Rumor Roundup: What Will We Get with the Samsung Galaxy S8?

The internet has been buzzing with rumors about the Samsung’s upcoming Galaxy S8 for the past few months. We here at ProPakistani decided to roundup all the rumors and list them with their likelihood of being true.

Let’s get the obvious out of the way first, Samsung Galaxy S8 will feature Android 7.1 Nougat with Samsung’s custom Touchwiz UI on top. It is safe to assume that Gear VR support will be included as well.

Going Edgeless?

The new Samsung Galaxy S8 is rumored to only have a single curved variant available. This means that only a curved screen Galaxy S8 will be released unlike last year’s Galaxy S7 which featured a regular and a curved screen variant.

This rumor does have weight to it as Samsung saw better sales for the S7 Edge compared to the regular S7. They could end up ditching the flat screen version completely.

After the Note 7’s launch, Samsung’s head of mobile, Koh Dong-jin said,

Samsung has considered that it would make the edge display as the identity of the Galaxy S smartphone lineup if the company can provide consumers differentiated user experience through software and user-friendly functions.

Likelihood of this being true: Reasonably high

Display Resolution

There are two different rumors in circulation about the display resolution. Korea Herald reports that the Galaxy S8 will have a 4K display. This is in favor of the Gear VR which should provide an optimal viewing experience at 4K resolution.

Business Korea on the other hand argues that an official from a Samsung partner company says that the Galaxy S8 will have a 2K resolution instead (same as last year’s S7). He also said that the Note 8 will be the one featuring a 4K display for the Gear VR.

SamMobile agrees on this saying that the S8 will feature the standard 2K 2560 x 1440 Super AMOLED display. They also say that the company could be switching from Diamond PenTile subpixel arrangement to a standard RGB one. This will, according to SamMobile, provide a noticeable improvement in virtual reality environments.

The 2K rumor seems to have more weight to it as the 4K resolution will be more resource heavy and will be a battery hog.

Likelihood of 2k Display Resolution: Reasonably high

Display size

Bloomberg weighs in on the display of the Galaxy S8 saying that it will feature a 5.1 inch version and 5.5 inch version. They also say that it will go for a bezelless design similar to the Xiaomi Mi MIX.

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VentureBeat on the other hand claims that a 5.7 inch and 6.2 inch variant of the Galaxy S8 will be revealed. The bigger screen size in line with having the curved edge like display wouldn’t increase the dimensions of the phone much according to the same website.

Samsung making such a huge change to screen sizes doesn’t seem like a possibility. A minor increase in size might be possible.

Likelihood of screen size being increased: Reasonably High

Physical Home Button and USB type-C

Another rumor says that the company might remove the physical home button at the bottom of the display. Instead, it could go for a capacitive fingerprint sensor/button in place of the clickable one. Samsung does not use fingerprint sensors on the back so they could be opting for an under-glass solution like in the Xiaomi Mi 5.

The company is also rumored to ditch the old microUSB ports in favor of the newer/faster/reversible USB type-C ports. The Note 7 featured a USB type-C port as well so its very likely that Samsung will opt for it as the default port for their upcoming S8 series.

Likelihood of Physical Home button being true: Somewhat High

Likelihood of USB Type C Port: High

No More Headphone Jack? Stereo Speakers?

Samsung may be one of the first mainstream Android smartphone maker to ditch the headphone jack. Last year’s jack-less iPhone 7 was the subject of controversy. Some embraced the change while most argued that it was a pointless change on Apple’s part.

Whether Samsung goes through with this or not only time will tell, for now the rumors seem to agree that Samsung will indeed ditch the 3.5mm headphone jack.

Another rumor in line with others is that Samsung Galaxy S8 could feature stereo speakers. This coupled with the increased focus by Samsung on VR means that this rumor is very likely to be true.

Likelihood of being true: Very High

Leaked Image

An image on a Chinese social media site, Weibo, claimed to be of the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S8 smartphone. The image showed the phone with a Chinese interface and seems to be in line with many of the rumors (curved display, bezelless, no physical home button).

A lot of rumors surface on Weibo (some have turned out to be true) but like all social media leaks, this could very likely be a fake. Take this with a grain of salt.

