Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus vs S10 Plus: What are the key differences?
If you’re looking for a Samsung Galaxy S21, it’s a good idea to compare it to past Samsung models, if only to see what advancements have been made. The most natural comparison is between this year’s models and the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10 Plus. After all, if you bought one of those two phones when they were released in 2019, you’re probably thinking about updating by now.
This type of comparison highlights several major improvements in the most recent editions. The Galaxy S21 and Galaxy S21 Plus both have excellent displays, a major speed bump thanks to the Snapdragon 888 engine, significant camera enhancements, and 5G compatibility as standard rather than an optional, more costly model.
Two years make a tremendous difference in smartphones, so the Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus will have an advantage over their S10 counterparts. Even if the latest handsets lack a few capabilities in older Samsung phones, our Galaxy S21 vs. Galaxy S10 comparison reveals that now is a fantastic time to upgrade.
We’ll break it down for you so you can decide for yourself.
Galaxy S21 vs. Galaxy S10 specs
|Galaxy S21||Galaxy S21 Plus||Galaxy S10||Galaxy S10+|
|Screen size||6.2-inch Dynamic AMOLED (2400 x 1080; 48Hz – 120Hz)||6.7-inch Dynamic AMOLED (2400 x 1080; 48Hz – 120Hz)||6.1-inch Dynamic AMOLED (3040 x 1440; 60Hz)||6.4-inch Dynamic AMOLED (3040 x 1440; 60Hz)|
|CPU||Snapdragon 888||Snapdragon 888||Snapdragon 855||Snapdragon 855|
|Storage||128GB, 256GB||128GB, 256GB||128GB, 512GB||128GB, 512GB, 1TB|
|Rear cameras||12MP (f/1.8) wide; 12MP (f/2.2) ultrawide; 64MP (f/2.0) telephoto with 3x optical zoom||12MP (f/1.8) wide; 12MP (f/2.2) ultrawide; 64MP (f/2.0) telephoto with 3x optical zoom||12MP (f/1.5, f/2.4) wide; 16MP (f/2.2) ultrawide; 12MP (f/2.4) telephoto with 2x optical zoom||12MP (f/1.5, f/2.4) wide; 16MP (f/2.2) ultrawide; 12MP (f/2.4) telephoto with 2x optical zoom|
|Front cameras||10MP (f/2.2)||10MP (f/2.2)||10MP (f/1.9)||10MP (f/1.9); 8MP (f/2.2)|
|Battery life (Hrs:Mins)||9:53 (60Hz); 6:31 (adaptive)||9:53 (60Hz); 9:41 (adaptive)||10:19||12:35|
|Wireless||5G, Wi-Fi 6E, UWB||5G, Wi-Fi 6E, UWB||LTE, Wi-Fi 6||LTE, Wi-Fi 6|
|Size||6 x 2.8 x 0.31 inches||6.4 x 3 x 0.31 inches||5.9 x 2.77 x .31 inches||6.2 x 2.92 x .31 inches|
|Weight||6.07 ounces||7.13 ounces||5.54 ounces||6.17 ounces|
|Colors||Phantom Violet, Phantom Gray, Phantom Pink, Phantom White||Phantom Violet, Phantom Silver, Phantom Black||Prism White, Prism Black, Prism Green, Prism Blue, Canary Yellow, Flamingo Pink, Cardinal Red, Smoke Blue||Prism White, Prism Black, Prism Green, Prism Blue, Canary Yellow, Flamingo Pink, Ceramic Black, Ceramic White, Cardinal Red, Smoke Blue|
Galaxy S21 vs. Galaxy S10: Prices
Samsung chose to launch the Galaxy S21 family this year at less expensive rates, falling from what many thought the S20 series’ prices were too high. You will need to pay $799 for the base Galaxy S21 with 128GB of storage; an additional $50 will bring you the 256GB model.
The base edition of the Galaxy S21 Plus costs $999, and the 256GB variant costs a further $50.
