Samsung is set to announce its latest flagship smartphones for 2018 in just two days, but many aspects of the Galaxy S9 and S9+ have already been leaked online. There may be a little more in store for the event, but here’s a list of every thing we know so far.
Design: Similar to S8, New Colour
Given the handsome good looks of the Galaxy S8 series, it isn’t too much of a surprise that the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+ look set to retain a similar design language. The biggest change will be at the back, where the fingerprint sensor will be placed below the camera sensor – it is definitely a welcome change.
The Galaxy S9 will also introduce a new colourway: Lilac Purple. According to serial leaker @evleaks, this colourway will replace the previous Maple Gold option. The other three colours remain the same as before: Midnight Black, Titanium Grey, and Coral Blue.
Hardware: New Exynos Chip, More RAM
The Galaxy S series are usually the first to receive the new Samsung Exynos chipset, and it looks to be the same for the S9. The new Exynos 9810 processor will likely debut on the Galaxy S9, with the American variant to be powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845.
Besides that, Samsung also looks to be introducing a feature similar to Apple’s Animoji, There will likely be a new set of hardware to enable this feature, but information on this has been scarce, beyond the teaser video above.
Interestingly, Samsung looks like it will differentiate the Galaxy S9 and the S9+ in a few hardware aspects. While both models look to retain the 5.8-inch and 6.2-inch Super AMOLED Infinity Display screens, the smaller S9 may sport a smaller battery and RAM – the Galaxy S9+ is said to pack a 3500mAh battery with 6GB of RAM while the S9 may only have a 3000mAh battery with 4GB RAM.
Camera: Variable Apertures, Dual-Camera on S9+
The biggest change will be the cameras. From the leaked renders, Samsung looks like it will put a single rear camera on the S9, and a dual-camera setup for the S9+. The sensors are likely to come from the company’s own ISOCELL sensors, which the Korean company recently announced with a slew of new features, including 480fps slow-motion recording at 1080p and variable aperture setting – a unique feature.
Variable aperture settings on smartphone cameras are very rare; only the W2018 smart flip phone from Samsung has this feature. The rear camera allows the user to switch between f/1.5 and f/2.4; the Galaxy S9+’s secondary camera will have a fixed f/2.4 aperture. Having such a large aperture makes it almost certain that these phones will have exceptional low-light performance – even Samsung is promising so in its set of teasers, going so far as using the tagline “the camera, reimagined”.
Price and Availability
The Galaxy S9 looks set to be released globally within weeks after the global launch event on the 25th, with 8 March being touted as a US release date. While we haven’t received confirmation on its launch date in Malaysia, we can expect it to be happening very soon. Samsung usually launches its previous flagships in Malaysia within a month or so after the global announcement, and there’s no reason for it to be different this time around.
Moreover, the company has already received SIRIM certification for both devices, so it is only up to Samsung when it plans to release it. External factors such as the Malaysian general elections may affect the planned release date, but it may not drastically alter the timeline.
As for the price, there are reports claiming that the S9 will be more expensive than the S8 series. The Galaxy S8 and S8+ retailed for RM3299 and RM3699 respectively, while the Galaxy Note 8 launched at RM3999 in Malaysia. we can expect the Galaxy S9 series to follow a similar price range, but at a slightly higher price point.