A report in Korean investment publication The Bell (via Droid-Life) claims that next year’s first-half Android flagship from Samsung, presumably marketed as the Galaxy S8, will follow a trend begun with 2015’s Galaxy S6 and come in two different variants. But unlike S6 — and this year’s Galaxy S7 — both S8 models will feature so-called edge displays, which curve on the sides to meet the phone enclosure in an effect that can make the handsets appear bezel-less. There won’t be a planar, or flat, screen model, according to the report.
Two key differences are said to exist between the variants, tipped to VentureBeat as the SM-G950 and SM-G955 (S7 devices shipped in the format SM-G93x, suggesting that Samsung is indeed skipping the SM-G94x nomenclature, reportedly due to Korean superstition surrounding the number 4).
The smaller model, G950, is said to offer a 5.7-inch screen, which would put it in the same league as a fall 2015 model, the Galaxy S6 edge+ (but slightly larger than 2016’s 5.5-inch Galaxy S7 edge — which was not followed by a plus variant — and quite a bit larger than the 5.1-inch Galaxy S6, S6 edge, and S7).
Besides being a half-inch bigger at 6.2 inches, the G955 was also rumored to adopt a different aesthetic appearance, thanks to a nearly edge-to-edge display. To achieve this appearance without pushing the limits of the device’s pocketability, it’s said to be the first Galaxy model to forgo physical and capacitive navigation buttons in favor of on-screen ones. The two phones will allegedly be sold as the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 plus.
As has become tradition over the past several years, Samsung is expected to introduce the new lineup at Mobile World Congress 2017 in Barcelona, Spain. And while it is making a concerted effort to curtail leaks of models that have taken on added importance in the wake of the costly Galaxy Note7 recall and cancellation, with the widespread popularity of the 8-year-old line, success in that seems highly unlikely.