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Samsung Galaxy S8 launch: A look at the new features that it may bring

Samsung is all set to unveil its flagship Galaxy S8 smartphone in New York along with all new digital assistant named Bixby. The phone, which is expected to be priced around Rs 61,000, will come what better water-resistant features, a dedicated button for the assistant, pressure sensitive screen and an unconditional guarantee to return the device within 3 months of purchase.

tech Updated: Mar 29, 2017 19:22 IST
Anirban Ghoshal
Samsung
Samsung is all set to unveil its flagship Galaxy S8 smartphone in New York along with all new digital assistant named Bixby. The phone, which is expected to be priced around Rs 61,000, will come what better water-resistant features, a dedicated button for the assistant, pressure sensitive screen and an unconditional guarantee to return the device within 3 months of purchase.

Will Samsung be able to bring back Galaxy Note 7 scarred customers with its S8 smartphone?

While the answer to the question is just hours away as the company prepares to unveil the flagship phone in an event named Galaxy Unpacked in New York.

However, as per speculations and rumours Samsung is going all out to woo the customers and here are the list of new features, specifications that may arrive with the Samsung S8:

Don’t like the phone? Return it in 3 months

This one is mostly a marketing gimmick post the Note 7 burn. According to a report in The Investor that cites Korean outlet Chosun Biz, the company may offer Galaxy S8 buyers a three-month unconditional return policy. Currently most smartphones offer upto two weeks - an industry average.

Better cameras

According to a report in SamMobile that cites Korean tech news site Naver, the Galaxy S8 may be capable of capturing video at 1,000 frames per second (fps). A 1,000fps video frame rate would make the Galaxy S8 the clear standard-bearer in this category; for comparison, that’s more than eight times faster than the iPhone 7, which records slow-motion 1080p video at 120fps (and 720p video at 240fps). It would also surpass the Sony Xperia XZ Premium, which shoots slow-motion video at a max of 960fps.

The Naver report also claims that the phone will have two front cameras, one for iris scanning and the other for selfies. This echoes an earlier report out of Korea, which pointed to two cameras on the back, just like with the iPhone 7 Plus, LG V20 and Huawei P9.

More colours just like Huawei and Apple

Samsung is likely to have a lot of colur options for the S8. Last week’s torrent of leaked photos and mockups showcased the phone in a variety of colours including violet or eggplant.

TechDroider had tweeted a picture last week showing the front plate of the Galaxy S8 in a variety of colours including black, white, blue, gold, and silver. Also, veteran leaker Evan Blass has given what may be the official names of three of those colours: Black Sky, Orchid Grey, and Arctic Silver.

Dual curves?

The Galaxy S8 may make the “Edge” line obsolete. If the phone has the same curved sides as the S7 Edge (probably on a smaller body size), then it would give all of Samsung’s flagship phones -- the S8 and Note lines -- curved screens by default.

Big, ‘bezel-less’ displays

The Galaxy S8’s face could be 85 percent or 90 percent screen, according to various reports. Longtime rival LG’s “Full Vision” display on the LG G6 has a huge screen-to-phone face ratio, and Chinese phone maker Xiaomi is already selling its own version, the ceramic-backed Mi Mix.

5.8 and 6.2-inch screens

One of the rumor doing rounds is the size of the screen on the phone. Reports suggest that Samsung might be able to fit a 5.8-inch display into the S8 and a 6.2-inch screen on the S8 Edge/Plus. Both screen sizes are larger than the Note 7’s 5.7-inch screen real estate, but the S8 is expected to have a smaller footprint than both the Note 7 and S8 Edge/Plus.

Will there be a Plus too?

Samsung might end up launching the phones in two sizes a S8 and an S8+. While some refer to it as the Galaxy S8 Edge, the larger of the two devices has another nickname, the Galaxy S8 Plus. Keep reading for more detailed sizes and hardware specs.

More production and more phones to buy?

Samsung could ready 16 million total units of the Galaxy S8 phones for its first batch of sales, a sign that the company anticipates high demand. The rumor suggests that the smaller Galaxy S8 will account for 10 million of those and the remaining 6 million phones would be the larger S8 Plus.

What will happen to the home button?

On a related note, some have suggested that a reduced bezel would compel Samsung to do away with the Galaxy S8’s home button, including the fingerprint reader, and use an optical sensor beneath the display. There are also rumors that Samsung may have incorporated virtual navigation buttons and moved the fingerprint sensor to the back of the phone.

Facial recognition and iris scanning

The Galaxy S8 may include a facial recognition feature -- in addition to a possible iris scanner and the usual fingerprint sensor, which may have migrated to the back of the device, according to a report by Korea Economic Daily. The upcoming iPhone 8 is also rumored to supplementing its Touch ID technology with facial and/or iris recognition.)

Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 inside?

Samsung’s S8 phones might be the first to come with the Snap 835 processor. However, Samsung might use its own Exynos processor in the phone for some countries inclduing India.

Batteries come from three suppliers?

Samsung could step away from one of the two companies that made the Galaxy Note 7’s exploding batteries and use Japanese manufacturer Murata Manufacturing and Sony instead. Samsung’s own SDI outfit, which was involved in making the Note 7 batteries (and then caught fire because of them) is still expected to produce some of the S8’s tickers.

Bigger batteries on board

The Galaxy S8 will muscle up with a 3,250mAh battery and the S8 Plus with a 3,750mAh battery.

Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus should be water-resistant

It wouldn’t surprise us if both Galaxy S8 phones recieve a water-resistant rating of IP68.

The Galaxy S8 could lose the headset jack, just like the iPhone

When the Galaxy Note 7 first launched, Samsung told me it was “proud” of its headset jack. That tune might change if this rumor is right. In its place, phone owners would have to use wireless Bluetooth-connected headsets (like these) or headsets that plug into the phone’s expected USB-C port (either directly or through an adapter dongle).

4K resolution display

It’s also expected that Samsung will go ultra-high-def for its next big phone, bumping up the S7’s current resolution (2,560x1,440 pixels) to a 4K resolution of 3,840x2,160 pixels.

Force touch on Samsung?

Just like rumours ahead of the Galaxy S7 launch, the S8 is also expected to come with a pressure-sensitive screen just like the force touch on Apple’s latest iPhones.