2017 is shaping up to be a big year for Samsung and their Galaxy S series. It may seem like that’s the story every year, but with Samsung still trying to repair the damage from the Galaxy Note 7, the rumor mill has been churning up some exciting news about where the South Korean company may take things next year. Now an exclusive report from Sammobile points to a considerable design change for the upcoming Galaxy S8 including the possible removal of both the home button and headphone jack.
Join us after the break for more.
The home button on all of Samsung’s smartphones has been as iconic for the products as their (obnoxious) logo planted above the displays. It has been a feature that both makes the device recognizable, and also causes confusion and copycat claims with a certain Cupertino-based company. But in the last couple years, customers have started craving phones with larger screens with a smaller physical size, as well as exciting new designs and features to lure them from their current smartphone of choice. And with Android having introduced on-screen buttons long ago and the rising trend of fingerprint sensors not tied to a physical home button, the year 2017 could very well signal a new direction for Samsung.
What would it mean for Samsung to ditch their iconic home button? Smaller bezels is the first result as the need for internal space for that component would go away in favor of, say, a bigger screen. To keep the functionality the same as current Galaxy S phones, the report indicates that Samsung would embed the fingerprint sensor with the display itself. This, paired with the possibility that Samsung could finally make use of stock Android’s software-based buttons, would streamline the design and features of the phone and retain the same type of usage customers already have.
Sammobile is also reporting that the Galaxy S8 will not feature the standard and also iconic 3.5mm headphone jack, thereby relying on the USB Type-C port for headphone connections. We’ve already seen this happen with Motorola as well as Apple’s iPhones, and while the backlash is still present, this is starting to look like the new standard. Removing the headphone jack, like with the home button, will allow Samsung to perhaps incorporate a larger battery, or have more space for better speakers. It will be interesting to see if Samsung adds any unique functions to a decision like this.
There have been rumors for a while about Samsung using a 4k resolution display on their Galaxy S8, but if this new report is true we are looking at the same 2k resolution as current Galaxy phones, but with improved technology. Samsung is known for using a Diamond PenTile layout for the pixels of the display, which despite a high resolution, can still lead to a display that is not quite as sharp as it could be. This may changed with the Galaxy S8 with the possible introduction of a Standard RGB layout at the same 2560×1440 resolution.
The biggest benefit for a change like this is with virtual reality, which is another technology that is rising in popularity. To have a fully immersive VR experience, you need to be able to see no individual pixels while wearing a headset, and while we are not yet at that ideal level with smartphone display resolution, this type of pixel arrangement will certainly make a big difference.
Of course, nothing is certain until Samsung officially announces the Galaxy S8 at the Mobile World Congress in February 2017. We will keep an eye out for any updates to these rumors. In the meantime, let us know your thoughts!