Samsung’s Galaxy S9 will be officially unveiled on 25th February, it has been confirmed, after the Korean company teased plans for the device via its official social media channels.
Aimed squarely at taking on the warmly reviewed iPhone X, Samsung’s new phone will need to be its best yet.
With a launch event in the diary, here’s everything you need to know about Samsung’s plans to take the fight to Apple.
A special event on 25th February
Samsung has sent out invites to media for a special, Samsung Unpacked event on 25th February. That’s a Sunday, the day before the annual Mobile World Congress (MWC) gets underway in Barcelona.
As promised earlier this month, Samsung’s gathering is taking place in the same city, with the device on show to the assembled press at the trade show too.
You'll be able to watch the event live online, usually through Samsung's YouTube channel.
What else is coming your way at MWC? Here's our look at what we expect to feature at this year's mobile technology showcase.
Expect to be able to buy it from March
DJ Koh, Samsung’s head of mobile, told journalists at the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this month that the company would unveil the Galaxy S9 at MWC.
What’s more, he also said Samsung would give a specific release date for the handset, meaning there should be news on pre–order dates and price too.
Leaks suggest a mid-March street date
According to serial leaker Evan Blass, Samsung will tell assembled media that both phones will be available to pre–order from 1st March, with a release date of 16th March.
There'll be two models to choose from
As in recent years, Samsung is said to be plotting two versions of its new phone. One standard–sized model, the S9 and another larger effort, the S9+.
The latter is likely to feature a dual lens camera rather than the single lens set to star on the S9. Otherwise, specs are widely expected to be the same.
That means the latest Qualcomm processor, Google Android Oreo and tweaked software to make with devices run smoothly.
How much will the Galaxy S9 and S9+ cost?
Samsung is expected to reveal its pricing plans in Barcelona. While recent reports have pegged the Galaxy S9 at £789 SIM–free, with the S9+ costing £879.
However, further rumours have suggested the S9 will actually come in at £739, £50 more than the Galaxy S8. Either way, both phones will be expensive propositions.
Samsung has really gone to town on the camera
Samsung itself hasn’t revealed any details. But a teaser clip posted to its Twitter feed suggests that the Galaxy S9’s camera will be the main focus of the event.
The Korean company says the shooter will be ‘reimagined’, with the handset itself, ‘chang[ing] how you experience everything’.
Sure, that’s a bold claim, but it does seem to back up recent rumours that the S9 will feature a variable aperture camera, something usually found in compact cameras rather than smartphones.
And facial recognition security will be improved too
Samsung won’t admit it, but Apple’s Face ID is far beyond the basic facial scanning it offers with the Galaxy S8 and Note 8.
With a fight on its hands, the company is now set to boost its facial recognition tech, although as yet it’s not clear if it will be used to secure payments like Apple’s system.
If so, it means that Samsung will have matched its arch rival’s efforts in a matter of months.
Bigger screen. But no unsightly notch
Rumours suggest Samsung has succeeded in getting the screen of the S9 and S9+ to cover even more space on the device, making the bezels even thinner.
These marginal gains should give it a design edge on Apple’s iPhone X, especially as neither device will feature an ugly notch on the top of the display.
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