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Android Cellphones Communications Hardware Technology

Samsung Announces the Galaxy S9 With a Dual Aperture Camera, AR Emojis (arstechnica.com) 137

Samsung has taken the wraps off of its latest flagship, the Galaxy S9, at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. The S9 features a familiar body with an upgraded camera, relocated fingerprint scanner, and newer processor. As usual, there are two versions: the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+. Ars Technica reports: The S9 is one of the first phones announced with the new 2.8Ghz Snapdragon 845 SoC in the US, while the international version will most likely get an Exynos 9810. Qualcomm is promising a 25-percent faster CPU and 30-percent faster graphics compared to the Snapdragon 835. The rest of the base S9 specs look a lot like last year, with 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage, a 3000mah battery, and a 5.8-inch 2960x1440 OLED display. The S9+ gets the usual bigger screen (6.2 inches @ 2960x1440) and bigger battery (3500mAh), but one improvement over last year is a RAM bump to 6GB. Neither RAM option is really outstanding for a phone this expensive, considering the much cheaper OnePlus 5T will give you 6GB and 8GB options for RAM at a much lower price. Both S9 models have headphone jacks, MicroSD slots, a new stereo speaker setup (one bottom firing, one doubles as the earpiece), IP68 dust and water resistance, wireless charging, and ship with Android 8.0 Oreo.

Both the Galaxy S9 versions are getting a main camera with two aperture settings. Just like a real camera, the Galaxy S9 has a set of (very tiny) aperture blades that can move to change the amount of incoming light. On the S9 they're limited to two different positions, resulting in f/1.5 and f/2.4 apertures. In low light the aperture can open up to f/1.5 to collect as much light as possible, while in normal or bright light it can switch to f/2.4 for a wider depth of field. Samsung is also answering Apple's Animojis with "AR Emoji." They work just like Apple's Animoji: using the front sensors to perform a primitive version of motion capture, the phone syncs up a character's facial expressions to your facial expressions.
The Galaxy S9 clocks in at $719.99 and the S9+ is going for $839.99. In the U.S., preorders start March 2 at all four major carriers, and the phones ship out on March 16.
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Samsung Announces the Galaxy S9 With a Dual Aperture Camera, AR Emojis

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  • by SeaFox ( 739806 ) on Monday February 26, 2018 @03:11AM (#56186219)

    I'll have to get myself a man-purse to carry it in.

    • Man-purses... for those without man-hands?
      • by Cederic ( 9623 )

        You carry your phone in your hands all the time?

        I put mine in my pocket, and use my hands to do manly things, like chopping down trees, eating large steaks and fondling attractive women.

        This phone is too fucking big to put in a pocket.

        • by tsqr ( 808554 )

          This phone is too fucking big to put in a pocket.

          Odd. My S8+ has a 6.2" screen, and I have no problem putting in my pocket. But then, I don't try to make it fit sideways.

        • You carry your phone in your hands all the time?

          That question is entirely orthogonal to the matter of whether the phone is adequately sized for one's hands.

        • You carry your phone in your hands all the time?

          I put mine in my pocket, and use my hands to do manly things, like chopping down trees, eating large steaks and fondling attractive women.

          This phone is too fucking big to put in a pocket.

          1. You chop down trees with your hands? Don't most people use a saw?

          2. You eat steak with your hands? Don't most people use a knife and fork?

        • Maybe if you wear skinny jeans.

    • by tlhIngan ( 30335 )

      I'll have to get myself a man-purse to carry it in.

      Too small a screen.

      Asians use screen size as status symbol (hence why iPhone X sales are soft - the screen is sized for practicality, not status). If you can hold your phone in one hand, and use it, you are basically a beggar. If it takes two hands, you poor thing, how do you get about your life? If you need at least three hands to carry your phone, great, you're making it big!

      Doesn't matter if you need 6 hands to actually use it. Size is king.

      • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Monday February 26, 2018 @05:41AM (#56186585)

        The true status symbol is the lackey walking behind you, carrying your phone and helping you hold it to make a call.

