Samsung’s Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+ are now official

After months of incessant leaks, Samsung at today’s Unpacked event in New York City has finally taken the wraps off of the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+.

These new phones are easily the most premium handsets Samsung has produced yet. After the disaster that was the Galaxy Note 7, you can expect to see great things out of these two new phones.

Samsung’s new Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ are larger than ever. The smaller model, the Galaxy S8, comes in with a 5.8-inch screen while the larger Galaxy S8+ gets a massive 6.2-inch screen. Samsung is calling the display on these two new phones the “infinity display,” as it has a near bezel-less design.

Getting into specifics, the Galaxy S8’s 5.8-inch display comes in with a resolution of 2960 x 1440. You also get an impressive 570 pixels per inch (ppi). The Galaxy S8+ resolution is the same, but gets a less impressive 529ppi. The height of both phones is rather interesting, as you get a unique 18.5:9 aspect ratio. This gives you a ton of extra screen real estate to scroll through and use.

Both phones have the same camera — around the rear is a 12-megapixel f/1.7 “Dual Pixel” OIS camera, which is essentially what we saw on last year’s Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7+, but with slight improvements. Around the front is an “advanced” 8-megapixel f/1.7 smart autofocus camera.

Your processing package depends on the region you buy the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ in. In some regions, you’ll get Qualcomm’s newest Snapdragon 835 chipset while others will get Samsung’s very own Exynos chipset. In both cases, these processors are built on a new 10nm semiconductor manufacturing process, so you’re going to see increased power efficiency.

Beyond that, it’s all pretty standard specifications — 4GB of RAM, 64GB of internal storage and a microSD slot to add more storage if needed. You get USB-C, NFC, MST for Samsung Pay, IP68 water and dust resistance, wireless charging and Bluetooth 5.0. And, despite the rumors, the 3.5mm headphone jack is here to stay.

As for the battery, the Samsung Galaxy S8 gets a 3,000mAh battery. The larger Galaxy S8+ has a much larger 3,500mAh battery, the same size that was in the Galaxy Note 7. And at least with the Qualcomm chip set, you get Quick Charge technology for faster charging.

Software is more important than ever on these two new phones. TouchWiz is still here (on top of Android 7.0 Nougat), and despite the many complaints it gets, it’s faster and more efficient. Samsung has actually built a new face detection system into these phones, making it the simplest and easiest way to unlock your phone.

With the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus, you get a new voice assistant — Bixby. There’s a lot of similarities between Bixby and Google Assistant, but the idea with Bixby is that, anything you can control on your phone with your hands should be able to be done with voice, too. It’ll be interesting to find out how that all works together in real-world applications. Beyond that, it’s your standard Android phone.

In the US, you’ll be able to start pre-ordering the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ tomorrow, March 30. It will come in black, gray, and silver. But, if you purchase it internationally, gold and blue options are available, too. Along with your pre-order is a free Oculus VR headset and controller with a package of free games.

You can expect to shell out around $720 for the Galaxy S8 and $850 for the Galaxy S8+, but some of that may vary from carrier to carrier. Either way, the phones are slated for an April 21 launch.


About the Author: Brad Ward

Brad is a tech enthusiast, writing and tinkering with all things technology since 2011. He currently bounces between the LG G3 and his beloved Moto X! His interests include reading, entrepreneurship, the gym, and of course, queso.