Tall, dark and handsome: Galaxy S8 finally leaked out for real, let's analyze it

After weeks of concept drawings, schematics and fanboy speculation, the latest Galaxy S8 image seems like a real press render, and is every bit as sleek as the rumors. A Guardian tech editor who leaked a lot about the upcoming handset a few weeks ago, already confirmed that the leak looks like what he has been shown, too.

At the time, those guys had two independent sources to verify the tip, so let's analyze what we can grasp from what is probably the first real look at Samsung's Galaxy S8, and how it overlaps with what we've heard so far about the next best thing in the Android universe:

Note 7 sensor/camera set at the top bezel


The Galaxy S8 is said to come with an iris scanner, and, looking at the render, it indeed has the same combo to the right of the earpiece as the Note 7. The scanner is comprised of a dedicated camera at the front, whose job is solely to perform the iris readings, and is aided by an LED shooting near-infrared light at the user's face, and that's exactly what we are seeing on the S8, too. At the left of the earpiece are the selfie snapper and the LED notification light, plus the ambient light and proximity sensors.


Tall, dark and handsome


That's the first impression one gets from the first leaked press render of Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S8 flagship. and that's most likely because of the new screen aspect ratio. Whether it is 18.5:9, as rumored, or 18:9, the fact is that the Galaxy S8 display will sport the 2:1 format called Univisium, which tries to unify footage shot for digital or theater distribution, so we have one and the same going forward. 

LG even got the inventor of the Univisium format Vittorio Storaro on stage during the G6 announcement to explain what is this new for the industry format. It looks like Univisium will be taking flagships by storm this year, making them a bit taller, but narrower, and thus easier to use with one hand. It will also make the core split-screen multitasking that comes with Nougat fit in even square boxes by default.

Crazy screen-to-body ratio 


Yep, that rumor will seemingly hold water. Ditching the home key, and encroaching onto the top and bottom bezels reportedly allowed for much larger display panels to be fit in footprints barely larger than those of the S7 or S7 edge, and it shows here. The freshly-announced LG G6 has the best screen-to-body ratio among brand-name flagships to date, but the Galaxy S8 may beat it, even though its top and bottom bezels don't look much narrower than those of the G6

LG claims 80% screen-to-body ratio, which is a bit exaggerated, as they calculate the rounded corners of the device, but even if it was a rectangle, the G6 would have had 78%, which is the highest among brand-name flagships so far. The Galaxy S8, however, is pegged to have 83% screen-to-body ratio, seemingly because the curved display sides you see here add to the number, and it will most likely be narrower than the G6, too, despite the comparable screen diagonals when unfurled.

Minimally curved screen



Granted, the Galaxy S8 won't sport a flat screen version, but the rumor that the curvature radius has been reduced compared to the S7 edge is apparently valid. It has been done to avoid inadvertent touches, as well as to improve aesthetics without angering the flat screen fans too much, and is similar to what Samsung did with the Note 7 and its "symmetrical" design paradigm.

Edge UX


Samsung's Edge UX pull tab is clearly visible in the Galaxy S8 render. The Edge UX interface is now much more expansive than it used to be, and takes up more space: you can now have more columns of apps, or use that space for custom widgets. It got upgraded recently with the new Nougat update for the S7 and S7 edge, so that's probably what the S8 will sport, too.

Bixby button indeed


Everyone is betting big on AI, and Samsung doesn't want to get left behind the Google Assistants, Cortanas, Alexas, or Siris of this world, so it is said to introduce the Bixby assistant with the Galaxy S8, based on the Viv Labs AI which Samsung purchased not long ago. Samsung is reportedly so keen to push Bixby that it has provided a physical button on the S8 with the sole purpose of starting the virtual butler, and we can see one on the left here indeed, under the volume rocker.

This is certainly a good idea for those moments you don't want to shout at your phone in the metro car looking like a douche, but then you'd still have to talk to it in public, so we'll see how this AI push pans out in the end for the user. What do you think?

Related phones

Galaxy S8
  • Display 5.8 inches
    2960 x 1440 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP (Single camera)
    8 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, 4GB RAM
  • Storage 64GB, microSDXC
  • Battery 3000 mAh
  • OS Android 9.0 Pie
    Samsung One UI

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