Samsung Galaxy Unpacked Event 2021: Live Blog

Faisal Rasool

Samsung's Galaxy Unpacked 2021 comes almost a month ahead of its yearly schedule. Later today, the company will be unveiling a new line of Galaxy devices. The virtual event has the tagline 'Welcome to the Everyday Epic.' The stream starts at 8:00 pm.

You can catch it live either on this page or on We’ll be liveblogging the highlights in bite-sized updates. Feel free to engage in the conversation via the comment section down below.

Samsung will be unveiling the new line of Galaxy S-series phones, along with other Galaxy products. The details of the Galaxy S21 series are an open secret if you've been following the story. It features three editions, S21, S21+, and S21 Ultra. The new Galaxy Buds Pro are expected to make their debut as well.

1/14/2021 9:16 pm
The event just concluded. Samsung has dropped prices from last year. Where the S20 started from $999, the base S21 variant is priced at $799. S21+ is $999 and the Ultra edition costs $1,199.

The entire lineup goes on pre-sale tomorrow. The pre-order window lasts from January 15 to February 5. With each Galaxy S21 and S21+ pre-order, Samsung is throwing in free Galaxy Buds Live and a SmartTag. S21 Ultra pre-registrations come bundled with Galaxy Buds Pro and a SmartTag.

1/14/2021 9:07 pm
Smart Things is a new Galaxy ecosystem. Google’s Nest and Android are seemlessly integrated into it — giving you access to entertainment, navigation, and smart home controls. 

1/14/2021 9:00 pm
Samsung is following in Apple’s footsteps. Just as the rumor mill had predicted, the S21 series will ship without a charging brick in the retail box. In all likelihood, this is the start of an industry trend. And the charger will go the way of the headphone jack. 

1/14/2021 8:58 pm
Samsung has added a rose color to spruce up the black and white color palette of the Ultra series.

1/14/2021 8:56 pm
It’s official. The S21 Ultra is now compatible with the S-pen. Samsung partnered with the graphic tablet giant, Wacom, to design the pen. What we hadn’t expected is two s-pen variants, one S-pen and the other S-pen Pro.

Samsung’s iconic stylus is the only feature that separates the high-end Galaxy Note from the S-series. Combining the S-pen with the S-series effectively makes the Note phones redundant. So its future is unclear now. We’ve been hearing rumors that Samsung is considering killing it off.

1/14/2021 8:50 pm
The extra space fits in an extra telephoto camera, in addition to the periscope-style one. Together they power the 100x space zoom which uses a blend of software magic and two dedicated lenses. Has Samsung finally perfected the feature?

1/14/2021 8:40 pm
Now’s the time for the most cutting-edge and ultra-premium powerhouse, S21 Ultra. Its gigantic camera now takes up even more space.

The main camera is designed to be versatile and highly-versatile. The sensor, using nona or 3x3 pixel binning, generates large and clean super pixels — great for both low-light and daylight photos. Also, 12-bit HDR eliminates blur.

1/14/2021 8:34 pm

Samsung’s first 5nm chipset powers these phones. As our host explains, over the past generation, the S21 line offers 20% CPU improvement and a significant 35% upgrade in GPU performance. AI is also twice as fast. The S21 packs the same 4000 mAh battery, but at 4800 mAh, the S21+ cell is slightly larger this year. We’re also promised all-day battery life and better heat management.

1/14/2021 8:30 pm
The S21, together with the revamped camera, takes point-and-shoot photography a step further. We’re looking at features like the Director’s mode, vlog mode, and live thumbnails. Single Take 2.0 takes multiple shots in several formats to get the perfect shot.

S21+ is the 6.7” version of the S21+ — the same camera, internal hardware, and screen. But it doesn’t have the beige color.

1/14/2021 8:20 pm

Now we’re getting to the meat of the presentation, the Galaxy S21 series. As always, the standard S21 has the widest range of colors available. It comes in charcoal, beige, silver, and lavender (it features a gorgeous gold accent on the camera island).

The bezels are not just shaved off to the very edges, they’re also uniform all around giving the S21 a one-of-a-kind look. But the hole-punch in the center is still there. The adaptive AMOLED 6.2” screen cycles between 48Hz and 120Hz. Given that the specs are unchanged from last year, the camera improvements largely come from the new ‘Pro-grade’ camera software and the new chip. The AI adjusts lighting and isolates portraits. When taking selfies, the white balance is also adjusted accordingly.

1/14/2021 8:16 pm
Smart Things Find is an entire network that helps you track Galaxy SmartTags. They can be attached to valuables and pets, and can pinpoint the exact location of the tag.

1/14/2021 8:12 pm
The event just kicked off with the keynote speech. As we expected, personalization is front and center this year. And more collaborations with tech companies are coming.

And the first Galaxy product for the night is being unveiled. The new Galaxy Buds Pro come in the familiar Galaxy Buds live casing, available in black, lavender, and white colors. But they no longer resemble beans.

The Buds Pro are oval in design, with metallic accents and soft ear tips sticking out. Also, the 3-mic array is back. As is the intelligent active noise cancellation on these TWS buds. And they can seamlessly switch between Galaxy devices. Using system-in-package technology, the Buds are engineered with two-way speakers.

They also detect your head movements to fully immerse you in the sound. In the demo, the AI onboard isolates conversations, neutralizing wind and noise during your calls. The pair starts from $199.