Our Opinion

The Samsung Galaxy M21 (6GB RAM, 128GB) is a slightly better phone than the realme 5 Pro (6GB RAM, 64GB), and is also slightly better value for money. What should you buy? Go for the Samsung Galaxy M21 (6GB RAM, 128GB)!

Samsung Galaxy M21 (6GB RAM, 128GB)  realme 5 Pro (6GB RAM, 64GB) 
Samsung Galaxy M21 realme 5 Pro
Buy Now Buy Buy
Excellence Score
37.4
36.1
Value for Money Score
73.5
72.0
Price ₹ 14,999 onwards ₹ 14,999 onwards
Launch Date (India) Mar, 2020 Aug, 2019
Expected Launch Date N/A N/A
Smartphone OS Android 10Expected update to next Android version Android 9.0 Pie, Upgradeable to Android 10Expected update to next Android version
Touchscreen Yes (Capacitive) Yes (Capacitive)
Screen Size 6.4 inches 6.3 inches
Screen Resolution 1080x2340 pixels (~ 403 pixels per inch) 1080x2340 pixels (~ 409 pixels per inch)
Tall Aspect Ratio / Minimal Bezels Yes Yes
Scratch Resistant Display Yes, Corning Gorilla Glass 3 Yes, Corning Gorilla Glass 5
Display Type AMOLED IPS LCD
Screen Refresh Rate 60 HzStandard 60 HzStandard
Display Features Super AMOLED Night mode
Full Physical QWERTY Keypad
Processor 2.3 GHz 2.3 GHz
Processor Type Octa Core Octa Core
Processor Name Samsung Exynos 9611Ranked #37 in Mobile Processor Benchmarks Qualcomm Snapdragon 712Ranked #31 in Mobile Processor Benchmarks
GPU Mali-G72 MP3 Adreno 616
RAM 6 GB 6 GB
3G Yes Yes
4G Yes Yes
5G
VoLTE Yes Yes
WiFi Yes Yes
VoWiFi/WiFi-Calling Yes Yes
GPS Yes Yes
Bluetooth Yes Yes
Connecting Port USB-C USB-C
Primary Camera 48MP + 8MP + 5MP 48MP + 8MP + 2MP + 2MP
Camera Auto-Focus Yes Yes
Camera Flash Yes Yes
HD Video Recording Yes (4K) Yes (4K)
Other Camera Features 48MP: f/2.0 aperture; 26mm Focal Length; 1/2.0" Sensor Size; 0.8um Pixel Size; PDAF, 8MP: f/2.2 aperture; 12mm Focal Length; Ultra-wide; 1/4.0" Sensor Size; 1.12um Pixel Size, 5MP: f/2.2 aperture; Depth Sensor, Panorama, HDR, Video: [email protected]; [email protected]; EIS 48MP: F/1.79 Aperture; 6P lens; PDAF; 10x Digital Zoom; Sony IMX586 Sensor, 8MP: 119° Wide-angle Camera; F/2.25 Aperture; 5P lens, 2MP: Depth Sensor, 2MP: Macro Camera; 4cm Shooting Distance, AI HDR, AI beauty, AI scene recognition, Chrome boost, Super nightscape, Filter mode, Panorama, Expert mode, Time-Lapse, EIS
Secondary Camera 20MP 16MP
Secondary Camera Features f/2.0 aperture, 26mm Focal Length, HDR Sony IMX471 Sensor, F/2.0 Aperture, 5P lens, AI beauty, AI HDR
Internal Memory 128 GB 64 GB
Expandable Memory Slot Yes, up to 512 GB Yes, up to 256 GB
Contacts Storage Unlimited Unlimited
SMS Storage Unlimited Unlimited
Music Player Yes Yes
FM Radio Yes (Wireless) Yes
Dual SIM GSM+GSM GSM+GSM
Thickness 8.9 mmMedium 8.9 mmMedium
Weight 188 gmMedium 184 gmMedium
Width 75.1 mmOk for one-handed use 74.2 mmOk for one-handed use
Audio Output 3.5mm jack 3.5mm jack
Water Resistant Yes, Splash resistant
Battery Capacity 6000 mAh 4035 mAh
Battery Standby N/A N/A
Battery Standby (3G) N/A N/A
Battery Talktime N/A N/A
Battery Talktime (3G) N/A N/A
Fast Charging Support Yes, 15W Fast Charging Yes, 20W VOOC Flash Charge 3.0
Included Fast Charger Yes, 15.0W Fast Charger Yes, 20.0W Fast Charger
Other Battery Parameters N/A N/A
Fingerprint sensor Yes Yes
Other Features Noise Filtration UFS 2.1 Storage; Noise Filtration
2-minute Review [Positives]
  • Decent looks and build quality - very similar to the Samsung Galaxy M31, with a a unibody polycarbonate design, and glossy finish on the back panel - the only major difference is the camera module which houses a triple rear camera
  • The plastic body keeps the phone feeling relatively lightweight at 188 grams, which is mighty impressive for a phone packing a big 6000 mAh battery
  • It also feels great to hold with a seamless curved panel that meets the display up front
  • Modern, Infinity-U front - bezels around the screen are slim, except for a slightly thick chin - you still get around 90 per cent screen-to-body ratio, which is great
  • Fingerprint sensor at the back is easy to reach and work very well
  • Gorgeous, 6.4-inch FHD+ Super AMOLED display with excellent viewing angles, and brightness levels - easily one of the best displays in the price bracket
  • It also comes with "Widevine L1" certification, which helps stream content in crisp HD resolution
  • Blacks are deep on the AMOLED display, which looks good with Night mode enabled
  • Samsung's OneUI is today one of the more clean, refined Android UIs that's especially well optimised for large displays like this
  • One UI also brings in other useful stuff, like a System-wide Dark mode (which turns the background completely black, and looks great on the M21's AMOLED display), and Always On Display option
  • Decent performance with the Exynos 9611 at the core (similar to Snapdragon 665) - the device is fairly quick to load up apps - multitasking is a breeze
