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Samsung Galaxy S8 Smartphone Review

Marcus Herbrich, Daniel Schmidt (translated by Liala Stieglitz), 06/13/2017

Smaller and fine-spun. Samsung's successor of the successful Galaxy S7 immediately catches the eye with its new design language: narrower edges and more screen. The Galaxy S8 is also a slightly more balanced product than its sister model, and its price is even lower.
Update: Additional reference values for the Snapdragon 835 powered S8 (SM-G950U) added.

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For the original German article, see here.

Samsung's Galaxy S8 (SM-G950F) is the smaller sibling of the Galaxy S8+. Only their screens, battery sizes, and prices differ. They have the standard specifications in common.

The Galaxy S8 also operates with Samsung's Exynos 8895 SoC using 4 GB of working memory and 64 GB of internal storage. The 12-MP primary camera has an aperture of f/1.7, the same as the 8-MP front camera. Not only has the latter's resolution been increased, it now also features an autofocus. The fingerprint scanner is now on the rear, and face recognition and an iris scanner have been installed as alternatives or supplementary security features. The narrow edges characterize the new 5.8-inch Infinity screen in the Galaxy S8, and the smaller S model is only available as "Edge". The battery has a capacity of 3000 mAh.

The Samsung Galaxy S8's RRP of 799 Euros (~$879) is 100 Euros (~$110) cheaper than the larger sister model, but it is also 100 Euros (~$110) more expensive than the former Galaxy S7. We use all models that claim to be a premium-range smartphone for comparison. These include Apple's iPhone 7Huawei's P10LG's G6Sony's Xperia XZHTC's U UltraLenovo's Moto ZGoogle's Pixel XLOnePlus' 3T, and the older Galaxy S7.

Update 6/12/2017: We've received benchmarks conducted by our US colleagues on a Snapdragon 835 powered Samsung Galaxy S8 (SM-G950U), and were also able to measure battery life. Accordingly, we've updated the Performance and Battery Runtime sections.

Samsung Galaxy S8 (Galaxy Series)
Graphics adapter
ARM Mali-G71 MP20, Core: 850 MHz
Memory
4096 MB 
, LPDDR4
Display
5.8 inch 2.06:1, 2960 x 1440 pixel 568 PPI, capacitive touchscreen, Infinity Display, Corning Gorilla Glas 5, Super AMOLED, Mobile HDR Premium, glossy: yes
Storage
64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash, 64 GB 
, 52.3 GB free
Connections
1 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 HDMI, 1 DisplayPort, Audio Connections: combo headphone and microphone jack, Card Reader: micro-SD max. 256 GB (SDHC, SDXC), 1 Fingerprint Reader, NFC, Brightness Sensor, Sensors: accelerometer, position, heartbeat, Hall, rotation, proximity, pressure and G-sensor, barometer, digital compass, iris scanner, face recognition, BeiDou, Galileo, Ant+, MST, Wifi Direct, Miracast
Networking
802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 5.0, LTE Cat. 16, LTE, GPS
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 8 x 148.9 x 68.1 ( = 0.31 x 5.86 x 2.68 in)
Battery
3000 mAh Lithium-Ion
Operating System
Android 7.0 Nougat
Camera
Primary Camera: 12 MPix (dual-pixel, OIS, f/1.7, 1,4 μm, UHD video)
Secondary Camera: 8 MPix (autofocus, f/1.7)
Additional features
Speakers: mono speaker, Keyboard: virtual, power supply, USB cable, AKG headset, two OTG adapters, SIM tool, quick start guide, safety instructions, Samsung Experience UI 8.1, 24 Months Warranty, USB Type-C (USB 3.1 Gen.1), Bixby, head-SAR: 0.315 W/kg, body-SAR: 1.27 W/kg, IP68 certificate, fanless
Weight
155 g ( = 5.47 oz / 0.34 pounds), Power Supply: 62 g ( = 2.19 oz / 0.14 pounds)
Price
799 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case

The Galaxy S8 (Plus) is available in the colors Arctic Silver, Orchid Gray, and Midnight Black. Initially, Coral Blue and Maple Gold will not be available in Germany. Samsung again sticks to its design tradition in 2017. Both the front and rear of the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus casings are made of glass - to be more precise, Corning Gorilla Glass 5. The curved glass on the long sides merges into a metal bezel, which makes the construction very rigid. The transition is just as cleverly solved as in the former Samsung Galaxy S7 (Edge). However, the S8 is now even more pleasant to hold despite its larger screen size. The reason for this is the new aspect ratio of the Super AMOLED screen in conjunction with a very narrow casing width of just 68.1 millimeters (~2.7 in).

Once again, the casing is IP68 certified, so it is protected against dust and water immersion. As with last year's models, the build quality is excellent. The card tray with an aluminum bezel fits flush into the casing and accepts a nano-SIM and a microSD card. The dual-SIM variant (hybrid slot) will not be available in Germany. The metal buttons are also comfortable to reach, hardly wobble in our review sample, and they have a pleasant pressure point.

A very narrow frame on the upper side and underside surrounds the new Infinity Super AMOLED panel in the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus. Thus, the screen-surface ratio is a superb 84.2%, which is even slightly better than that of the Galaxy S8+ (83.3%). The Korean manufacturer has optimized this point even more compared with the 2016 models - for example, the Galaxy S7 Edge "only" achieves 76.1%. Omitting the mechanical home key and replacing it with touch and pressure-sensitive buttons makes this possible.

Size Comparison

Connectivity

The manufacturer has again omitted the option of remote controlling devices via infrared. Nor is it possible to use the handset as an FM radio. However, this does not exclude the possibility that this feature could be integrated via an update in specific regions.

The storage can be expanded via an optional microSD card. Theoretically, all standard SDXC models with up to 2 TB can be inserted, but only cards with a capacity of 256 GB are currently available. The different speeds of the internal and external storages do not allow formatting the microSD as an internal storage or moving apps to it.

The USB port is now implemented in the latest Type-C version and supports the 3.1 transfer standard (Gen.1). Furthermore, it is OTG capable so that peripherals or storage devices can be connected via an adapter. It also allows the S8 to charge other devices, and the port can be used as an HDMI port or DisplayPort 1.2 for outputting videos and images on external devices.

The sensor configuration is more than generous. A fingerprint scanner and iris scanner are installed among other sensors. The heart-rate monitor has also been installed on the rear again. In addition to NFC, Bluetooth 5.0 is now also on board. The latter is brand new and its range, transmission speeds, and power consumption have been greatly improved. Since Samsung does not state the module's class, we cannot provide any exact specifications here. However, it is now possible to, for example, control two Bluetooth speakers at the same time and play high-fidelity audio material. The aptX codec is again installed for a nice sound, but not the newer aptX HD.

Top: Microphone, card tray
Top: Microphone, card tray
Left: Volume, Bixby
Left: Volume, Bixby
Right: Power
Right: Power
Bottom: Audio, USB, microphone, speaker
Bottom: Audio, USB, microphone, speaker

Software

Samsung uses Google's Android 7.0 Nougat and covers it with its own Samsung UI 8.1 on the Galaxy S8. Compared with the former Grace UI, it has undergone some visible developments. The app drawer has now been completely omitted. Instead, an overview of all apps can be opened by swiping vertically over the home screen. Familiar features, such as the edge bar or game launcher, are again installed, same as Samsung's own app store. Furthermore, Facebook and Microsoft apps are preloaded and cannot be completely uninstalled; they can only be deactivated. 

The status of Google's security patches (03/01/2017) was updated to April 1, 2017 during the test. We will have to wait and see just how tight the update intervals will be.

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Communication and GPS

Samsung's Galaxy S8 also presents identical connectivity features as the Galaxy S8+. The smartphone's Wi-Fi module supports the IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac standards and thus transmits in both the 2.4 and 5.0 GHz frequency ranges, which is standard for a handset from this price range. In addition, it supports VHT80 MU-MIMO and 1024 QAM (10-bit quadrature amplitude modulation). The latter is primarily to improve transmission speeds and stability.

