Samsung confirms stylus support is coming to Galaxy phones like the S21

Image: Android Police

Samsung’s president of mobile, TM Roh, dropped several hints about the company’s product roadmap in a blog post today. He confirmed Samsung will hold an event in January — presumably for the Galaxy S21. He also implied that S Pen support will come to more phones and that Samsung intends to broaden its line of folding phones with less expensive options.

The hint that’s likely to have the biggest impact on the greatest number of customers is stylus support for Galaxy phones beyond the Note line. That’s been rumored for some time now, but Roh also claims that Samsung intends to “add some of its most well-loved features to other devices in our lineup.”

It may mean that the other half of those rumors will also come to pass: that the Note line itself may soon be coming to an end, at least as a premium flagship in Samsung’s lineup. The Note hasn’t been that differentiated from the regular S line of phones for a while now. The main difference beyond design language has been that silo for the stylus.

With S Pen support on Galaxy S phones like the upcoming Galaxy S21 line and Z phones like the Z Fold (and maybe even a Z Flip), Samsung probably figures it’s just as easy to store a stylus in a case as it would be inside a phone.

Roh also confirmed that Samsung will be providing more details in January. That’s when Samsung is expected to unveil the Galaxy S21 line, a month or two ahead of when it usually does.

The S Pen wasn’t the only thing Roh hinted at in the post. He also said that Samsung intends to have a “portfolio of foldables” and that it wants to make the category “more accessible to everyone.” “Accessible,” in this case, is likely a reference to the price of folding phones, which clock in anywhere from $1,300 to $2,000 for a new phone right now. The rumor here is that there will be a Z Fold “Lite” sometime in 2021. If folding phones are ever going to be more than a curiosity, they’ll need to come down significantly in price. That appears to be what Samsung is aiming for.

The next version of the Z Fold will likely include support for stylus input.
Image: Samsung

Roh says that Samsung will put more emphasis on “pro-grade camera and video capabilities” on its phones. That’s not really much of a revelation, but it may mean that Samsung hopes to get back into a camera quality race with Apple and Google — a race Samsung has yet to definitively win. Roh promised an “epic new year” and specifically mentioned using AI to improve image quality. Computational photography is precisely where Samsung has traditionally fallen a little behind its competitors.

He hinted that it would begin to do more with UWB in 2021 as well. Like Apple, he’s promising that your phone will open your car door. Unlike Apple, he’s willing to talk about using it to locate objects and “even your family pet.”

That’s a lot of teases for Samsung’s January event, which we currently expect to happen on the 14th. That’s when we’ll see the Galaxy S21 announced and perhaps a bit more, an earlier start than usual to a new year of phones.

Comments

Can’t wait for a Foldable phone with SPen support – it’ll be the ultimate productivity machine with a huge canvas.

At first I thought you wrote caveat, and I think that would be also fitting…

And its gonna be named ‘Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 Note 5G’ which is somehow worse then Sonys names…

Except that all now have 5G and there is no point mentioning it any longer, and 3 is not required as it Z folds.

On par with the Samsung Galaxy S II Epic 4G Touch.

Pouring one out for the Sprint Samsung Galaxy SII Epic 4G Touch

RIP Galaxy Note series… one of my favorite line of devices ever made!

They’ll still be around. Just because they have Pen support doesn’t mean it’ll be integrated into the device like the Notes.

I wish Apple brought the stylus to the iPhone pro Max.

It would be the perfect extension for my iPad Pro when I’m on the go and I can’t carry my tablet.

What do (would) you use it for? Genuinely curious.

Drawing

Just bring down the price. These phone prices are getting out of hand.

When the Note Officially dies, back to the blue bubble cult I’ll go. There’s nothing wrong with the S Line or Fold, but the Note is the reason I gave Samsung a try. It was always on the bleeding edge of innovation. The closest thing to some of the Nokia and Lumia Phones. I like the throw the kitchen sink in there approach. Perhaps if Samsung built a phone in the mold of the surface duo packed with technology I’d reconsider.

The Note 4 was my first smartphone. I’d held out for a few years through college and into working as a substitute teacher before making the plunge from like the cheapest thing my parents got through US Cellular for me. Still one of the best tech purchases I’ve made to this day compared to what was on the market at the time. Sad to see the brand go.

Samsung better do something about the fold’s plastic screen if they want to add s-pen ability.

Really sad to see the end of Note series. It really evolutionized the smartphone industry by going against SJ.

https://youtu.be/HsCqPLNLoag?t=13

I suspect they will still make a note line with integrated pen silo.

I don’t think Samsung will can the note series, it’s a productivity powerhouse and is marketed as such, the fanbase for the note series is also resoundingly large to say the least

If I was Samsung, I would get rid of S21 Ultra and I would introduce S21 FE, S21 (both with pen support only but sold separately) and S21 Note Edition more premium with pen silo.

I still am rocking the first folding phone. The iPhone 6.

#bendgate

I wonder how they plan on charging the S Pen without putting it in the phone (yes it’s an active pen with a capacitor to power it). Also are you gonna lose all that nice integration where as soon as you pop out the pen you get pen specific options?

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