Now that the Galaxy S21 Ultra is available, there’s an obvious question to ask: how does its performance fare against Samsung’s previous flagship, the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra? Gary Sims has conducted a realistic speed test of the Snapdragon versions of the S21 Ultra and Note 20 Ultra to find out, and one Galaxy emerged the clear victor.
This was ultimately a way to gauge the Snapdragon 888’s prowess. The Galaxy S21 Ultra won every speed test by a significant (though not cavernous) margin, completing each benchmark a few seconds faster than the Snapdragon 865 Plus-based Note 20 Ultra. The largest proportionate advantage was in mixed-use tasks, but there was never a doubt about the leader.
Notably, the Exynos 2100-based Galaxy S21 Ultra was still faster in Sims’ speed tests than the Snapdragon-powered Note 20 Ultra — worth noting if you have to buy the international S21 variant, especially when the Exynos-equipped Note 20 will be slower still.
There are reasons to pick the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra over the S21 Ultra beyond test results. The more powerful (and included) S Pen is the most obvious example. but you might also prefer the microSD expansion slot or that squared-off aesthetic. This is also excluding deals that could make the older Note 20 more attractive. If raw power is all you really care about, though, the S21 is your clear pick.