Samsung may bid farewell to the Galaxy Note series next year. This is according to Korean tech blog The Elec, which suggests that the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra and Galaxy Note 20 may be the company’s last-ever Note branded devices. Instead, Samsung may offer an S Pen to the Galaxy S21 Ultra’s next top-of-the-line Galaxy S device. The regular Samsung Galaxy S21 and S21 Plus – If Samsung continues with the three-pronged strategy and naming system of existing models – will not feature a stylus.
Samsung may also bring the S Pen to the Galaxy Z Fold 3- the 2021 iteration of its flagship tablet-style foldable, following the release of the Galaxy Z Fold 2 in the coming weeks.
It has been suggested by some that Samsung introduced the S Pen with a foldable device due to concerns over repeated durability and cracking over the durability of ultra-thin glass. The company will no doubt be trying to take the strength of that material to the point where it can reliably abuse a stylus.
Now, it is worth pointing out that this is the first time Samsung has been rumored to sunset the Note series. Last September, when Samsung was in the process of launching the Galaxy Note 10 series, Evan Blass tweeted that the tech giant was actively involved in mixing the Galaxy S and Note lines into a single family of devices for the first half-year. Was considering Because their “features overlap so closely.”
Will ‘Galaxy Note’ be gone forever?
The obvious step would be to retire either the Galaxy S or the Galaxy Note name when the two product lineups are merged into a series. But to maximize the capacity of the lineup, Samsung may choose to keep both brands.
For example, standard and plus-size flagship models may continue to be marketed under the Galaxy S branding, but the Ultra variant with the S Pen may be entirely different from the Galaxy Note’s name or replacement.
For now, Samsung has not confirmed the name for the next Galaxy S device but as most rumors call it the Galaxy S21, that’s what we will refer to it in this feature until there is any substantiating evidence suggesting otherwise.
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra Release Date And Price
- Expected to be announced February 2021
- Likely on sale from March 2021
Samsung usually announces a series of Galaxy S smartphones in February, followed by a release in March, so we would expect the same for 2021.
The Samsung Galaxy S9 was announced on February 25 and March 16 from the sale. The Galaxy S10 was announced on February 20 and on sale from March 8, and the Galaxy S20 was announced on February 11 and from March 6.
We would expect the Galaxy S21 series to go on sale on March 5 or March 12, but we are making an educated guess for now.
In terms of price, we’d expect the devices to be in a similar ballpark to their predecessors, with the Galaxy S21 the cheapest and the Galaxy S21 Ultra – if there is one – the flagship device.
- Glass and metal premium design
- Drastic redesign unlikely
The Samsung Galaxy S20 series made a few changes on the design front compared to the S10 series (ignoring the S10 Lite), moving the camera housing on the rear from the center to the left corner.
The front remained largely unchanged however with a punch-hole camera in the center of the display at the top. It’s not yet clear if Samsung will change the design drastically from the Galaxy S20 – we expect to see some changes but we don’t expect to see an entire redesign.
A waterproof body with a glass rear and metal frame are likely to remain for the Galaxy S21 with new color options.
The biggest change might come if Samsung succeeds in offering an under-display front camera but there’s only one rumor to say this is a possibility so far. If things stay mainly the same, expect the Galaxy S21 Ultra to look like the flagship again, like the S20 Ultra does.
- Three sizes again?
- 120Hz refresh rates
- Curved edges
The Samsung Galaxy S20 has a 6.2-inch display, the S20+ has a 6.7-inch display and the S20 Ultra has a 6.9-inch display. All have curved edges and all have a Quad HD+ resolution with a 120Hz refresh rate.
We would expect similar display sizes in the Galaxy S21, S21 +, and S21 Ultra – if there are three devices again – and we would expect to see a 120Hz refresh rate again as well. We would also at least expect curved displays on the S21 + and S21 Ultra.
Hardware and specs
- Exynos 991/992 or 1000/Qualcomm Snapdragon 875
- 128GB/256GB storage options
It’s been suggested the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra will run on the unannounced Exynos 1000 – a 5nm chipset said to compete with the unannounced Qualcomm Snapdragon 875 – which the US version of the device will likely offer.
As for the standard Galaxy S21 and S21+, it is currently unclear what chipsets will power them but Exynos 991/992 (name still unconfirmed) has been suggested. It’s also been claimed there will be 5G variants of all three devices and they will be offered in 128GB and 256GB storage options.
In terms of battery capacities, the S21 Ultra is likely to have the largest, followed by the S21+ and then S21.
- Under-display front camera?
- 150MP main camera rumored
- OIS on the front camera?
Samsung will undoubtedly offer a big focus on the camera for the Galaxy S21 range, especially in the case of the S21 Ultra. There’s been talk of an under-display selfie camera, as well as talk of OIS on the front camera, and there has also been talking of a 150-megapixel sensor in the making too.