This year’s big smartphone battle has already started brewing.

Soon enough, Samsung’s Galaxy S8 will reach store shelves, ready for a fight with Apple’s iPhone 8later this year. Collectively, the devices will look to win over customers willing to spend serious cash on the latest and greatest devices.

Galaxy S8 and iPhone 8 concepts: Credit: Mobile Fun and Matteo Gentile

According to the rumors, both Apple and Samsung have big plans for their respective devices, including curved screens, high-end processors and compelling new designs. The two companies seem to be planning similar features, but they also seem willing to try new things.

Based on rumors and early reports, here’s how the Galaxy S8 and iPhone 8 stack up so far, along with an early prediction for which device will have the advantage when the two finally clash later this year.


iPhone 8

Apple’s iPhone 8 should boast a major redesign to celebrate the iPhone’s 10th anniversary. According to several rumors, the device will feature an all-glass enclosure in  a design that might resemble the iPhone 4, with a metal spine to separate the pieces of glass.


Photo Credits: Mateo Gentile, Cult of Mac, TechConfigurations, Glaxon Paul, ConceptsiPhone, Handy Abovergleich, Imran Taylor

Apple is also reportedly planning to make the iPhone 8 the company’s first device to offer an OLED, curved screen. The home button might also be moved to inside the screen, eliminating the need for a physical button; this would allow the iPhone 8 to come with a display that nearly covers the device’s entire face. The screen could even wrap around the sides of the phone.

Galaxy S8


It’s a similar story for Samsung. The Galaxy S8 is said to offer a curved screen and an impossibly thin bezel on either side. While the device’s chassis won’t look too different from that of the Galaxy S7, the handset will ditch the home button and apparently offer a virtual option through the software.


Photo Credits: MobileFun, Steel Drake, ConceptCreator, Benjamin Gelskin, KingwayLee, DKonovalov, WeiboEvan Blass

Since the fingerprint sensor was previously on the home button, Samsung is planning to move the sensor to the back of the Galaxy S8 and sit it next to the camera. Watch out for smudging! At least you’ll probably get a 3.5mm headphone jack, something Apple ditched with the iPhone 7.

Early Advantage: iPhone 8.

If the rumors are true, Apple’s iPhone 8 will be a groundbreaking achievement and a major departure from previous iPhones, setting a new standard for Apple’s mobile design. The Galaxy S8, meanwhile, seems like an iterative update over last year’s model with a more awkward fingerprint reader.


Galaxy S8


This Galaxy S8 concept would be a break from previous Galaxy S designs. (Credit: PHConcepts/Steel Drake)Some expect Samsung to offer a dual-lens rear camera in the Galaxy S8 to catch up with the features of competitors like the iPhone 7. However, a highly detailed report on Galaxy S8 features by serial leaker Evan Blass suggests Samsung will stick with the dual-pixel camera that made the Galaxy S7 our top camera phone; in that case, the big addition to the Galaxy S8’s camera could be image-recognition capabilities that help you with searches. On the front of the phone, expect to find a selfie-friendly 8-megapixel camera that could be couple with a rumored iris scanner.

iPhone 8


Look for the dual-lens camera to remain on the iPhone 8. (Credit: Milind Chandwe)It’s a similar story with the iPhone 8. Credible rumors about the handset’s camera have been a little hard to come by, but this phone, too, should retain the dual-lens camera added to the iPhone 7 Plus. There are some questions over whether the cameras will be aligned vertically or horizontally, but don’t expect a big update.

Early Advantage: Galaxy S8.

The Galaxy S7’s dual-pixel autofocus camera offered superior image quality to the cameras on the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus in our tests, especially in low light. And we expect Samsung to keep its lead in this category.


iPhone 8

Apple’s iPhone 8 is expected to come with a big display update. First off, it’ll be the first iPhone to use OLED instead of the LCD that’s always been used in iPhones. The screen will also be curved and will spill over both sides of the device. Thanks to the curved design, the screen will likely be bigger than the iPhone 7 Plus’ 5.5-inch screen,measuring 5.8 inches. Its resolution, however, might not be much better than full HD.