The Galaxy S10 Plus launched in 2019 with a starting price of $999 before Samsung reduced it to $849 with the release of the Galaxy S20 Plus a year later. Starting prices for the Plus versions haven’t altered. Since then, prices have decreased much further.
The Galaxy S21 is $100 less expensive than the Galaxy S10 was when it first launched in terms of entry-level versions. Additionally, the cost of the S10 has decreased, first to $749 in 2020 and then further into this year.
If you’re thinking about upgrading, start at Samsung because the company is giving back money for outdated phones. With a Galaxy S10, for instance, you can obtain a credit of up to $450 toward the Galaxy S21 or Galaxy S21 Plus. We also keep tabs on the top Samsung Galaxy S21 offers from other merchants and wireless service providers.
Galaxy S21 vs. Galaxy S10: Display
For years, Samsung had some of the greatest smartphone displays, but with the S20 series, it embraced high refresh rates. Samsung reduced the screen resolution to full HD (1080p) with the Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus but added a variable refresh rate that can ramp up to 120Hz.
While the total resolution isn’t as great as the Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus, the S21 and S21 Plus can be set to 120Hz or adaptively reduced to save battery life. The S10 versions, however, are limited to 60Hz and QHD resolution.
These older Samsung phones still have fantastic displays, but once you see Android at 90 frames per second or higher (120fps in the case of the S21/Plus), it’s difficult to go back to 60. The difference is palpable, and it’s for the better.
Galaxy S21 vs. Galaxy S10: Design
With the S20 series, Samsung altered its design aesthetic, which was then improved for the S21. Instead of being a bar, the back cameras are confined to a single corner. Instead of being offset to one side, the cutout for the front camera is centered along the top. In conclusion, there are still some parallels between the two device families, but you must actively hunt for them.
In contrast to the S21 and S21 Plus, which come in Phantom Violet, Phantom Gray, Phantom Pink (S21), Phantom Black (S21 Plus), and Phantom White (S21), the S10 and S10 Plus have a lot of silly and entertaining color options, especially the yellow one.
The S21 and S21 Plus are heavier than the S10 and S10 Plus – in fact, the S21 is nearly as heavy as the S10 Plus. The thickness of these phones is the same at 0.31 inches, but the S21 and S21 Plus are larger at 6 x 2.8 inches and 6.4 x 3 inches, respectively. In comparison, the S10 measures 5.9 x 2.77 inches, and the S10 Plus is 6.2 x 2.92 inches. It’s a small difference, especially considering the batteries in the S21 and Plus are larger than those in the S10 and S10 Plus.
Galaxy S21 vs. Galaxy S10: Performance
It may seem obvious, but performance measurements will be substantially different between the S21 and the S10 families. The new Snapdragon 888 processor in the Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus is a beast, and it is the top-performing CPU in the Android world.
The S10 and S10 Plus, on the other hand, are powered by the Snapdragon 855, which is still more than adequate for the great majority of users but is two years older than the Snapdragon 888. Basically, unless you’re a spec junkie, there’s no reason to upgrade to the S21 just for the performance boost.
When the Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus were released, they were the quickest Android phones we’d tested, though the OnePlus 9 Pro and ROG Phone 5 have since exceeded Samsung’s smartphones. We offer a detailed analysis of our original Galaxy S21 benchmarks if you’re interested.
When combined with the 8GB of RAM, there isn’t much the S21 and S21 Plus can’t achieve in terms of smartphone performance. The S10 Plus’s higher-end model included 12GB of RAM as an option, which might be useful for keeping more apps in memory. Having said that, we’re convinced that the majority of you will be OK with the S21/Plus 8GB.
The storage capacity on all of these phones starts at 128GB. The S21 and S21 Plus have storage capacities of up to 256GB, whereas the S10 has a maximum capacity of 512GB. That’s nowhere near what the top-tier S10 Plus saw: a whopping 1TB. All this was on top of the S21 series’ lack of a microSD card port. If you save everything on your phone and choose the 512GB or 1TB options on your S10 or S10 Plus, you may want to find another backup solution if you upgrade to an S21 or S21 Plus.
The Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus are standard with 5G connectivity and compatible with all 5G networks in the United States. In 2019, Samsung produced a unique Galaxy S10 5G model, which was somewhat expensive for early adopters.
Galaxy S21 vs. Galaxy S10: Cameras
The S21 and S21 Plus retain a triple camera arrangement, which is essentially the same as the Galaxy Note ’20s, however, the telephoto lens has been improved. It now has 3x optical zoom, up from 2x on the S10 and S10 Plus, while Samsung’s Space Zoom function on the latest phones can result in 30x photographs. It’s quite impressive.
These Samsung phones have ultrawide lenses, ideal for capturing spectacular landscape images. The major differences are software-powered camera features on the newer models, such as the insane Space Zoom feature, which can yield 30x zoom images, or the Super Stable mode, which uses AI to keep your video steady. Read Also; Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra vs Galaxy Note 10 Plus
Through software updates, several camera functions have made their way to the S10. For example, Verizon customers received a software update for the Galaxy S10 models, allowing the Photo, Portrait, and Hyperlapse camera modes to recognize low-light conditions. Still, if you want the greatest camera features, you should go with the newest versions.
The front cameras on all four phones are 10MP, with the Galaxy S10 Plus adding an additional 8MP snapper. If selfies are essential to you, the S21 and S21 Plus will not disappoint, while the variations in photo quality between the S10 and S10 Plus may not be easily evident to most people.
Galaxy S21 Plus vs S10 plus: Battery and charging
The Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus batteries are larger than those in the S10. The S21 has a 4,000 mAh battery as opposed to the S10’s 3,400mAh; the S21 Plus has a 4,800 mAh battery as opposed to the S104,100mAh. +’s
The batteries in the S21 series are not only physically larger but also combined with the more power-efficient Snapdragon 888. Samsung has also discussed the new AI features on the S21 and S21 Plus, stating that it will learn your usage habits and manage battery consumption accordingly.
Unfortunately, this did not convert into fast timings in our battery test, in which we had phones surf the web until they ran out of juice. The Galaxy S21 lasted 9 hours and 53 minutes with the display set to 60Hz; turn on adaptive display and the S21 ran out of energy 3 hours sooner. The Galaxy S21 Plus had more consistent results in line with the typical smartphone. However, when we tested the Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus in 2019, they both lasted longer on a charge.
The S21 family supports 25W fast charging, which means you may charge your phone quickly if you purchase the charger separately, as it is not included with the phones. Out of the box, the S10 and S10 Plus support 15W charging. (The S10 5G had a 25W rapid charging capability.)
It’s worth mentioning that none of the Galaxy S21 phones come with a charger, so you’ll have to buy one separately to get the full rapid charging experience. People argue for it in grounds of decreasing electrical waste and packaging, but we understand why this decision may irritate some.
Galaxy S21 plus vs S10 plus: Bottom line
If you’re currently using a Galaxy S10 or S10 Plus, the S21 and S21 Plus are excellent options if you’re seeking to upgrade. You’ll get even better displays, 5G, camera upgrades, faster charging, and larger batteries. Not only that, but the Snapdragon 888 CPU is the most recent offering from Qualcomm.
Coming from the S20 series is a considerably smaller step, so unless you really want Samsung’s latest, you’re not missing out on much. What a difference two years can make in smartphone technology, however.
It’s unfortunate that the S21 and S21 Plus don’t come with a charger, but the most vexing absence is the lack of a microSD card slot. Why Samsung did this is unknown, but it will not be a popular decision among users. If you need expandable storage, you should definitely stick with your S10 or S10 Plus, or get one of the S20 phones now that their costs have dropped.
Nonetheless, it’s no surprise that the Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus outperform their S10 siblings. If you’re ready to upgrade, these Samsung models might be the ones to convince you to do so.