Galaxy S8 gets pictured: No home button, huge 5.8- and 6.2-inch displays

Bigger screens, bigger price tags, software buttons, and probably the same size body.

 Ron Amadeo


Over at VentureBeat, Evan Blass has what is supposedly the first-ever live picture of the Samsung Galaxy S8. At first glance it looks like every other Samsung phone—the long edges on the front and back are still curved, the back is still glass, there is still a single bottom-firing speaker, and there's still a heart rate sensor on the back. Look closer, though, and there are a few key differences.
First, there's no home button. Samsung has been rumored to finally ditch physical buttons with the Galaxy S8, and this picture seems to line up with that expectation. The rumors say that Samsung will use on-screen software buttons on the S8, five years after Google started on-screen Android buttons with the Galaxy Nexus. There's also no Samsung logo on the front, resulting in a very clean looking device.
VentureBeat claims there are two sizes for the Galaxy S8: 5.8 inches and 6.2 inches. At first this might sound like the phones are massive size increases over the 5.1- and 5.5-inch Galaxy S7 variants, but according to the report the new displays will have a 18.5:9 aspect ratio instead of the standard 16:9. With no physical buttons and no front Samsung logo, we're really just getting taller screens, not wider bodies. Sadly the screens are turned off on VentureBeat's picture, but for an idea of what the screen-and-bezel situation will look like, check out the third-party screen protector in the gallery.
The "inch" measurement is a diagonal measurement, so a 5.1-inch, 16:9 screen should be about the same width as a 5.8-inch 18.5:9 display. The same goes for the bigger version. It would not surprise me if the "big" 6.2-inch and "small" 5.8-inch Galaxy S8 models had a similar overall footprint to the "big" 5.5-inch and "small" 5.1-inch Galaxy S7 models. Smaller bezels mean more screen in the same size body.
With no physical home button, Samsung needs to find a place for the fingerprint reader, and it seems the new spot, as previously rumored, is on the back. It's the rectangle right next to the camera bump. I wonder how easy it will be to accidentally smudge up the camera lens when reaching for the fingerprint reader. On the bottom it looks like Samsung is making a great decision and keeping the headphone jack. And given that the Galaxy Note 7 had a USB Type C port, we're going to guess that's the port on the bottom of this, too.
VentureBeat has a spec readout: a Snapdragon 835 SoC, 4GB of RAM, a baseline of 64GB of Storage, a 12MP rear camera, 8MP front camera, and a 3000mAh battery for the 5.8-inch device or a 3500mAh battery for the 6.2-inch device. If Samsung is sticking with the same physical phone sizes, that's the same size battery in the "small" Galaxy phone as last year and a 100mAh decrease in the bigger model. Remember, the last time Samsung got ambitious about battery sizes, its phones started exploding.
In terms of software, we are getting a Samsung assistant app called "Bixby," which will mostly likely be an offshoot of "Viv," a company Samsung acquired last year. Viv was founded by some of the same people who created Apple's Siri. The report also says Samsung will be launching an HDMI desktop dock that will have the phone power a "desktop view" version of Android to be used with a keyboard and mouse.
Lastly, VentureBeat reports on the price. In Europe at least, Blass says to expect a €100 increase. The small model is claimed to retail for €799 ($852), while the bigger one supposedly clocks in at €899 ($959). That's a rough pill to swallow for a company we've already criticized for being too expensive. The report says the S8 will get a press event on March 29 and a release on April 21.
Listing image by VentureBeat
Galaxy S8 gets pictured: No home button, huge 5.8- and 6.2-inch displays Reviewed by Bizpodia on 04:28 Rating: 5

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