Samsung Galaxy S21 Unpacked Launch Date Confirmed, Here's What We Know So Far

samsung galaxy S21
It appears the launch of Samsung's Galaxy S family of smartphones gets earlier and earlier each year. This year is no exception, as Samsung this evening confirmed that the Galaxy Unpacked 2021 announcement will take place on January 14th at 10am EST. For those keeping score, the Galaxy 20 family was announced on March 11th, 2020, which means that the Galaxy S21 is being unleashed nearly a month sooner.

"Over the past year, mobile technology has taken center stage in everyday life as people are working remotely and spending more time at home," said Samsung upon announcing the Galaxy Unpacked 2021 event. "The accelerated transition to a mobile-first world brings with it the need for devices that can transform everyday life into an extraordinary experience."

At this point, we already know what smartphones Samsung will be announcing at the event. Like years past, there will be three phones on deck: the Galaxy S21, Galaxy S21+ and Galaxy S21 Ultra. All will be powered by the all-new Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 SoC, and will come with the usual year-over-year refinements to overall design, cameras, and general specs. However, the Galaxy S21 Ultra is likely to steal the show with a key addition compared to its Galaxy S20 Ultra predecessor.

It's widely expected that the Galaxy S21 Ultra will gain native support for the S Pen that is standard on the Galaxy Note family of smartphones. This largely aligns with the rumors that Samsung is looking to kill off its Galaxy Note family to focus on folding smartphones at the high-end. In the case of the Galaxy S21 Ultra, the smartphone won't have a built-in silo to accommodate the S Pen, and it won't come standard in the box.

samsung galaxy s21 ultra
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra

Speaking of in the box, another rumor suggests that Samsung won't be including wired headphones or a USB-C wall charger with its new smartphones. This move comes after Samsung mocked Apple for making the exact same move with its iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro product families. The removal of these accessories will save Samsung a couple of bucks in materials, and will also allow it to ship the smartphones in smaller boxes, reducing its shipping costs. For those wondering, Samsung will still allegedly include a USB-C cable in the box.

galaxy buds pro
Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro

In addition to the Galaxy S21 family, it has also been reported that Samsung will debut the Galaxy Buds Prowireless earbuds, which will compete directly with the Apple AirPods Pro. The Galaxy Buds Pro will be available in three different colors, and will come standard with a wireless charging case (you'll also be able to recharge via USB-C). New features that will be brought to the table include active noise cancellation and 3D spatial audio.

galaxy smart tags
Samsung Galaxy SmartTag

Finally, another accessory that will probably be unveiled on the 14th is the Galaxy SmartTag, which is a small tracker akin to Tile, which can be attached to your wallet, keys, or just about any other device that you might easily lose. The Galaxy SmartTag is expected to be priced between $20 to $30, putting it on even footing with Tile's trackers.

Stay tuned to HotHardware for more information on Samsung's Galaxy Unpacked 2021 in the lead-up to January 14th.