Samsung rolls out new One UI 4 update to fix the Galaxy S21's refresh rate bug

Samsung Galaxy S21 vs. Galaxy S21 Ultra
Samsung Galaxy S21 vs. Galaxy S21 Ultra (Image credit: Hayato Huseman / Android Central)

Update, Nov 24 (6:15 a.m. ET): A fix is now rolling out

What you need to know

  • The final One UI 4 beta seems to have broken the high refresh rate on Samsung's Galaxy S21 phones with Snapdragon chips.
  • The apparent bug seems to limit the refresh rate on S21 displays to 60Hz, well below the 120Hz the phone is capable of.
  • Samsung says it is working on a fix but hasn't given a firm timeline to resolve the issue.

Samsung is known for making some of the best Android phones that you can buy, with gorgeous screens featuring high refresh rate displays, fantastic cameras, and industry-leading One UI software. However, the company's most recent One UI beta build for Android 12 seems to have thrown a wrench in that smooth-running machine.

According to a reddit thread reported on by Android Police, the final One UI beta build for Android 12 appears to have locked the high refresh rates down to just 60Hz on S21 series phones. This has resulted in stuttery scrolling and laggy app experiences. Curiously, the bug only seems to affect S21 devices using Qualcomm Snapdragon SOCs, as owners of S21s running Samsung's own Exynos chips have not reported any such issues.

A Samsung Beta Moderator acknowledged in the Reddit thread that it is working on a solution and that it has been escalated to its internal quality assurance teams. While we don't yet have a firm timeframe for when the fix will arrive, S21 owners running the fourth One UI 4 beta can manually set their display settings to run at 60Hz for the time being. This should resolve most of the errant stuttering while scrolling web pages or apps like Twitter.

Reddit S21 refresh rate moderator

Source: Reddit (Image credit: Source: Reddit)

Ever since the Galaxy S21, Galaxy S21 Plus, and Galaxy S21 Utra debuted earlier this year, reviewers and fans alike have praised both the build quality and overall experience of using the phones. We've had them on our list of best Android phones and best Android phone cameras all year, so having a glitch like this disrupt the user experience is frustrating for sure.

Update, Nov 24 (6:15 a.m. ET) ― New One UI 4 update fixes Galaxy S21's screen refresh rate bug

Just two days after acknowledging the screen refresh rate bug affecting Galaxy S21 series phones, Samsung has released a new stable One UI 4 update to fix the issue (via XDA Developers). The update is now available for the Verizon variants of the S21 trio and is soon expected to hit other carrier variants in the U.S.

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Jeramy Johnson
Editor-in-chief

Jeramy is proud to help *Keep Austin Weird* and loves hiking in the hill country of central Texas with a breakfast taco in each hand. When he's not writing about smart home gadgets and wearables, he's defending his relationship with his smart voice assistants to his family. You can follow him on Twitter at @jeramyutgw.

3 Comments
  • I thought my perception was off. Glad for the story!
  • and to think they could have done this during the beta...assuming this actually fixes the problem. there were plenty of US phones in beta that didn't have the lag. alas, I was not in that group, lol.
  • Got the update a few days ago on my Verizon S21+. Some apps stay on 120HZ while others still revert back to 60HZ while scrolling. I would say it affects about half of my apps.