The Galaxy S8 achieves similar transmission speeds as the Galaxy S8+ in the test with our reference router, and it is very fast. The receive rates are within a very good range, but the Pixel XL and iPhone are much faster here. The Galaxy S8+ develops its full potential in transmit and positions itself at the top of the comparison field with a superb outcome of 651 Mbit/s. The attenuation of 39 dBm (2.4 GHz) and -32 dBm (5.0 GHz) in the direct vicinity of our router is excellent. The attenuation increases when moving away from the router and reaches just -76 dBm at a distance of approximately 12 meters (~39 ft; through an inner wall). However, the signal is then still strong enough to stream HD video content on the smartphone without interruptions.

As with the S8+, the review sample also sometimes had problems in the 5.0 GHz network. A stable connection to a Devolo dLAN 1200+ Wi-Fi ac was not possible. Although it identified and connected to the network, it disrupted again immediately and recurrently tried to reconnect. However, we did not experience these issues with our EA8500. Thus, it does not seem to be a general problem with the frequency range.

Samsung's Galaxy S8 can connect to the mobile data network via quad-band GSM, six 3G bands or via the fast and modern Gigabit LTE (download: max. 1 Gbit/s; upload: max. 150 Mbit/s). The smartphone supports a broad frequency range with 22 supported bands and should easily find a network in most countries.

Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Apple iPhone 7
A10 Fusion GPU, A10 Fusion, 128 GB NVMe (Klaus I211)
532 MBit/s ∼100% +62%
Google Pixel XL 2016
Adreno 530, 821 MSM8996 Pro, 32 GB eMMC Flash
515 MBit/s ∼97% +57%
Samsung Galaxy S8
Mali-G71 MP20, 8895 Octa, 64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
329 MBit/s ∼62%
LG G6
Adreno 530, 821 MSM8996 Pro, 32 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
325 MBit/s ∼61% -1%
Huawei P10
Mali-G71 MP8, Kirin 960, 64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
308 (min: 48.8) MBit/s ∼58% -6%
Samsung Galaxy S7
Mali-T880 MP12, 8890 Octa, 32 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
281 MBit/s ∼53% -15%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Samsung Galaxy S8
Mali-G71 MP20, 8895 Octa, 64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
651 MBit/s ∼100%
Apple iPhone 7
A10 Fusion GPU, A10 Fusion, 128 GB NVMe (Klaus I211)
485 MBit/s ∼75% -25%
Google Pixel XL 2016
Adreno 530, 821 MSM8996 Pro, 32 GB eMMC Flash
435 MBit/s ∼67% -33%
Huawei P10
Mali-G71 MP8, Kirin 960, 64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
343 (min: 154) MBit/s ∼53% -47%
Samsung Galaxy S7
Mali-T880 MP12, 8890 Octa, 32 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
335 MBit/s ∼51% -49%
LG G6
Adreno 530, 821 MSM8996 Pro, 32 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
220 MBit/s ∼34% -66%
GNSS
GNSS
GPS test indoors
GPS test indoors
GPS test outdoors
GPS test outdoors

Samsung's Galaxy S8 (SM-G950F) supports the global satellite navigation systems (GNSS) GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou, and Galileo for positioning. Satellites were found relatively fast, even indoors and also proved to be quite accurate. The outcome is even better outdoors and satellites are found as soon as the app is opened.

To evaluate the accuracy in everyday situations, we took the Galaxy S8 on a bike ride where it had to compete against Garmin's Edge 500. The S8 presented a similar, good performance as its larger sibling. The devices deviated by just 20 meters (~66 ft) over the entire logged route, and the Galaxy S8 was even slightly more accurate on the path through the woods than the bike computer.

Samsung Galaxy S8: Overview
Samsung Galaxy S8: Overview
Samsung Galaxy S8: Woods
Samsung Galaxy S8: Woods
Samsung Galaxy S8:Bridge
Samsung Galaxy S8:Bridge
Garmin: Overview
Garmin: Overview
Garmin: Woods
Garmin: Woods
Garmin: Bridge
Garmin: Bridge

Telephony and Call Quality

Phone app
Phone app

The layout of the phone app in Samsung's smartphone is identical to that of Google's app and only its looks have been modified slightly. It should be easy to use for everyone.

The call quality convinced us. It did not give any reason for complaint when held to the ear, and the voices were transmitted clearly to both ends. The speaker also proved to be useful in quiet environments. We could understand our contact well, which is also true for the Galaxy user, although the voice echoes noticeably. The included AKG headset also made a good impression. Although the contact sounded rather muffled due to its bass-heavy transmission, it did not give any reason for criticism. The indoor performance of the headset's microphone in particular convinced us, but it hardly suppressed wind noises outdoors. The Galaxy S8's noise-cancelling is also decent, although it fails with loud voices.

As with the Galaxy S8+, the S8 tends to produce noise in the direct vicinity of DECT-capable devices. Its shielding could be improved here.

Cameras

Front camera photo
Front camera photo

The camera configuration of Samsung's Galaxy S8 is identical to that of the Galaxy S8+, and thus a detailed test of the cameras can be found here. The front-facing camera now has a resolution of 8 MP and offers a nominally higher light sensitivity with an aperture of f/1.7, as well as an autofocus. Videos can be recorded in Full HD (1920x1080 pixels). The preloaded beauty filter provides many settings. We liked the photo outcomes, which also made a good low-light impression. However, the little lens soon finds its limits in terms of dynamic range.

Compared with the Galaxy S7, the primary camera has not been improved, but only its software has been modified slightly. It still offers a 12.2-MP resolution dual-pixel lens with 1.40 µm pixel size. The aperture of f/1.7 is also still the same and an optical image stabilizer (OIS) is also integrated. The photos made an outstanding impression in practice, as we had already experienced with the predecessor. The photos are even slightly brighter in low-light scenes, and the edges are somewhat sharper than from the S7. This difference is only visible in full zoom and a direct comparison of the photos.

Nothing has changed in terms of video mode either. Although the Exynos 8895 could theoretically deal with Ultra HD videos at up to 120 frames per second, Samsung still uses the 30 FPS variant and limits the recording time to 10 minutes.

Samsung Galaxy S8
Samsung Galaxy S8
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge
Samsung Galaxy S8
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge
Samsung Galaxy S8
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge

Image Comparison

Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.

Scene 1Scene 2Scene 3
click to load images

The familiar camera modes are still found in the reworked camera app on Samsung's Galaxy S8. The settings can be adjusted manually in the pro mode and it is also possible to use the RAW format. The application's looks have been adapted to the new aspect ratio of 18.5:9 - content is now only displayed on the lower half of the screen.

We performed further tests with the camera of Samsung's Galaxy S8 under defined light conditions. The photos are not edited afterwards. The screenshot of X-Rite's ColorChecker Passport pleases with good color reproduction. Although the colors are slightly more saturated, it adds brilliance to the photos and the white balance is slightly warmer.

The photograph of the test chart is also very good and presents a relatively good sharpness in the image center that hardly decreases toward the edges. Some rivals, such as LG's G6, achieve even more convincing results in terms of sharpness. However, the color gradation hardly gives any reason for complaint.

ColorChecker Passport: Target colors are displayed in the lower half of each patch.
ColorChecker Passport

Accessories and Warranty

A black modular power supply (9.0 V, 1.67 A; 5.0 V, 2.0 A), the matching USB cable (Type-A to Type-C), two OTG adapters (Type-C to Type-A and Type-C to micro-USB), a SIM tool, an AKG in-ear headset with plugs in different sizes, and various leaflets concerning safety, warranty, and instructions are included with Samsung's Galaxy S8 (black).

The manufacturer also offers many optional accessories for its flagship model in its online shop. In addition to the usual diverse covers that are largely familiar from the predecessor, external batteries and inductive quick-charge stations are available. Furthermore, a USB Type-C to HDMI adapter that should allow transmitting images in Ultra HD is now offered. An optional starter kit contains an additional battery that supports quick-charge, a screen protector, and a transparent case. Samsung's DeX also comes with the Galaxy S8 models. It allows using the smartphone as a computer. This functions like Microsoft's Continuum except that Android is displayed as the desktop rather than Windows.

