Samsung held their Galaxy UNPACKED event in New York today, revealing their new Samsung Galaxy S8 for the first time along with some other upcoming products and features.
The presentation began with a trailer, briefly showing the phone in everyday use. Samsung’s president, DJ Koh took to the stage after, touching on the company’s successes and failures throughout the previous year. He went on to speak about how much Samsung learned from all these experiences, applying them to their latest mobile device, the Samsung Galaxy S8.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 was then introduced in two different size variations, the S8 and S8+. Announced as a new kind of smartphone, the highlight of the device is the phone’s screen, the infinity screen. By curving the edges, the device allows for more screen by removing the bezels on all sides. The home button commonly found at the lower center of cellphones has been moved lower, keeping it out of the user’s way. The S8 incorporates the camera technology found in Samsung’s previous phone, the Galaxy S7.
The Galaxy S8 will offer a variety of different protection methods. Passwords and Pin numbers can still be used the same way as before, along with the fingerprint scanner found on the back of the phone. Another method, facial recognition, has been improved to work instantaneously without needing to hold up the phone. New to the Galaxy S8 is iris recognition. By holding the phone up to your eye, the Samsung Galaxy S8 can create a digital password, completely different to each person.
Samsung also introduced its new personal intelligence assistant built into the Galaxy S8, Bixby. Bixby is able to search for information on the internet, notify you of alerts, locate places on a map and send messages to people in your contacts list. In the future, Bixby will be able to control things like the TV and air conditioner along with other devices. Samsung stated that Bixby will be supported on other devices as well as the S8.
A new version of Samsung’s Gear 360 camera was also shown for the first time at the event and given to all those who attended the event. The new Gear 360 is smaller in size, using a built-in grip. The camera is able to capture video in 4k at a resolution of 4096 by 2160. One of the biggest additions to the device is its ability to live-stream videos in 2k. The new Gear 360 is able to pair with a number of Samsung and Android phones and for the first time, the camera can pair with the recent versions of the iPhone.
The final product shown at the event was the Samsung DeX (Samsung Desktop Experience). By Pairing the upcoming Galaxy S8 with specialized dock accessory, the Galaxy S8 can be connected to a monitor via HDMI. The dock allows for keyboard and mouse connectivity and two USB ports to essentially turn the mobile device into a desktop computer, capable of displaying Android apps.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+ will be available in Midnight Black and Orchid Grey when it releases in Canada on April 21, 2017. Consumers who pre-order either device between March 29, 2017 and April 20, 2017 will also receive the new Gear VR with the controller as a free gift. Samsung’s new Gear 360 will also be available in Canada sometime during the first half of 2017.