Our Galaxy S21 Ultra review should be going live next week after we spend more time using the latest flagship, and so far, our opinions on the device are fairly positive. However, there is one particular issue that should be brought to your attention — and Samsung’s — as soon as possible, especially if you’re a SmartThings user.
Judging by our experience so far, SmartThings, One UI 3.1, and the Galaxy S21 Ultra don’t seem to be getting along very well, leading to significant battery life drainage. Take this one scenario for example, as seen in the screenshot below: the Galaxy S21 Ultra was used for roughly 10 hours and SmartThings was the most demanding app, even if it was only running in the background.
A battery hit of 14.6% for 8 hours of background usage for SmartThings is not at all normal, and this becomes even more obvious when you realize that our second device — the Galaxy Z Flip — which was used in conjunction with the same network of SmartThings devices had experienced only a 0.1% impact on battery life while SmartThings was running in the background for nearly 7 hours.
We’re guessing this is an issue that can be resolved through a firmware update and perhaps it will be fixed by the time the Galaxy S21 Ultra ships to customers later this month. We’ll keep you posted.