Samsung Galaxy S8 – Leaked photos, concept images, and renders Sun, January 1, 2017
Samsung Galaxy S8 looks set to be the smartphone to beat this year. Following a swathe of rumours from the Chinese supply chain, a number of graphic designers have cooked-up high-resolution renders of what the smartphone could look like, when it launches in the UK in April 2017
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Samsung Galaxy S8 will get a dramatic new design, with no buttons, and an edge-to-edge display
Samsung Galaxy S8 is widely-tipped to launch on March 29th 2017.
The latest entry into the flagship Galaxy S series is rumoured to include a bezel-less dual-curved display, iris scanner for additional security and larger capacity battery.
When the Galaxy S8 launches in March, it will have been over two years since Samsung's flagship phone underwent a substantial facelift – after all, the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge were more of a subtle refinement of the design debuted with the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge, instead of a dramatic overhaul.
But all that is set to change with the Samsung Galaxy S8.
According to the latest whispers, the Samsung Galaxy S8 will ship in two models – both with a dual-curved, edge-to-edge display.
The Galaxy S8 will arrive with a large 5.8-inch Quad HD display and a 3,250mAh battery, but maintain the same footprint as the Galaxy S7. There is also expected to be a 6.2-inch QHD AMOLED display model, with a hefty 3,750mAh cell, marketed as the Galaxy S8 Plus.
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Samsung Galaxy S8's release date is coming soon, but the new phone could bring a new issue
To accommodate these larger displays, but keep the overall size of the device small enough to use one-handed, Samsung is expected to ditch the physical home button from the front of its new phones. Instead, the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus owners will use on-screen buttons to navigate around the Android operating system. Problem solved, right?
Since the Galaxy S5, which launched in 2014, the Galaxy S range has included a fingerprint scanner embedded inside the home button for additional security.
With the home button gone, sources say Samsung will relocate the fingerprint scanner, which is used to unlock the device and authorise contactless payments, to the back of the smartphone.
That’s nothing new. Android manufacturers including LG, Huawei, and Google have long used the back of the device to house a fingerprint scanner, usually below the camera sensor, in the middle of the case.
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Leaked cases appear to confirm the slightly baffling design choice
However, if the latest leaked images are correct, Samsung appears to be trying something very different – housing the fingerprint scanner in the top right-hand corner of the back panel, next to the rear camera and heart-rate sensor.
Granted, we haven’t had the opportunity to try the as-yet unannounced Samsung Galaxy S8, but that seems like an odd design decision.
CNET Korea claims Samsung made the choice because most smartphone owners hold the device with their right hand, and when holding the Galaxy S8 in this position, the index finger naturally falls onto the fingerprint sensor.
However, that design decision doesn’t account for those people who hold their smartphones with their left hand.
While the purported design choice will supposedly make life easier for right-handed users, it will leave left-handed users at a frustrating disadvantage.
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These Samsung Galaxy S8 renders, based on the latest leaks, show the fingerprint sensor
Using a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor can be intuitive, but only if the finger naturally falls close to the scanner, otherwise users find themselves blindly fumbling to unlock their phone – or endlessly flipping it over to locate scanner.
And with the fingerprint scanner allegedly so close to the camera, it cause endless photography problems if you placing your greasy digits on the lens.
With so much functionality now tied to the fingerprint scanner – contactless payments via Samsung Pay, Google Play Store purchases, and unlocking content with secure apps, like 1Password – the Galaxy S8 could present a frustrating learning curve for some users.
There is a chance Samsung already knows this.
The South Korean technology company is rumoured to be incorporating the iris scanner it debuted with the ill-fated Galaxy Note 7 inside the Galaxy S8.
If the iris scanner works as advertised, users might not have to rely on the fingerprint sensor at all.
Either way, it looks like we’ll find out on March 29th.