Samsung includes a two-year warranty on its product. The included accessories are covered for just six months, while the battery is covered by a 12-month warranty. This does not affect the retailer's warranty.

Samsung's Mobile Care package can be purchased for an additional 119 Euros (~$131) when buying the smartphone. It covers screen breakage, damage due to liquids and battery defects for 24 months. The customer has to pay 10% of the purchase price in case of damage. Interestingly, Samsung writes that damages due to liquids are not covered in its German warranty conditions:

The warranty does not cover the following points [...] The product has been exposed to liquids/chemicals of any kind and/or extreme temperatures, humidity or moisture.

Considering the IP68 certification stating protection against ingress of dust and water, this is rather confusing and the customer will probably have to rely on Samsung's goodwill.

Input Devices and Handling

Samsung Galaxy S8: Extended functions
Samsung Galaxy S8: Extended functions
Samsung Galaxy S8: Smartphone security
Samsung Galaxy S8: Smartphone security

Samsung's Galaxy S8 offers the same options as the Galaxy S8+ and uses an onscreen navigation in its flagship smartphones. Three touch-sensitive buttons below the screen are used for controlling the S8. This functioned well in the test and was beyond criticism. Since the front-sided home button is no longer present, the fingerprint scanner has been moved to the rear and also supports swipe gestures for opening the notification center. Samsung has copied this nicely from Huawei's models, such as the Mate 9, even if its range of functions is not as extensive. The fingerprint scanner itself responds very quickly and reliably. Unlike the Galaxy S8+, the positioning is better, thanks to the shorter length and the sensor's surface is easy to reach without having to turn the smartphone. The surface is often confused with the neighboring camera at first. The heart-rate sensor is not noticeable.

In addition to the fingerprint scanner, Samsung's Galaxy S8 also offers other security features. The iris scanner familiar from the Note 7 is installed and functions just as reliably. Unfortunately, it needs a moment for unlocking the device. Face recognition is much faster, although it is not as reliable as Samsung points out when setting it up. Our colleagues from Heise could unlock the handset with a photo, and thus we would discourage using this feature even if Samsung has now added an optional, improved recognition mode that should reduce this risk but cannot completely eliminate it. It also increases the recognition process.

Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protects the capacitive touchscreen in Samsung's Galaxy S8. It has very good gliding qualities, and its reliability and responsiveness cannot be criticized. Samsung relies on its own keyboard layout with a plain design, which supports word suggestions and swipe gestures. Alternatively, other layouts can be installed from Google's Play Store.

The smartphone's physical buttons are well-built and fitted. These include the volume control and Bixby button as well as the power button. The latter also opens an overview of upcoming appointments, weather forecast, Samsung Health, news, and more that is compiled on one page even in a locked state.

Display

Subpixel grid
Subpixel grid

Only the 5.8-inch size of the Infinity screen in Samsung's Galaxy S8 differs from that of the Galaxy S8+. It also uses a Super AMOLED panel that has a maximum resolution of 2960x1440 pixels. However, its compact dimensions result in a pixel density of 568 PPI. The difference is not visible to the naked eye. In addition to the screen's curved edges on both long sides, the corners are also rounded. Also true here: The new 2.06:1 aspect ratio seemingly increases the screen diagonal significantly, but it does not offer as much screen surface as an equally sized screen with a standard 16:9 format. The following chart illustrates this.

Smartphone Galaxy S7 Galaxy S8 LG G6 Huawei P10 iPhone 7 Xiaomi Mi 5s 5.8 inches (16:9)
Screen Surface 71.70 cm² 85.38 cm² 83.84 cm² 71.70 cm² 60.90 cm² 73.12 cm² 92.74 cm²

The Galaxy S8 only develops its full brightness when the ambient light sensor is enabled. We could measure a maximum of 362 cd/m² in the screen's center on a pure white background. When the fast-responding sensor is enabled, we measured up to 575 cd/m² in the same scenario. It was even almost 800 cd/m² in the realistic APL50 assessment where bright and dark areas are distributed evenly.

The screen's illumination of 94% is very homogeneous. Thanks to the underlying AMOLED technology, the screen can also display an absolute black, making a theoretical infinite contrast ratio possible. An eye-friendly blue-light filter is also installed and, as with the predecessor, the familiar Always On Display feature is also present.

The screen also supports HDR content that streaming services, such as Amazon and Netflix, already use. This, alongside a higher dynamic range, also promises more and richer colors.

As with the Galaxy S8+, our S8 (retail version) also operates with a screen resolution of just 2220x1080 pixels ex-factory. Although this is energy-saving, the settings should be adapted for enjoying the premium screen's full beauty.

The Galaxy S8 displays an identical PWM behavior as its larger sibling that we analyzed more closely there.

543
cd/m²
566
cd/m²
574
cd/m²
561
cd/m²
566
cd/m²
570
cd/m²
563
cd/m²
562
cd/m²
575
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 575 cd/m² Average: 564.4 cd/m² Minimum: 1.7 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 94 %
Center on Battery: 566 cd/m²
Contrast: ∞:1 (Black: 0 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 2.7 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.2
ΔE Greyscale 3.1 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
99.87% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 81.57% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.15
Samsung Galaxy S8
Super AMOLED, 2960x1440, 5.8
Samsung Galaxy S7
SAMOLED, 2560x1440, 5.1
LG G6
IPS LCD, 2880x1440, 5.7
Huawei P10
LTPS, 1920x1080, 5.1
Apple iPhone 7 Plus
IPS, 1920x1080, 5.5
Lenovo Moto Z
AMOLED, 2560x1440, 5.5
OnePlus 3T
Optic-AMOLED, 1920x1080, 5.5
Screen
6%
-27%
-33%
16%
2%
-88%
Brightness middle
566
350
-38%
646
14%
547
-3%
557
-2%
485
-14%
421
-26%
Brightness
564
351
-38%
611
8%
556
-1%
553
-2%
490
-13%
430
-24%
Brightness Distribution
94
98
4%
89
-5%
86
-9%
97
3%
92
-2%
84
-11%
Black Level *
0.23
0.43
0.35
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
2.7
2.04
24%
4.5
-67%
4.8
-78%
1.4
48%
2.1
22%
7.1
-163%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
5.4
3.25
40%
8.3
-54%
8.8
-63%
3.1
43%
5.5
-2%
15.3
-183%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
3.1
1.63
47%
6
-94%
4.5
-45%
1.3
58%
2.6
16%
6.8
-119%
Gamma
2.15 102%
2.07 106%
2.27 97%
2.39 92%
2.21 100%
2.23 99%
2.23 99%
CCT
6335 103%
6391 102%
7996 81%
7194 90%
6667 97%
6843 95%
7866 83%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
81.57
86.86
6%
67.74
-17%
63.1
-23%
88.14
8%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
99.87
99.35
-1%
99.05
-1%
99.83
0%
100
0%
Contrast
2809
1272
1591

* ... smaller is better

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM detected 250 Hz

The display backlight flickers at 250 Hz (Likely utilizing PWM) .

The frequency of 250 Hz is relatively low, so sensitive users will likely notice flickering and experience eyestrain at the stated brightness setting and below.

In comparison: 52 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 8920 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

OLED panels ensure first-rate contrasts and vivid colors and Samsung's Galaxy S8 is no exception. The screen has an adaptive panel that always selects the correct color balance in compatible apps. The predefined profiles Basic, Photo, and Cinema can also be set manually. We examined their accuracy with the photospectrometer and the analysis software CalMAN. We did not discover any real shortcomings in any of the profiles. The average DeltaE rates are lower than three, which is the limit for deviations visible to the human eye, in all profiles. Only the iPhone achieves a higher accuracy in the comparison field, but it also has a lower color-space coverage.

