Samsung did a great job with the release of the Galaxy S8 and S8+, however, recent stats show that the phones are not performing as good as the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge after being around for about two months now.
According to market estimates, Samsung has managed to part with about 9.8 million S8 units in two months, a figure that is dwarfed by the 12 million S7 units the company managed to sell in the first two months following the release of the 2016 flagship. While experts believe that the huge number of Chinese smartphones in the market that offer high-end specs at affordable prices coupled with the anxious wait for the Galaxy Note 8 and Apple iPhone 8 could be the reason for these slow sales, it could also be simply because the Galaxy S8 and S8+ did not live up to the expectations of many S7 and S7 Edge owners.
The company did a complete overhaul of the design, ditching the physical keys in favor of on-screen keys, going for a new display design, relocating the fingerprint scanner and introducing a new Bixby digital assistant. Other than these, the other changes to the Galaxy S8 and S8+ are what we can call mainstream, among them a newer processor, new OS out of the box and to many people’s dislike, a higher price tag. These will also happen with the S9, which will get a newer processor, new Android O out of the box, and possibly a steeper price tag than its predecessor, but it should be worth it in a way or the other.
Given that many people upgrade their phones after two years of use, current Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge would still be thinking: should I buy the Galaxy S8 or S8+? Will the shift make any sense? Well, in an attempt to answer these questions, here are some of the reasons we believe S7 and S7 Edge users should skip the S8 family and wait for the release of the Galaxy S9, which should be here in about 8 months’ time.
Front-mounted fingerprint scanner and enhanced iris scanner, facial recognition
When the Galaxy S8 was unveiled, one of the most debated features was the fingerprint placement. Loyal Samsung fans were somehow unimpressed with Samsung’s choice to shift the scanner to the back of the phone. While there are other features to compensate for this relocation, for instance, the iris scanner and facial recognition, none of these features have been perfected in the same way as the fingerprint scanner.
With the Galaxy S9, Samsung will probably be ready to integrate the fingerprint scanner into the display screen. This was expected to happen with the S8 and/or Note 8, but sources close to Samsung say that the technology is not yet ready. In short, it should be ready by the time the S9 comes around in Q1 2018.
Also, the debut of the S9 should be accompanied by huge improvements for the iris scanner as well as facial recognition, features that are still at an early stage at this point in time.
Samsung has always used the Galaxy Note family to introduce new features. The iris scanner and USB Type-C ports you see on the Galaxy S8 and S8+ were first released on the Galaxy Note 7. Apparently, the incoming Galaxy Note 8 will feature a dual-lens camera, a feature that is expected to become a mainstay in Samsung flagships.
With this in mind, it’s a no-brainer that Samsung Galaxy S9 or at least Galaxy S9+ will carry a dual-lens camera setup on the back, which would be a significant improvement over the S7 and S8. The S8 basically kept the same camera used on the S7, which rules out the camera as a reason for one to make the switch from the 2016 model to this year’s model.
A better Bixby Assistant
Samsung is going head-to-head with Google in the digital assistants’ world, but it is still playing catch up. While Bixby has some amazing potential, it only works in a handful of languages and in fact, it’ll be ready for a global rollout somewhere in Q4, just a few months before the Galaxy S9 comes in.
So, why not sit back and wait for a fully functional Bixby when the S9 is released in 2018, especially since it will be running on a phone that will also be more powerful than the current S8?
Possibility of a flat-screen version
Okay, this is just a wish I’d like to see come true. Not everyone is a fan of the curved screens, which is why there are people who bought the Galaxy S6 and S7 when the duo had curved screen variants to pick from. Now that Samsung Galaxy S8 has taken this away, it means everyone looking for a new Sammy flagship must do with the curved edges.
It’s true that the curved screens have been instrumental in Samsung’s new design change and increased screen sizes, but we’ve seen LG achieve just about the same thing with the G6, yet the phone still rocks a flat screen. The LG G6 has a relatively small frame and ships with a massive 5.7-inch display screen, which is almost bezel-less and has an 18:9 aspect ratio (S8 has 18.5:9). You also get a bigger battery on the G6, a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner, and no physical buttons, just like the S8.
There’s also word that the Google Pixel 2 XL will follow the LG G6 path by coming in with a flat screen and a near bezel-less design in order to accommodate a massive 6-inch display panel on a body that is almost the same size as the smaller Pixel phone.
So, why wouldn’t Samsung give us a Galaxy S9 model with a flat screen while at the same time keep the same 18.5:9 aspect ratio? As noted, this is wishful thinking and hopefully, Samsung hears the cries of many fans out there. Or am I alone here? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.