Now that the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra is available. How does it compare to last year’s Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra? We’re going to be doing a side-by-side comparison, Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra. And we’ll be trying to answer the question. If you’ve got the S21 Ultra right now should you upgrade to the S22 Ultra? And if you’re new in the market, which one should you buy?
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Design Comparison
I want to initially kick off by talking about the design. Now I’m going to just go ahead and say this in my personal opinion, I think the S21 Ultra is a better-looking device. Thanks to this console cut camera module which blends into the edges. This is a really unique design and the S21 Ultra was my favorite-looking smartphone of 2021. And it still holds up.
The S22 Ultra is not bad by any means. We’ve got these individual camera rings, which do look pretty good. I just prefer the contour cut camera module. They’re both roughly about the same when it comes to size and weight. But the thing to note is that the S21 Ultra is a lot more curved on the edges versus the more squared edges on the S22 Ultra.
And you guys probably already know this, but this is because the S22 Ultra is following the design language of Note devices that we’ve had previously, compared to S devices. I’d also say that the S21 Ultra overall is a little bit more comfortable to hold. Thanks to these curves on the edges versus the more pokey sides of the S22 Ultra.
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Color Comparison
S22 Ultra is available in more colors. So the S21 Ultra is available in a phantom black and a phantom silver. It was also available in a few exclusive colors which you can no longer from samsung.com. The S22 Ultra comes in four colors. We’ve got a phantom black, a phantom white, burgundy as well as green. We’ve got red, graphite as well as sky blue. And there are three additional exclusive colors available from samsung.com.
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Dimension Comparison
Both devices are really premium. And we’ve got an aluminum armor frame with Gorilla Glass Victus on the S21 Ultra, and Gorilla Glass Victus Plus on the S22 Ultra. This is apparently 12.5% stronger. I’m not sure how they’ve reached this number and I’m not somebody who does drop tests, but the S21 Ultra has been quite durable in my experience. And I expect the S22 Ultra to be the same or even better.
Both devices do have IP68 water and dust resistance. And let’s now move over to the front. So both are following the Infinity-O designed with small bezels and a punch out.
Both devices are also curved on the edges. However, the S22 Ultra does have more of a pronounced curve compared to that on the S21 Ultra.
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Display Comparison
Both devices have a 6.8-inch display with Dynamic AMOLED 2X technology Quad HD Plus resolution with a refresh rate of up to 120 Hertz, making everything really smooth. Now, let me just go ahead and say that the S21 Ultra had one of the best displays of 2021, and it still holds up today. It’s still one of the best displays on the smartphone market, but of course, Samsung has improved a few things here on the S22 Ultra.
Firstly, the adaptive refresh rate can go all the way down to just one Hertz. Whereas the S21 Ultra can only onto 10 Hertz. This is going to make the S22 Ultra display a little bit more efficient. And we also had a higher peak brightness on the S22 Ultra all the way up to 1,750 nits compared to the already very bright display on the S21 Ultra with 1,500 nits.
So realistically speaking, both of these are excellent displays and you can’t go wrong with either. But yes the S22 Ultra does have some improvements. Both also have an in-display ultrasonic fingerprint scanner. This is the Qualcomm 3D Sonic Gen 2 sensor. So that’s not a chance. This works really well. I like it and I really do prefer it to optical in-display fingerprint scanners which shine a big light whenever you’re trying to unlock.
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Camera Comparison
Let’s now talk about the cameras, but just to quickly remind you. If you’re enjoying this video so far and you want to see more videos like this then maybe consider subscribing and hitting that bell icon. So you’re notified as soon as I upload a fresh new video.
Now I know a lot of you guys are interested in the camera setup and what the differences are. I’m going to try to break everything down for you as best I can with some samples as well. Now on paper, they seem pretty much exactly the same.
We’ve got a 40-megapixel selfie camera with a quad rear-facing camera setup and laser autofocus. You’ve got a 12-megapixel ultra-wide camera and generally speaking, you get some great results with both of these excellent dynamic ranges with lots of detail. Then we have the 108-megapixel primary cameras. Now the S22 Ultra does have larger pixels around 1.2, three times.