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
3.2 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 2 ms rise
↘ 1.2 ms fall
The screen shows very fast response rates in our tests and should be very well suited for fast-paced gaming.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 1 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (25.6 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
5.6 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 2.8 ms rise
↘ 2.8 ms fall
The screen shows very fast response rates in our tests and should be very well suited for fast-paced gaming.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 2 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (40.9 ms).

Samsung's Galaxy S8 makes an outstanding impression outdoors. The high contrast and enormous brightness ensure very good legibility even in direct sunlight. Especially the reflections on the screen's surface are comparatively low, which is a real advantage in outdoor use.

Samsung Galaxy S8: Outdoors
Samsung Galaxy S8: Outdoors
Samsung Galaxy S8: Outdoors
Samsung Galaxy S8: Outdoors

Samsung has improved the Galaxy S8's viewing-angle stability compared with the predecessor. The light color haze that is typical for AMOLED panels appears starting at approximately 100 degrees and therefore very flat angles. This involves a slight brightness decrease, but ghosting, glow or clouding effects are not an issue on the Galaxy S8's Infinity screen.

Samsung Galaxy S8: Viewing angles
Samsung Galaxy S8: Viewing angles

Performance

Samsung's own Exynos 9 chip powers the European S8 model (SM-G950F) while Qualcomm's Snapdragon 835 is installed into the S8 (SM-S950U) sold in the USA. Both SoCs use the 10 nm structure width and should thus be correspondingly stronger and more efficient than their predecessors. Samsung speaks of a 27% higher performance than the Exynos 8890 while the power consumption has dropped by 40%. The manufacturer again relies on the big-LITTLE architecture with two clusters that contain four cores each. The performance cluster uses Samsung's custom second-generation M1 CPU cores that clock up to 2.3 GHz. The energy-saving cluster uses ARM Cortex A53 cores that can clock at up to 1.7 GHz. Like Huawei uses in its P10 among others, Samsung has installed an ARM Mali-G71 graphics unit. However, the Korean manufacturer's model not only provides eight GPU cores for video calculations, it provides a total of 20. This power-bundle can fall back on 4 GB of LPDDR4x working memory.

The performance in the benchmarks is outstanding and achieves some new top rates. We performed a more exact analysis in the test of the Galaxy S8+. Since we now also have an S8 with a Snapdragon SoC in our office, we will provide the outcomes as soon as possible.

Update 6/12/2017: We've added the Snapdragon 835 powered Galaxy S8 (GPU: Adreno 540) to our comparison chart. It lags behind slightly in AnTuTu, but trumps the Exynos-powered S8 in PCMark by a significant margin. It even manages to outperform the Huawei P10 in the Work 2.0 test. In GFXBench, the Exynos-powered model is faster, in 3DMark it is the other way around, and the Snapdragon 835 is up to 12 % faster than the Exynos in Sling Shot Extreme. Thus, neither model seems to be clearly better than the other in every single aspect.

