Now that Samsung has unveiled its latest flagship smartphones, the Galaxy S8 and S8+, consumers and business users can immediately start preordering the devices for delivery beginning April 21.
Prices for the handsets, which made a splashy debut on March 29, vary by carrier, but range from about $720 for a Galaxy S8 to about $850 for a Galaxy S8+, according to announcements from the four major U.S. carriers—AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon. All four carriers are also offering a special deal from Samsung that includes a free Gear VR headset and controller (valued at $179) and Oculus Bonus Content for preorder buyers, while supplies last.
The Galaxy S8+ and the Galaxy S8 feature large displays with almost no bezels, powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 64-bit octa-core processors and still-developing integration with Samsung's new Bixby intelligent virtual assistant.
The S8+ handset features a 6.2-inch Super AMOLED quad HD display (2,960-by-1,440 resolution, 529ppi), while the S8 has a 5.8-inch Super AMOLED quad HD display (2,960-by-1,440, 570ppi). Highlighting the displays are scaled-down bezels, leaving most of the screen area on the handsets dedicated to the screens.
According to Samsung, 83 percent of the fronts of the two handsets are now dedicated to the actual display by using shrunken bezels. The 4G LTE phones will be available in Midnight Black, Orchid Gray or Arctic Silver colors in the United States.
Other big changes for both new models include the deletion of the front-mounted home button found on earlier Galaxy models, providing more room to enlarge the screens. There are also facial and iris recognition security capabilities to supplement the fingerprint scanners that are a holdover from the earlier Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge handsets. The home button for the phones is now located under the glass at the bottom of the displays and offers haptic feedback when pressed by users.
AT&T customers can preorder their S8 handsets now for pickup or delivery on April 21, according to an announcement by the carrier. On an AT&T Next calling plan, existing customers can get a Galaxy S8 for $25 a month for 30 months ($750 total) or a Galaxy S8+ for $28.34 for 30 months ($850.20 total). Buyers can also get up to $750 in credits toward another Samsung Galaxy S8 or S8+ as part of a Buy One, Get One Free special offer. The device fees are in addition to calling plan service charges.
AT&T wireless customers who sign up for an AT&T Unlimited Plus plan will get a $25 monthly video credit toward any AT&T video service, including DirecTV, DirecTV NOW or U-verse TV. New AT&T wireless customers can also receive up to $650 in credits when they switch to AT&T from another wireless provider and buy a new smartphone with eligible service on AT&T Next after trading in their old device, according to the company.
AT&T customers who purchase an S8 or S8+ smartphone are also eligible to buy a Samsung Gear S3 smartwatch for $49 with a two-year service agreement or a Samsung Tab E tablet and/or a Samsung Gear S2 smartwatch for 99 cents when activating a two-year service agreement.
Sprint customers can buy a Galaxy S8 handset for $750 or a Galaxy S8+ for $850, or can lease one on an 18-month agreement that allows them to upgrade their devices any time after 12 months, according to the carrier. An S8 handset can be leased for $31.25 per month for 18 months ($562.50 total), while an S8+ can be leased for $35.42 per month ($637.56 total) for 18 months. Calling plan fees are in addition to the phone purchase or lease costs.