Samsung has chosen to offer a plastic back for its classic Galaxy S21. A choice that allows the smartphone to withstand drops better than the Galaxy S21 Plus and Galaxy S21 Ultra.
In about ten years, smartphone manufacturers have gone from plastic to metal and then to glass for the backs of their smartphones. Still, Samsung has been slowly backing down since last summer, now offering high-end phones with a plastic back.
This was already the case last summer with the Samsung Galaxy Note 20. It is now also the case with the classic Galaxy S21. These two smartphones do not in fact have a glass back, like the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, Galaxy S21 Plus and Galaxy S21 Ultra, but a polycarbonate back, that is to say plastic. If this choice can be prohibitive for some, the plastic is not considered as a material « noble », however, it does have one major advantage – in addition to its greater lightness: its strength.
On Tuesday, the manufacturer of protective cases Allstate Protection Plans published a video of the drop test of Samsung’s latest three smartphones, the Galaxy S21, S21 Plus and S21 Ultra. The builder dropped them from a height of 6 feet, or about 183 centimeters, first from the front, then from the back. Remember that the three models are equipped with a Gorilla Glass Victus coating on the front. It is the same coating that we will find on the back of the Galaxy S21 Plus and Galaxy S21 Ultra, while the classic Samsung Galaxy S21 therefore benefits from a plastic back and, like its big brothers, a photo module made of metal.
A more resistant plastic back than glass ones
The results of this drop test are unequivocal: thanks to its plastic back, the Samsung Galaxy S21 is much more resistant to drops than the Galaxy S21 Plus and Galaxy S21 Ultra. While the backs of the two large models are shattered after falling, that of the Galaxy S21 shows only a few scratches. Note also that the metal photo module of the three smartphones protects the various sensors. However, at such a height, a drop to the level of the screen ensures many cracks, even with a protection in Gorilla Glass Victus, the latest version of Corning’s technology.
Moral of the story? If you do not plan to protect your smartphone with a protective case, it will be better to opt for a more resistant model. And if plastic may seem more entry-level than glass, the flexibility of the material at least has the merit of absorbing shocks more easily and avoiding too much breakage.