AnTuTu v6 - Total Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
171884 Points ∼68%
Samsung Galaxy S7
127902 Points ∼50% -26%
Huawei P10
140084 Points ∼55% -19%
LG G6
151751 Points ∼60% -12%
Apple iPhone 7
142532 Points ∼56% -17%
HTC U Ultra
139017 Points ∼55% -19%
Sony Xperia XZ
129317 Points ∼51% -25%
Lenovo Moto Z
129197 Points ∼51% -25%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
148698 Points ∼58% -13%
OnePlus 3T
159866 Points ∼63% -7%
Google Pixel XL 2016
138641 Points ∼55% -19%
Geekbench 4.0
64 Bit Multi-Core Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
6300 Points ∼23%
Huawei P10
6036 Points ∼22% -4%
Apple iPhone 7
5585 Points ∼20% -11%
HTC U Ultra
3983 Points ∼14% -37%
Sony Xperia XZ
3701 Points ∼13% -41%
Lenovo Moto Z
3946 Points ∼14% -37%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
4292 Points ∼16% -32%
OnePlus 3T
4236 Points ∼15% -33%
Google Pixel XL 2016
4167 Points ∼15% -34%
64 Bit Single-Core Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
1970 Points ∼34%
Huawei P10
1935 Points ∼34% -2%
Apple iPhone 7
3490 Points ∼60% +77%
HTC U Ultra
1643 Points ∼28% -17%
Sony Xperia XZ
1647 Points ∼29% -16%
Lenovo Moto Z
1480 Points ∼26% -25%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
1728 Points ∼30% -12%
OnePlus 3T
1881 Points ∼33% -5%
Google Pixel XL 2016
1513 Points ∼26% -23%
Geekbench 4.1/4.2
64 Bit Multi-Core Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
6711 Points ∼19%
Huawei P10
6521 Points ∼18% -3%
LG G6
4369 Points ∼12% -35%
Apple iPhone 7
5922 Points ∼16% -12%
64 Bit Single-Core Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
1997 Points ∼32%
Huawei P10
1899 Points ∼30% -5%
LG G6
1831 Points ∼29% -8%
Apple iPhone 7
3527 Points ∼56% +77%
3DMark
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1) Physics (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
2494 Points ∼59%
Samsung Galaxy S7
2022 Points ∼48% -19%
Huawei P10
1902 Points ∼45% -24%
LG G6
1955 Points ∼46% -22%
HTC U Ultra
1763 Points ∼42% -29%
Sony Xperia XZ
1667 Points ∼40% -33%
Lenovo Moto Z
1797 Points ∼43% -28%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
1857 Points ∼44% -26%
OnePlus 3T
1728 Points ∼41% -31%
Google Pixel XL 2016
1935 Points ∼46% -22%
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1) Graphics (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
3472 Points ∼64%
Samsung Galaxy S7
2216 Points ∼41% -36%
Huawei P10
2409 Points ∼45% -31%
LG G6
2980 Points ∼55% -14%
HTC U Ultra
2405 Points ∼45% -31%
Sony Xperia XZ
2853 Points ∼53% -18%
Lenovo Moto Z
2336 Points ∼43% -33%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
2933 Points ∼54% -16%
OnePlus 3T
2418 Points ∼45% -30%
Google Pixel XL 2016
2820 Points ∼52% -19%
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1) (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
3194 Points ∼67%
Samsung Galaxy S7
2170 Points ∼46% -32%
Huawei P10
2274 Points ∼48% -29%
LG G6
2669 Points ∼56% -16%
HTC U Ultra
2225 Points ∼47% -30%
Sony Xperia XZ
2548 Points ∼54% -20%
Lenovo Moto Z
2190 Points ∼46% -31%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
2598 Points ∼55% -19%
OnePlus 3T
2221 Points ∼47% -30%
Google Pixel XL 2016
2560 Points ∼54% -20%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Physics (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
2440 Points ∼58%
Samsung Galaxy S7
2010 Points ∼48% -18%
Huawei P10
2193 Points ∼52% -10%
LG G6
1961 Points ∼47% -20%
Apple iPhone 7
1525 Points ∼36% -37%
HTC U Ultra
1646 Points ∼39% -33%
Sony Xperia XZ
1667 Points ∼40% -32%
Lenovo Moto Z
1828 Points ∼43% -25%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
1927 Points ∼46% -21%
OnePlus 3T
1452 Points ∼34% -40%
Google Pixel XL 2016
1902 Points ∼45% -22%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Graphics (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
4923 Points ∼59%
Samsung Galaxy S7
3018 Points ∼36% -39%
Huawei P10
2816 Points ∼34% -43%
LG G6
4121 Points ∼50% -16%
Apple iPhone 7
4057 Points ∼49% -18%
HTC U Ultra
3807 Points ∼46% -23%
Sony Xperia XZ
4522 Points ∼54% -8%
Lenovo Moto Z
3718 Points ∼45% -24%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
4746 Points ∼57% -4%
OnePlus 3T
3310 Points ∼40% -33%
Google Pixel XL 2016
3935 Points ∼47% -20%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
4015 Points ∼62%
Samsung Galaxy S7
2715 Points ∼42% -32%
Huawei P10
2649 Points ∼41% -34%
LG G6
3282 Points ∼51% -18%
Apple iPhone 7
2964 Points ∼46% -26%
HTC U Ultra
2947 Points ∼46% -27%
Sony Xperia XZ
3275 Points ∼51% -18%
Lenovo Moto Z
3023 Points ∼47% -25%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
3580 Points ∼55% -11%
OnePlus 3T
2577 Points ∼40% -36%
Google Pixel XL 2016
3180 Points ∼49% -21%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Physics (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
21543 Points ∼27%
Samsung Galaxy S7
19944 Points ∼25% -7%
Huawei P10
15341 Points ∼19% -29%
LG G6
22335 Points ∼28% +4%
Apple iPhone 7
15450 Points ∼20% -28%
HTC U Ultra
21263 Points ∼27% -1%
Sony Xperia XZ
20772 Points ∼26% -4%
Lenovo Moto Z
20948 Points ∼27% -3%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
22372 Points ∼28% +4%
OnePlus 3T
22426 Points ∼28% +4%
Google Pixel XL 2016
18222 Points ∼23% -15%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Graphics Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
36347 Points ∼7%
Samsung Galaxy S7
33348 Points ∼6% -8%
Huawei P10
35964 Points ∼7% -1%
LG G6
32128 Points ∼6% -12%
Apple iPhone 7
63974 Points ∼12% +76%
HTC U Ultra
33446 Points ∼6% -8%
Sony Xperia XZ
32056 Points ∼6% -12%
Lenovo Moto Z
26659 Points ∼5% -27%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
34202 Points ∼6% -6%
OnePlus 3T
34494 Points ∼6% -5%
Google Pixel XL 2016
32652 Points ∼6% -10%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
31532 Points ∼15%
Samsung Galaxy S7
29015 Points ∼14% -8%
Huawei P10
27692 Points ∼13% -12%
LG G6
29276 Points ∼14% -7%
Apple iPhone 7
37676 Points ∼18% +19%
HTC U Ultra
29668 Points ∼14% -6%
Sony Xperia XZ
28603 Points ∼13% -9%
Lenovo Moto Z
25135 Points ∼12% -20%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
30606 Points ∼14% -3%
OnePlus 3T
30810 Points ∼14% -2%
Google Pixel XL 2016
27766 Points ∼13% -12%
GFXBench (DX / GLBenchmark) 2.7
1920x1080 T-Rex HD Offscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
121 fps ∼1%
Samsung Galaxy S7
84 fps ∼1% -31%
Huawei P10
69 fps ∼1% -43%
LG G6
75 fps ∼1% -38%
Apple iPhone 7
110.3 fps ∼1% -9%
HTC U Ultra
74 fps ∼1% -39%
Sony Xperia XZ
88 fps ∼1% -27%
Lenovo Moto Z
77 fps ∼1% -36%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
93 fps ∼1% -23%
OnePlus 3T
91 fps ∼1% -25%
Google Pixel XL 2016
91 fps ∼1% -25%
T-Rex HD Onscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
60 fps ∼2%
Samsung Galaxy S7
53 fps ∼2% -12%
Huawei P10
55 fps ∼2% -8%
LG G6
46 fps ∼1% -23%
Apple iPhone 7
57.7 fps ∼2% -4%
HTC U Ultra
46 fps ∼1% -23%
Sony Xperia XZ
88 fps ∼3% +47%
Lenovo Moto Z
53 fps ∼2% -12%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
60 fps ∼2% 0%
OnePlus 3T
59 fps ∼2% -2%
Google Pixel XL 2016
55 fps ∼2% -8%
GFXBench 3.0
off screen Manhattan Offscreen OGL (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
62 fps ∼1%
Samsung Galaxy S7
40 fps ∼1% -35%
Huawei P10
30 fps ∼0% -52%
LG G6
38 fps ∼1% -39%
Apple iPhone 7
60.7 fps ∼1% -2%
HTC U Ultra
26 fps ∼0% -58%
Sony Xperia XZ
40 fps ∼1% -35%
Lenovo Moto Z
41 fps ∼1% -34%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
49 fps ∼1% -21%
OnePlus 3T
46 fps ∼1% -26%
Google Pixel XL 2016
48 fps ∼1% -23%
on screen Manhattan Onscreen OGL (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
41 fps ∼1%
Samsung Galaxy S7
27 fps ∼1% -34%
Huawei P10
32 fps ∼1% -22%
LG G6
27 fps ∼1% -34%
Apple iPhone 7
58.5 fps ∼2% +43%
HTC U Ultra
23 fps ∼1% -44%
Sony Xperia XZ
39 fps ∼1% -5%
Lenovo Moto Z
26 fps ∼1% -37%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
48 fps ∼1% +17%
OnePlus 3T
45 fps ∼1% +10%
Google Pixel XL 2016
30 fps ∼1% -27%
GFXBench 3.1
off screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Offscreen (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
24 fps ∼1%
Samsung Galaxy S7
28 fps ∼1% +17%
Huawei P10
24 fps ∼1% 0%
LG G6
29 fps ∼1% +21%
Apple iPhone 7
42.2 fps ∼1% +76%
HTC U Ultra
12 fps ∼0% -50%
Sony Xperia XZ
31 fps ∼1% +29%
Lenovo Moto Z
27 fps ∼1% +13%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
32 fps ∼1% +33%
OnePlus 3T
32 fps ∼1% +33%
Google Pixel XL 2016
32 fps ∼1% +33%
on screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Onscreen (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
23 fps ∼1%
Samsung Galaxy S7
15 fps ∼0% -35%
Huawei P10
25 fps ∼1% +9%
LG G6
16 fps ∼0% -30%
Apple iPhone 7
59.4 fps ∼2% +158%
HTC U Ultra
12 fps ∼0% -48%
Sony Xperia XZ
31 fps ∼1% +35%
Lenovo Moto Z
15 fps ∼0% -35%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
32 fps ∼1% +39%
OnePlus 3T
32 fps ∼1% +39%
Google Pixel XL 2016
17 fps ∼0% -26%
GFXBench
off screen Car Chase Offscreen (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
25 fps ∼1%
Samsung Galaxy S7
15 fps ∼0% -40%
Huawei P10
15 fps ∼0% -40%
LG G6
20 fps ∼1% -20%
HTC U Ultra
15 fps ∼0% -40%
Sony Xperia XZ
20 fps ∼1% -20%
Lenovo Moto Z
16 fps ∼0% -36%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
19 fps ∼1% -24%
OnePlus 3T
20 fps ∼1% -20%
Google Pixel XL 2016
19 fps ∼1% -24%
on screen Car Chase Onscreen (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
13 fps ∼0%
Samsung Galaxy S7
7.9 fps ∼0% -39%
Huawei P10
16 fps ∼1% +23%
LG G6
11 fps ∼0% -15%
HTC U Ultra
8.4 fps ∼0% -35%
Sony Xperia XZ
19 fps ∼1% +46%
Lenovo Moto Z
9.8 fps ∼0% -25%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
19 fps ∼1% +46%
OnePlus 3T
20 fps ∼1% +54%
Google Pixel XL 2016
11 fps ∼0% -15%
PCMark for Android
Work 2.0 performance score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
5370 Points ∼52%
Samsung Galaxy S7
3550 Points ∼34% -34%
Huawei P10
6206 Points ∼60% +16%
LG G6
5152 Points ∼50% -4%
HTC U Ultra
5217 Points ∼51% -3%
Sony Xperia XZ
5616 Points ∼54% +5%
Work performance score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
6035 Points ∼45%
Samsung Galaxy S7
4826 Points ∼36% -20%
Huawei P10
7341 Points ∼54% +22%
LG G6
5703 Points ∼42% -6%
HTC U Ultra
5217 Points ∼39% -14%
Sony Xperia XZ
5058 Points ∼37% -16%
Lenovo Moto Z
7637 Points ∼56% +27%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
5121 Points ∼38% -15%
OnePlus 3T
5664 Points ∼42% -6%
Google Pixel XL 2016
4739 Points ∼35% -21%
BaseMark OS II
Web (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
1156 Points ∼57%
Samsung Galaxy S7
957 Points ∼47% -17%
Huawei P10
1077 Points ∼53% -7%
LG G6
1073 Points ∼53% -7%
Apple iPhone 7
1531 Points ∼75% +32%
HTC U Ultra
907 Points ∼45% -22%
Sony Xperia XZ
1066 Points ∼52% -8%
Lenovo Moto Z
959 Points ∼47% -17%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
1020 Points ∼50% -12%
OnePlus 3T
891 Points ∼44% -23%
Google Pixel XL 2016
977 Points ∼48% -15%
Graphics (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
6096 Points ∼21%
Samsung Galaxy S7
1723 Points ∼6% -72%
Huawei P10
4115 Points ∼14% -32%
LG G6
5138 Points ∼18% -16%
Apple iPhone 7
6896 Points ∼24% +13%
HTC U Ultra
4591 Points ∼16% -25%
Sony Xperia XZ
4716 Points ∼16% -23%
Lenovo Moto Z
4321 Points ∼15% -29%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
5033 Points ∼17% -17%
OnePlus 3T
4444 Points ∼15% -27%
Google Pixel XL 2016
5017 Points ∼17% -18%
Memory (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
3039 Points ∼48%
Samsung Galaxy S7
2244 Points ∼36% -26%
Huawei P10
2778 Points ∼44% -9%
LG G6
1930 Points ∼31% -36%
Apple iPhone 7
1257 Points ∼20% -59%
HTC U Ultra
1581 Points ∼25% -48%
Sony Xperia XZ
1434 Points ∼23% -53%
Lenovo Moto Z
2190 Points ∼35% -28%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
1740 Points ∼28% -43%
OnePlus 3T
1954 Points ∼31% -36%
Google Pixel XL 2016
1677 Points ∼27% -45%
System (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
5386 Points ∼33%
Samsung Galaxy S7
4217 Points ∼26% -22%
Huawei P10
3830 Points ∼23% -29%
LG G6
3646 Points ∼22% -32%
Apple iPhone 7
6097 Points ∼37% +13%
HTC U Ultra
2834 Points ∼17% -47%
Sony Xperia XZ
3047 Points ∼19% -43%
Lenovo Moto Z
3398 Points ∼21% -37%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
3387 Points ∼21% -37%
OnePlus 3T
3130 Points ∼19% -42%
Google Pixel XL 2016
3889 Points ∼24% -28%
Overall (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
3277 Points ∼39%
Samsung Galaxy S7
1987 Points ∼24% -39%
Huawei P10
2621 Points ∼31% -20%
LG G6
2496 Points ∼30% -24%
Apple iPhone 7
2999 Points ∼35% -8%
HTC U Ultra
2078 Points ∼25% -37%
Sony Xperia XZ
2165 Points ∼26% -34%
Lenovo Moto Z
2356 Points ∼28% -28%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
2345 Points ∼28% -28%
OnePlus 3T
2218 Points ∼26% -32%
Google Pixel XL 2016
2378 Points ∼28% -27%
Basemark X 1.1
High Quality (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
42183 Points ∼96%
Samsung Galaxy S7
30097 Points ∼68% -29%
Huawei P10
37968 Points ∼86% -10%
LG G6
35449 Points ∼80% -16%
Lenovo Moto Z
33028 Points ∼75% -22%
Google Pixel XL 2016
30724 Points ∼70% -27%
Medium Quality (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
43852 Points ∼97%
Samsung Galaxy S7
40252 Points ∼89% -8%
Huawei P10
43782 Points ∼97% 0%
LG G6
37621 Points ∼84% -14%
Lenovo Moto Z
41445 Points ∼92% -5%
Google Pixel XL 2016
34695 Points ∼77% -21%
Basemark ES 3.1 / Metal - offscreen Overall Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
1276 Points ∼24%
Samsung Galaxy S7
732 Points ∼14% -43%
Huawei P10
664 Points ∼13% -48%
LG G6
647 Points ∼12% -49%
Apple iPhone 7
1322 Points ∼25% +4%
Apple iPhone 7
1059 Points ∼20% -17%
Lenovo Moto Z
542 Points ∼10% -58%
Google Pixel XL 2016
621 Points ∼12% -51%
Lightmark - 1920x1080 1080p (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
30.64 fps ∼79%
Samsung Galaxy S7
13.86 fps ∼36% -55%
Huawei P10
23.56 fps ∼61% -23%
LG G6
24.34 fps ∼63% -21%
Lenovo Moto Z
24.33 fps ∼63% -21%

