With the company still reeling from the effects of its disastrous Galaxy Note 7 failure, Samsung has moved quickly to shift the conversation away from the Note 7 and onto its new (and hopefully far, far improved) Galaxy S8, set to debut in late March or early April.
We don’t have all the details yet, but several leaks from reliable sources are pointing toward good things for the S8, including a massive screen, a miraculously thin design and a minimalistic display.
While it’s still a little too early to call it, I decided to have a comprehensive look at what we learned from the Note 7, as well as at the competition, to put together my list of features I’d like to see moving forward on the new Galaxy S8. Here’s what I’m thinkin’:
A Battery That Doesn’t Explode
Right now you probably think I’m just dragging Samsung through the mud. The reality of it is that safety should be a brand’s number one priority leading up to the Galaxy S8 release. So, before things get out of hand again this year, the only request I have is that they make sure the hardware works seamlessly with its components in order to create a user experience that’s not only unlike anything else we’ve ever seen, but also safe. I don’t think that’s asking for too much.
Let’s not forget that, although Samsung lost a lot of money on the recall, some people lost a lot more.
The New Snapdragon 830 Processor
Everyone is hard up for the Snapdragon 821 processor right now, but the rumor mills have indicated a heavy probability in Samsung manufacturing the 830 in time to include it in the Galaxy S8’s hardware. While we don’t know how, exactly, the 830 is going to improve on the still remarkably robust 821, it’s a pretty safe bet to assume it’ll use the new 10nm process technology, make decent improvements in performance and also support up to 8GB of RAM, which would be a best-in-class improvement over the competition.
A 4K AMOLED Display
When it comes to the Galaxy flagships, Samsung has been known to really stay ahead of the competition. We already know the Galaxy S8 is going to come with an AMOLED display (as is the standard on Samsung’s phones at this point), but a 4K display would be a new offering for the phone. The 4K display would make room for some pretty wild resolution (think something like 2840 x 2160) and a crazy high pixel-per-inch count.
When we first started seeing 4K displays in last year’s Sony Xperia Z5, critics were quick to point out that the feature seemed like overkill. But what the hell do they know? I’m pumped for the 4K display, and really hope that Samsung follows through with it.
If the Galaxy S8 is going to come equipped with that snappy Snapdragon 830 processor and 8GB of RAM, I’d love to see what it could do with a dual camera setup, much like the iPhone 7 Plus, the Huawei P9 or the LG V20. I’m a huge fan of the camera on the Galaxy S7.
It renders color better than just about any other smartphone camera out there, holds resolution very well and even performs well in low-light situations (due largely in part to the f/1.7 lens, no doubt). If the S7 and S7 Edge can do that well with one lens, I can only imagine what they’d be able to pull off with two.
At this point, there’s pretty much no way the Galaxy S8 won’t have Nougat, but it’s worth putting down here because the latest Android update, which just became available for the S7 and S7 Edge last week, is a massive improvement over Marshmallow. Aside from faster information processing, Nougat brought with it split-screen functionality, better multi-tasking abilities, quick switching apps, sleeker notifications and the Quick Reply feature (among other things), and I can’t wait to see how it rolls out with the Galaxy S8’s gorgeous display.
The iPhone has Siri, the Galaxy phones have S Voice and Google Pixel has Google Assistant. If I had things my way, the Galaxy S8 would be able to make use of the same technology that Google Assistant has. After all, Samsung owns Viv, the company responsible for Google Assistant.
The issue is that it would create a direct competition between Samsung and Google, who these days are working closely together to keep Apple at bay. Google Assistant is exceptionally more robust and intuitive than S Voice, but the odds of it coming to fruition for the S8 are unfortunately slim. But here’s to hoping!
Since its debut a couple years ago, the USB-C port has caught on heavily in the technology market and is being called one of the best developments in tech in the last few years. Aside from its inter-brand universality (even Apple is getting on the bandwagon), the USB-C ports can support adapters for HDMI, VGA, DisplayPort and others in a single port; can deliver up to 100 watts of power (the average USB 2.0 connection only provides 2.5 watts); and it features bi-directional delivery, allowing a device to both send and receive power. The addition of the USB-C port would be ideal for the Galaxy S8, and would open up a whole new set of doors for the phone.
An Even Larger Display
To go with what’ll hopefully amount to a beautiful 4K AMOLED display, rumors appear to suggest the Galaxy S8 is poised for an upgrade in sizing as well. The Galaxy S7 came with a 5.1-inch screen, and the S7 Edge came with a 5.5-inch screen. The Galaxy S8, however, will allegedly feature 5.7-inch and 6.2-inch screen options.
The best part about it is that, while it sounds like a pretty massive bump up in size, the phone’s physical body should remain similar to the S7. Because the S8 is rumored to have fewer (if any) bezels and buttons on the face of the phone, it leaves more room for the expanded screen.
One of the rumors surrounding the S8 for quite some time has been desktop-compatible browsing. Drawing on the popularity and utility of the smartphone/tablet market, the Galaxy S8 will be powerful enough to plug right up to a monitor and use a “light” version of Windows 10 to surf, browse, and create—yes, with a keyboard, mouse, etc. The idea is that Samsung is trying to position the Galaxy S8 as a technological tour de force.
To me, the idea of being able to plug my phone (via fancy high-speed USB-C port) into a monitor and work on live projects, browse freely or be free from the constraints of a tiny smartphone screen seem like a dream come true, especially if they can make it a built-in feature. If that’s the case, then hot damn, count me in!
When Asus debuted its Zenfone AR last month at CES, it quickly made my list as one of the biggest innovations in the smartphone game. Aside from being positively gorgeous, I love that it comes with AR/VR compatibility built right into the phone.
With the way the industry is going, and the way AR and VR have taken a front row seat in the tech scene, I think it was extremely intelligent of Asus to give the Zenfone AR built-in compatibility, and doing the same for the Galaxy S8—especially with Samsung’s skin in the game with its Gear VR setup—would be an exceptionally smart move.
Next up, here are 10 features we want to see in the iPhone 8.
- Main Image:wccftech.com