We are reader supported. When you buy through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.

Samsung Galaxy S22 vs S21 (2022): What’s Different?

Because of yearly releases and development of new phone technology slowing down, the gap between previous gen and current gen flagships is becoming less pronounced. This can be said for many of the top brands, including Samsung. The Galaxy S22 lineup definitely has some upgrades over the previous generation S21 lineup, but are the upgrades significant enough? Today, we’ll be taking a look at the Galaxy S22 and the Galaxy S21 to find out what exactly those upgrades are.

Samsung Galaxy S22 vs S21 Comparison Chart

ModelSamsung Galaxy S22 Samsung Galaxy S21
 
PriceCheck Price at AmazonCheck Price at Amazon
Size5.75 x 2.78 x 0.30 inches5.97 x 2.80 x 0.31 in
BuildGorilla Glass Victus+ front & back
Aluminum frame
Gorilla Glass Victus front
Plastic back
Aluminum frame
Display6.1 inches Dynamic AMOLED 2X
120Hz, HDR10+
1080 x 2340 pixels 425 ppi
6.2 inches Dynamic AMOLED 2X
120Hz, HDR10+
1080 x 2400 pixels 425 ppi
ChipsetQualcomm SM8450 Snapdragon 8 Gen 1Qualcomm SM8350 Snapdragon 888 5G
Configurations128GB 8GB RAM
256GB 8GB RAM
128GB 8GB RAM
256GB 8GB RAM
Camera50 MP, f/1.8, 23mm wide
10 MP, f/2.4, 70mm telephoto
12 MP, f/2.2, 13mm, 120˚ ultrawide

Front: 10 MP, f/2.2, 26mm wide
12 MP, f/1.8, 26mm wide
64 MP, f/2.0, 29mm telephoto
12 MP, f/2.2, 13mm, 120˚ ultrawide

Front: 10 MP, f/2.2, 26mm wide
ConnectivityWiFi 6
Bluetooth 5.2
NFC
WiFi 6
Bluetooth 5.2
NFC
SensorsFingerprint (under display, ultrasonic), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometerFingerprint (under display, ultrasonic), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer
Battery3700mAh
25W charging
Qi/PMA wireless charging
Reverse wireless charging
4000mAh
25W charging
Qi/PMA wireless charging
Reverse wireless charging
ColorsGreen, Phantom White, Phantom Black, Pink GoldPhantom Violet, Phantom Gray, Phantom White, Phantom Pink

Design

The Galaxy S22 has a more premium feel than the Galaxy S21.

samsung galaxy s22 vs s21 design
The Samsung Galaxy S22 (left) and Galaxy S21 (right).

At first glance, there’s hardly any difference with these smartphones. However, upon closer look, there are a few subtle differences here and there. First, the size of the screen is slightly different. The Galaxy S22 has a 6.1-inch display whereas the Galaxy S21 sports a 6.2-inch screen.

Another difference is that the newer Galaxy S22 features a glass front and back with an aluminum frame while the previous gen S21 has a glass front, a plastic back and an aluminum frame. When held, you can feel that the former has a more premium heft due to having a glass back, as opposed to the cheaper feeling that you get with the plastic back of the S21.

One other thing that the Galaxy S22 has over the S21 is that it is slightly thinner, with a thickness of 0.30 inches. In comparison, the Galaxy S21 is 0.31 inches thick. The difference is small, but in combination with its slightly smaller screen and lowered side buttons, the S22 is much easier to use with just one hand.

The Samsung Galaxy S22 is available in green, phantom white, phantom black and pink gold, while the Galaxy S21 is available in phantom violet, phantom gray, phantom white and phantom pink.

Display

The Samsung Galaxy S22 and S21 use the same display technology.

samsung galaxy s22 vs s21 display
You’ll have a hard time telling the Galaxy S22 (left) and S21 (right) apart since they have pretty identical designs.