        • The true status symbol is the lackey walking behind you, carrying your phone and helping you hold it to make a call.

          Maybe if you're a peasant.

          Unless you've got at least four lackeys carrying your giant phone around in a palanquin everyone is going to know you're a nobody. You'll probably want another lackey or two spreading rose pedals for good measure.

        • If you can afford someone to carry your phone, why not have them answer it as well, so you don't need to talk to people on the phone.
      • Doesn't matter if you need 6 hands to actually use it. Size is king.

        That's what she said.

    • by Teun ( 17872 )
      Shows you.
      Only 1.2" to go before they catch up with the 2012 era Nexus 7 that fitted the inside pocket of my jacket.

      Judging by myself I know why tablet sales are dropping faster than phone sales, most modern phone screens are big enough for our daily use.

      And because I'm careful with my money I've just ordered a new OnePlus 5T, the otherwise perfectly working OnePlus 3 goes to the lady who's Nexus 4 with broken GPS will become an IP security camera.

      This all says phones are already for years so good an
      • by torkus ( 1133985 )

        It's ironic to see these phones out now...

        Everyone laughed at Dell when they launched a 5" phone/tablet. Granted it had larger bezels and all but still! They were ahead of their time it seems.

    • by Bongo ( 13261 )

      I'll have to get myself a man-purse to carry it in.

      The 50 lbs IBM 5100 is light enough for anyone.

    • With the tiny bezels it's actually smaller than a lot of phones with even smaller screens.
  • They can take their locked bootloader and stick it up their kimchee-reeking asses.
  • AR Emojis?! (Score:5, Funny)

    by nagora ( 177841 ) on Monday February 26, 2018 @03:21AM (#56186245)

    Wow, that would be a real selling point if I were 6 years old.

    • Animojis from the iPhone X or AR Emojis from the S9 may not be your thing, but they are absolutely driving interest in the flagship phones from both companies.

      I don't want to say you're getting old and the world has moved beyond you, but you should really think about how the tech in a simple phone these days is brushing up against million dollar Hollywood mocap tech. Obviously, there's an exponential difference between the two, but the fact that a cell phone can even give something close to that in real tim
      • Re:AR Emojis?! (Score:4, Insightful)

        by 93 Escort Wagon ( 326346 ) on Monday February 26, 2018 @04:17AM (#56186363)

        I see it somewhat differently. If Animoji and AR emoji are really what passes for cutting edge new features that differentiate flagship phones now, it means there’s very little reason to upgrade your phone anymore - unless it breaks.

        Now, get off my lawn.

        • Or that!
        • I'm an old geezer like you (first computer was a Timex Sinclair 1000). But AR emoji is one of the baby steps towards a completely non-tactile interface system. Like the ones portrayed in movies where people just wave their hands around in the air. If they can subsidize R&D into computer vision and facial expression recognition by marketing it as a fun feature on a new phone, I'm not gonna complain.
      • Animojis from the iPhone X or AR Emojis from the S9 may not be your thing, but they are absolutely driving interest in the flagship phones from both companies.

        Are they though? Apple and Samsung obfuscate their sales figures but there's a fair bit of evidence that new generations of high end phones have disappointing sales figures and people are either keeping their old phone or buying a budget one.

        The majority of people download zero apps per month.

        https://techcrunch.com/2017/08... [techcrunch.com]

        And of the ones who do how many need a 2.8Ghz Snapdragon 845 SoC? The apps I use would run fine on a much slower CPU than that.

        It's like with PCs. An old high end or new budget device i

        • by Calydor ( 739835 )

          Zero apps per month?

          Maybe because when people get a new phone, most of their standard apps (like Facebook, Snapchat etc.) come pre-loaded, and they already know which ones they need to go and get, so that gets done on day one.

          And then ... well, how many programs do you download for your computer in a month once you have everything you need installed? Phones are no different in that regard.

          • by HiThere ( 15173 )

            I don't know about you, but I only got a smartphone because I could do that a lot more quickly than getting an decent phone. I can pretty much do without the smart, though the "frequently called numbers" is convenient. I don't download any apps because I don't use any.

