After months and months of endless circulation of rumors and supply chain leaks, Samsung has finally launched the latest flagship Galaxy S8 today. For a phone that could potentially decide Samsung’s place in the future’s top smartphone makers, the handset is impressive not only in look in feel, but it also boasts the internals to stake its claim.
Galaxy S8 comes in two screen sizes, as expected: there’s the standard 5.8-inch variant, and the Galaxy S8 Plus in 6.2-inch. Both come with the latest “Infinity Display” that, while does come with minor bezels, looks like it extends even beyond the screen with its curved edges. There is no Home button, again, something that we expected after months of leaked photos and rumors, but it comes with iPhone-esque haptic feedback where the Home button used to be located.
Coming to the internals, S8 and S8 Plus come in two processors: Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 for the US version, and Samsung’s own 10nm-based Exynos for the international model. The processor is coupled with 4GB of RAM, not 6GB as rumors had us believing, as well as 64GB of internal storage that should please a lot of memory-conscious users. Galaxy S8 also keeps the microSD card slot, so this could finally be the time when you buy a phone and forget about having to clear any additional files to make room on it, even on the base model.
Camera and battery are two departments Samsung has not deemed upgrade-worthy in the latest flagship; S8 comes with 3,000 mAh, and S8 Plus with the Note7-identical 3,500 mAh battery. As for the camera, Galaxy S8 uses the exact same Galaxy S7 12MP rear camera lens with OIS. Interestingly enough, it doesn’t come with the dual-camera setup that iPhone 7 boasts, and this year’s iPhone will also feature, so it is one aspect where Galaxy S8 still might take a hit, even after going all-out on the display.
But where Samsung really hopes to capture its audiences is its new virtual assistant, Bixby. You can launch it using the dedicated button on the right-side of the handset, and it comes with a number of cool features: Bixby Home for controlling smart appliances, and Bixby Camera to point at things using the camera and get suggestions. It works with only about 10 Samsung apps at launch, but more should be added to the list with the passage of time.
At first glance, and a little usage admittedly, Galaxy S8 looks like an exciting prospect for Samsung. One that could right the wrongs of Note7, but it is perhaps too early to say if it will prove to be able to do so.