SmartHouse - - FIRST LOOK | SAMSUNG - Writ­ten by David Richards

I was shoot­ing a pic­ture from rooftop bar in Hong Kong this week dur­ing a quick busi­ness trip, when I got a real live con­sumer re­ac­tion to the new Sam­sung S8+, and if the re­ac­tion I got is any­thing to go by this de­vice is set to be a smash hit.

In fact, I had only had the de­vice in my hands for a few min­utes when a male guest, asked me “What phone is that” when I told him that it was the new S8+ run­ning An­droid he said “Wow” can I have a look, within min­utes he said, “This looks and feels very nice, it's very stylish”.

An in­vest­ment banker with HSBC in Hong Kong he then showed the de­vice to sev­eral his friends sit­ting round a ta­ble, there re­ac­tion was equally im­pres­sive, then came the punch­line, they were all Ap­ple iPhone users.

“Now I know why I need to give up my iPhone” said one fe­male while an­other asked how easy was it to use An­droid, af­ter point­ing out a few dif­fer­ences in­clud­ing the cam­era they unan­i­mously agreed that the new S8+ was a “se­ri­ously “cool phone”. When I pointed out that the cam­era was like the pre­vi­ous Galaxy S7 one male in the group said that they never thought “an An­droid” phone was “that good” I al­ways thought they were just an or­di­nary” smart­phone.

I then pointed out the fea­tures that An­droid had over the Ap­ple iPhone and then I re­alised that this group were se­ri­ous con­tenders to switch to the new S8+ es­pe­cially when one fe­male asked whether it came in a smaller size.

When it comes to the Galaxy S8+, Sam­sung's over-sized ver­sion of the S8, is one se­ri­ously good piece of en­gi­neer­ing though it is not with­out its faults.

These are faults that one can work around es­pe­cially if you have small hands but still want to own a smart­phone that boasts a giant 6.2in screen, the tini­est of bezels and specs that se­ri­ously kick arse. Size wise it is se­ri­ously big­ger than the 5.7in LG G6.

One big grip I have, is the lo­ca­tion of the fin­ger­print scan­ner, un­like the G6 the S8 scan­ner is lo­cated at the top right of the rear right next to the cam­era and I have al­ready had two warn­ings that my cam­era lens was greasy.

Un­like the G6 scan­ner which is easy to reach, one must reach up and feel for the scan­ner with the S8+ so, if you have su­per long fin­gers you should be okay, but if you are like me and you fall short of an easy con­tact, it quickly be­comes ir­ri­tat­ing.

The fall back is the pat­tern se­cu­rity fea­ture fol­low­ing a click of the right-side but­ton.

The first thing you no­tice about the S8+ is also its key fea­ture It's what Sam­sung calls the “in­fin­ity screen”, it used to be called the Edge screen but what you get with the S8 is a big im­prove­ment on past mod­els, it's smoother more stylish and fits right into one's hand, it de­liv­ers a mas­sive point of dif­fer­ence to any other smart­phone out there.

With the typ­i­cal 16:9 as­pect ra­tio stretched out to 18.5:9, Sam­sung has man­aged to fit 5.8-inch and 6.2-inch OLED screens into a se­ri­ously to­gether de­sign with the S8 and S8+.

They have taken over where Steve Jobs left off, driv­ing sales with cut­ting edge tech­nol­ogy that dares to be dif­fer­ent.

10 years ago, Sam­sung was blow­ing in the wind when it came to smart­phones, in fact they weren't in the race, to­day they are a class act both from a de­sign and tech­nol­ogy prospec­tive, be­cause tucked un­der the bon­net of this S8+ are Sam­sung made com­po­nents that most other smart­phone Com­pa­nies must buy in, in Ap­ples case, from Sam­sung.

As one ob­server said of the new S8+ de­sign “It feels as if, this smart­phone fits you”.

Sam­sung claims that one of the key dif­fer­ences with this phone is their new Bixby ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence en­gine. I have al­ready had my say on this en­gine which still has a long way to go.

What you will no­tice, is that Sam­sung has re­moved the home but­ton, this has al­lowed them to de­liver bet­ter screen to bezel ra­tio than any other main­stream de­vice by 84 per cent.

At 8.1mm thin, with curved Go­rilla Glass 5 on the front and back, com­bined with a metal frame, the Galaxy S8+ is up there when it comes to dura­bil­ity. Com­bine this with IP68-stan­dard wa­ter and dust re­sis­tance as well as the usual ar­ray of ports, in­clud­ing a USB-C and an all-im­por­tant 3.5mm head­phone jack, and its clear Sam­sung hasn't had to make any ma­jor sac­ri­fices.

The main OS is An­droid 7.0, on top of this Sam­sung has added their own top­pings.

For ex­am­ple, there's no apps tray but­ton, In­stead, to cy­cle be­tween the apps tray and home screens, you sim­ply need to swipe up or down. It took me a few goes to get into the prac­tise of us­ing this fea­ture be­cause my fin­ger of­ten wen to the bot­tom of the screen in­stead of to the light grey flick­er­ing ar­row. The Galaxy S8+ has the same rear cam­era specs as the Galaxy S7, a 12MP sen­sor with an f/1.7 aper­ture.

Video recorded on the Galaxy S8+ is also above av­er­age es­pe­cially when shoot­ing in 4K.

The use of im­age sta­bil­i­sa­tion makes a big dif­fer­ence when shoot­ing work­ing dif­fer­ent all res­o­lu­tions, gone are the wob­bles of­ten as­so­ci­ated with a long video shoot.

Low light per­for­mance is where this cam­era re­ally kick in es­pe­cially in a low light restau­rant. It's also no per­for­mance slouch due in part to the use of a Sam­sung Exynos 8895 pro­ces­sor that's paired with 4GB RAM, the 64GB of mem­ory also comes in handy.

The front cam­era, how­ever, has been bumped up from 5M to 8MP, shar­ing the same wide f/1.7 aper­ture as the rear cam­era.

Pic­tures taken on the rear cam­era look ex­cel­lent on the S8+'s dis­play, in these shots of the fa­mous Penin­su­lar Ho­tel in Hong Kong the colours are ex­tremely ac­cu­rate.

The ex­cel­lent clar­ity as seen in the panoramic shot is ex­cel­lent ow­ing to ex­tremely good op­ti­cal im­age-sta­bil­i­sa­tion and some very smart imag­ing al­go­rithms.

The S8+ takes three stills for every pic­ture taken and then ex­tracts in­for­ma­tion from all three to fine­tune the fi­nal im­age.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.