            OTOH, I guess I am an "old codger", though I don't think of myself that way. To me social media is slashdot and email. And I don't even like web-based mail interfaces.

            P.S.: What the hell *are* AR emojis? An ad that doesn't explain itsel

            • by Calydor ( 739835 )

              I like the ability to browse the net while sitting in the waiting room at the doctor's office which I unfortunately tend to do a lot.

              The AR emojis, from what I could gather, appear to be some kind of motion-capture that mimics your facial expression on a smiley. Or something like that.

        • by hawguy ( 1600213 )

          Animojis from the iPhone X or AR Emojis from the S9 may not be your thing, but they are absolutely driving interest in the flagship phones from both companies.

          Are they though? Apple and Samsung obfuscate their sales figures but there's a fair bit of evidence that new generations of high end phones have disappointing sales figures and people are either keeping their old phone or buying a budget one.

          The majority of people download zero apps per month.

          https://techcrunch.com/2017/08... [techcrunch.com]

          And of the ones who do how many need a 2.8Ghz Snapdragon 845 SoC? The apps I use would run fine on a much slower CPU than that.

          It's like with PCs. An old high end or new budget device is good enough for most people. And people bitch about the features that are being removed from new end devices.

          I'm one of those that downloads around 0 apps per month (last time I got a phone, I didn't install any new apps, just carried over the ones from my new phone).

          However, with every OS and app update, my phone seems to get slower and slower, I want to stay on top of security updates, so ignoring updates is not really a solution.

          I realize that this is right where Google wants me to be -- to keep me trapped in the upgrade cycle but my 2.5 year old Nexus 5X is starting to feel unusable at times and I'll likely up

          • Have you thought of doing a firmware reset on the device? I did that for a quite a while on my Galaxy S5 before finally snapping and buying a V20 this year.

            A firmware reset and a new battery is almost as a good as having a new phone in my experience. I.e. new versions of Android aren't slower if you do a clean install but a phone that's gone through multiple OS upgrades is going to be unusably slow.

          • Google doesn't care if you buy a new phone, they just care if you use in-app payments through Google Play Services (or, ideally, buy new apps through the Play Store) or have their tracking stuff installed. They've actually made Android faster. When I upgraded to the a LineageOS based on the newer AOSP, most of my apps were noticeably faster due to improvements in the ART compiler (which, to be fair, started from a really slow place).
      • So you say that, technically, these emojis are a technical feat. Sure. But seriously Apple and now Samsung making a top selling point out if it?
        Don't think it'll have a deep impact on most users lives, phone wise...
      • Animojis from the iPhone X or AR Emojis from the S9 may not be your thing, but they are absolutely driving interest in the flagship phones from both companies.

        Really? Because I've seen precisely zero people actually using them. While I understand that my personal experiences do not imply anything more general, I'm definitely not seeing any evidence of sales because of this "feature".

        the fact that a cell phone can even give something close to that in real time should be something you appreciate, not tell people to get off your lawn about.

        I'll appreciate it when it does something actually useful to someone besides a bored 12 year old. Turning my face into an animated smiling pile of motion captured poo is not useful even as an insult.

      • Here's the thing with Animoji: they're a minimum viable product. They're a fun sort of tech demo that Apple did to show what you can do with good facial mapping. It's clear that even they were taken by surprise that animojis were so popular; after all, they weren't the ones that invented animoji karaoke, but they sure were quick to pick it up once other people started doing it and roll it into their advertising.

        Samsung, as with many things they copy, has mistaken them as an end in themselves. I don't think

      • ...the tech in a simple phone these days is brushing up against million dollar Hollywood mocap tech. Obviously, there's an exponential difference between the two, but...

        What?

    • Wow, that would be a real selling point if I were 6 years old.

      Samsung does their marketing homework. Their studies show that most adults buying ultra-expensive smartphones have the mentality of 6-year-olds.

      On the serious side:

      The S9 is one of the first phones announced with the new 2.8Ghz Snapdragon 845 SoC in the US, while the international version will most likely get an Exynos 9810

      Why, and what does this mean . . . ? Is one better than the other . . . ?

