Samsung Galaxy S21 FE release date, rumours, features, specs

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(Pocket-lint) – Samsung’s Galaxy S21 series only hit shelves a few months ago but there are already plenty of rumours circulating about the Galaxy S21 Fan Edition, or Galaxy S21 FE. 

The Galaxy S21 FE would succeed the excellent Galaxy S20 FE if it arrives, likely hitting the sweet spot between price and features once again. Here is everything we have heard so far.

Release date and price

  • Possibly 19 August
  • Cheaper than Galaxy S21

The Samsung Galaxy S20 Fan Edition model was revealed in September 2020 and made available in October 2020. It’s been claimed there is a Samsung device with a model number SM-G990B in the works that is likely to be the Galaxy S21 FE, and that it would launch in the second half of 2021.

With the Galaxy S21 series launching earlier than the Galaxy S20 series, it might be that the Galaxy S21 FE also arrives a little earlier than its predecessor. A leaked mini Samsung roadmap suggests a date of 19 August has been pencilled in for the S21 FE launch, which would support that idea, and potentially fill the August launch gap if the Note 21 doesn’t appear this year.

In terms of price, we’d expect the Galaxy S21 FE to sit below the Galaxy S21. The Galaxy S20 FE starts at £599 in the UK for the 4G model – it isn’t available in the US – with the 5G model costing £599 in the UK and $599 in the US, so we would expect a similar ballpark for the Galaxy S21 FE. 

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Design

  • Similar to Galaxy S21 series
  • Plastic 
  • IP68 rating likely
  • 155.7 x 74.5 x 7.9mm

The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE featured a design similar to the Galaxy S20 series, but made a couple of changes in order to reduce the price, like a plastic rear instead of glass.

The Galaxy S21 FE is expected to do the same but with a design similar to the Galaxy S21 and S21+. Rumours claim it will come in gray/silver, pink, violet, and white colours, though there has also been talk of light green. It’s likely to offer waterproofing, like the Galaxy S20 FE did, and we’d expect a flat display.

Based on some leaked renders, the camera housing on the rear of the S21 FE will fall into the frame, as it does on the Galaxy S21, but it will be an overall more traditional and simpler design. The housing also appears to be the same colour as the rest of the rear rather than a different colour like the Galaxy S21.

Display

  • 6.4-inches
  • Full HD+
  • 120Hz refresh rate likely

The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE has a 6.5-inch display with a Full HD+ resolution, though rumours claim the Galaxy S21 FE will have a 6.4-inch screen. That still puts it in between the Galaxy S21 and Galaxy S21+ in terms of size though.

Both the S21 and S21+ have a Full HD+ display too and both come with a variable 120Hz refresh rate. As the Galaxy S20 FE retained the 120Hz refresh rate of the Galaxy S20 series, it is likely the S21 FE will also offer the faster refresh rate, though it is unclear if it will offer variable.

A flat display is also likely for the Galaxy S21 FE, along with a centralised punch hole front camera. It’s also likely to be a Super AMOLED panel.

Hardware and specs

  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 888/Exynos 2100?
  • 128GB/256GB storage options
  • 5G

Rumours suggest the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE will come in 128GB and 256GB storage options, like its predecessor. It isn’t clear if it will offer microSD support for storage expansion, though the Galaxy S21 and S21+ don’t so it’s possible the S21 FE won’t either. 

Reports claim it will be a 5G device, which we’d expect, though it isn’t clear if there will be a 4G LTE model too as there is with the Galaxy S20 FE. It is also said to run on Android 11. 

At the moment, there is no word on what processor the Galaxy S21 FE will use, though as the Galaxy S20 FE ran the same as the Galaxy S20 series, we’d expect the Qualcomm Snapdrgon 888 or the Exynos 2100 like the Galaxy S21 series.

It’s likely the Galaxy S21 FE will offer a little less RAM than the Galaxy S21+ but it wouldn’t be surprising to see the same battery capacity.

Camera

  • Triple rear camera probable

The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE featured a triple rear camera with the same main camera as the Galaxy S21+. It dropped the resolution of the telephoto camera and upped the resolution of the front camera. It also has the same resolution ultra wide camera as the Galaxy S20 and Galaxy S20+ but with smaller pixels. 

At the moment, there are no specific rumours regarding the Galaxy S21 FE camera specs, but renders show a triple rear camera like the Galaxy S21 and S21+, which is expected.

Samsung Galaxy S21 FE rumours: What’s happened so far?

Here is everything we have heard about the Galaxy S21 FE so far.

6 May 2021: Samsung Galaxy S21 FE on track for August reveal, in four colours

Ross Young tweeted claiming the Galaxy S21 FE is starting production in July and set to come in Gray, Light Green, Light Violet and White colour options.

12 April 2021: Here’s what the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE will look like

Steve Hemmerstoffer (OnLeaks) posted a number of high resolution renders of the Galaxy S21 FE to The Voice plaform, along with a few details. 

18 March 2021: Samsung Galaxy S21 FE could launch on 19 August, S7 Lite tablet in June

Evan Blass revealed a leaked Samsung mini roadmap that suggests the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE could launch on 19 August 2021. 


Best smartphones 2021 rated: The top mobile phones available to buy today

13 February 2021: Samsung Galaxy S21 FE mid-ranger might arrive later this year

Sammobile claimed the Galaxy S21 FE could already be in development with a model number SM-G990B. The site said it will have 5G, come in 128GB and 256GB storage options, and have Android 11. It is also said to be coming in gray/silver, pink, violet, and white colours when it launches in the second half of this year.

15 November 2020: Samsung Galaxy S21 FE expected in 2021

Leaker Max Weinbach tweeted that the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE was one of the flagships to expect from Samsung in 2021.

Writing by Britta O’Boyle.





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