After numerous leaks and rumors, we finally have our first reported image of the Samsung Galaxy S8. Coming from trusted Venture Beat writer Evan Blass, perhaps better known on Twitter as @evleaks, the image shows what many anticipated would come from the Korean smartphone manufacturer’s latest and greatest.
The rear of the phone is similar to those of recent memory, appearing to be a glass slab in the same vein as the S7. One noticeable change is the addition of a fingerprint scanner, relocated from its spot as a part of the tactile home button previously found on the front of the device. Given reports that the two variants of the S8 will retain roughly the same size as the S7 and S7 Edge, I’m curious about the position of the scanner. Putting the fingerprint reader on the rear is nothing new, but OEMs that have opted to do so in the past generally placed them below the camera, approximately where your finger naturally rests when you hold the phone. Samsung has chosen to place it next to the camera instead, which could be a stretch for some users.
The big news, though, is the front of the handset. It appears, as was rumored for months, much of the real estate on the front of the S8 has been allotted to the screen. The Guardian, in another recent scoop, notes the phone will likely come with either a 5.8 or 6.2-inch QHD AMOLED display. The sizes are larger than last year and even larger than the company’s flagship phablet Note line thanks to the removal of the navigation buttons and reduced bezels. Both screens are expected to have curved edges, which should help offset their size.
The rest of the specifications are expected to be fairly standard for a device of high quality and price like the S8 should be. The camera, which was one of the best of 2016, will remain largely unchanged save for a few new software features. The rear shooter will stay at 12-megapixels with an aperture of f/1.7 and the front selfie camera will be 8-megapixels with the same aperture as the rear. Depending on the market, the smartphone will be powered by a Snapdragon 835 or equivalent Exynos processor, and 4GB of RAM no matter the region. On board storage is expected to come in at 64GB with microSD expansion and battery size will be 3000mAh for the smaller variant and 3500 for the larger.
As you can see in the photo, the headphone jack lives on. It was reported late in 2016 that Samsung was looking to kill the standard 3.5mm connector, but in the end the company thought wiser of it (good job, Samsung). The S8 will also feature USB-C for charging, the first S phone to do so.
The new phones are also expected to bring a few extra features that will be firsts for Samsung handsets, including a Windows Continuum-like mode that gives the S8 functionality similar to desktop PCs when connected to an HDMI dock. The company is also expected to be on trend in 2017, including its own digital AI similar to Siri and the Google Assistant. Samsung’s butler will reportedly be named Bixby and will be capable of handling “more complex commands than its competitors.”
Now, when can we expect the S8 to officially launch? Samsung won’t be revealing them next month at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, as it has in years past, but instead in late March (March 29, to be specific). The Unpacked event has not been officially announced, but expect Samsung to do so soon.
Once the phone is officially announced, Paste will have loads more coverage. The S8 is shaping up, as is usual for the latest Samsung flagship, to be one of the hottest devices of the year and one of the best the company has ever made.