Today, we will talk about the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G (India Variant) which has been made available in India on 11-Jan-2022. We will talk about the specs and features of the S21 FE 5G and also the important changes from S20 FE 5G model. So, make sure to read this review till the end.
First-hand Experience of Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G (India Variant)
We have got our hands on the new Galaxy S21 FE 5G phone and here we are sharing our reviews. We will be covering almost every aspect of this flagship phone starting from the build to the software. So, let’s start with the outer body design.
Body and Design Overview
So, first of all, the Galaxy S21 FE 5G carries over the same design language as the other S21 phones. But, there are a few minor differences. First, the frame at the back does not extend to the camera bump. And second, the camera model has the same finish in all the S21 FE color variants. The olive green, the graphite black and the lavender, all of them have the same color finish on the back as well as the camera module.
Now, the frame of the device is Aluminium which looks premium. And the back is the same matte finish plastic from the S21. But we’re not actually complaining. Because first, the finish looks and feels really good and secondly, we like the lightweight nature of the phone. Though, S21 FE 5G is a little bigger when compared to the Galaxy S21 but there’s no doubt that the S21 FE 5G is a compact and lightweight phone. Apart from that, the whole design is IP68 rated for water and dust resistance. So, you can actually take it for a swim.
On the front the Galaxy S21 FE 5G has Samsung’s 6.4″ Dynamic AMOLED 2X display. It also comes with the 120 Hz refresh rate with 19.9:5 aspect ratio, 1200 nits of peak brightness, HDR10 Plus support and Gorilla glass. So, this is a proper Samsung flagship display and it shows in typical Samsung style.
The colors on the display just look really beautiful and vibrant. And with the loud stereo speakers the experience of watching movies and shows is great. Plus, the display is really smooth thanks to the 120 hertz refresh rate.
Cameras in the Galaxy S21 FE 5G (India Variant)
Anyway, going to the back once again, we have the Triple-camera setup in S21 FE 5G. And compared to the S21, there’s only one change – the Telephoto lens. S21 FE 5G sports an 8-megapixel sensor instead of the 64-megapixel camera on the S21. And we don’t think it’s a big deal because the 8-megapixel sensor here has a YS and it can take 3x optical zoom shots.
The S21 FE 5G also lacks 8K video recording support which we personally don’t really mind. Because, 4K 60 FPS is more than enough for most of us and this phone supports that. Anyway, the main rear camera remains the same. And the 12-megapixel dual pixel camera with OIS takes flagship grade photos. We have not tested this extensively, but from whatever photos we’ve taken with the FE 5G so far, look really good.
We have been most impressed with the colors in the photos, especially in gloomy cold season. So, yeah this is promising. Plus, there are all the other high-end features like the dual video feature. That means, you can record a video from the front and the rear camera at the same time in the PIP style or in the big screen style.
The selfie camera is a 32-megapixel sensor instead of the 10 megapixel camera on the S21 series. So, on paper, it’s actually an upgrade. And from the selfies we’ve taken, it seems like a very good selfie camera. The exposure is great, and it captures good details.
The Powerhouse (Battery)
The S21 FE 5G also packs a 4500 mAh battery which is a 500 mAh pump from the S21. This makes sense because the FE does have a bigger screen too. Talking about the charging, like the S21, the S21 FE 5G also has no charger in the box. But it does support 25 watt fast charging along with fast 15 watt wireless charging which is expected in the flagship phone.
Important Change (the Processor in Galaxy S21 FE 5G)
Apart from all the specs and features, there is one important change in the S21 FE 5G. In the India variant, unlike the S21 FE in the US, comes with Exynos. Yes, it’s true. The India variant we have tested, has the Exynos 2100 chipset with 8 GB of RAM and 256 GB of storage. We know, a lot of you guys were expecting the Snapdragon version. But even the S20 FE came with Exynos first and then came the S20 FE 5G with Snapdragon.
So, yes, we were kind of expecting this. Anyway it is the Exynos 2100 in India. To be honest, it is a flagship chipset. The same 5 nm chips that Samsung uses in the S21, as well as the higher priced S21 Ultra. So, Samsung isn’t really making a compromise here.
It’s too early to comment on the long term performance of the S21 FE 5G right now. But so far, it runs like a flagship – it’s fast, responsive and the gaming is top-notch. So, you get the idea. And we can’t complain about Samsung not using the Snapdragon 888 because that’s not a chipset that has received a lot of positive reviews. In fact, it’s evident from various reports that a lot of Snapdragon 888 phones have thermal issues.
Android Features and Updates
Apart from all this, one thing we liked is that the S21 FE 5G comes with the latest One UI 4 update on top of Android 12. That means, you get all the new Android 12 features like the Privacy Indicators or the Privacy Dashboard which Samsung has tweaked a bit.
Besides that, you also get these new widgets like Clock or Calendar etc. There’s also theming feature based on the wallpaper. So, you can set a wallpaper and the icons change along with the UI elements.
Samsung has been doing great when it comes to Android updates. And this is another phone that’s promised to get 3 years of major Android updates and 4 years of security patches which is just great.
Samsung Galaxy S21 FE 5G Pricing
So, all in all, the galaxy S21 FE 5G brings all of the S21 features plus a bigger screen, a bigger battery and a different Telephoto camera. With all of this, the S21 FE 5G is priced at INR 54,999 for 128 GB variant and INR 58,999 for 256 GB variant. Initially, the S21 FE 5G was planned for 2021 but due to the whole chip shortage issues it has arrived now.
This is a true flagship phone – it has a flagship design with features like IP68 water and dust resistance, fast wireless charging, dual OIS, a Telephoto lens. These are features that a majority of budget flagships lack be the OnePlus 9 or even the upcoming OnePlus 9RT or even the lower priced Mi 11X Pro or Realme GT.
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Galaxy S21 FE 5G – A true Flagship Phone from Samsung
The S21 FE 5G is a flagship all around. It has cameras that seem very good, there’s a beautiful 120 Hz AMOLED screen, the latest One UI 4 on top of Android 12 with Samsung’s 4 years update promise. And there is Exynos chip which at the end of the day is still a flagship chipset. So, let us know your thoughts about the S21 FE 5G in the comments down below.