      • I was wondering this, too. Why build the US version with one SoC and the rest of the world version with another SoC? Moreover, why would Samsung build a version for the US with Qualcomm's chip, and for the rest of the world version with its own chip?

        Android Authority has an article comparing those two with the Kirin 970. https://www.androidauthority.c... [androidauthority.com]

        "There actually won’t be any divergence in 4G LTE speeds. All three of the chips feature integrated Category 18 LTE modems, boasting up to 1.2 Gbps

        • by Geeky ( 90998 )

          I think they use Qualcomm in the US because their own chips don't support one of the big carriers (because they lack CDMA maybe? I don't recall the details.)

          I guess they stick with their own chips elsewhere in order to avoid paying money to Qualcomm.

      • Snapdragon (Qualcomm) tends to have fewer cores but better single-threaded performance compared to Exynos (Samsung's in-house ARM chips; not used on U.S. models). Snapdragon tends to presents fewer issues with drivers than Exynos (for those developing custom ROM's) but in the case of several Samsung models that I know of, the international variants of the phones with Exynos can be bootloader-unlocked while the US models equipped with Snapdragon cannot.
    • by fedos ( 150319 )
      I guess they should have taken into account the hundreds of thousands of units you were intending to buy when they came up with the list of which features to market as the phone's selling points.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    I've been noticing that lately smart phones such as android and iphones are terrible at their primary role which is to just make and receive calls.

    Don't know why they keep putting out new models with more horse power, personally I went back to a flip phone after I purchased minutes and forgot to take the data off only to learn that within 2 minutes of placing time on the phone the data ate it. This is after my previous phones battery failed and I was forced into upgrading to a new model which only came wit

    • Happy you've found a point in the past you are happy with. Personally, I'll stick with my 1970's wall mounted telephone from the GPO. And a paper address book. The quality is fantastic, once I've chased the crows off the telephone wires.
    • by hawguy ( 1600213 )

      I've been noticing that lately smart phones such as android and iphones are terrible at their primary role which is to just make and receive calls.

      You don't understand what smartphones are used for if you think that making calls is their primary role, it's been at least a month since I've made or received a call on my smartphone (I get lots of voicemails, I ignore 90% of them, and for 90% of the remainders, I reply via SMS, IM, or Email). My last phone developed a bad speaker, I kept it for nearly 6 months before I finally replaced it -- turns out that not being able to make calls is wasn't really much of an issue.

    • by jedZ ( 571869 )
      Making and receiving calls may be your primary usage mode but why do you assume it is their primary function? Email + Whatsapp have pretty much rendered traditional phone communication obsolete.
    • I hate phone calls. I hope Apple has the courage to phase out that feature. If Apple dies it, the rest will follow.
    • I've been noticing that lately smart phones such as android and iphones are terrible at their primary role which is to just make and receive calls.

      That's because their primary role is not and never has been to make and receive calls. Smartphones are handheld computers that happen to be able to make calls too. Phone calls are CLEARLY not their primary role for the majority of people using them. They use them primarily for web browsing, email, texting, various apps, games, and the like. Phone calls are just a bonus feature that gets used now and then - some use it more than others. Personally I probably use 50-100 minutes for phone calls on my smar

  • Anyone who... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Chris Katko ( 2923353 ) on Monday February 26, 2018 @04:33AM (#56186399)

    Anyone who pays $1000 for a phone, I don't care if they get a deal or ripped off. You're still blowing a grand on something that will become less useful than a toaster in 5 years.

    I cannot fathom--for the life of me--how people can convince themselves to spend a grand on something that sends text messages and snaps selfies. You can buy a fucking 4K TV >65" for a grand. I should know, I bought a Samsung 55" for ~$800.

