Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus review

The middle model in the Galaxy S21 family, is the Samsung S21 Plus smartphone the sensible compromise?

Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus
(Image: © Basil Kronfli/Digital Camera World)

Digital Camera World Verdict

The Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus is a great all-around smartphone, but at around $1000 / £949, it isn’t much cheaper than the S21 Ultra and loses out on almost all its bells and whistles. In day-to-day use, it’s performance is on-point, so if you find it at the right price, it won’t disappoint. Like the S21, the S21 Plus’s camera is also dependable for most scenarios, but when you’re paying this much, it’s not unreasonable to expect a bit more sparkle, some new hardware, and maybe even a telephoto zoom.


  • +

    Good looking, slender smartphone

  • +

    Big, bright, smooth screen

  • +

    Flagship power and smooth UI


  • -

    2020 camera hardware

  • -

    No optical zoom

  • -

    No expandable storage

Why you can trust Digital Camera World Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out how we test.

Samsung’s Galaxy S21 series has been incredibly well-received, with the top-tier S21 Ultra scoring full-marks and the Galaxy S21 not far behind. There’s a lot Samsung is doing right with this year. Sitting in the middle between both in terms of size and price, the Galaxy S21 Plus combines S21 specs with a larger display and a bigger battery. It also sports a higher price, and coming in at just shy of $1,000/£1,000, needs to be pretty darn special to win your cash. 

On paper, it’s an instant tough sell. With its 6.7-inch display, it’s a flagship size, but its 1080p resolution is a step down from last year’s S20 Plus. Sporting the exact same camera setup, and a plastic back, we’re left wondering why you’d even consider it when its predecessor is trumping some of its headline specs. There’s also tough competition from the much cheaper Galaxy S20 FE, OnePlus 8T and Xiaomi Mi 11.

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Basil Kronfli

Basil Kronfli is a freelance technology journalist, consultant, and content creator. He trained in graphic design and started his career at Canon Europe before moving into journalism. Basil is also experienced in video production, independently running the YouTube channel TechEdit, and during his time at Future, he worked alongside the Digital Camera World team as a senior video producer.