We’ve seen a lot of Galaxy S8 rumours and leaks in the run-up to Samsung’s official S8 launch, but some are proving slightly disconcerting. Here are the five Galaxy S8 rumours that have us most worried.
We’re positive that the Samsung Galaxy S8 will be a fantastic phone, even after the debacle of the Galaxy Note 7. After all last year’s flagship Sammy phone, the Galaxy S7, is still one of our favourite 2016 mobiles, packing fantastic camera tech, sexy design, a gorgeous Quad HD screen and strong all-round performance.
But some of the rumours and leaks surrounding the Galaxy S8 are rather strange, or even a wee bit troublesome. Right now of course they’re just that – rumours – and there are loads of reasons to be excited about the S8 too. But here’s the hearsay and speculation that has us most worried.
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Worrying Galaxy S8 Rumours: Ultra HD screen
One of the most popular rumours about the Galaxy S8 handset points to a fresh new 4K Ultra HD screen, a serious step up from the Quad HD panel found on the Galaxy S7. In other words, the S8 will have a much sharper display, packing as many pixels as a massive 4K telly.
That may sound like a good thing, but 4K resolution on a dinky mobile screen is utterly redundant for everyday use. We’ve already reviewed one smartphone with an Ultra HD display, namely the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium, and found no real advantage to the boosted resolution. Visuals can be just as strong on Quad HD screens, with individual pixels invisible to the naked eye.
In fact, the Z5 Premium’s battery life appeared to suffer as a result of that Ultra HD panel. The Z5 Premium only just about gives us 24 hours of use per charge, despite sporting a 3430mAh battery. In comparison, the standard Xperia Z5 offers a day and a half of life from its 2900mAh cell, despite packing very similar specs.
So why would Samsung consider shoving a 4K screen onto the Galaxy S8? Well, the only obvious answer is virtual reality. Samsung really pushed VR in 2016 with its Gear VR headset, which the company gave away with some smartphone pre-orders, and we expect this trend to continue in 2017. An Ultra HD panel on the S8 will make it the ideal VR companion, as long as it doesn’t overheat too horribly.
But of course VR is something to be enjoyed occasionally, while our mobiles are our full-time portable pals. So if the likes of battery life take a significant hit, just so we can enjoy the odd bit of crisp and clear VR porn, that’s definitely a bad thing.
Not to mention the cost of crafting mini 4K screens…
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Worrying Galaxy S8 Rumours: Wireless charging only
We’re fully expecting the Galaxy S8 to support Qi wireless charging, which means no fiddling with USB cables when your phone needs some juice. However, some rumours have suggested that the S8 might shun cables altogether, ditching the micro USB port and relying entirely on wireless charging, just like many smartwatches already do.
That by itself isn’t a massive pain. Although if you like to charge up in multiple locations – like work and home, for instance – you’ll no doubt have to splash out on extra docks, rather than simply borrowing a spare cable or reusing your old S7 charger.
The real ballache involves connecting to a computer, to backup your files and copy on media. Without a USB port, you’ll have no choice but to move things to and from the cloud, or via the likes of Bluetooth. That’s a rather inflexible and means transferring files will suddenly be a long-lasting chore.
Worrying Galaxy S8 Rumours: King Kong sizes
At first it sounded like Samsung would stick with a 5.1-inch screen for the Galaxy S8, while also bringing out a larger ‘Galaxy S8 Plus’ for lovers of big handsets. But the closer we get to the S8’s launch date, the bigger it seems to be growing.
Most recently, several sites reported that the Galaxy S8 is actually an enormous 5.7-inch mobile, while the Galaxy S8 Plus sports a near-tablet-size 6.3-inch screen. Regardless of VR functionality, that seems a step too far, in our opinion at least. You can forget about one-handed use, or even being able to fit the damned things in your pocket or purse, if that’s actually the case.
Here’s hoping those leaks are way off the mark and the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus are a more sane size when they finally launch.
Worrying Galaxy S8 Rumours: Optional S Pen?
When we first heard that the Galaxy S8 will likely come packing Samsung’s excellent S Pen, it wasn’t a shock. After all, with the possible demise of the Galaxy Note range, it makes sense for Samsung to recycle that excellent stylus, which can even scribble accurate sketches when the screen is wet.
The idea of a Galaxy S-series phone packing an S Pen made us very moist indeed, but now it emerges that Samsung may not bundle the stylus with the S8. Rather, consumers will possibly need to splash more cash for the S Pen. And if you’ve spunked all your cash on the inevitably expensive S8, you’ll just have to make do with a gaping, unfulfilled orifice in the bottom corner of your phone.
Worrying Galaxy S8 Rumours: Late arrival
We were really hoping that Samsung would launch the Galaxy S8 at MWC 2017, meaning we’d finally get our mitts on one at the end of February. But now rumours and internet rumblings are pointing to a March 29 launch, which means we won’t likely see Samsung’s phone in UK stores for another three months at least.
Despite all of these troublesome leaks and rumours, we’re still massively excited about the Samsung Galaxy S8. Check out our most exciting S8 rumours round-up for more info, and stay tuned for our in-depth S8 launch coverage.