    A thousand bucks buys you an insanely good guitar, violin, or damn near anything else. You could buy a full VR setup. But somehow, for a phone that does what everyone else's does (but it loads Facebook 25% faster! omg!) and will become trash within 5 years... how... what... is EVERYONE RICHER THAN ME? Does no one have to make careful decisions about where to spend their money? I can live in my rental _house_ for two months (1/6th of the year!) for the price of one of those phones. I could build an amazing PC for a grand. I could buy a pretty damn good laptop for a grand and it would be USEFUL for at least ten years. My wife's old i5 laptop her grandparents bought her for school 6+ years ago is still fast enough to run 4K YouTube, games, and more.

    • by Zocalo ( 252965 )
      There's also the fact that a lot of people can't do math, or can't budget, in the face of aggressive marketing and peer pressure surrounding their posistion as a supposed status symbol to factor into the equation. I mean, does anyone *really* care what phone you have as long as it works? I suspect a lot of users of high-end phones never actually own them, they just lease them from their carrier at a monthly rate that ultimately ends up costing them a lot more than it would to just buy the phone outright -
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Many people spend more time on their phone than they spend doing anything else. If I spend two hours a day on my phone, that's over 700 hours of use per year. If I keep it two years, that's less than a buck an hour. I would say this is probably the most valid argument for most people.

      Then there is the point that not everyone who buys a $1,200 phone is sacrificing something to get it. I earn enough to pay for two of these on a bad day. Even if I quit working today (at 38) I have enough in investments to last

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by thegarbz ( 1787294 )

      You're still blowing a grand on something that will become less useful than a toaster in 5 years.

      Yep just like my laptop. And just like every* desktop PC from the 80s to the mid 00s.

      If history is anything to go by then people would have no problem spending that money. Especially when you consider it is the device they will interact with most in any given day.

      * LOL Just kidding, we never got a desktop PC for that cheap.

      I cannot fathom--for the life of me--how people can convince themselves to spend a grand on something that sends text messages and snaps selfies.

      Oooh I get it. You don't know what a mobile phone is. Here, let me educate you by going the opposite extreme: https://www.theregister.co.uk/... [theregister.co.uk]. You may just send text messages and snap s

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        LOL spotted the guy who bought an expensive phone and is super insecure about it.
        • LOL spotted the guy who bought an expensive phone and is super insecure about it.

          Nope. Just someone with critical thinking skills. I don't actually have a phone I paid for. Just the one work provides for me. But good work showing you own biases towards the conversation.

          • by HiThere ( 15173 )

            Well, if work provides the phone, then I guess you aren't out much, and they probably got the phones at a huge discount.

            But I still don't understand how people find them useful except for certain specialist applications. And for the specialist applications that I know of a tablet would be a better choice.

      • Yep just like my laptop. And just like every* desktop PC from the 80s to the mid 00s.

        I disagree on that. If you bought a decent (say 1000 dollar) laptop in 2012, it probably would have a 1080p screen, discrete graphics, and a decent CPU (probably quad-core). I got a couple of such desktop replacement laptops and they remain incredibly useful. On a laptop you can still upgrade storage and RAM.

        A 1000 dollar smartphone will basically become a fancy brick in 3-4 years, assuming you don't drop it earlier or run

        • Not sure about a $1000 laptop. My partner is using my old one, which cost about double that in 2011, because the one that she bought about two year ago for a little under $1,000 is, even after a replacement battery, basically dead (and Dell support is crap). A $1,000 laptop might still work after 3-4 years, but increasingly the low-end laptops are built with cheap components making them effectively disposable devices.

          My phone is from 2013 and is not a brick. The one it replaced, from 2010 is, because it

        • I disagree on that. If you bought a decent (say 1000 dollar) laptop in 2012, it probably would have a 1080p screen, discrete graphics, and a decent CPU (probably quad-core). I got a couple of such desktop replacement laptops and they remain incredibly useful. On a laptop you can still upgrade storage and RAM.

          I did buy a laptop in 2012. I replaced it last year. Battery life became unusable. Fan was always running full pelt. There was damage to the corner so it didn't close properly anymore and some of the keys on the keyboard were getting dicky. Aside from that it was also quite slow and I needed someone lighter with an SSD.