Legend

 
Samsung Galaxy S8 Samsung Exynos 8895 Octa, ARM Mali-G71 MP20, 64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
 
Samsung Galaxy S7 Samsung Exynos 8890 Octa, ARM Mali-T880 MP12, 32 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
 
Huawei P10 HiSilicon Kirin 960, ARM Mali-G71 MP8, 64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
 
LG G6 Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 MSM8996 Pro, Qualcomm Adreno 530, 32 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
 
Apple iPhone 7 Apple A10 Fusion, Apple A10 Fusion GPU / PowerVR, 128 GB NVMe
 
HTC U Ultra Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 MSM8996 Pro, Qualcomm Adreno 530, 64 GB eMMC Flash
 
Sony Xperia XZ Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 MSM8996, Qualcomm Adreno 530, 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
Lenovo Moto Z Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 MSM8996, Qualcomm Adreno 530, 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
Xiaomi Mi 5s Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 MSM8996 Pro, Qualcomm Adreno 530, 128 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
 
OnePlus 3T Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 MSM8996 Pro, Qualcomm Adreno 530, 64 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
 
Google Pixel XL 2016 Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 MSM8996 Pro, Qualcomm Adreno 530, 32 GB eMMC Flash

Samsung's Galaxy S8 performed very well in the comparison field in the browser benchmarks. However, it cannot surpass the Internet leader Apple iPhone 7, but this does not at all affect the subjectively fast browsing speed.

WebXPRT 2015 - Overall Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
194 Points ∼24%
Samsung Galaxy S7
166 Points ∼21% -14%
Huawei P10
136 Points ∼17% -30%
LG G6
122 Points ∼15% -37%
Apple iPhone 7
202 Points ∼25% +4%
Sony Xperia XZ
90 Points ∼11% -54%
Lenovo Moto Z
112 Points ∼14% -42%
OnePlus 3T
135 Points ∼17% -30%
Google Pixel XL 2016
126 Points ∼16% -35%
Octane V2 - Total Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
12941 Points ∼26%
Samsung Galaxy S7
13161 Points ∼27% +2%
Huawei P10
10236 Points ∼21% -21%
LG G6
9113 Points ∼18% -30%
Apple iPhone 7
24875 Points ∼50% +92%
HTC U Ultra
5511 Points ∼11% -57%
Sony Xperia XZ
9069 Points ∼18% -30%
Lenovo Moto Z
7771 Points ∼16% -40%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
9378 Points ∼19% -28%
OnePlus 3T
9798 Points ∼20% -24%
Google Pixel XL 2016
8690 Points ∼18% -33%
Mozilla Kraken 1.1 - Total Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
1886.6 ms * ∼3%
Samsung Galaxy S7
2561.5 ms * ∼4% -36%
Huawei P10
3128.7 ms * ∼5% -66%
LG G6
2464.2 ms * ∼4% -31%
Apple iPhone 7
1113.4 ms * ∼2% +41%
HTC U Ultra
4141 ms * ∼7% -119%
Sony Xperia XZ
2768 ms * ∼5% -47%
Lenovo Moto Z
3154.7 ms * ∼5% -67%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
2580.2 ms * ∼4% -37%
OnePlus 3T
2719.3 ms * ∼5% -44%
Google Pixel XL 2016
2653.6 ms * ∼4% -41%
JetStream 1.1 - 1.1 Total Score (sort by value)
Samsung Galaxy S8
65.846 Points ∼20%
Samsung Galaxy S7
74 Points ∼22% +12%
Huawei P10
57.9 Points ∼17% -12%
LG G6
56.628 Points ∼17% -14%
Apple iPhone 7
165.86 Points ∼50% +152%
HTC U Ultra
45.084 Points ∼14% -32%
Sony Xperia XZ
54.201 Points ∼16% -18%
Lenovo Moto Z
47.5 Points ∼14% -28%
Xiaomi Mi 5s
57 Points ∼17% -13%
OnePlus 3T
54.526 Points ∼16% -17%
Google Pixel XL 2016
55.4 Points ∼17% -16%

* ... smaller is better

Samsung's Galaxy S8 houses 64 GB of UFS 2.1 flash memory in its casing. The larger 128 GB memory model is currently available only in the Asian market. Only Huawei's P10 has the presently fastest storage for mobile end devices in the comparison field. It can boast with much better read and write speeds in small data blocks.

