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- Galaxy S21 FE vs. Galaxy S21: Every big difference we're expecting in Samsung's phones

- Galaxy S21 FE vs. Galaxy S21: Every big difference we're expecting in Samsung's phones

The Samsung Galaxy S21 FE (not pictured) is expected to be a cheaper alternative to the Galaxy S21 (above). 


Sarah Tew/CNET

Samsung’s next Galaxy phone launch could be on its way. We may see the as early as . Like , the Galaxy S21 FE is expected to be a less expensive version of Samsung’s marquee smartphone, the . The two phones could even sport a similar look, according to leaked marketing material from . 

But, you’re probably wondering what you’ll be missing out on by choosing Samsung’s budget-minded option over the standard . It’s impossible to answer that question before Samsung announces the Galaxy S21 FE. But rumors and leaks may have given us some idea of how the Galaxy S21 FE could compare to its more expensive sibling.

It’s important to keep in mind that none of the information below has been confirmed by Samsung and may not reflect the actual device. One rumor from Korean news website also suggests the Galaxy S21 FE may only launch in Europe, so it might not be available in your area even if the leaks do turn out to be accurate.

Here’s what we know about how the Galaxy S21 FE could compare to the Galaxy S21.

Samsung Galaxy S21 vs. Samsung Galaxy S21 FE (rumored)



Samsung Galaxy S21

Samsung Galaxy S21 FE (rumored)

Display

6.2-inch AMOLED 2,400 x 1,080; 120Hz refresh rate

6.4 AMOLED 2,340 x 1,080; 120Hz refresh rate

Processor

Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 5G

Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 5G

Camera

12-megapixel wide, 12-megapixel ultra-wide, 64-megapixel telephoto

32-megapixel, 12-megapixel, 8-megapixel

Front camera

10-megapixel

12-megapixel

Battery and charging

4,000 mAh capacity; fast charging; Wireless PowerShare

4,370 mAh capacity; fast charging

Storage

128GB or 256GB

128GB or 256GB

Memory

8GB RAM

6GB or 8GB RAM

Connectivity

5G, LTE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, ultrawideband

5G, LTE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0

The Galaxy S21 FE may have a slightly larger screen than the Galaxy S21

The Galaxy S21 FE is rumored to come with a 6.4-inch screen, according to information posted on China’s TENAA Certification website spotted by . That would make it just a bit larger than the , which has a 6.2-inch screen, possibly making it a good middle ground for those who want a screen that’s bigger than the S21’s but not as large as the 6.7-inch

It’s also expected to come with a 120Hz refresh rate for smoother scrolling, just like the Galaxy S21. But what’s less clear is the resolution we should expect to see. One report from MyFixGuide says the phone will come with a 2,340×1,080 resolution, while from the same website lists the resolution as 2,009×1,080. 

The first report is based on the TENAA Certification website, while the second came from leaked specifications that reportedly appeared on the Google Play Console, Google’s tool that lets developers publish and manage games and apps.

The Galaxy S21 FE’s price will probably be cheaper than the Galaxy S21’s

We can’t say anything about the Galaxy S21 FE with certainty just yet. But there’s a strong chance it will be cheaper than the Galaxy S21, just as was about $300 less expensive than the .

Since the Galaxy S21 starts at $800, that would put the Galaxy S21 FE at $500 if Samsung follows the same pricing structure. But this is all speculation at this point, since Samsung has yet to even announce the phone. But there’s a chance it might take a different approach since it already offers at that price. 

Expect a triple-lens camera, but with different resolutions than the Galaxy S21

Like many of Samsung’s other , the Galaxy S21 FE is expected to come with a triple-lens , according to MyFixGuide. But there are important differences when it comes to the quality of those cameras, the report suggests. The Galaxy S21 FE is expected to come with a 32-megapixel, 8-megapixel and 12-megapixel rear camera system and a 12-megapixel front camera. The Galaxy S21, by comparison, has a triple-lens camera with a 12-megapixel wide, 12-megapixel ultrawide, and 64-megapixel telephoto lens with a 10-megapixel selfie camera. 

That suggests the Galaxy S21 FE may take sharper selfies, but the Galaxy S21 will likely take crisper zoom and ultrawide shots. It sounds like Samsung wants to provide the flexibility that comes with having three cameras and multiple shooting modes, but may have opted for lower-resolution sensors to keep the price down. 

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