          Why do you think these rules are any different to that of a phone? If you want you can have my Galaxy S1, it still does everything it used to do just as well as the day I got it.

      • " I'll wager my current smartphone is far more useful than some 6+ year old laptop as well. "

        That is because you are a consumer, not a producer. You are using computers wrong.
    • Two things I think are going on - the price is often pretty opaque once you take into account the carrier deals that you get, you still pay the $1000 but it feels different spread over 2 years, and combined with the service charge. The other is that all those other things you mentioned you spend less time infront of than your phone - and a phone is a multipurpose device that comes with you and is useful everywhere. I personally would never spend $1000 on a TV because my £300 from a few years ago is be

    • something that will become less useful than a toaster in 5 years.

      I get your point, but my Galaxy S3 is still perfectly useful. It's the only phone I use, and i use it a lot. Calling, GPS, apps, it has it all.

    • It's the difference between £30/month or £40/month - not the difference between £1000 and £300. For a kid who earns say £250/month, it's a small incremental cost from money for which they have nothing else of value to spend on.

      (in the US it's probably more like the difference between $80 and $100/month, but that's because your mobile industry isn't regulated properly, but you get the idea)

      • I'm on a pre-pay contract where I typically spend well under £5/month, so I wondered if your numbers were actually correct. Here's what I discovered from my provider:

        Galaxy S9: £99 + £40/month.

        iPhone 7: £79 + £36/month.

        iPhone SE: £19 + £18/month.

        Galaxy J3: £19 + £14/month.

        Alcatel Pixi 3 (never heard of it - really low-end Android phone that's worse than my 4-year-old one): £19 + £7/month.

        So the difference between the latest phone and

    • That's why I have been spending 300 bucks tops on a new phone. I think companies like Lenovo and Huawei have started putting out on the market actually pretty decent cheap phones since about 2016 (Moto G4 Plus, Moto G5 plus, Honor 6x, Honor 7x, etc). I was able to buy Honor 8 for under 300USD 1.5 years ago. These phones basically do everything the "flagship" phones do for just one half or one third of the price. Unless you _really_ need to mine bitcoins on your smartphone, and launch Firefox with 45 open ta

    • I cannot fathom--for the life of me--how people can convince themselves to spend a grand on something that sends text messages and snaps selfies. You can buy a fucking 4K TV >65" for a grand. I should know, I bought a Samsung 55" for ~$800.

      Tell me you're joking.

      My current smartphone is used for backcountry, road and marine navigation, photography and video recording, voice and text communication, web lookups, portable storage, as a TV remote (ie. Chromecast), a music hub in my car, weather station (bar

      • I cannot fathom--for the life of me--how people can convince themselves to spend a grand on something that sends text messages and snaps selfies. You can buy a fucking 4K TV >65" for a grand. I should know, I bought a Samsung 55" for ~$800.

        Tell me you're joking.

        My current smartphone is used for backcountry, road and marine navigation, photography and video recording, voice and text communication, web lookups, portable storage, as a TV remote (ie. Chromecast), a music hub in my car, weather station (barometer, hygrometer and thermometer), alarm clock, on-call pager, voice recorder, mobile hotspot, guitar tuner, etc., etc., ad nauseum.

        Your TV does what? Entertain you a few hours a day?

        You don't need to spend $1k for a phone that does all that, and if you really care about the photo/video, buy a $200 phone and an $800 camera. Or buy a $200 phone, a $500 camera, and a... I don't know.. $10 thumb drive? What does using your phone for "portable storage" mean?

        • You don't need to spend $1k for a phone that does all that, and if you really care about the photo/video, buy a $200 phone and an $800 camera. Or buy a $200 phone, a $500 camera, and a... I don't know.. $10 thumb drive? What does using your phone for "portable storage" mean?

          Huh?

          Why on Earth would I want to complicate my life like that?

          My mobile device does everything essentially flawlessly. So why not get the best mobile device for my needs that I can afford? I'm literally not getting this.