Approximately 52.3 GB of the nominal 64 GB storage is available for personal use in factory state. With 11.7 GB, the system is a real storage killer. We tested the microSD-card slot with our Toshiba Exceria Pro M401 (max. read: 95 MB/s, write: 80 MB/s) reference card. The rates are on par with the Galaxy S7, which is comparatively fast without exhausting the card's potential.

Samsung Galaxy S8Samsung Galaxy S7Huawei P10LG G6HTC U UltraSony Xperia XZLenovo Moto ZOnePlus 3TXiaomi Mi 5sGoogle Pixel XL 2016
AndroBench 3-5
-13%
145%
-13%
-8%
-44%
56%
82%
-23%
-40%
Sequential Write 256KB SDCard
53.5
53.6
0%
32.19
-40%
53.33
0%
67.6
26%
29.8
-44%
45.64
-15%
Sequential Read 256KB SDCard
63.9
72.33
13%
54.22
-15%
77.61
21%
82.8
30%
33.5
-48%
78.51
23%
Random Write 4KB
15.25
16.01
5%
152.31
899%
16.58
9%
13.7
-10%
10.5
-31%
74.93
391%
74.39
388%
15.08
-1%
14.56
-5%
Random Read 4KB
127.17
85.9
-32%
168.42
32%
95.19
-25%
84.2
-34%
71.5
-44%
117.15
-8%
123.57
-3%
100.35
-21%
87.67
-31%
Sequential Write 256KB
193.23
145.72
-25%
189.83
-2%
122.85
-36%
164.7
-15%
138
-29%
168.32
-13%
165.3
-14%
153.47
-21%
83.38
-57%
Sequential Read 256KB
792.86
483.82
-39%
737.65
-7%
428.67
-46%
423.9
-47%
281
-65%
439.66
-45%
436.43
-45%
412.7
-48%
258.23
-67%

Games

Up-to-date games are no challenge for Samsung's Galaxy S8. The integrated ARM Mali-G71 MP20 GPU accelerates all games in the highest resolution and supports all modern graphics interfaces, such as OpenGL ES 3.x and Vulkan. However, we noticed that many games are limited to 30 FPS in the benchmarks, presumably for energy-saving reasons. We examined this in Asphalt 8 and played this game for over an hour. Performance drops were not recorded and GameBench calculated a possible total game time of over six hours on one battery charge.

The Game Launcher familiar from the predecessor is also installed, and it provides players with a real added value. Videos and screenshots of the game can be created quickly and easily, and distracting notifications can be suppressed. The touchscreen and the sensors do not give any cause for criticism. Only the speaker's positioning is still less than ideal when the smartphone is held in landscape mode as it could be easily covered. Since games are adapted to the 16:9 format, wide bars are produced in landscape mode. However, the Galaxy remains well under control despite its narrow frame this way.

Temple Run 2
Temple Run 2
Asphalt 8 plus Game Launcher
Asphalt 8 plus Game Launcher
Asphalt 8: Airborne
 SettingsValue
 high29 fps
 very low30 fps
Temple Run 2
 SettingsValue
 default60 fps
Temple Run 2
 SettingsValue
 default60 fps

Emissions

T-Rex
T-Rex
Manhattan
Manhattan

Temperature

The surface temperatures of Samsung's Galaxy S8 are very similar to those of the Galaxy S8+. The permanent load temperatures are slightly higher due to the smaller casing. However, the smartphone only gets lukewarm.

We examined the SoC's behavior during permanent load with the GFXBench battery test. The throttling behavior is identical to that of the S8+ in both the T-Rex scenario (OpenGL ES 2.0) and the more demanding Manhattan test (OpenGL ES 3.1). The Exynos 8895 and Mali-G71 MP20 reached their intermediate throttling peak with performance losses of 23% (T-Rex) and 42% (Manhattan). The larger sibling model consistently achieves a few more frames than the review sample. But this does not make a perceivable difference in everyday use. The S8's minimum performance is still considerably higher than that of a mid-range smartphone, such as the Galaxy A3 (T-Rex: max. 1054 FPS).

Max. Load
 35 °C
95 F
36.7 °C
98 F
34.2 °C
94 F
 
 34.7 °C
94 F
35.4 °C
96 F
34.5 °C
94 F
 
 34.2 °C
94 F
34.4 °C
94 F
34.1 °C
93 F
 
Maximum: 36.7 °C = 98 F
Average: 34.8 °C = 95 F
35.2 °C
95 F
37.5 °C
100 F
32.8 °C
91 F
34.5 °C
94 F
36.2 °C
97 F
32.1 °C
90 F
33.9 °C
93 F
35.4 °C
96 F
32.7 °C
91 F
Maximum: 37.5 °C = 100 F
Average: 34.5 °C = 94 F
Power Supply (max.)  30.6 °C = 87 F | Room Temperature 22 °C = 72 F | Voltcraft IR-350
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 34.8 °C / 95 F, compared to the average of 33.2 °C / 92 F for the devices in the class Smartphone.
(+) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 36.7 °C / 98 F, compared to the average of 35.8 °C / 96 F, ranging from 22.4 to 51.7 °C for the class Smartphone.
(+) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 37.5 °C / 100 F, compared to the average of 34.3 °C / 94 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 26 °C / 79 F, compared to the device average of 33.2 °C / 92 F.

Speaker

Pink Noise diagram
Pink Noise diagram

The mono speaker in Samsung's Galaxy S8 is once again situated on the smartphone's lower edge and is identical to the unit in the Galaxy S8+. It can get quite loud with up to 82.44 dB(A). Most low tones are inaudible and only the upper range of higher bass can be perceived when the mids and trebles do not simply drown it out. While the mids are relatively linear, the trebles are a bit too dominant. Thus, the overall sound impression is not very balanced. The quality is sufficient for occasional viewing of a short video or music sampling. Otherwise, headphones or other external solutions should be used.

We examined the performance of the included AKG headset and Bluetooth 5.0 in the review of the Galaxy S8+.

