Samsung confirmed today that its latest Galaxy Unpacked event -- and its first major smartphone launch of the year -- will take place virtually at 10AM Eastern/7AM Pacific on Thursday, January 14th.
“Over the past year, mobile technology has taken center stage in everyday life as people are working remotely and spending more time at home,” Samsung’s invitation reads. “The accelerated transition to a mobile-first world brings with it the need for devices that can transform everyday life into an extraordinary experience.”
As usual, a steady stream of pre-event leaks means we're running low of things to be surprised about. Samsung has already opened preorder reservations for its Galaxy smartphones, and a well-informed employee at the Samsung flagship store in Bengaluru, India confirmed the launching timing to Android Authority in early December. And while Samsung hasn't explicitly said which devices it plans to announce, it's all but certain we'll be getting our first official looks at the new Galaxy S21, S21 Plus and S21 Ultra, possibly alongside a new set of wireless Galaxy Buds. (You can read everything we know about the S21 series so far right here.)
Holding a launch event this year in a given year is certainly unusual for Samsung, but the company's moves later in the year may prove to be even more surprising. For one, some persistent rumors suggest that, rather than continue to focus on the growth of its popular Galaxy Note devices in 2021, Samsung will pivot to pushing "more accessible" foldable smartphones, including its first lower-cost models. Those reports dovetail nicely with Samsung's plan to make more of its devices compatible with the Galaxy Note's trademark S Pen stylus, including this year's premium Galaxy S21 Ultra and possibly even Samsung's next Galaxy Z Fold. Samsung smartphone chief TM Roh has discussed these ambitions openly already, but expect more insight into Samsung's priorities for 2021 once Unpacked kicks off properly.