So in good light, I think they are still pretty much neck and neck. But when it comes to low light, I’ve noticed that on the S22 Ultra you don’t have to keep the shutter open for as long as you have to do on the S21 Ultra. Also, when it comes to extreme low-light situations I did find that the S22 Ultra performed better.
And one of the other new features that we’ve got on the S22 Ultra is a detail enhancer at 108 megapixels. Now, once again the S21 Ultra still takes great images at 108 megapixels. But, if you look really, really close you might notice that’s with the detail enhancer on, you are just going to get some more crisp details on the S22 Ultra.
Now, when it comes to the zoom cameras, both have three times as well as a 10 times optical zoom camera. And to be fair, the S21 Ultra still holds up. But thanks to the improvements on the image signal processor and software, the S22 Ultra was a tad sharper, I found.
And when we zoom in at 10 times, again they’re very close. But when we get to 30 times you will start noticing that on the house the lines are just a little bit more defined on the S22 Ultra compared to the S21 Ultra.
And when we go in all the way to 100 times zoom which is super creepy, again, the S21 ultra is still holding up. But the S22 Ultra just has some nice refinements. Again, those lines are just clearer on the S22 Ultra.
Now one area where I definitely did notice an improvement on the S22 Ultra is when it comes to portrait. So Samsung is using a new AI depth mapping algorithm and this is really good at detecting edges. So although the S21 Ultra still does pretty well.
Now on the S21 Ultra, you can take portraits at one time, two times, as well as three times. On the S22 Ultra, you can only take portraits one time and three times. Now, I’m really not concerned about this because when you are at two times on the S21 Ultra, it’s actually using digital zoom because the S21 Ultra does not have a two times dedicated optical zoom camera. And this results in very soft images at two times anyway.
For video, both can record at 8K 24 frames a second and 4k 60 frames a second across all cameras. But we do have some new features on the S22 Ultra. Firstly, thanks to that depth mapping technology the portrait video are better, and you can also do portrait video with both one time as well as the three times optical zoom camera on the S22 Ultra. On the S21 Ultra, you can only do it at one time.
The S22 Ultra also has a new feature called Auto Framing. This is where it’s going to take a wide-angle view and then zoom into subjects. I mean, this does work. It’s not something I can see myself using too much.
So generally speaking although there are some improvements here on the S22 Ultra. I still feel that the S21 Ultra has excellent cameras which still do hold up.
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Chipset Comparison
Let’s now talk about the performance. So the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra comes with last year’s chipsets. We’ve got the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 or the Samsung Exynos 2100, depending on your region. The S22 Ultra comes with the latest Qualcomm snapdragon 8 Gen 1 or the Samsung Exynos 2200. Now, it’s really difficult to talk about performance. Because having tried both of these outs they do handle everything that I’ve thrown at them.
Now I’m not somebody who games too much on my smartphone but my buddy Thunder E from Booredatwork is a gamer. And in his testing, he did find that the S22 Ultra did maintain slightly lower temperatures when gaming for a longer period of time. And it was also more efficient over time. So after say an hour of gaming he did lose less battery life on the S22 Ultra compared to the S21 Ultra.
But generally speaking, yes the S22 Ultra is going to give you a slight edge in terms of performance. But the S21 Ultra is still really, really good.
Now for Ram, the S21 Ultra does have more Ram compared to the S22 Ultra. You’ve got either 12 or 16 gigabytes. The S22 Ultra has eight or 12 gigabytes. Now, in my day to day, I really did not find much of a difference.
There’s also a feature called Ram Plus which is going to give you some more virtual memory that it’s going to take from the Ram. Honestly speaking, everything that I tried worked absolutely fine on both of these devices. And I didn’t really notice too much of a difference.
Sure, if you’re going to be switching through many, many apps then the 16 gigabyte Ram version of the S21 Ultra might give you a slight edge. I personally don’t have that with me. So I can’t test that out, Unfortunately.
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Software Comparison
Now for software, both devices currently have Android 12 with one UI. We’ve got one UI 4.0 just updated on my S21 Ultra. On the S22 Ultra, it comes with one UI, 4.1 out of the box. Samsung has been really good with updates. They are also supporting their devices for quite a bit longer compared to many other competitors.
