Just how many phones will launch in your lifetime? Remember in The Simpsons where everyone got really bored with Nasa launching people into space? Well, that’s happened with smartphone launches too. All we ask is that you give the new Samsung Galaxy S8 a chance. Honestly, it’s not just another new Samsung phone. We’re here to tell you why.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 could be the nicest phone ever
Ok, first of all, I’ll admit I’m a Samsung fan. The Note7 was a disaster, but not just for Samsung. I saw the phone at its Dublin launch and fell in love. When the phone was pulled I wondered if I could love again. Looking at the Galaxy S8, I think it’s time to try for love again.
The Galaxy S8 design: Bezels are so last year
Coining the phrase “infinity display”, Samsung has killed the bezel. The bezel is the non-screen part of your phone’s body that visible from the front. Combined with the huge 18:9 ratio screen and you’ve got an incredible looking piece of kit. Yes, there are some fears around the increased chances of total destruction, but still – pretty.
To give you some context to the size of the new Samsung phones, the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus are 5.8-inches and 6.2-inches respectively. Last year’s beast smartphone, the Galaxy S7 Edge was just 5.5-inches. Other than that, there’s loads rocking on the Galaxy S8 with screen improvements, camera upgrades – you know, the usual craic. We want to show you the really cool new toys that make this amazing.
You won’t even know your unlocking your phone
Some phone users unlock their phone over 80 times per day. Honestly, I think that’s a conservative figure. Anyway, at first look, Samsung would appear to have complicated unlocking your phone. The fingerprint sensor is up by the rear camera now as there’s no button on the front.
Samsung has a trick up their sleeve. The Galaxy S8 comes with two new ways of unlocking your new Samsung phone:
This was one of the Note7’s great innovations. To unlock your phone, you lined up your eyes with circles on the screen. We could probably add this to our list of James Bond tech that really exists. We’ll have to wait and see just how fast this is, but it was slower than fingerprint unlocking on the Note7. If it’s not fast enough for you, there’s one more trick up Samsung’s sleeve.
This is not the first time we’ve seen facial recognition on an Android phone. It is the first time it’s been done right. Early reports suggest that it’s fast and reliable, with Samsung sacrificing some security for user experience. For verifying payments and the likes, you’ll need to use retina scanning, fingerprints or your pin.
It’s got USB-C, a headphone socket and wireless charging
USB-C is the new standard port for new devices. Still, I wasn’t convinced Samsung would take the leap with USB-C since they left it off the Note7. Sure enough, they have and they’ve kept the headphone socket too. Personally, I’m delighted they’ve also kept wireless charging which has fast become my favourite thing about owning a Samsung. The official Samsung wireless charger is a kind of dock, but there’s also another dock you can get for the Galaxy S8.
Samsung DeX: A mad, but brilliant, notion
Admittedly, DeX is not going to be for everyone. DeX is a special dock that converts your new Samsung phone into a desktop computer. Immediately, I could imagine this being great for connecting to your TV at home. Really, DeX does aim to take the place of a computer. Will there be too many gaps for the Galaxy S8 to fill this job full time but time will tell. To be fair, at first look DeX looks pretty comprehensive.
Bixby: The new Samsung personal assistant
Irish people are not going to be talking to their phones anytime soon. Even with the international popularity of Apple’s Siri, Irish people just think talking to a piece of tech is a step too far. Still, Samsung don’t care and are bringing their own personal assistant to the party.
Called Bixby, your new Samsung personal assistant can carry out some simple tasks. If you’re looking at a photo that’s sideway, ask Bixby to rotate it. Naturally, you can then ask your assistant to send the photo too. The more connected devices you have, the more useful your assistant as Bixby can control the lot. Okay, so like Siri, Bixby is a bit of a gimmick.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 Irish launch date and pricing
As is par for the course, the main retailers in Ireland are offering pre-orders for the Samsung Galaxy S8. The official Irish release date for the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus is 28 April. You can pre-order now and get the phone eight days early. Here’s how the networks compare.
Get the Samsung Galaxy S8 on Vodafone
Vodafone will be offering their customers the Galaxy S8 on all their plans. Pre-order is open until 19 April and they even have pricing available already:
|€40 per month||€60 per month||€80 per month|
|€449 up-front||€249 up-front||nothing up-front|
|€1,409 over 24-months||€1,689 over 24-months||€1,920 over 24-months|
Head on over to the Vodafone site where you can pre-order the Samsung Galaxy S8 now.
Get the Samsung Galaxy S8 on Three
Three should be seeing a lot of interest in the Galaxy S8. Most Three customers were recently able to leave their contracts and still can until 3 April. Right now, Three are showing the Galaxy S8 pricing with their current suite of plans. Just remember, you’ll never pay a bill on this monthly cost. Here are the actual monthly and up-front costs:
|€45 per month||€60 per month|
|€399 up-front||€299 up-front|
|€1,479 over 24-months||€1,739 over 24-months|
You can pre-order now on Three.ie.
Get the Samsung Galaxy S8 on Meteor and eir
While not offering the best value in the market, Meteor is still a popular choice in Ireland. eir’s pricing is a little harder to work out, but it’s not a million miles off from Meteor’s anyway. You can pick up the Galaxy S8 from Meteor through pre-order at the below prices:
|€30 per month||€45 per month||€55 per month||€65 per month|
|€549 up-front||€449 up-front||€349 up-front||€349 up-front|
|€1,269 over 24-months||€1,529 over 24-months||€1,669 over 24-months||€1,909 over 24-months|
Meteor are now accepting Galaxy S8 pre-orders via their site.
Get the Samsung Galaxy S8 on iD Mobile
One of Ireland’s younger networks, iD runs on Three. iD is rather confusing, but they offer flexibility and transparency. While still a considerable unknown in the Irish market, it’s understandable if you’re hesitant. Still, it’s worth having them in the mix. iD are actually cheaper than some of the more established networks.
|€54 per month|
|€1,546 over 24-months|
The Samsung Galaxy S8 may become available on other Irish networks in the coming days. Right now, we’re still waiting on Tesco Mobile and Virgin Media.