Samsung is expected to launch the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Edge phones at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next year as per the usual cycle of the company's flagship device launches. According to some analysts, the recent global recall of Galaxy Note 7 handsets by Samsung may force the company to launch the Galaxy S8 and S8 Edge ahead of their scheduled launch dates to perk up sales and cover up losses suffered in the last few weeks. The company has reportedly suffered a loss of $10 billion in its market value ever since the issue of faulty battery cells in Note 7 handsets came to light.
An early launch of the Galaxy S8 and S8 Edge phones may also give Samsung a head start over the likes of LG, Huawei and HTC who are also expected to launch their next-gen flagship phones at Mobile World Congress. Reportedly, Samsung is planning on sweetening its Galaxy S8 offering by including a new accessory named the Gear 360 Pro, a modified version of the Gear 360 camera which launched earlier this year along with Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge phones.
According to Sammobile, the Gear 360 Pro may feature 'improved image and video quality' apart from several new features and will work with iOS devices as well in due course. The existing Gear 360 cam runs two 15MP cameras simultaneously that will let you shoot hi-res 360-degree videos with resolutions of 3840 x 1920p and also take 30-MP pictures. When synced with S7 or S7 Edge, Gear 360 will let you record and preview content at the same time. It will be interesting to see if the upcoming Gear 360 Pro will support 4K videos or if it will let you broadcast live videos on YouTube while you're recording your adventures.
As for the upcoming Galaxy S8, what we know so far is that it may launch with a 4K Ultra HD display with a resolution of 2160 x 3840 pixels. It is also rumoured that the Galaxy S8 will be powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 830 processor whose architecture will be based on an energy-efficient 10nm FinFET process. However, it is more likely that Samsung would want to transition completely from Qualcomm's processors to its own Exynos ones with the next-generation smartphones.
Samsung may also launch the Galaxy S8 with its new 10-nanometer LPDDR4 6GB smartphone RAM. Apart from featuring a higher capacity, the new RAM is based on a 10nm standard which, compared to the existing 14nm standard in the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge devices, will consume lesser energy and will thereby increase the battery life of phones.
Samsung is also putting finishing touches to its Samsung Music app which is set to be released with future Samsung handsets. At the moment, the app is somewhere between a beta stage and a full-fledged version. Launch back in May on the Google Play Store, it is presently intended for developers and enthusiasts to try it out, get used to it and suggest changes which can make it even better. Built specifically for Samsung's Galaxy phones, the app is getting constantly updated and apart from getting rid of bugs, it is also filling up with new features and functionalities. Our money is on Samsung Pay launching officially with the Galaxy S8 at Mobile World Congress early next year, or maybe earlier.
Samsung has just launched a new promotion offer by offering the Gear VR for free to those who will purchase the Galaxy S7 Edge from either Samsung's E-store or from participating retailers like Carphone Warehouse, EE, O2, Three, Vodafone, Curry’s PC World, Tesco, John Lewis, Argos, Shop Direct, Sainsbury’s, Forum VDI and TDM. The offer is applicable between 14th September and 5th October and is clearly another way for Samsung to boost device sales following the global recall of Galaxy Note 7 phones.