Samsung unveils new Galaxy S21 range – how to find the cheapest deals
Samsung has today revealed three new handsets for 2021: the Galaxy S21 5G, the Galaxy S21+ 5G, and the Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G. They're certainly not MoneySaving, with the most expensive – the S21 Ultra 5G – costing up to £1,329. But if you're determined to get one, we've got some tips on how to cut costs below.
All of the new models are now available to pre-order and will be released on 28 January. But the latest Samsungs won't come with a power adapter. This means those new to Samsung or those with older equipment that is not compatible may need to buy these separately, with a power cable costing £11.90 when purchased with the phone from Samsung directly.
Also, in a first for its flagship range, the new handsets have been designed to be compatible with the faster 5G network - this is despite 5G not being available across the whole of the UK until 2022 at the earliest. But don’t worry though, as if 5G isn’t available in your area just yet, the handsets will still work with 4G.
What are the new models and how much will they cost?
Here's a rundown of what to expect from the new handsets - and how much they'll cost if you buy one upfront.
- Samsung Galaxy S21 5G – This model comes with four cameras (one front, three rear) and a 6.2-inch screen. It starts at £769 for 128GB of storage, rising to £819 for 256GB.
- Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G – This model has the same features as the S21 5G, albeit with a bigger 6.7-inch screen. It's £949 for the 128GB model or £999 for the 256GB model.
- Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G – This model comes with a slightly bigger screen again, at 6.8-inches. It also comes with its ‘pro-grade camera system’ packing five cameras (one front, four rear) and in a first for the Galaxy S series, you’ll be able to use the mobile with Samsung's ‘S Pen’ - but you have to buy that separately for £34. Handset prices starts from £1,149 for the 128GB model rising to £1,329 for the 512GB model.
How to cut the cost of buying a brand-new Samsung
New models typically cost more as soon as they've launched, but if you're determined to pre-order one, here's how to cut costs.
- First, do you REALLY need the latest model? The prices of previous Samsung models will most likely come down now that the newer models have been revealed, so if you want a fancy smartphone but aren't fussed about having the latest model, this is a cheaper way to get your hands on one. Use our Cheap Mobile Finder tool or check our Cheap Samsung guide for the pick of best - including prices for the Samsung Galaxy S20 range released just last year.
- If you're sure you want a new Samsung... wait a few weeks. Based on what we've seen in previous years, handsets are initially expensive but prices drop after launch, as the market settles and cheaper deals come through. This applies particularly to contracts, as upfront prices are less likely to move – but the longer you wait, the better the deals are likely to be.
- Avoid paying for extra storage you don't need. With these models, storage ranges from 128GB to 512GB and there's a real price difference when it comes to each, so don't buy more storage than you'll really use. See How to increase phone storage for free.
- Avoid paying for extra data you don't need. When looking at plans, ensure you check you're not paying for something you won't ever use. For example, will you ever use that 100GB/month of data? Most won't and according to our most recent poll, 68% use 3GB/month of data or less, increasing to 80% using 5GB/month or less. So it pays to check with your provider how much data you use each month on average. You can usually find this information by logging in to your account or for a rough idea on your usage, you can use our handy Data Calculator tool.
- Contract deals can be the cheapest way – though never just go direct to the network. Historically, we've said that if you have the cash, as a rule it's cheaper to buy a new mobile phone upfront and pair with a cheap Sim, as two-year contracts generally come at a hefty markup. But increasingly, contracts that include the handset price are becoming cheaper.
- Prefer to buy upfront? You can spread the cost of a new Samsung interest-free. If you're buying online via Samsung, it gives you the option to pay monthly through PayPal Credit which allows you to pay over either 12, 18, 24 or 36 months interest-free. For example, the top end Samsung Galaxy Ultra 5G, when purchased with the power adapter works out at £37.25 a month if you choose to pay over 36-months (a total of £1,340.90). Just be aware that PayPal Credit charges a £12 late payment fee and says you may be charged if interest if you don't repay in full - see our Buy Now Pay Later guide for more on how this works and the potential risks involved.
Still sure you want the latest model? How to save £500
Currently, the cheapest way we can find to get the basic Samsung Galaxy S21 5G with enough data (3GB+) is by taking out a contract. We've included this deal below alongside how much it would cost to buy the phone outright and pair with a similar data Sim. We've also included the cheapest deals available from the networks directly. Just be aware that these prices can change in future.
|24-MONTH CONTRACT VIA RESELLER|
|iD Mobile (via iD Mobile*)
|£69.99 when using code IDM10OFF on the basket page.||£34.99||20GB||£909.75|
|BUY OUTRIGHT + iD MOBILE SIM|
|Samsung S21 5G (via John Lewis)||£769||
|24-MONTH STANDARD CONTRACT|
|O2 (direct)||£30||£54.59 (iii)||5GB||£1,338|
Selling your old Samsung? Do it soon
Trends from previous years suggest that the value of your old Samsung usually drops after a new model's announced, and then falls further again shortly after new models go on sale in the UK.
When selling an old phone, always compare the prices offered by the big reselling sites using a mobile-phone recycling price-comparison service, or go it alone and flog it on eBay, where you can often sell for more. See our Sell Old Mobiles guide for full tips on ensuring you get the best price.
Have your say
This is an open discussion and the comments do not represent the views of MSE. We want everyone to enjoy using our site but spam, bullying and offensive comments will not be tolerated. Posts may be deleted and repeat offenders blocked at our discretion. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you wish to report any comments.
Update: We are aware that some users may currently be having issues seeing the comments and we're working on it.