  • Decent triple rear camera setup - a 48MP primary snapper, an 8MP ultra-wide lens and a 5MP depth sensor
  • In broad daylight, you'll get consistent, crispy shots with decent dynamic range and sharpness levels are respectable with the primary lens
  • The ultra-wide sensor, like on any budget phone, is a good addition - it takes social media-worthy images in great lighting conditions (in low-light, the quality dips and pictures look grainy and noisy, wide-angle shots also have barrel distortion at the edges)
  • Live Focus shots are quite good and the camera app does give you the option to set the level of blur before taking a shot - edge detection is very good and the Galaxy M21 does a good job of separating the subject from the background
  • The 20MP selfie camera is quite good and takes detailed selfies (though, in low light, the quality goes down a notch and results are grainy)
  • Monster 6000 mAh battery delivers an incredible 2-3 days of usage easily, making for one of the largest battery life smartphones currently available
  • Supports 15W fast charging
  • If you're someone who consumes a lot of content on their phone, the Galaxy M21 is a good phone for you, it has great AMOLED display, outstanding battery backup that will last you for days
  • Premium looks and design - with a beautiful, abstract geometric pattern on the back, and a smooth, metallic sheen - this is one of the hottest looking devices coming at this price point
  • Very easy to grip - the rounded sides and curved back panel make it fit comfortably in a palm
  • It is actually more compact than the Realme 5 - and you will not have any trouble using it even with one hand
  • The front is modern and sharp too - with a big 6.3-inch LCD screen, with a 'waterdrop notch' - and a 90.6 screen-to-body ratio - the chin is fairly prominent but the rest of the borders are narrow and modern-looking
  • The fingerprint sensor at the back, and face recognition - both work well, and are fast to unlock - and can be used to unlock not only the phone but also individual apps
  • Good, 6.3-inch full-HD+ IPS display - the screen can get quite bright and is easy to use outdoors - and video content looks good, with decent colours and sharpness
  • Support Widevine L1 DRM for high-res video streaming
  • ColorOS is now much more refined and streamlined than before - customisation options include a 'Smart Assistant' to the left of the first home screen, icon density on the home screens, UI animation speed, themes, and various gestures - you can long-press the phone's power button to call up Google Assistant, and launch apps with gestures on screen when the phone is in standby - and the standard Android navigation buttons can be replaced with a variety of gesture schemes
  • There are also no spammy ads in the interface - an issue that has recently plagued phones from Xiaomi
  • Excellent, top-bracket-for-the-price-range performance backed by the powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 712 SoC which has a slight edge over the Snapdragon 710 and Snapdragon 660, which are commonly found in phones in this segment - everything from daily use to high-end games is smooth
  • Good quad camera setup at the rear - 48-megapixel primary + 8-megapixel wide-angle camera + 2-megapixel macro camera + 2-megapixel depth sensor
  • The primary camera especially delivers impressive photo quality in daylight - focus speed is fast - and the images are sharp, details are high, and the colour balance is good
  • Shots from the wide-angle and the macro camera, while not that that good in quality, give you some interesting shot framing options
  • Portrait shots utilize the depth sensor, and generally come out well
  • The 16MP selfie camera too delivers decent selfies, and also has a (decent) software-based portrait mode
  • Video recording quality is good too, especially in daytime - there's also electronic stabilisation, which works fairly well at 1080p
  • Nightscape mode works fairly well for night photography (though it takes several seconds for the phone to save a shot)
  • Overall, the camera setup on the Realme 5 Pro is easily among the best in this price bracket
  • The single speaker is quite loud and voices are clear even at high volumes (though of course, like most phones in this price bracket, there's no bass or depth when listening to music)
  • Good (though not exceptional) battery life with a 4035 mAh battery - you will get 1 day with heavy use, and 1.5 days with moderate use
  • Very fast charging with Oppo's proprietary VOOC quick charging technology - and a large 20W charger in the box with this phone - using the included charger, you will get up to 15 percent in 10 minutes and 70 percent in just over 30 minutes - pretty cool
