Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G Review: Most Value-For-Money S21 Flagship
After several months of teasers, rumors and leaks, Samsung has finally launched the Galaxy S21 FE 5G smartphone. In India, this is Samsung’s first smartphone launch in 2022. This new phone is the successor to the Galaxy S20 FE that was launched last year and is a refreshed variant of the regular Galaxy S21.
The Galaxy S21 FE 5G smartphone claims to offer a flagship experience and offers features like a 120Hz refresh rate AMOLED display, powerful processor, triple camera setup and more. Also, one of the key highlights of S21 FE is that the phone supports a wide range of 5G bands. After using this phone for some time, here’s our review of the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G.
Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G Design And Display
The design is inspired by the flagship Galaxy S21 series with the triple camera module nicely blending into the side frame. Samsung has used a plastic back panel while the frame is made of aluminium. The Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G feels lightweight at 177 grams and talking about durability of this phone, the display is protected by Gorilla Glass Victus. Not to forget, the body is IP68 rated dust and water resistant as well.
To make the phone look good, Samsung has matched the colour of the camera module with the back panel. The device comes in four colour options– Graphite, White, Lavender and Olive. Overall, the build quality is sturdy and the device feels compact in the hands.
This phone flaunts a 6.4-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X display panel with Full HD+ resolution. Not just that, the refresh rate of the display can be bumped up to 120Hz for a smoother experience.
Samsung is continuing with the similar 19.5:9 aspect ratio while the pixel density is decent at 411 pixels per inch. This means, you won’t face much of a problem while viewing the phone under direct sunlight. The viewing angles are at par with other phones and the colour production is quite good. Overall, there’s isn’t anything in particular to dislike about this display. Be it gaming, watching movies or using the phone generally, the experience is quite pleasing.
Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G Performance
When we talk about the performance of Samsung phones, the debate starts with why Samsung is not using the Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset for the devices that are sold in India. In fact, the Exynos versus Snapdragon chipset discussions have been there for almost all Samsung flagships. While this could be quite polarising for tech enthusiasts, for end users, adequate performance is all they care about. And this is where this phone delivers and you are essentially getting the same performance that you can expect to get from other S21 series phones.
Samsung is offering the S21 FE 5G variant with the 5nm Exynos 2100 chipset in India. This is the same chipset that powers flagship smartphones in the S21 series including the expensive Galaxy S21 Ultra and S21+ devices.
This phone comes with 8GB of RAM which is capable of taking care of your day-to-day performance requirements. And there are two storage variants. You can choose to buy the S21 FE with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage or if you are some who need more storage space then you can opt for the 256GB variant with the same 8GB RAM module.
Note that there is no microSD card slot in this phone. Also, there’s no headphone jack, so you need to get a wireless earphone to listen to music.
As far as the overall performance is concerned, this phone is smooth and offers a good multitasking experience. You won’t have to deal with any lags or app crashes while gaming and overall, most average users will be mighty pleased with this phone. The device runs Android 12 operating system and delivers a clean software experience as well.
As India is gearing up to get 5G connectivity, the good news is that the Galaxy S21 FE supports a wide range of 5G bands. But for obvious reasons, we were not able to test 5G performance on this phone.
Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G Camera
Samsung has talked a lot about the camera of this phone. The Galaxy S21 FE 5G comes with a triple camera setup at the back with a 12-megapixel dual pixel Wide primary sensor that offers auto focus, optical image stabilisation and an aperture of F1.8.
The other two cameras include a 12-megapixel ultra wide sensor with F2.2 aperture and an 8megapixel telephoto sensor with F2.4 aperture. The phone offers up to 30X digital zoom. While 30X Zoom sounds great, remember you would need super steady hands and a tripod to get desirable results. Also, super zoom images may not always impress you.
This phone can be used to record videos in 4K resolution at up to 60 frames per second. The video quality is good and can easily cater to the needs of content creators.
Overall, the camera delivers flagship-like results in bright conditions but you will need to be a bit patient while shooting in lowlight. On the front, there’s a 32 megapixel selfie camera with an aperture of F2.2 which clicks decent photos for social media usage.
Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G Battery
Talking about the battery life of this phone, the device will easily last you a day of mixed usage including gaming. Initially, you may be surprised to get a battery life of over a day. There’s a 4,500mAh battery with support for 25W fast charging. If you charge this phone wirelessly then you get 15W fast charging. Not to forget there’s reverse charging as well with which you can use the phone to charge earbuds and smartwatches too.
Having said that, you won’t get any charger inside the box. So, if you don’t have a fast charger you will need to buy it. Samsung has trimmed the box of its flagship phones and nowadays you just get the phone and a charging cable.
Talking about other features, there’s support for Samsung Pay and you can make NFC payments. Also, there’s support for Samsung Dex which can connect the phone to a PC or monitor and convert the phone into a desktop ‘Android computer’.
Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G Verdict
The Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G is all about providing the flagship experience of the Galaxy S21 series at a much affordable price point. Of course, there are many phones out there which may sound better on paper but this phone from Samsung is all about delivering a hassle-free experience with a longer life-span in terms of software, durability and brand value.
Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G doesn’t promise any flashy new feature, charging or camera capability. It’s all about providing a reliable device with decent cameras, 5G support, good performance and battery life.