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2031.635.12525.433.53125.334.84032.9345033.629.46331.629.68028.424.91002731.212520.834.71602239.820021.348.325020.855.331521.259.540019.462.250019.567.163017.77080017.973.6100017.874.2125017.373.2160017.472.7200016.773.2250017.272.1315018.269.7400017.969500017.666.3630017.766.9800017.8671000017.951.61250018.145.21600018.247.7SPL3082.4N1.354.8median 17.9median 66.9Delta1.311.831.63725.434.125.333.632.932.533.630.531.631.828.428.42724.920.829.62242.221.352.620.859.721.260.419.459.919.56217.766.617.96717.866.117.368.117.468.816.771.617.271.618.270.417.970.317.667.917.762.217.856.717.953.518.15118.238.13080.41.345.9median 17.9median 621.3931.639.925.439.825.339.732.934.733.634.731.632.728.427.82726.420.828.62241.521.350.520.855.921.260.319.46519.568.617.766.817.964.417.866.917.371.517.473.516.774.517.273.718.272.217.970.517.670.717.764.817.860.417.95918.148.418.232.83082.71.352.3median 17.9median 64.81.310.6hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseSamsung Galaxy S8LG G6Huawei P10
Samsung Galaxy S8 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (82.44 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 22.1% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (11.7% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 5% higher than median
(+) | mids are linear (4.3% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 3.7% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (6.7% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (21.3% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 18% of all tested devices in this class were better, 12% similar, 70% worse
» The best had a delta of 13%, average was 25%, worst was 44%
Compared to all devices tested
» 49% of all tested devices were better, 9% similar, 42% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

LG G6 audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (80.35 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 17.1% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (14.7% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 4.8% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (4% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 6.6% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (5.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (21.8% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 23% of all tested devices in this class were better, 12% similar, 66% worse
» The best had a delta of 13%, average was 25%, worst was 44%
Compared to all devices tested
» 53% of all tested devices were better, 8% similar, 39% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Huawei P10 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (82.74 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 20.9% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (12.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 4.2% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (6% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 5.5% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (4.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (22.8% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 32% of all tested devices in this class were better, 12% similar, 57% worse
» The best had a delta of 13%, average was 25%, worst was 44%
Compared to all devices tested
» 59% of all tested devices were better, 8% similar, 33% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Frequency diagram in comparison (checkboxes above can be turned on/off!)

Energy Management

Power Consumption

The Galaxy S8's power consumption has increased slightly compared with the former S7. This is due to the larger screen. However, it is the most economic device in the comparison field thanks to the reduced load power consumption, which is very low.

Samsung's Galaxy S8 uses the same quick-charge technology as the Galaxy S7 and its battery capacity of 3000 mAh is also identical. The included power supply recharges the Galaxy S8 fully within 92 minutes. The battery is charged to 25% after 15 minutes and 43% after half-an-hour. 80% is accomplished after 59 minutes. The smartphone can also be recharged without a cable via induction with optional accessories.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.02 / 0.14 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 0.78 / 1.1 / 1.16 Watt
Load midlight 4.15 / 5.12 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Samsung Galaxy S8
3000 mAh
Samsung Galaxy S7
3000 mAh
LG G6
3300 mAh
Huawei P10
3200 mAh
Apple iPhone 7
1960 mAh
OnePlus 3T
3400 mAh
Xiaomi Mi 5s
3200 mAh
Power Consumption
-6%
-35%
-65%
-5%
-54%
-36%
Idle Minimum *
0.78
0.68
13%
0.62
21%
0.83
-6%
0.54
31%
0.61
22%
0.4
49%
Idle Average *
1.1
1.02
7%
1.43
-30%
2.1
-91%
1.51
-37%
1.77
-61%
1.7
-55%
Idle Maximum *
1.16
1.14
2%
1.48
-28%
2.18
-88%
1.54
-33%
1.81
-56%
1.81
-56%
Load Average *
4.15
4.73
-14%
5.52
-33%
6.57
-58%
3.75
10%
6.67
-61%
5.84
-41%
Load Maximum *
5.12
7.16
-40%
10.47
-104%
9.32
-82%
5.01
2%
10.98
-114%
9.12
-78%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Runtime

The battery life of Samsung's Galaxy S8 has increased slightly compared with the predecessor. While its maximum and minimum runtimes have decreased marginally, it is particularly convincing in the tests using a screen brightness set to 150 cd/m², which is closer to real life and allows a better comparison.

The S8 lasts considerably longer than its predecessor that had a 37% shorter runtime in the Wi-Fi browsing test. However, the review sample's video playback time is shorter although it still achieves a very good outcome. The battery test of PCMark for Android also illustrates the improvements over the S7 and shows that its battery life comes close to the Galaxy S8+'s runtimes despite the smaller battery. This was different in the S7 lineup.

In brief, the Galaxy S8 provides a really good battery life that can even be expanded with the existing energy-saving modes.

Update 6/12/2017: We've added the Snapdragon 835 powered Galaxy S8 (GPU: Adreno 540) to our comparison chart. In PCMark for Android Work 2.0, with display brightness normalized to 150 nits, it lasted quite a while longer than the Exynos model: 47 minutes, or +9 %.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
27h 47min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
11h 59min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
12h 51min
Load (maximum brightness)
4h 24min
PCMark for Android - Work 2.0 battery life
Huawei Mate 9
677 min ∼100% +28%
Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus
533 min ∼79% +1%
Samsung Galaxy S8
527 min ∼78%
Sony Xperia XZ
482 min ∼71% -9%
Lenovo ZUK Z2
481 min ∼71% -9%
HTC 10
387 min ∼57% -27%
Samsung Galaxy S7
371 min ∼55% -30%
Samsung Galaxy S8
3000 mAh
Samsung Galaxy S7
3000 mAh
Apple iPhone 7 Plus
2915 mAh
LG G6
3300 mAh
Huawei P10
3200 mAh
Lenovo Moto Z
2600 mAh
HTC U Ultra
3000 mAh
Battery Runtime
-5%
-5%
-0%
-8%
-12%
-18%
Reader / Idle
1667
1810
9%
1835
10%
1789
7%
1540
-8%
1371
-18%
1568
-6%
H.264
771
892
16%
813
5%
779
1%
582
-25%
724
-6%
605
-22%
WiFi v1.3
719
456
-37%
587
-18%
692
-4%
966
34%
407
-43%
546
-24%
Load
264
242
-8%
225
-15%
252
-5%
176
-33%
320
21%
214
-19%

Pros

+ excellent screen
+ stylish design
+ fast SoC
+ very good GPS qualities
+ fast Wi-Fi
+ Gigabit LTE
+ decent call quality
+ solid sensor configuration
+ USB 3.1 with DP, HDMI, and OTG
+ good battery life
+ quick-charge and wireless charging
+ water and dust-resistant
+ very good camera,...

Cons

- ...though not much better than in the predecessor
- no dual-SIM
- fingerprint scanner hard to find via touch
- SoC throttling during permanent load
- warranty does not cover damage due to liquids

Verdict

In review: Samsung Galaxy S8
In review: Samsung Galaxy S8

With its Galaxy S8, Samsung has created a superb product that scores even a bit better than its larger Galaxy S8+ sister model. This was different in the S7 lineup, but the Plus model cannot take advantage of its larger battery and is also heavier. Furthermore, the fingerprint scanner's positioning is not as comfortable to reach due to its size. Thus, the 100 Euros (~$110) extra can be saved when the larger screen is not a must have.

The smartphone itself convinces with a stylish design and the new Infinity display that offers an accurate color reproduction, high brightness, and few reflections, which is also the clear highlight of the Galaxy S8. However, the new SoC also boosts the performance and a Gigabit LTE module is also installed. However, it is too bad that Samsung does not offer a dual-SIM variant for our latitude.

Nevertheless, Samsung's Galaxy S8 has to accept some criticism, although it is an outstanding smartphone.

The diverse security features are also a strong plus point, but face recognition should not be used when the smartphone really has to be secured, as this method is simply too easy to deceive. Unfortunately, the assistant Bixby is still incomplete and does not yet convince us.

We would generally wish that Samsung would give the consumer more freedom. For example, the 128-GB model (6 GB of RAM) will not be available in Europe and the customer will not be able to choose all available colors if they don't live in Asia.

However, Samsung has managed to upgrade its premium smartphone very well with its Galaxy S8 that convinces with its stylish design, a superb camera as before, very good battery runtimes, and a great screen.

Samsung Galaxy S8 - 05/03/2017 v6
Marcus Herbrich, Daniel Schmidt

Chassis
93%
Keyboard
72 / 75 → 96%
Pointing Device
97%
Connectivity
69 / 60 → 100%
Weight
92%
Battery
94%
Display
91%
Games Performance
64 / 63 → 100%
Application Performance
66 / 70 → 95%
Temperature
93%
Noise
100%
Audio
71 / 91 → 78%
Camera
94%
Average
84%
92%
Smartphone - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Samsung Galaxy S8 Smartphone Review
Marcus Herbrich, Daniel Schmidt, 2017-06-13 (Update: 2018-05-15)