Processor/SoC and RAM

Samsung shipped last year’s Galaxy S7 with two different chipsets. Some featured a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chip while others had Samsung’s own Exynos 8890 Octa SoC.

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Samsung Galaxy S8 could come with both Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 and Samsung’s own Exynos 8895 Octa.

Qualcomm has already revealed their latest Snapdragon 835 chip built on a 10nm process. It is an octa-core processor with efficiency in mind and an updated Adreno 540 GPU. It uses 25 percent less power than before which translates to about 2.5 hours of additional use.

Qualcomm aims to cover all ends with better VR/AR support (supports Google Daydream). It will also be better at gaming tasks with support for DirectX 12, Vulkan API, OpenGL ES 3.0 and OpenCL 2.0.

SamMobile reported that Samsung will feature the Exynos 8895 Octa chip in the new Galaxy S8. It will feature ARM’s Mali-G71 GPU. Performance is rumored to be 1.8 times better than last year’s Samsung Galaxy S7 (the Exynos variant).

The RAM on the other hand could go up to 6 GB which is similar to what was featured in the Oneplus 3 and 3T. It is also rumored to go as high as 8 GB if Samsung Galaxy S8 features AR/VR capabilities with a 4K display.

Likelihood of being true: Borderline confirmed

Dual Cameras? Bigger Battery?

In line with Apple’s recent venture into the dual-camera realm and Huawei continuing to opt for dual-camera setups for its flagship phones, Samsung could hop on the train as well.

There are mixed rumors about this as Bloomberg reports that even though Samsung is indeed experimenting with dual cameras, it has ultimately scrapped the idea due to higher manufacturing costs.

A leak Chinese social media site Weibo on the other hand claims that Samsung Galaxy S8 will come with a 13MP and a 12MP camera, in a dual camera setup.

Due to the popularity of the selfie culture, Samsung could integrate an 8 MP front camera with autofocus. It is also rumored to feature an iris scanner, similar to the one on the Galaxy Note 7, according to a Weibo tipster.

The battery included in the Galaxy S8 is likely going to be larger than last year’s Galaxy S7 featured. This is because the screen sizes (as mentioned earlier) are going to be larger as well as the resolution (if the 4K rumor is true). Samsung could feature upwards of 3,500 mAh both variants inch version depending on the screen size.

Likelihood of Dual Cameras: Fairly High

Likelihood of Bigger Battery: Very High

New Digital Assistant

Samsung acquired Viv, the company that built Siri for Apple. The company is indeed working on another virtual assistant to follow in line with Google Assistant and Siri.

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Samsung’s CTO for Mobile Communications, Injong Rhee says that we can expect to see Viv integrated in phones as early as the second half of 2017. If it does turn out to be true then we could see a potential Samsung Galaxy Note 8 featuring their new AI assistant.

Another rumor circulating on the internet is that Samsung has already built an AI assistant which they’re going to call “Bixby”. An image was also “leaked” (could be a fake) which showed Samsung Pay offering an option called “Bixby” to pay for the purchase.

Is it something limited to Samsung Pay only? Is it a full fledged AI based assistant?

The rumors point to latter being the case.

Likelihood of being true: Very High

Pricing and Release Date

A recent release date rumor points to an April 18th release date for Samsung Galaxy S8. The rumor also suggests that Samsung will be holding its own event at New York City for the phone’s release.

The Note 7 might have a hand in this as the South Korean company might be looking to delay the phone as much as possible to get things right the first time around. Hopefully we won’t have an explosion ready phone with the Galaxy S8.

The prices might actually be higher than expected as well. This is due to the larger screen sizes which result in a higher price for smartphones. The S7 was released for $700 while the Edge variant was released at a $795 price tag. Considering the screen size going upwards of 6 inches, the price could likely fall closer to the S7 Edge’s price (which was larger) or maybe even higher than that at $800+.

According to a research note released by Goldman Sachs Galaxy S8 might cost the company 15 to 20 percent more than the S7 due to rising raw material prices. This means that the base model Galaxy S8 could go as high as $800 but it is still unclear how much the raw material costs impact the cost of the phone itself.

A price increase might be coming either way as Apple increased the prices of its iPhone 7 Plus phones by $20 this month without notice.

What do you think about the Galaxy S8? Know of any other rumors circulating the internet?