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Phone Comparisons: Apple iPhone 13 vs Samsung Galaxy S21 FE

AH Apple iPhone 13 vs Samsung Galaxy S21 FE comparison
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Samsung recently announced its new ‘FE’ device, the Galaxy S21 FE. Well, in this article, we’ll compare the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE vs Apple iPhone 13. That comparison seems logical, as the two phones have a similar price tag. On top of that, they’re not much different when it comes to size either, and both are kind of high-end devices. The best of all, they come from two different platforms, and two of the biggest smartphone OEMs in the world. So, this should be an interesting comparison.

We’ll start things off by listing their spec sheets. Following that, we’ll compare these two smartphones across a number of different categories, including design, display, performance, battery, cameras, audio, and more. That being said, let’s kick off the Apple iPhone 13 vs Samsung Galaxy S21 FE comparison, shall we?

Specs

Apple iPhone 13Samsung Galaxy S21 FE
Screen size6.1-inch fullHD+ Super Retina XDR OLED display (60Hz)6.4-inch FullHD+ Dynamic AMOLED 2X display (120Hz adaptive refresh rate, LTPS)
Screen resolution2532 x 11702400 x 1080
SoCApple A15 BionicQualcomm Snapdragon 888 or Samsung Exynos 2100
RAM4GB6GB/8GB (LPDDR5)
Storage128GB/256GB/512GB, non-expandable128GB/256GB, non-expandable
Rear cameras12MP (f/1.6 aperture, 26mm lens, 1.7um pixel size, dual pixel PDAF, sensor-shift OIS)
12 MP (f/2.4 aperture, 120-degree FoV, 13mm lens)
12MP (f/1.8 aperture, 1.8um pixel size, OIS, Dual Pixel PDAF)
12 MP (f/2.2 aperture, 1.12um pixel size, 123-degree FoV)
8MP (telephoto, f/2.4 aperture, 1.0um pixel size, OIS, PDAF, 3x optical zoom)
Front cameras12MP (f/2.2 aperture, 23mm wide-angle lens)32MP (f/2.2 aperture, 0.8um pixel size, 26mm lens)
Battery3,240mAh, non-removable, 23W wired charging, 15W MagSafe wireless charging, 7.5W Qi wireless charging4,500mAh, non-removable, 25W wired charging, 15W Qi wireless charging, Wireless PowerShare
Dimensions146.7 x 71.5 x 7.7mm155.7 x 74.5 x 7.9mm
Weight174 grams177 grams
Connectivity5G, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C5G, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C
SecurityAdvanced facial scanningIn-display fingerprint scanner (optical)
OSiOS 15Android 12
One UI 4.0
Price$699$699
BuyAppleSamsung

Apple iPhone 13 vs Samsung Galaxy S21 FE: Design

These two smartphones both come with a frame made out of metal. The iPhone 13 has a piece of glass on the back, while the Galaxy S21 FE utilizes a plastic backplate. Having that in mind, they do look quite a bit different. The iPhone 13 comes with a much boxier design. All of its sides are flat, while the Galaxy S21 FE has a lot more curves. The Galaxy S21 FE is easier to hold due to that, as it doesn’t cut into your hand all that much, but it also feels a little bit more slippery because of it.

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The Galaxy S21 FE has slightly thinner bezels, and a centered display camera hole at the top. The iPhone 13 includes a rather unseemly notch at the top of its display, but that’s something Apple users are already used to. That notch is narrower and taller than the one on the previous-gen iPhones. Both phones include their rear cameras in the top-left corner. The iPhone 13 has two of them there, while the Galaxy S21 FE utilizes three.

The iPhone 13 is shorter, and narrower than the Galaxy S21 FE, while it’s also slightly thinner. That’s not surprising considering its display is smaller in comparison, a 6.1-inch panel compared to a 6.4-inch one. Despite all that, the iPhone 13 is only barely lighter than the Galaxy S21 FE. It weighs 174 grams, compared to 177 grams of the Galaxy S21 FE. Each of these phones has its positives and negatives when it comes to design, but it’s up to you to decide which you prefer.

Apple iPhone 13 vs Samsung Galaxy S21 FE: Display

The iPhone 13 features a 6.1-inch 2532 x 1170 Super Retina XDR OLED display. That panel supports HDR10 content, and Dolby Vision as well. It has a peak brightness of 1,200 nits, and is protected by scratch-resistant ceramic glass. The Galaxy S21 FE, on the other hand, boasts a 6.4-inch fullHD+ (2400 x 1080) Dynamic AMOLED 2X display. That display offers a 120Hz refresh rate, unlike the 60Hz panel on the iPhone 13. The Galaxy S21 FE’s panel is protected by the Gorilla Glass Victus, and supports HDR10+ content. Both displays are flat.

