Samsung Galaxy S8 vs Galaxy S7: Should you wait for Samsung’s new flagship?
All aboard the premium smartphone train! Choo-choo! Samsung’s new contender will be pulling into the station later this month, this time carting a shiny, expensive new Galaxy S8 flagship in tow. A series of leaks has given us a pretty good idea of what to expect, but are ultra-thin bezels and new cameras enough to place it above the Galaxy S7? ARE THEY?
If you’re staring into the interior of your wallet, deciding which Samsung device to opt for, we’re here to help you make that decision. Note, however, that the Galaxy S8 has yet to be officially announced – so these comparisons are based on rumours and should, naturally, be taken with a pinch of salt. Who knows? The S8 might be revealed to be a hat. Samsung’s foray into hat making. Imagine that.
Samsung Galaxy S7 vs Galaxy S8: Design
Samsung is heavily rumoured to shake things up in the design department with the Galaxy S8. Before you get excited at the prospect of a new burger phone, remember that we’re still very much talking about black rectangles. What will be different, allegedly, is the screen will take up a larger proportion of the handset’s front.
The S7 measures 142.4 x 69.6 x 7.9mm, and while this isn’t expected to change drastically for the S8, a larger part of that will be the display. That means slim bezels on the top, bottom and sides. Based on leaked pictures of the standard S8, the so-called “infinity display” looks to curve around the edges, while the bottom leaves no room for a physical home button. Instead, the S8 will have an onscreen home button, and a fingerprint sensor on the back.
There was also murmuring that the S8 would do away with the headphone jack, akin to Apple’s iPhone 7, but this has been refuted in recent reports. In terms of design, therefore, expect similar functions to the S7 but rejigged to make way for a bigger display.
Samsung Galaxy S7 vs Galaxy S8: Display
Talking of the display, the S8’s is said to measure 5.8 inches – compared to the S7’s 5.1in screen. From the images we’ve seen, the standard S8 will have a curved display – much like the S7 Edge and Note 7. What will become of the typically-curved Edge model then? Well, for one, it won’t exist, replaced instead by the S8 Plus. The screen on this larger iteration is reported to be 6.2 inches.
Regardless of size, the screen is predicted to once again use Super AMOLED technology. Some sources predict the S8 will bump the Galaxy’s resolution to 4K, which would give a boost to its VR capabilities. While Samsung will want to bump its VR-ready display, we think 4K is unlikely given we haven’t heard anything firm about it.
Samsung Galaxy S7 vs Galaxy S8: Camera
Like the S7, the S8 is thought to feature Dual Pixel camera technology. While the older device had a 12-megapixel rear camera, there are reports that the S8 will come with a dual-camera setup, encompassing both a 12-megapixel and 13-megapixel sensor. Regardless of whether we end up with a dual-camera on the S8, the newer device will undoubtedly pitch itself as a technologically superior machine in the photo department.
Not that the S7 is a slacker – with a f/1.7 aperture, it boasts one of the brightest smartphone cameras out there, delivering 25% more light to the sensor than the S6. It also comes with phase detection autofocus and optical image stabilisation, both of which should make their way to the S8.
Samsung Galaxy S7 vs Galaxy S8: Specs and features
In terms of processor, the Galaxy S8 is predicted to feature the 10nm Snapdragon 835 chip, built in collaboration with Qualcomm. Among the improvements to performance and efficiency, the new chip also supports Quick Charge 4, said to give five hours of battery life with only five minutes of charging. Post-Note 7, Samsung will understandably want to underline the, ahem, safety of this capability.
Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 chip also works with up to 8GB of RAM. The S7 came with 4GB of RAM, and rumours are that the S8 will raise this to 6GB. Samsung also has a habit of releasing its handsets with its in-house Exynos processors in some regions – expect that one to be the Exynos 8895, with the ARM Mali-G71 GPU.
The Galaxy S8 is reported to come with an in-built digital assistant, perhaps called Bixby, perhaps called Viv – seemingly based on the company’s acquisition of AI startup Viv last October.
Verdict – Should you wait for Samsung’s new flagship?
After the Note 7 fiasco, Samsung will want to be on its A-game with the Galaxy S8. The company needs to draw a line in the sand behind 2016, and the best way to do that is drawing attention away from the metaphorical pile of burning tyres, towards a spangly, future-facing device. Its makers with pitch the S8 as a strong improvement on previous Galaxy flagships, although the reality of what it will bring to the table won’t be clear until 29 March.
The S8 will bring improvements to the S7, from processor to camera. Whether or not those changes are enough to justify the difference in price remains to be seen. So, should you wait for the Galaxy S8? Yes – of course you should. It’s being launched in a matter of weeks. If you’ve waited this long before buying a Samsung handset, holding off for a bit longer isn’t going to hurt.
The bigger question will then be whether you should opt for the newer but more expensive S8, or last year’s model. We can’t give a definitive answer on that until we’ve got our hands on Samsung’s next smartphone. For what it’s worth, the S7 is an excellent device, and the inevitable reduction in price will make it a very convincing prospect.
We’ll be updating this page once the Galaxy S8 becomes a reality – for now, you can catch up on the latest news and rumours surrounding Samsung’s new flagship over here.