Galaxy S21 vs. iPhone 12: Sorry, Apple, but Samsung may have won it, this round:

iPhone 12 review

The iPhone 12 is the kind of product Apple only releases once in a while — the kind that looks different, is built on a fundamentally new technology, and will ultimately form the basis of future iPhones for years to come.

Iphone 12 image

It’s fortunate, then, that the new iPhone that most people will probably buy is also mostly a success. The iPhone 12 has an attractive new design, a straightforward and complete approach to 5G, good cameras and even better performance.

But an iPhone of all trades is a master of none, and thus, the iPhone 12 isn’t perfect, either. A low amount of base storage and the lack of a charger included in box means this iPhone isn’t as inexpensive as it may initially seem. Additionally, some of the best features coming out of the Android realm, like the super-sharp digital zoom and fast-refresh rate displays of the Samsung Galaxy S21, are missing in action here.

Nevertheless, you shouldn’t sweat the details. As our iPhone 12 review notes, Apple’s latest relatively-affordable premium handset is still fantastic all around, in spite of what bleeding-edge specs it may lack. Where it counts, it remains one of the best phones you can buy today.

Samsung S21 Ultra review

Samsung Galaxy S21 and Galaxy S21 Plus specifications 

The Galaxy S21 5G and Galaxy S21+ 5G are IP68 rated dustproof and water-resistant devices. The Galaxy S21 has a 6.2-inch display, whereas the Plus variant has a bigger 6.7-inch display. Both phones 

feature Dynamic AMOLED 2X screen that offers Full HD+ resolution of 1080 x 2400 pixels, 60 to 120Hz refresh rate, 1300nits brightness, ultrasonic in-screen fingerprint reader, and Gorilla Glass 7 protection. The S21 offers 52pi pixel density, while the S21+ supports only 394ppi. The Galaxy S21 will come with a plastic rear, while the S21+ will have a glass back.

Galaxy S21 Ultra

The Galaxy S21 5G has a 4,000mAh battery and it measures 7.9mm in thickness and weighs 171 grams. On the other side, the Galaxy S21+ 5G has a larger 4,800mAh battery and it has a thickness of 7.8mm and weighs 202 grams. Both phones are preinstalled with One UI 3.1 based Android 11 OS. The retail package of the S21 duo will not feature a charger. These phones carry support for 25W fast charging, and they are also equipped with wireless charging and reverse wireless charging.

 

The Galaxy S21 and S21+ have a triple camera setup on their rear. The setup includes an OIS assisted 12-megapixel main lens with 1/1.76-inch sensor size, 1.8μm pixel size, and f/1.8 aperture. It is coupled with a 64-megapixel telephoto lens with OIS and a 12-megapixel ultrawide lens. The triple camera setup supports 3x hybrid zoom and up to 30fps 8K video shooting. On the front, the S21 duo has a 10-megapixel selfie camera.

 

Europe will receive the Exynos 2100 chipset variant of the Galaxy S21 and S21+. Some other markets including the U.S. will get their Snapdragon 888 variants. Both phones will come with 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB / 256 GB of internal storage. It seems that the S21 duo will not have a microSD card slot. Both phones offer other features such as dual SIM support, Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC, USB-C, face recognition, and stereo speakers.

 

OUR VERDICT

Surprise, the Galaxy S21 Ultra is launching a month earlier than anticipated, and that’s good news if you’re eager to own the very best of what Samsung can pack into a smartphone. It wowed us with a huge screen, five cameras and the best zoom on any readily available Android phone. Caution: while it’s cheaper than last year’s ‘Ultra’ phone, it remains pricey for average consumers, and it doesn’t come with a microSD card slot nor does it include a charger.

Design and display

 

The Galaxy S21 Ultra is one gorgeous-looking smartphone – so much so that we didn’t bother to put a case on it during testing. Risky, yes, but the finish of our review device – a matte Phantom Black with few seams – helped minimize the camera bump and fingerprints smudges.

In addition to the deep, Vantablack-like Phantom Black color, there’s also a Phantom Silver color on sale everywhere, while Samsung’s own online store offers an additional three options: Phantom Titanium, Phantom Navy and Phantom Brown. 

Whatever color you choose, the matte finish of each is a significant improvement over last year’s S20 series, which had a reflective sheen that looked a little plasticky and cheap.

 

The Galaxy S21 Ultra screen is Samsung’s first (among smartphones) that’s capable of running at a smooth 120Hz refresh rate while in a pixel-packing Quad HD resolution. The entire S20 series and Note 20 Ultra forced you to choose between 120Hz/60Hz and Quad HD/Full HD, while the new S21 and S21 Plus are stuck at Full HD+, with 120Hz enabled by default.

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra

The long-awaited verdict to having both? Meh – it’s the best of both worlds, sure, but you won’t see much of a difference between 1080p and Quad HD on a display of this size, and Quad HD will drain your battery faster. 

The need for resolutions higher than Full HD among smartphones was being driven by VR headsets – you could see a ‘screen door effect’ at lower resolutions when the pixels were so close to your face. But Samsung, along with the entire mobile industry, seems to have cooled all phone-based VR initiatives

 

This is still Samsung’s best screen, but for many other reasons. We found the 6.8-inch body to be easier to grasp than the 6.7-inch iPhone 12 Pro Max, and that’s in large part thanks to the curved display and overall narrowness of Samsung’s device. The curved edges are subtle on the S21 Ultra, and not quite as pronounced as on past Samsung devices, and that means fewer errant presses.

We also tested the screen brightness of the Galaxy S20 Ultra outdoors, and it automatically amps up to a super-bright 1,500 nits when necessary. Other phones with AMOLED screens, including the S21 and S21 Plus, max out at 1,200 nits, and every little bit helps in direct sunlight.

Samsung’s redesigned in-screen fingerprint sensor, which uses ultrasonic technology courtesy of Qualcomm, makes its debut on the Galaxy S21 series. There’s 1.7x more surface area to this invisible biometric pad, and we found it was more forgiving of our often wayward thumb placement – that’s a relief given the fact that face unlock is useless at a time when we’re often hidden behind a mask. Visit naijateck for more TECH News

 

 

 

Emezie Okoro

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