Samsung intends to launch a new variant of the Galaxy S21 FE, but an early leak uncovered a significant change that might turn off many buyers.
Samsung may be planning to launch a new variant of the Galaxy S21 FE, which has been reported to be less powerful than the current model. While some will argue that the Galaxy S21 FE’s arrival was ill-timed since the Galaxy S22 series launched a few weeks later, the phone is still a great buy for those who can’t afford to pick up the new Galaxy S22. However, in countries like the United States, there are other alternatives to Samsung’s budget flagship.
There is the Pixel 6, which costs $599, $100 less than the Galaxy S21 FE. It shares a handful of features with the Galaxy S21 FE, such as the screen size and resolution but packs a bigger battery and supports faster wireless charging. There is also the Galaxy A53 5G which costs $450 and has the same software support duration as the Galaxy S21 FE.
The Galaxy S21 FE currently sold across the globe is powered by a Snapdragon 888 chipset which has a 5G modem built-in. However, a new variant of the phone with a slightly different model number has been spotted on various sites. First reported by Galaxyclub, the new variant has the model number SM-G990B2, which is similar to the SM-G990B model number of the current model in the market. The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has also certified this new variant. In addition to these are some listings that have popped up on some retail sites, revealing some key specs of the phone, chief of them being a new processor.
A Mid-Range Chip Should Mean A Lower Price Tag
One of the listings is from a Danish store, while the other is from the Norwegian online store Technet and both listings reveal the phone will have a 6.4-inch FHD+ display with a 2340 x 1080 resolution. While the screen size is identical to the Galaxy S21 FE, the resolution is slightly different. For the cameras, it keeps the same configuration as the current Galaxy S21 FE – a 12MP primary sensor, an 8MP telephoto camera, and a 12MP ultrawide angle camera while the front-facing camera is a 32MP sensor. There is also a 4500mAh battery capacity. In addition to these specs, both listings mention the phone has an “SDM720G” processor, which is Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 720G chipset, the same one that powers the Galaxy A52 4G. The chipset is paired with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage.
Compared to the Snapdragon 888 inside the current Galaxy S21 FE, this chip is not only a serious downgrade in terms of performance, but it also lacks a 5G modem. There is no explanation for why Samsung would want to launch a less-powerful variant of the Galaxy S21 FE, let alone one with a 4G modem, in the middle of 2022. This year Samsung has ramped up the switch to 5G. Its new mid-range Galaxy A smartphones, such as the Galaxy A33, Galaxy A53 and Galaxy A73, are only available in 5G options, unlike their predecessors that were available in 4G and 5G options. Samsung is even equipping entry-level models such as the Galaxy A13 with 5G.
While an official launch date for the phone is yet to be revealed, the listings from both sites say the ETA for the device is July 1, 2022. This might mean Samsung will unveil the phone before the end of June. When it arrives, it is expected to have a price tag lower than the $699 launch price of the 5G version. However, it is unknown if it will make it to the United States.
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