Watch the Galaxy S8 play Gamecube titles at full speed
Whether you're willing to admit it or not, chipset benchmarks aren't really that big of a deal – yes, you might be able to squeeze some more processing power from the latest hardware, but ultimately that will have little to no impact on your everyday experience of using a phone – the feeling of good performance relies much more on software optimization and smooth animations than on the raw hardware running underneath.
There are, however, exceptions where raw power is exactly what's needed. Such is the case with emulation: unlike your everyday Instagrams and Facebooks, emulators eat up system resources like it's nobody's business. And for good reason, too – accurately imitating one piece of hardware on another takes a lot of computation, and thus requires more powerful hardware.
Currently, smartphones only have the processing power to smoothly play games from up until the fifth generation of video game consoles (think the original Sony PlayStation). However, that didn't stop the developers of Dolphin, a Nintendo Gamecube and Wii emulator, from launching an Android port all the way back in 2013. This was mostly a proof-of-concept, showing that emulating the two systems on smartphones is possible, even though performance was never good enough for real-life use.
Up until now, that is – it seems the latest generation of mobile SoCs has finally reached the point where the possibility of replaying your favorite console classics from fifteen years ago is a real one. A video demonstrating the Samsung Galaxy S8 playing three Nintendo Gamecube titles – Super Smash Bros Melee, Super Mario Sunshine, and The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, has recently hit YouTube, and shows the device having no problem achieving real-time speeds with next to no hiccups.
Judging from the channel's other videos, the person is American, meaning it's likely the S8 model in question is the Snapdragon 835 one, which should be reassuring to those who feared the US version will be underpowered compared to its Exynos 8895 counterpart. It's worth noting, however, that the person in the video seems to be using Samsung's Game Tuner to limit the app's display resolution, so don't expect to be able to utilize that Quad HD+ goodness in its full glory just yet.