          Also, mobile

    • by eam3 ( 962365 )
      I see plenty of people at my job who are always thrilled because they got the latest and greatest and tell me that it's only $25 a month. For a couple of years. With some ridiculous plan from the big carriers. They can't afford to pay attention but they are always going on and on about their latest acquisition. I still have my Samsung S5 (bought brand new for well under $300 when the S7 was introduced) running Marshmallow, that I take to Best Buy every now and then to have the Samsung guys install the l
    • Anyone who pays $1000 for a phone, I don't care if they get a deal or ripped off. You're still blowing a grand on something that will become less useful than a toaster in 5 years.

      Maybe but I'm going to use my smartphone 4-8 hours almost every day, every day for the next 1-3 years. I might use my toaster once or twice a month for about 2 minutes. I am quite confident I'm getting better value for money out of a $1000 smartphone than a $20 toaster.

      A thousand bucks buys you an insanely good guitar, violin, or damn near anything else.

      I don't play guitar, violin, or anything else and don't plan to start. So why do I care? None of those things have any value to me. A smartphone does.

      You could buy a full VR setup.

      And do what with it exactly? I have less use for a VR setup than the toaster.

      Does no one have to make careful decisions about where to spend their money?

      When you

    • Who offers those steep discounts for new subscribers (people who switch carriers) and 2-for-1 specials. In other words, if you have service with that carrier and you don't buy a $1000 flagship phone, your monthly service fee is helping subsidize the purchase of those who do buy it. This is one of the reasons I really wish carriers were prohibited from selling phones. If I stick to an old phone, I want to only be paying for service, not paying to help other people upgrade their phones.

      Also, the high pr
  • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Monday February 26, 2018 @05:44AM (#56186603)

    AR Emojis! And a relocated fingerprint scanner! And all for merely the price of a new laptop!

    In case you wondered why people stop buying phones like crazy [slashdot.org]...

    • Yeah, and I don't think it's just that the new features for new smartphones aren't very useful. I think there's a danger that they make the phones worse. Extra features tend to take storage space, RAM, and processing power. They clutter the interface, and pop up at inopportune moments. They make the experience of using it more confusing and frustrating.

      The same thing has been going on with laptops and desktops. They've reached a point where, for the things that people use computers, tablets, and smart

      • There is another inherent danger: Security issues. The more something can do, the more can be exploited. We have actually bought old non-smart phones for a few key applications where making phone calls and receiving text messages is all we need, simply to make absolutely certain that no security problem can arise from any of the "smart" features of the phone.

    • AR Emojis! And a relocated fingerprint scanner! And all for merely the price of a new laptop!

      My thoughts exactly. I even laughed when I read the new features. And their weird pseudo iris on the camera is a hoot too. This is Samsung's answer to Apple?

      In case you wondered why people stop buying phones like crazy [slashdot.org]...

      The market is becoming mature. It is pretty difficult to add new features that cause people to think they gotta have that new phone, I've waited a couple stages of evolution already, like from a Nokia FP to an iPhone 5 to an iPhone 7, where I'm at now. But unless the mythical "gotta have" feature comes around, I'll run it until the batteries go, or I dr

  • Hmm.. right. I guess I am going to have to trade my S8 for the S9 because of this. And what about the CPU? Has anyone really cared about the CPU performance since say the 2016 Snapdragon 820. If the companies continued selling the phones with the old Snapdragon 800 from 2013, I bet most people would still feel fine with these. For goshs sake, 99 percent of the time you just use the thing for texting, email, and web browsing.

    • It's better than an S8 because it's $5 cheaper! Screwy S8 prices have stayed jacked up since before the holidays.

  • I support laws banning the import/sale of this device as the manufacturer has again chosen to glue a wear item in place, making it difficult and expensive to repair. A non-replaceable battery is extremely wasteful and we should not tolerate it.

    Enough is enough.

  • But... does it explode like the older Samsung phones? If not, it is rather uninteresting :)
  • $830 for... AR Emojis?!

    "But it has Electrolytes!"

  • Is there any obvious reason I am missing why Samsung would go through the trouble of using two distinct CPUs for different markets? What's the point of that?

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