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Samsung Galaxy S21 FE AM AH 01

So, are these displays any good? Well, they are, they’re excellent, even. When it comes to overall better display, that is definitely the Galaxy S21 FE’s panel, at least on paper. 120Hz refresh rate dwarfs 60Hz refresh rate, so the difference in that regard is huge. If you don’t really care about the refresh rate, you’ll be glad to know that both are excellent. They both provide vivid colors, with deep blacks, and excellent viewing angles.

One thing to note is that the iPhone 13’s panel is not fixed to the mid-frame. In other words, the iPhone 13’s panel should be easier to repair, in theory, but it will feel hollow when you use it. The Galaxy S21 FE’s will not, in fact, it will feel more premium because of it. The Pixel 6, 6 Pro, all new iPhones, and a number of other devices use the hollow display approach these days. Most people won’t really care, though.

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Apple iPhone 13 vs Samsung Galaxy S21 FE: Performance

The performance of these two smartphones is also excellent. That is to be expected considering their internals. The iPhone 13 comes with the Apple A15 Bionic SoC, Apple’s latest and greatest SoC. The Galaxy S21 FE, on the other hand, comes with the Snapdragon 888 or Exynos 2100 SoC, depending on the market. Those processors, combined with more than though RAM, and good flash storage, results in a really good performance.

Software, of course, has a lot to do with it. The iPhone 13 rocks iOS 15, while the Galaxy S21 FE comes with One UI 4 based on Android 12. Both software builds are well-optimized for these two devices, and quite honestly, don’t expect to see lag on these phones. They may skip a frame here and there, as any phone out there, but don’t expect to see lag, slowdowns, or anything of the sort.

They can handle regular, everyday tasks, like champs, and the same goes for gaming. These two phones can play basically any game (with ease) you can find in Apple’s and Google’s app stores, that’s for sure.

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Apple iPhone 13 vs Samsung Galaxy S21 FE: Battery

The Apple iPhone 13 includes a 3,240mAh battery. The Galaxy S21 FE, on the other hand, has a 4,500mAh battery pack. Do note that iOS handles battery differently, so just because the iPhone 13’s is significantly smaller doesn’t mean anything. Also, that handset does have a smaller display, and a 60Hz refresh rate. So, how’s the battery life on these two phones? Well, based on what we’ve seen, they’re both excellent.

The difference between what they can provide is not massive. Presuming you’re not a gamer, you should be able to pull off somewhere between 6 and 7 hours of screen-on-time on these two phones. Games, and other processor-intensive tasks, will deplete the battery faster, of course. Still, any phone that can reach 7 hours of screen-on-time on a single charge is worth battery-praising.

If you do happen to end up without enough juice in the middle of the day, you can utilize fast charging on both phones. Truth be said, the charging speeds these two phones support are not the best, but they’ll be enough for most. The iPhone 13 supports 23W wired, 15W wireless (MagSafe), and 7.5W wireless (Qi) charging. The Galaxy S21 FE supports 25W wired, 15W wireless, and also reverse wireless charging.

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Apple iPhone 13 vs Samsung Galaxy S21 FE: Cameras

The iPhone 13 comes with two 12-megapixel cameras, wide and ultrawide units. The Galaxy S21 FE also has 12-megapixel wide and ultrawide cameras, in addition to an 8-megapixel telephoto unit. Cameras on both phones perform really well in all lighting conditions, basically. There are some differences, of course. Most of the time, the iPhone 13 is able to capture images with warmer tones, and that is especially true for low light shots.

Samsung Galaxy S21 FE AM AH 08

The Galaxy S21 FE tends to provide a bit colder images in low light situations. Both handle dynamic range with grace, and both phones can provide plenty of details. In low light, both light up a scene more than enough, and then proceed to balance such images. They do a really good job, though the iPhone 13 is a bit more consistent. The same actually can be said for selfies, though the iPhone 13 is the one that provides slightly colder images here.

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Audio

If you need an audio jack, for whatever reason, neither of these phones is the one for you. That is something we’re used to when it comes to smartphones today, especially higher-end ones. What they do have, however, is stereo speakers. Both come with equipped with them, and they sound great, actually, on both phones. The ones on the Galaxy S21 FE are even capable of producing 32-bit/384kHz audio.

The speakers are well-balanced on both phones. You’ll get some bass out of both of them, while the vocals are also quite clear. Both phones include a bottom-firing main speaker, in addition to the front-firing secondary speaker (which is located above the display). There’s really not much to complain about here, in regards to audio.