Samsung Galaxy S8 rumored to be announced on March 29th, will be redesigned
Samsung’s Galaxy line of smartphones always generates immense speculation every year. Rumors have been flying about the specs, the design, and other features of the upcoming flagship. Evan Blass (better known as @evleaks on Twitter) is typically a reliable source of rumors concerning mobile technology. In an article featured on VentureBeat, Blass has stated that the Galaxy S8 is slotted to be announced on March 29th and will feature a completely different design than its predecessors.
Citing “someone familiar with the company’s plans,” Blass said that Samsung will unveil the Galaxy S8 at their Unpacked event on March 29th. This is interesting as Samsung typically announces or releases their Galaxy S flagship right before Mobile World Congress (MWC). Blass said that the later release date is most likely to allow Samsung further time to test their devices. After the Note 7 catastrophe of last year, the Korean tech giant is being very cautious with their flagship phones.
The Galaxy S8 is also rumored to feature a complete design overhaul. There will be two models, both featuring larger display panels than even the Note 7. The smaller model will measure in at 5.8 inches, while the larger will be a monstrous 6.2 inches. Despite the larger displays, Samsung is aiming to minimize the phones’ footprints; the QHD Super AMOLED screens will cover 83% of the front body of the phone and curve around the sides much like the Galaxy S7 Edge. The screens will also have an uncommon 18.5:9 aspect ratio.
Another major design change will be the removal of the physical home button, which has become a Samsung staple. It’s not clear whether or not the capacitive navigation buttons will also be cut, but their removal is likely. The fingerprint reader has subsequently been moved to the back of the device and will be placed to the right of the camera, which may prove more difficult to use. Other phones with back-mounted fingerprint readers typically place them below the camera for an easy reach.
It’s no secret that the Galaxy S8 models will be the first to sport Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 835 SoC, but some markets may get phones equipped with a Samsung Exynos processor. Both processors will be similar and manufactured on a 10-nm FinFET process. The S8 is expected to be marginally faster than the S7, with 11% faster system performance, 23% better graphics performance, and around 20% better energy efficiency.
The 5.8- and 6.2-inch models will be powered by 3000 and 3500 mAh batteries, respectively. Both models will feature 4 GB of RAM and a base storage of 64 GB (with support for a 256 GB microSD card). The phone will carry over the USB-C charging/data port of the S7 and will have a headphone jack, which is sadly becoming increasingly rare in smartphones.
Galaxy phones are known for their excellent cameras, and the S8 should be no different. The main shooter will be 12 MP, while the front-facing “selfie” camera will be 8 MP. Both cameras will have a generous f/1.7 aperture. The phone will also feature an iris scanner similar to that found on the Note 7.
Other features include Samsung’s own digital voice assistant, similar to Siri, Cortana, and the new Google Assistant. Samsung’s PA will be known as Bixby and should be able to handle multiple complex instructions at a time. The S8 may also feature pressure sensitive sensors in the display allowing for contextual input akin to the Iphone’s Force Touch.
Again, all of this should be taken with a grain of salt. While this information is from a fairly reliable source, we won’t know the exact specs or feature set of the Galaxy S8 until Samsung announces it. We don't even know for certain when the device will be announced. However, we do know that the S8 is coming very soon. If history is any indicator, it should be a compelling flagship option with one of the best user experiences available in the smartphone world.