Samsung is well into the development of several new devices. But two always stand out - the Galaxy S10 smartphone and its partner the Galaxy Note 9. (And that's in addition to the Galaxy Tab S4 we mentioned earlier today.) So, what will the Galaxy S10 and Note 9 bring to the table when they are finally released?
Under The Covers
The Galaxy Note9 will see a processor bump to the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 wth a 512GB storage option and 8GB of memory. We can expect the Galaxy S10 to match that given that device is likely to be announced at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next year.
The Galaxy S10 is also rumoured to be getting a triple-lens camera system powered by a Exynos 9820 CPU according to a report from SamMobile.
On The Outside
The Bell reports that the Galaxy S10 will boast an under-display fingerprint scanner, much like the one on the Vivo X21. The same tech is also expected in the Galaxy Tab S4 that we expect later this year.
Facial recognition, similar to Apple's FaceID systems, is also expected but how that's going to work is anyone's guess.
A leaked photo has revealed a totally bezel-less front face which means, unless Samsung adopts a notch we haven't seen yet, that they have found a way to hide all the cameras and sensors such a system needs without impacting the display area or shape.
This may be a design beyond. pic.twitter.com/lViQUsW1Jv
— Ice universe (@UniverseIce) June 20, 2018
The Note9 is expected to look very similar to last year's model with a slightly thicker chassis for better durability. With that said, some big changes are coming to the S-Pen stylus. Apparently, it will be used to control music playback and will come with inbuilt Bluetooth which may allow you to make and receive calls. A context-free image on the Samsung Unpacked invitation depicts what appears to be a button on a cylindrical device. Could this button relate to the S-Pen's new Blutooth or speaker functionaloty?
We're Not Folding - Yet
It's basically an open secret that Samsung and others are trying to develop mobile devices with folding displays.
Microsoft has been teasing such a device for a while now as have a few others. Whether the hardware is ready for mass adoption remains to be seen.
I'd expect such a device to appear as part of Samsung's Tab or Note range rather than in their smartphones. It makes more sense there as the form factor fits with the notebook-and-stylus model rather that a smartphone.
But if the Galaxy Note 9 or Galaxy Tab 4 don't offer Folding options when they're released, we can expect them in the next iterations of those devices.
Are They Apple Killers?
One thing is certain, at the top end of the market Samsung is leading Apple in many areas. While the recent updates to the iPad, the iPad Pro and iPhone X are all great devices, Samsung offers more flexibility and their integration with Android, which brings "Hey Google" as well as Bixby leaves Siri in the dust at the moment.
Apple is also reported to be redeveloping their Maps application. And my recent experiences of using Apple Maps and Google Maps reveals the Google option is far superior is finding the best routes.
Apple's "whole widget" approach was a massive advantage but Samsung has all but caught up and processor improvements have narrowed the gap between the SnapDragon chips used by Samsung and Apple's bespoke A-series power plants.
So, while the new Samsung devices might not destroy Apple's market share, they will certainly get the folks at Cupertino scrambling to ensure the new iPhones we'll see later this year are a big improvement on last year's models.
Which model should you buy?
It goes without saying that you should wait to see the full specs before making a purchasing decision. If the leaked details are all accurate, the choice will largely come down to the stylus. If you rarely use these accessories, the Samsung Galaxy S10's bezel-free display probably represents a more alluring proposition.
On the other hand, fans of the S-Pen will surely be enticed by the new-and-improved version that will come with the Note9. If you hold off on purchasing for a while, it should also lower in price by the time the S10 hits the market.