Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra leak reveals it will fix this major Galaxy S20 flaw

Samsung Galaxy S21 120Hz display WQHD+
(Image credit: Future)

According to notable leaker Ice Universe (@UniverseIce), the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra will be able to have both WQHD+ resolution and 120Hz refresh rate on simultaneously. This is a departure from the Galaxy S20 Ultra, which forced users to choose between the two as enabling both would have greatly hindered battery life. 

As mentioned in our Galaxy S20 Ultra review from last year, "the Galaxy S20 Ultra’s display comes with a rather hefty caveat to running at 120Hz. When it’s in this high-refresh mode, you only get a Full HD resolution, rather than the native QHD resolution."

But if Ice Universe's latest leak is to be believed, then Samsung has made major gains in battery performance that's allowing the company to confidently roll out WQHD+ at 120Hz without hesitation. 

Already, it's being reported that Samsung might be opting for a lower resolution display for the base S21 and is using more efficient processors, with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 (within US) and Exynos 2100 (outside US). While the Qualcomm chip delivers 15% better battery life, the Exynos gets much higher at 25-35%. These gains are massive, and can allow engineers more headroom in which features to enable. 

The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra has some other big upgrades on the way based on leaks. This includes support for the S Pen (although you'll need a separate case for the stylus) and two optical zoom lenses (one 3x and one 10x). 

At the moment, Samsung has announced an Jan. 14 Unpacked event where it's expected the S21 line will be fully unveiled, along with the Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro and possibly a new Samsung Galaxy SmartTag product tracker.. The phone should start hitting store shelves later this month. 

Imad Khan

Imad is currently Senior Google and Internet Culture reporter for CNET, but until recently was News Editor at Tom's Guide. Hailing from Texas, Imad started his journalism career in 2013 and has amassed bylines with the New York Times, the Washington Post, ESPN, Wired and Men's Health Magazine, among others. Outside of work, you can find him sitting blankly in front of a Word document trying desperately to write the first pages of a new book.