decision by comparing the two Samsung flagship phones side-by-side, in order to show you exactly what the Galaxy S21 is bringing over the S20 and how the S20 holds up next to its successor.

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Samsung Galaxy S21 vs Galaxy S20 price and color options


The price of the Galaxy S21 is $799, significantly less than what the Galaxy S20 launched at – $999. So if you're currently choosing between last year's S20 and the Galaxy S21 – picking up the newer one is both the more future-proof option and will actually save you $200!


Samsung Galaxy S21 color options

  • Phantom Gray
  • Phantom Violet
  • Phantom Pink
  • Phantom White

Samsung Galaxy S20 color options

  • Cosmic Grey
  • Cloud Blue
  • Cloud Pink
  • Cloud White

Samsung Galaxy S21 vs Galaxy S20 design and storage options


The new Galaxy S21 has about the same dimensions as last year's Galaxy S20, but sports a different design, especially noticeable with the camera module. The S21 also features a smooth matte finish that does better against fingerprints. In terms of weight, the S21 is slightly heavier at 171 grams over the S20's 163 grams.

Samsung Galaxy S21

Samsung Galaxy S21

Dimensions

5.97 x 2.8 x 0.31 inches

151.7 x 71.2 x 7.9 mm

Weight

6.03 oz (171 g)

Samsung Galaxy S20

Samsung Galaxy S20

Dimensions

5.97 x 2.72 x 0.31 inches

151.7 x 69.1 x 7.9 mm

Weight

5.78 oz (163 g)

Samsung Galaxy S21

Samsung Galaxy S21

Dimensions

5.97 x 2.8 x 0.31 inches

151.7 x 71.2 x 7.9 mm

Weight

6.03 oz (171 g)

Samsung Galaxy S20

Samsung Galaxy S20

Dimensions

5.97 x 2.72 x 0.31 inches

151.7 x 69.1 x 7.9 mm

Weight

5.78 oz (163 g)

See the full Samsung Galaxy S21 vs Samsung Galaxy S20 in real size or compare them to other phones using our Size Comparison tool.

When it comes to storage options, the Galaxy S21 and S20 share the exact same numbers.

Samsung Galaxy S21 and S20 storage options

  • 128 GB
  • 256 GB
  • 512 GB

However, while the S20 additionally has an SD Card slot (microSDXC), allowing the user to add up to 1000 GB of expandable storage, the S21 does not have that option.

Samsung Galaxy S21 vs Galaxy S20 display size and specs


The Galaxy S21's display size is 6.2 inches in size, just like the S20. It is again an AMOLED display, capable of super-smooth 120Hz refresh rate. However, the S21's display resolution has been downgraded to 2400 x 1080 pixels (Full HD+). For a cleaner comparison, below are the Galaxy S21 specs against the Galaxy S20's specs.

Samsung Galaxy S21 specs:

  • 6.2-inch 120Hz AMOLED display, 2400 x 1080
  • Snapdragon 888 chipset / Exynos 2100 chipset
  • 8 GB of RAM
  • 12 MP + 64 MP + 12 MP cameras
  • 10 MP punch-hole selfie camera
  • 128 GB / 256 GB / 512 GB of storage, no microSD card slot
  • 4,000 mAh battery, fast 30W wired charging, no charger in the box
  • No headphone jack
  • 5G connectivity

Samsung Galaxy S20 specs:

  • 6.2-inch 120Hz AMOLED display, 3200 x 1440
  • Snapdragon 865 chipset / Exynos 990 chipset
  • 8 GB of RAM
  • 12 MP + 64 MP + 12 MP cameras
  • 10 MP punch-hole selfie camera
  • 128 GB / 256 GB / 512 GB of storage, microSD card slot
  • 4,000 mAh battery, fast 25W wired charging, charger included
  • No headphone jack
  • 5G connectivity

Benchmarks

Geekbench 5 single-core Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy S21 1043
Samsung Galaxy S20 922
Geekbench 5 multi-core Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy S21 3090
Samsung Galaxy S20 2784
GFXBench Car Chase on-screen Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy S21 50
Samsung Galaxy S20 44
*Note that we tested the Exynos versions.

Samsung Galaxy S21 vs Galaxy S20 battery life and charging speeds


In our Galaxy S20 review, the phone proved to feature solid battery life, lasting about 12 hours in our internet browsing test, with the display set to 60Hz. However, when the S20's display was set to its maximum of 120Hz, that same test gave significantly lower results – it took about 7 hours and 45 minutes for the phone to run out of battery.

The Galaxy S21 has the exact same battery capacity as its predecessor (4000 mAh), although the S21's chipset is more energy efficient, which in theory should help with its battery life performance. Another slight improvement the S21 gets over the S20 is faster wired charging speeds, at 30 watts over 25.

Web browsing battery life test results

Browsing test (hours) Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy S21 9h 6 min
Samsung Galaxy S20 12h 12 min
Browsing test at 120Hz (hours) Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy S21 7h 47 min
Samsung Galaxy S20 7h 45 min

YouTube playback battery life test results

YouTube video streaming (hours) Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy S21 7h 36 min
Samsung Galaxy S20 10h 20 min

3D Gaming battery life test results

3D Gaming (hours) Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy S21 7h 9 min
Samsung Galaxy S20 7h 43 min

As is evident by our battery life tests above, the new Galaxy S21 has lower, but still great battery life performance, when compared to last year's S20. Even with the screen set to 120Hz refresh rate, it lasted nearly 8 hours of constant web browsing. In our Galaxy S21 review, we concluded that most users should realistically expect anywhere between 5 and 9 hours of usage time between charges.

Samsung Galaxy S21 vs Galaxy S20 camera comparison


The Galaxy S21 sports 12MP main, 64MP zoom and 12MP ultra-wide camera sensors on the back. New camera features include brighter Night mode, Portrait mode with improved separation for selfies and Zoom Lock for clear shots at 30x. The phone can also shoot Super Steady video at 60fps and gets 8K Snap, Director's View and Single Take with Dynamic Slow-mo. 

The Galaxy S20 has a 12MP main, 64MP telephoto and 12MP ultra-wide cameras. It too can shoot 8K video. Both phones have 10MP punch-hole selfie cameras.


As expected, the camera performance hasn't changed much on the S21, if at all, although the two phones process photos in a noticeably different way. While the S21 produces fairly realistic and clean shots, the S20 seems to do a lot more post-sharpening, with stronger contrast. This is especially visible in the zoom comparisons below.




Whether the sharper and more contrasty appearance of the S20 photos is better than what we see from the S21 is down to personal preference. Regardless, as we covered earlier, the difference appears to exist only due to the stronger image post-processing of the S20 and doesn't necessarily mean that either phone captures more detail than the other.



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