Practice English Speaking&Listening with: The cost of price cuts

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(upbeat music)

- Gather around friends.

For now it is time to tell a story

about the Samsung Galaxy S21.

I don't know what I'm doing here.

It's this purple and gold phone that you're looking at.

And what's interesting

about the S21 is that Samsung has found a way

to drop the price on this phone down to $800

while still keeping a lot of flagship specs but,

not all of them.

I mean, look, bringing the price down means

that Samsung has to make some choices

about what's worth including

and where it can save some money.

And the story with the S21 is whether

or not Samsung made the right choices

on what to keep and where to save,

but more importantly

whether Samsung's choices line up with your needs.

So let's just, review the phone to find out.

(upbeat music)

So right at the top to

I do wanna get one little re viewy bit out of the way

'cause I've got some other stuff I wanna say

before we really get into it.

If you need a new phone

and you like the way that Samsung does things

you will like this phone and it won't do you wrong.

There's no WTF fails here.

And there is one incredible thing in the S21.

It has a fast and powerful processor.

As for the rest, well, it's good, but not great.

You see for the past couple of years now,

basically since mid-range phones started getting really good

I've been saying

that it's harder to buy an inexpensive phone

than it is to buy a flagship phone.

With flagship phones like this S21 Ultra here,

if you can afford to pay for this phone

you don't have to think about what your trade offs are.

Everything on this phone is as good

as Samsung can make it,

but with the S21 or really any other less expensive phone

you have to decide what you care about

and what you don't care about.

And also on the other side

every company is trying to bring

the price down on their phones

and so they have to place some bets.

And on this phone,

Samsung bet on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor.

Here is what this processor gets you.

A very fast phone with decent battery life.

That's kind of the bottom line for most people.

You can get a full day

but you can also kill it in a day

if you really overdo it.

The battery on the small Galaxy S21

with a 6.2 inch screen is 4,000 milliamps.

And for me, it's enough to get through a normal day.

There is also a Plus version of this phone

which has a 6.8 inch screen and a 4800 milliamps battery.

I didn't get the test the bigger one,

but it is a safe bet

that it has a slightly better battery life

than the regular S21.

Oh, and by the way, speaking of Qualcomm

it has a bigger and faster fingerprint sensor now

and Samsung put it in this phone,

it's under the screen and it is really good.

It's bigger and faster

and I'm really happy it's in here.

(upbeat music)

In terms of being a powerful, good performing phone,

the S21 checks that box with a big old Sharpie.

It also has a variable refresh rate screen

that goes from 48 to a 120 Hertz.

It has eight Gigs of Ram, which okay, but look

there's no lag on the camera or anywhere else.

And of course it has 5G.

And you know, by the way,

in the US I think

that 5G is starting to get good enough

that I think you should get it if you can.

But to be clear, do not upgrade just to get 5G.

But if you have to upgrade this year

all other things being equal.

If a 5G phone is on the table

you should probably opt for it.

Anyway, Samsung's choice for the most important thing

on this phone is the processor.

So let's talk

about the things that Samsung didn't choose to prioritize.

And the first one is glass.

I mean, there's of course glass

on the front of the screen

but the back of this phone is made out of plastic.

It does make the phone lighter and cheaper.

You know what?

Yeah, go for it.

It feels fine, it feels good.

I think it looks good.

And you can get it lots of different colors really easily.

Honestly with plastic, this nice.

It's kind of hard to justify asking

for glass on the back of most phones.

Plus maybe more importantly

the S21 has this new updated design that Samsung has come

up with where the metal rails blend into the camera bump

on the side which is surrounded by metal now.

And it makes the camera bump look nicer

and makes this whole thing feel just more

like an integrated whole and more elegant.

But then there's stuff that has been left

out of both the regular S21

and the S21 Plus and even the very fancy Galaxy S21 Ultra.

So for example, there's no MST Samsung's system for paying

at credit card readers it only has regular all NFC.

That's fine by me,

but there's also no micro SD card slot

for storage expansion anymore which,

I don't know you really just need to make sure

that you pick the right storage option

if you go to buy this thing.

So the base Galaxy S21 costs 799 99

for a 128 gigs of storage.

To get 256 you just have to spend 50 bucks more.

And it's the same with the S21 Plus.

It starts at a thousand dollars

and for 50 bucks more, you can double the storage.

See, I've been talking a lot about choices

but the choice of which stores option you should buy

it really seems like an easy one.

But as long as we're talking about prices

remember that Samsung phones get pretty heavily discounted

by carriers and everybody else all the time

and actually pretty fast too.

