SAMSUNG HAS SURPRISED precisely no-one with the launch of the Galaxy S8 and S8+.
Matching up near-perfectly with the month's worth of leaks surrounding them, the Galaxy S8 and S8+ pack 5.8in and 6.2in QHD+ resolution displays, packing a pixel density of 570ppi and 529ppi, respectively. Much like LG G6, these near bezel-less "Infinity" displays stretch across the entire front of the smartphones, with Samsung ditching the physical home button in favour of a pressure sensor that sits under the glass on the front of the handsets.
The fingerprint sensor has been moved to the rear of the phone, while the front is home to what Samsung is touting as a "vastly improved" iris scanner.
The Galaxy S8's display, like the now-defunct Note 7, supports mobile HDR and comes with an 18:9 ratio, which means TV shows and films streamed to the smartphone will fill the entire display.
Samsung is touting the Galaxy S8 as the first 10nm smartphone, likely because it will the market before Sony's Snapdragon 835-powered Xperia XZ Premium. S8 owners in the UK will get Samsung's homegrown Exynos 9 chip, which the firm claims offers 27 per cent higher performance compared to its previous 14nm chip, and 40 per cent less power consumption.
This chip comes paired with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage, which can be expanded up to 256GB via microSD. You'll also find a 3,000mAh battery under the hood of the Galaxy S8, and a bigger 3,500mAh battery on the S8 Plus.
On the photography front, you'll find a 12MP Dual Pixel rear camera with f/1.7 lens, and an 8MP f/1.7 sensor on the front. Samsung has added its multi-frame image processing technology to the smartphone, which will see it capture three shots every time a photo is taken and optimise them to produce the best image.
Naturally, as it's 2017, there's also stickers and Instagram-style filters baked-in, including 'Cookie Cream', 'Evergreen' and INQ's personal favourite 'Riddle'. Sigh.
The Galaxy S8, naturally, runs Android 7.0 Nougat, topped with Samsung's custom 'Experience'. This equips the phone with a bunch of additional software features, most notably Samsung's Siri rival called Bixby which it is touting as more proficient in the areas of completeness, context awareness and cognitive tolerance.
However, Bixby won't be available in the UK at launch, and will instead make its debut in Korea and the US. Until then, the Bixby button on the side of the S8 will act as a launcher for Bixby Home, a custom homescreen similar to that found on HTC smartphones.
Samsung Experience also brings with it 'Snap Window', which allows you to pin two apps on top of one another for multitasking, and Samsung Connect, the firm's take on Android Home that lets you control connected IoT devices.
Naturally, Microsoft apps are pre-loaded on the Galaxy S8, as is Samsung's Knox enterprise software. Building on this business focus, the S8 will be offered alongside DeX - a docking station that allows you to transform the phone into a full-fledged PC. What's more, Samsung has partnered with Amazon, Citrix and VMWare to equip DeX with VDI support, which means biz users can run a full version of Windows from the connected S8.
The Galaxy S8 also packs Bluetooth 5.0, built-in NFC and Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac support.
Just like the S7 before them, the Galaxy S8 and S8+ are IP68 certified, and they also come in a range of colours, including Midnight Black, Orchid Grey and Arctic Silver.
Pre-orders will begin today with the S8 and S8+ priced at £689 and £779, respectively. Customers who are quick to order will receive their device on 20 April, and it'll be available to all from 28 April. µ
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