When it comes to display, the only noteworthy differences are the actual size and resolution. The Galaxy S22 has a 6.1-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X 120Hz display with a resolution of 1080 x 2340 pixels for a pixel density of 425 ppi. It also supports HDR10+ and has a peak brightness of 1300 nits.

Meanwhile, the older Samsung Galaxy S21 sports the same Dynamic AMOLED 2X 120Hz display, but it’s slightly larger at 6.2-inches. The screen has a resolution of 1080 x 2400 pixels for a pixel density of 421 pixels per inch. It also supports HDR10+ and the peak brightness is at 1300 nits.

Hardware

The Galaxy S22 comes with upgraded hardware and camera, but the improvement in performance over the S21 may not be that big.

samsung galaxy s22 vs s21 hardware
At the back, there’s not much difference between the Galaxy S22 (left) and S21 (right) as well.

Equipped with the latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip, the Samsung Galaxy S22 comes with improved performance over the last gen Galaxy S21 which has a Snapdragon 888 chipset. Particularly, in the GPU department. CPU performance is not that groundbreaking, but users that like to play games will have a much more enjoyable time with the Galaxy S22. You’ll get significant fps boost on most demanding games, making them smoother and overall more enjoyable to play.

Both phones are equipped with similar three camera arrays, however, the camera hardware are different. The Galaxy S22 features a 50MP wide main shooter, 12MP ultrawide and a 10MP telephoto camera at the back, and a 10MP wide selfie camera.

On the other hand, the Galaxy S21 has a 12MP wide main camera, a 12MP ultrawide and a 64MP telephoto lens at the back, and a 10MP sensor camera at the front. When it comes to the quality of the images, the two can capture excellent pictures during daytime, with the Galaxy S22 having slightly warmer colors and better zoom shots performance.

You can get both phones in 128GB and 8GB RAM, and 256GB and 8GB RAM configurations. As with most flagship phones, they don’t have microSD expansion slots.

Battery Life

The smaller form factor of the Galaxy S22 means its battery capacity is reduced.

samsung galaxy s22 vs s21 battery life
The Samsung Galaxy S22 comes in four colors—green, phantom white, phantom black and pink gold.

As it is the smaller phone, the Galaxy S22 is also equipped with a smaller capacity battery. It has a 3700mAh Li-Po battery that’s smaller than the 4000mAh Li-Po battery of the Galaxy S21. The decrease in battery capacity translates to a few minutes less run time in real-life use case, so the difference is not that big, but still worth mentioning.

Both phones support 25W charging speeds with a wall charger (not included though), 15W fast Qi/PMA wireless charging and 4.5W reverse wireless charging.

Verdict

The upgrades that come with Galaxy S22 are minor.

If you own any variant of the Galaxy S21 or a recently released smartphone that is similar to the S21 in terms of specs and hardware, upgrading to the Galaxy S22 will only provide a small improvement in performance. These older, but fairly recent smartphones still have excellent hardware that you’ll be satisfied with. However, if you own an old smartphone, the Galaxy S22 is a very good smartphone to upgrade to. It has excellent hardware with a more compact form factor than other flagships.

FAQs

📌 Does the Galaxy S22 have a memory card slot?

No, similar to the Galaxy S21, the S22 does not come with a microSD card slot.

📌 What is the difference between S21 and S22?

The Galaxy S22 is smaller, has a more recent SoC and it is equipped with a slightly better camera. However, its smaller form factor means that battery capacity is reduced.

📌 When did the Samsung Galaxy S22 come out?

February of 2022.

📌 Is it still worth buying the Galaxy S21?

Yes, its hardware holds up and if you can get it with a discount, it’s absolutely still worth buying.

RELATED  Galaxy Tab A7 vs Fire HD 10 (2021): Comparing Budget Tablets
Carlo Salvador

Senior Editor at Compare Before Buying. Writer and researcher passionate about fitness, gaming and music.