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  • (gentle music)

  • - The Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus are officially here

  • and Samsung has brought all the latest improvements

  • that you'd expect from a flagship Galaxy design.

  • New specs, better designs, the works.

  • But the biggest thing about this year's new phones

  • isn't actually the phones themselves,

  • it's that after years of prices

  • that have been steadily creeping upwards,

  • Samsung has reversed course on this year's flagships.

  • They start for $200 less

  • than last year's Galaxy S20 models.

  • The S21 starts at just 799

  • and the S21 Plus at 999.

  • Now that's a big change

  • and that's despite the fact that these phones

  • are actually more advanced in some ways

  • like the new Snapdragon processor.

  • So what's the catch?

  • (bright music)

  • Well, there are a couple of changes that Samsung has made

  • to help hit those lower price points.

  • For starters, that base Galaxy S21,

  • it's back is made out of polycarbonate plastic

  • instead of aluminum.

  • And both phones have shifted from the curved screens

  • that Samsung has been using for years down to a flat panel.

  • Now, I happen to personally like flat panel phones

  • but if you're a fan of the old curve designs

  • it's something that you wanna be aware of.

  • There are a couple of bigger changes to specs though,

  • that Samsung has made here.

  • Both panels are lower resolution than last year's models.

  • Down to 2400 by 1080 resolution instead of 3200 by 1440.

  • They also come with less RAM,

  • just eight gigabytes instead of 12.

  • Now, does any of that actually make a difference

  • in daily use?

  • I don't know, but we will definitely have an answer for you

  • when we're able to fully review these devices soon.

  • Of course, there's still a lot of new things to like.

  • There's the new design which we'll talk about in a minute,

  • there's the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor

  • which promises to be even faster than last year's

  • and there's improvements to the already really good cameras

  • from last year.

  • (gentle music)

  • Now, at least head-on the S21's

  • do broadly resemble their predecessors

  • with edge-to-edge OLED dispalys,

  • hole-punched cameras

  • and the same 6.2 inch and 6.7 inch screen sciences.

  • Although again, they're flat panels not curved.

  • Flip it over though, and you'll see some differences.

  • Gone is the back piece of glass.

  • Now it's just either aluminum or polycarbonate

  • depending on which model you get.

  • Which in theory should be less fingerprinty

  • but for some reason isn't,

  • but the biggest design change on the S21 models

  • is the camera bump.

  • Now for years, as long as smartphone manufacturers

  • have been trying to cram in better lenses

  • and bigger sensors into our phones,

  • we've been stuck with these big ugly protruding camera bumps

  • and last year's S20 lineup was particularly egregious

  • with that massive squircle thing

  • that just stuck out of that otherwise beautiful glass back.

  • Now, the S21 and the S21 Plus still have a camera array,

  • but instead of jutting out,

  • Samsung has made it this seamless piece of metal

  • that smoothly flows from the metal rails of the phone

  • onto the back and a spiffy two-tone design that looks great,

  • especially on that purple and gold model.

  • Look, it's not perfect.

  • No camera bump ever will be,

  • but if I do have to get stuck with a camera bump,

  • and if you want good pictures on your phone,

  • you probably do.

  • I'd really love it to keep looking like this.

  • As for those three cameras, there's a 12 megapixel wide

  • a 12 megapixel ultra-wide and a 64 megapixels telephoto lens

  • along with a 10 megapixel selfie camera

  • in that hole-punch on the front display.

  • Now, if those sounded a little familiar to you,

  • it's because that these are virtually identical,

  • at least hardware-wise to the cameras on last year's S20

  • and S20 Plus.

  • That said, Samsung says that it has made improvements

  • to things like AI processing

  • and added some new camera features,

  • so there are some things to look forward to.

  • (bright music)

  • As for the phones themselves,

  • they're really polished pieces of hardware,

  • which again, this is Samsung's big flagship.

  • So it's sort of what you would expect from that.

  • Of the two, I prefer the S21 size,

  • but unfortunately that plastic back

  • just has it feeling cheaper than the S21 Plus,

  • which is a shame

  • because it's just a little too big for my taste.

  • Both phones are also surprisingly light,

  • possibly because there's no slab of glass on the back.

  • Those lighter weights are despite the fact that the S21

  • has a 4000 milliamp hour battery

  • the same as last year's model.

  • And the S21 Plus actually has a bigger

  • 4800 milliamp hour battery.

  • As for ports,

  • they're what you would expect from a 2021 smartphone

  • which is to say, limited.

  • There's a USB-C port.

  • There's also a power button and volume buttons

  • no weird Bixby buttons here, no headphone jacks

  • although there is wireless charging.

  • If you need another way to charge your phone.

  • If you're getting the base Galaxy S21

  • you'll have a choice of four colors, white,

  • grayish black, pink, and my personal favorite

  • the purple and gold, which looks fantastic.

  • The S21 Plus has three colors which are slightly different

  • and in my opinion, a little better.

  • There's the same purple and gold

  • and the same black and gray

  • but the S21 Plus's silver option

  • is this really nice almost pearlescent silver,

  • that shimmers in different colors in the light.

  • It looks really good.

  • Both phones fully support 5G

  • with support for both sub-6 and millimeter wave 5G,

  • thanks to the integrated Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor.

  • So it should work

  • with basically whatever phone network you have.

  • The Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus

  • are different type of flagship for Samsung,

  • instead of just chasing the absolute best phone

  • that they can make,

  • and don't worry,

  • they're also doing that with the Galaxy S21 Ultra,

  • which check out our other video on that,

  • but it really speaks to a different philosophy

  • that Samsung has taken here.

  • One that we started to see with last year's Galaxy S20 FE

  • which is to say

  • that they're looking to make these great phones

  • a little more affordable to the average consumer

  • which in a world of $1000 flagships

  • or $2,000 foldables is a really appealing prospect.

  • Now, whether or not the trade offs

  • that Samsung has made here

  • are something that we will definitely have to get into

  • and definitely have to see

  • but at least on paper, the S21 is exciting

  • and at least compared to last year,

  • far more affordable flagship

  • than we've seen from Samsung in a long, long time.

  • To the ones on last year's, dear God!

  • (indistinct)

  • Our video producer, Becca has told me that I'm wrong

  • and that the flat white one is better

  • but I'm on the camera right now.

  • - [Becca] It's true!

(gentle music)

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B1 samsung galaxy camera flagship snapdragon megapixel

Samsung Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus hands-on: price drop

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    林宜悉 posted on 2021/01/14
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