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Samsung Galaxy S8 vs Samsung Galaxy S7: The biggest differences between Samsung’s flagships

Expert Reviews logo Expert Reviews 10/03/2017 Nathan Spendelow

Samsung is launching the Galaxy S8 this year. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, as every year we’re treated to the latest and greatest in Samsung’s Galaxy S lineup, and 2017 is no different. But what are the differences between this year’s Galaxy S8 and 2016’s Galaxy S7? Will it be worth the upgrade?

Samsung’s Galaxy S8 is still to be unveiled. We’ll hear all the juicy gossip at Samsung’s Galaxy S8 launch event on 29 March at 4PM GMT, but recent internet rumblings and leaks have given us a pretty clear picture of what to expect. Will we see ultra-thin bezels à la LG’s G6? Or perhaps a shiny new camera? We won’t have to wait long to find out.

If you’re on the fence about which of Samsung’s offering to fork out for, we’re here to help. Below, we’ve put both Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S7 smartphones in a head-to-head battle, so you can see which comes out on top.

Samsung Galaxy S8 vs Samsung Galaxy S7: Design

While we haven’t seen much change with Samsung’s Galaxy lineup in the past few years, we may see a radical difference with this year’s Galaxy S8. It will still be a black rectangle – that’s a given – but recent leaks indicate we’ll see an all-display front, akin to LG’s G6. Samsung might do away with the headset jack, too.

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Meanwhile, Samsung’s Galaxy S7 isn’t a drastic departure from recent offerings. It’s a pretty bland-looking phone and, although not quite as dull as Google’s Pixel, it hardly wins any points in the looks department. Its flashier brother, the Galaxy S7 Edge, is the one turning heads, with its impressive curved display. Will the S8 be thinner than last year’s 7.9mm? Only time will tell.

Samsung Galaxy S8 vs Samsung Galaxy S7: Display

Heading back to that display, the Galaxy S8 is said to sport a 5.8in screen, up from the S7’s 5.1in offering. Those leaked images seem to suggest a minimal bezel, too, so don’t expect an unwanted bump in handset size either. However, the standard S8 looks to have the curved display this time around, perhaps debunking the possibility of a Galaxy S8 Edge.

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Yet again, we’re poised to expect a Super AMOLED display. Whether or not Samsung opts for the 4K route, akin to Sony’s XZ Premium, remains to be seen, but I imagine HDR will be on the cards. Expect to see more of a VR push too, especially considering the recent launch of Samsung’s Gear VR controller.

Samsung Galaxy S8 vs Samsung Galaxy S7: Camera

Like the phone before it, the Galaxy S8 will feature front and rear cameras. While the S7 touted a 12-megapixel rear snapper, reports suggest the S8 will come equipped with both 12-megapixel and 13-megapixel sensors on the back.

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What does this mean? Well, this will be Samsung’s first foray into the dual-camera world, hot on the heels of LG and Huawei. Regardless, expect the S8 to pack a phenomenal camera, worthy of rivalling the Pixel’s award-winning shots.

The S7 is still no slouch, however. Its f/1.7 aperture sensor lets in plenty of light – 25% more light than the S6 in fact – while phase-detect autofocus and optical image stabilisation (OIS) is also expected to make the move to the Galaxy S8.

Samsung Galaxy S8 vs Samsung Galaxy S7: Specs and features

Taking a look at internals, expect to find a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chip inside the Galaxy S8. Despite the obvious improvements to processing speed, the Snapdragon 835 supports Quick Charge 4, with just five minutes of charge granting five hours of battery life. Impressive, right? But expect Samsung to be a little cautious with the S8’s battery, given that Note 7 debacle.

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Will we see 6GB of RAM? I reckon so, especially considering that Snapdragon 835 chip supports up to 8GB. Just remember, these specs may vary region to region, with some areas likely to launch with Samsung’s in-house Exynos 8895 and ARM Mali-G71 GPU. We might get Samsung’s own digital assistant, too, following the Viv acquisition last year.

Samsung Galaxy S8 vs Samsung Galaxy S7: Who wins?

While we’ve already seen Samsung’s mid-range Galaxy A series phones show up in shops this year, all eyes will be drawn to the Galaxy S8 come the end of March. Following that Note 7 fiasco, Samsung has a lot to prove with the firm’s latest flagship.

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Regardless, one can assume the Galaxy S8 will improve on the Galaxy S7 in almost every way. From the camera, processor, display and design, it’s a given that the S8 will be a significant upgrade to the S7. The only thing we don’t know is the price.

Considering you can pick up the Galaxy S7 for £420 SIM-free these days, it will still be a firm choice for the months to come. Given we might see the Galaxy S8 launch for a staggering £800 come April, stick with the S7 if you’re looking to save your pennies.

I’ll be updating this article as and when new information becomes available, so stay tuned for more details in the very near future.

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