Galaxy S9: How Samsung Will Improve on Its Flagship Handset Line

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Galaxy S9: How Samsung Will Improve on Its Flagship Handset Line

Coming off a successful year with the launch of the Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+ and Galaxy Note 8, Samsung is already preparing for the release of its Galaxy S9. According to an ever-growing number of reports, Samsung plans to release updates to its Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ in March or April of next year. And when that happens, the Galaxy S9 line will reportedly come with an improved processor, refined designs and some important tweaks that will make using the smartphones even more appealing. Samsung will also ensure that some of the finer things in the earlier handsets remain. This eWEEK slide show looks at some of the most prominent rumors about what Samsung has planned for the Galaxy S9.

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Expect Only Minor Design Changes

Samsung isn't planning to make big changes to its Galaxy S9 design, according to reports. Instead, it's expected to reduce the size of the bezels at the top and bottom of the screen and move the rear-facing fingerprint sensor. Other button placements will remain.

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Is a Third Galaxy S9 in the Works?

In an interesting twist, some reports say Samsung will deliver not two, but three new Galaxy S9 smartphones next year. The first two, the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+, will be minor upgrades over last year's Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+. But a third phone, a Galaxy S9 Mini, would boast a 4-inch screen. All other features should be the same.

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Bring On the Dual-Lens Camera

Although the Galaxy S8 line didn't ship with a dual-lens camera, the Galaxy Note 8 did. So expect Samsung to include a dual-lens camera with the Galaxy S9 line. Information on the camera, including its specs, are still unknown. But look for high-quality imagery to come to Samsung's new handsets.

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Fingerprint Sensor Finds a New Home

As discussed, Samsung is said to be planning to move the physical fingerprint sensor baked into the Galaxy S9. Rather than place it to the side of the rear cameras, Samsung will reportedly move it under the dual-lens camera. It's worth noting that the dual cameras will be vertically aligned, according to reports.

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Qualcomm Will Be Inside

Samsung has once again partnered with Qualcomm on the Galaxy S9. According to reports, the company's new line of handsets will ship with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 and initially will be the exclusive home of that smartphone chip. Look for it to come to other devices soon after.

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A True Face ID Competitor Comes to Galaxy

Samsung's Galaxy S9 line will reportedly ship with a 3D front-facing camera and sensor system, similar to the Face ID feature offered in Apple's iPhone X. That should mean the smartphone's face scanner will be far more capable at seeing a person's face and side-stepping possible spoofs.

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Fast-Charging, Long-Lasting Battery Is a Near Guarantee

No surprise here, but tipsters are saying the Galaxy S9 smartphones will come with fast-charging batteries. In fact, there's a good chance that the Galaxy S9's battery will last all day on a single charge and will be replenished in no time. The Galaxy S8 offered the feature, which makes its addition to the Galaxy S9 a near guarantee.

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Fast Modem Connectivity Gives Galaxy S9 an Edge

Like the Galaxy Note 8, Samsung's Galaxy S9 will likely ship with a fast LTE modem. That's important. In speed tests, Samsung's flagship devices consistently placed ahead of all others in connection speed. By offering the faster modem, the company should hold on to that lead.

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Don't Expect Major Display Changes

Samsung is keeping the Infinity Display—including its 18.5:9 aspect ratio—in the Galaxy S9 line, according to several reports. In addition, the company will keep the same OLED technology, quad-HD resolution and screen size (5.8 inches for the Galaxy S9 and 6.2 inches for the Galaxy S9+).

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Galaxy S9 Will Have Same Pricing, but Earlier Availability

Samsung likely won't modify pricing on its Galaxy S9 line, instead keeping to its existing cost structure. However, the company is expected to unveil the device around Mobile World Congress in February 2018 and could deliver it to store shelves soon after in early March or at the latest, April.

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