So honestly, if you're interested

in a Galaxy S21 OR S20 Plus or even the Ultra

it's worth looking for a deal

or maybe even waiting for a deal.

Another choice that Samsung made to save money is

that the screens are only 10 ADP,

but look the screen still looks great.

It's also perfectly flat and not curved on the edges

which I know a lot of people prefer.

It's nice.

It's a nice screen, but it doesn't work

with the S pen like the Galaxy S21 Ultra can.

So, no stylists for you on the small one.

That leaves one more set of choices to talk about.

And it's probably the most important choices.

It's the choices on the cameras.

And with the cameras

Samsung basically decided to do, nothing.

Other than a little sensor swap on the ultra wide,

this camera system is the exact same thing as we had

on the Galaxy S20 last year.

There's three cameras

a wide and ultra wide and a 3X telephoto.

And then the selfie camera

on the front is a 10 megapixel sensor.

Now look, I know it's not totally fair to say

that Samsung did nothing.

They are taking advantage of that Qualcomm processor

to slightly tweak the way that they process images.

There are a kajillion camera features too.

You can shoot 4k 60 on all the lenses

you could use director's mode

which lets you get a little preview

of all the lenses and switch between them as you shoot.

Although it does drop down to 10 ADP.

There's pro modes for both photo and video

so that you can adjust the ISO whatever else

you want whenever you want.

There's also space zoom

which lets this thing zoom all the way

up to 30 X, but don't do it.

It's pretty bad.

Anything over three, five, 10 here is not really usable.

But set all of those features aside

and just look at the photos

and you would have to be

the persnicketiest the pixel peepers to

tell the difference between this year's Galaxy S21

and last year's Galaxy S20.

Which means that the images and photos

that this thing shoots are good.

They just don't keep up with the S21 Ultra

Or the iPhone 12.

So what I thought made the most sense to do

is to compare it to the Pixel 5

which is kind of the same idea as the S21

in terms of having to make choices

to get some cost savings.

And when you're looking

at the photos that these two phones take, honestly

it's a choice between the pixels aesthetics and consistency

or Samsung's technically superior photos

and a telephoto lens.

Looking at the images.

I prefer the pixels color choices.

I think that Samsung still over brightens a little bit.

I mean, just look at these greens

but Samsung just does a little bit better in the details.

It's nicer in night mode

and it has an optical zoom at 3X.

The pictures are overall sharper too, which usually works

but sometimes it just goes a little bit too far.

And also between these two phones

the S21 clearly wins on video too.

(upbeat music)

Okay. There's one final set of choices to talk about.

It is the choices that Samsung makes with its software.

Now I've ranted about this, my Galaxy S21 Ultra review

I'll like that down below, you can go watch that.

Here I'm just gonna keep it short.

There are ads in Samsung apps for no good reason.

And there are dozens of features in the settings

and a bunch of stuff in the quick settings.

And it's not immediately obvious what they are

or if you should care about them.

Now I've done all the work and like looked

into what all the little buttons do

and I've turned a bunch of them on and,

I really get a lot out of this phone.

It's really powerful.

But if you haven't used a Samsung phone in a while

and you pick this thing up

just prepare to invest some time to figure out

what all of these options and buttons and features do.

And if you actually wanna turn any of them on.

(upbeat music)

So those are all of the choices that Samsung made

in developing the Galaxy S21.

And when you put them all together, what you discover is

that the S21 is basically a refresh

of last year's Galaxy S20

with a faster processor in a different,

and I think nicer design.

Which means that the biggest choice here

is that instead of making a fan edition low-cost version

of the Galaxy S flagship phones

Samsung just made the Galaxy S phones themselves

the low cost editions

and left all the fancy stuff for the Ultras.

As for Samsung's decision to bring that cost down

by prioritizing the processor

above all the other features they could have put in here.

It's probably the right choice

for people who wanna have a phone

that's gonna last them several years.

A fast new processor adds to the longevity of a phone

but the bummer about all that other stuff that they left

out means that Samsung took a choice away from you.

You can't get Samsung's very best phone

without getting Samsung's very biggest phone.

And what that means is I don't think you should rush

out to upgrade to the regular Galaxy S21.

But if you do need a new phone

and you do like the way that Samsung does Android

then yeah, the Galaxy has 21 is a fine choice.

Thanks so much for watching.

Like I said, I've done a review of the Galaxy S21 Ultra.

If you wanna know what a spec monster is

like when Samsung goes at it

as for the regular S21 down in the comments

let me know what you think of Samsung's choices.

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