But being the new device the S22 Ultra is obviously going to have updates for a longer period of time compared to the S21 Ultra.
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra S Pen Comparison
let’s talk about the feature that makes the S22 Ultra unique and different to the S21 Ultra. And that is the enclosed S Pen. So the S21 Ultra does have support for the S Pen. However, this is something that’s not enclosed within the device and it’s something that you have to buy separately.
Now, I did try the S Pen on the S21 Ultra last year but because there wasn’t really somewhere to house it, you’d have to get a bulky case or something. And I really found myself not using it at all. However, with the S22 Ultra, it is carrying over that Note DNA, and having the S Pen enclosed within the device really makes a big difference.
So if you are somebody like me who uses is the S Pen a lot for editing images and other things, then I really do think you’ll appreciate having the S Pen included with the S22 Ultra.
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Battery Comparison
Right, battery size and battery life. So both devices have the exact same battery size, 5,000 mAh. Now it is quite impressive that Samsung has managed to get this size battery into the S22 Ultra, considering that the S Pen does take up space inside the device.
And what has my experience been with battery life? So the S21 Ultra for me has had a really good battery life. And in my usage of the S22 Ultra so far I’m getting pretty similar battery life compared to the S21 Ultra.
So that’s roughly about six hours plus of the screen on time with my usage. I know usage varies from person to person but I haven’t really noticed a huge deal of difference. It’s not like the S22 Ultra is lasting me a lot longer or a lot less. Now, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, because once again I want to emphasize that the S21 Ultra does have excellent battery life.
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Charging Comparison
Now for charging, both of these have the same speed of Qi Wireless Charging at 15 Watts. So this hasn’t been improved. We’ve also got reverse wireless charging wireless power share, where you can charge things like earbuds on the back of these devices.
And neither of these comes with a charger included out of the box. However, the S22 Ultra can support faster 45-watt charging. Whereas the S21 Ultra can only support a maximum of 25 watts of charging.
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Speaker Comparison
Now for speakers, we’ve got really good stereo speakers on both devices. We’ve got one in the earpiece and one button firing. They both sound pretty much the same to me. However, I do prefer the positioning of the speaker on the S21 Ultra, which is in the same space as the camera. So when I am gaming, occasionally, then I’m not really going to block it up.
Now, I know most people when they game use earphones, I don’t. With the S22 Ultra, if you are holding the device in landscape then you can cover the bottom (indistinct) speaker.
Samsung S21 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Storage and Price Comparison
Finally storage and pricing. So both devices are available in a 128, 256, as well as a 512-gigabyte version. However, the S22 Ultra is also available in a one terabyte version, if you really need that storage. Neither are expandable.
And the S22 Ultra does start at the same price as the S21 Ultra started at. However, you do get eight gigabytes of Ram instead of the 12 gigabytes of RAM for the base model. And there are slight differences for the larger storage versions.
However, because the S21 Ultra has been out for a year. If you want to pick it up right now, you can get it for around 800 pounds or $900 renewed. The S22 Ultra, Samsung is actually giving some really crazy pre-order deals.
So right now on Samsung’s website, you can get the 256-gigabyte version for the price of the 128-gigabyte version, or the 512-gigabyte version for the price of the 256-gigabyte version.
If you have an S21 Ultra, should you upgrade it to the S22 ultra? In my personal opinion, don’t think so. I think the S21 Ultra is still an excellent device and it’s still going to be absolutely fine for you.
Yes, you’re getting quite a few improvements here on the S22 Ultra but I don’t think they’re significant enough to warrant an upgrade already.
However, if you are somebody who uses the S Pen a lot and maybe you want to take advantage of some of those trade-in deals.
Then it might be worth considering trading in your S21 Ultra and getting the S22 Ultra. And if you’re somebody who’s currently thinking should you buy the S21 Ultra instead of the S22 Ultra and save a bit of money?
In my personal opinion, with all of the pre-order deals that you can get right now. I would go for the S22 Ultra. You’re getting the newer device and it’s going to last you that much longer. That’s what I think anyway.
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What do you guys think? Do drop me a comment below and let me know your thoughts.