  • The Realme 5 Pro looks like yet another winner from Realme, that once again sets the bar high for other competitors to try and match - it impresses across the board - and it should definitely be in your shortlist for this price bracket
2-minute Review [Negatives]
  • The power button and volumes are quite flush with the frame which means they lack that tactile, clicky feel
  • Design feels a bit dated and underwhelming, there is no spark in Galaxy M21's design as we see in other brand's phones like Xiaomi and Realme
  • However, this is an old chipset and heavy gaming isn't best on this phone - the Redmi Note 9 Pro and the Realme 6 are much better options that will handle gaming better than the Galaxy M21
  • Photos taken in low-light are average - focusing gets worse in low light and the extreme noise-correction makes images look like water paintings
  • Overall, the cameras on the M21 are decent, but there are better cameras available in this price bracket, including the Galaxy M31, which is just a tad bit pricier
  • Samsung Galaxy M11 falls behind in fast charging as competitors are offering close to 30W fast charging, the 15W on M21 feels low
  • Having said that, the Redmi Note 9 Pro and the Realme 6 will still offer you more bang for your buck, overall and when it comes to intensive tasks like gaming, you’ll be better off choosing the Realme 6 or the Redmi Note 8 Pro that are probably the best phones for gaming in this segment
  • There are still a number of pre-loaded apps however - though most of these can thankfully be uninstalled
  • The camera app looks slick but the layout is a bit awkward at times - for instance, to use the macro lens, you have to select the Ultra Macro mode which is buried in a spillover menu next to the standard Photo, Video, and Portrait mode selection buttons - this menu is unnecessarily small and you actually have to scroll down within it to find the Ultra Macro mode
Expert Reviews
  1. All the battery life you need
    fonearena.com in-depth Read Review »
  2. Big battery and display at an affordable price
    indiatoday.in in-depth Read Review »
  3. A good option if you are out in the market looking for a capable smartphone that is not Xiaomi or Realme
    business-standard.com in-depth Read Review »
  4. A Phone That Caters Best To Video Content Consumers
    in.mashable.com in-depth Read Review »
  5. Sharp display, good cameras, decent performance and an amazing battery life, though the Galaxy M31 is better
    zeebiz.com in-depth Read Review »
  6. bgr.in in-depth Read Review »
  7. economictimes.indiatimes.com in-depth Read Review »
  8. news18.com in-depth Read Review »
  9. gadgetsnow.com in-depth Read Review »
  10. gsmarena.com hands-on Read Review »
  11. ibtimes.co.in hands-on Read Review »
  1. An amazing offer...there is hardly a better phone for this amount of money
    gsmarena.com in-depth Read Review »
  2. A great phone...The Realme 5 Pro impresses us almost entirely across the board
    gadgets.ndtv.com in-depth Read Review »
  3. A leap in camera over the Realme 3 Pro...again shows that Realme has got what it takes to build a reliable smartphone camera on budget
    bgr.in in-depth Read Review »
  4. Solid set of hardware..unfortunately let down by poor software
    androidauthority.com in-depth Read Review »
  5. A fantastic value budget handset
    stuff.tv in-depth Read Review »
  6. All-round smartphone that looks really impressive in front of the competition..an easy recommendation
    indiatoday.in in-depth Read Review »
  7. Best camera phone you can buy on a budget
    in.mashable.com in-depth Read Review »
  8. Beauty meets beast...a top pick in the mid-budget line-up
    deccanchronicle.com in-depth Read Review »
  9. Offers quite a lot, for the price it comes for
    gadgetsnow.com in-depth Read Review »
  10. Nice little mix of impressive hardware and aggressive price
    timesnownews.com in-depth Read Review »
  11. Makes a complete package, that thrills with its all-round performance
    business-standard.com in-depth Read Review »
  12. Formidable proposition
    techpp.com in-depth Read Review »
  13. A real game-changer
    thenewsminute.com in-depth Read Review »
  14. fonearena.com in-depth Read Review »
  15. finder.com.au in-depth Read Review »
  16. techradar.com hands-on Read Review »
  17. trustedreviews.com hands-on Read Review »
  18. themobileindian.com hands-on Read Review »
  19. firstpost.com hands-on Read Review »
User Reviews
  1. Flipkart4.3 53+ reviews »
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Official Website Official Website » Official Website »
Unofficial specs? N/A N/A
Individual Review 2
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