An iPhone 8 concept shows how a wrap-around screen might look. (Credit: Techconfigurations/YouTube)

Galaxy S8

Samsung’’s Galaxy S8 will also come with a curved display with an edge-to-edge look. Expect two versions, one with a 5.8-inch panel and the other with a 6.2-inch version. As with the iPhone 8’s screen, the Galaxy S8’s display is expected to offer OLED technology, but Samsung could go with a higher resolution of 4K. You should expect at least 2960 x 1440 pixels.

Early Advantage: Galaxy S8.

One of the Galaxy S8’s screens will likely be bigger than the iPhone 8’s, and Samsung has been offering OLED screens for a long while. Look for the new phone’s display to be a winner.


Galaxy S8

The Galaxy S8 will ship with a fingerprint sensor, but because Samsung is ditching the home button on the front, this sensor will likely be moved to the back, next to the rear-facing camera lens. It remains to be seen whether it’ll be easy to reach and will avoid causing users to smudge the lens.

iPhone 8

Most rumors say Apple will keep its Touch ID fingerprint sensor, but move it under the display. In fact, Apple is said to be testing technology that would bake Touch ID directly into the screen and potentially let users press anywhere on the display to activate its features.

Early Advantage: iPhone 8.

This is a no-brainer. A fingerprint sensor that’s on the back, is hard to reach and could smudge the camera lens, or one that uses next-generation technology?


iPhone 8


Another iPhone 8 concept shows off a front that’s all display. (Credit: Matteo Gentile/TechDesigns)Apple’s Siri is consistently getting smarter and will get some updates this year. But don’t look for a revolutionary update this year that will dramatically improve the iPhone experience.

Galaxy S8

Samsung’s Galaxy S8 could be the first to get the company’s brand-new virtual personal assistant, Bixby. The feature should be getting at least some help by Viv Labs, a company Samsung acquired last year, and could be activated by a special button on the side of the phone.

Expectations and hopes are high for Bixby, and it might prove to be one of the best artificial intelligence services in the industry. Samsung has promised a much more open and developer-friendly assistant.

Early Advantage: Galaxy S8.

Bixby looks like a winner, and Siri is, well, Siri, but we’re hoping Apple makes major strides this year.


Galaxy S8

The Galaxy S8 won’t necessarily come with a slew of special features, but the ones we’ve heard about so far seem exciting. Bixby leads the way and should be a huge improvement over the lame S Voice. You can also expect an iris scanner, similar to the one on the Galaxy Note 7 (RIP).


The Galaxy S8 could double as a PC when used with a rumored dock. (Credit: ConceptCreator)A new desktop dock will reportedly enable users to plug their S8s in and get a PC-like experience, including multiwindow support on a big screen, as well as mouse and keyboard support. In other words, you might be able to use your Galaxy S8 as your computer.

It’s also worth noting that the S8 will likely offer a microSD card slot for expanding the memory. Don’t expect that from Apple.

iPhone 8

The iPhone 8 should come with IP68 water- and intrusion-resistance. And there’s speculation that in this device, Apple will finally offer wireless charging. You can also expect an iris scanner up front for logging in.

Some have reported that Apple is experimenting with augmented reality, and we could see some of those features built into the iPhone 8, especially around object recognition. But we’ll have to wait and see.

Early Advantage: Draw.

Samsung and Apple both seem to have compelling special features in store.


iPhone 8

We haven’t heard too much about Apple’s plans for the iPhone 8’s performance. The device is expected to be powered by an A11 chip, which could be built on a 10-nanometer process. Ultimately, it’s expected to offer much faster performance than the A10 and be more energy efficient.

On the storage side, look for Apple to offer up to 256GB internally. There’s also talk of Apple offering much better battery life in the iPhone 8.

If the rumors are true, Apple’s iPhone 8 will be a groundbreaking achievement and a major departure from previous iPhones, setting a new standard for Apple’s mobile design.

Galaxy S8

Samsung is going all in on performance. The Galaxy S8 will be the first to run on Qualcomm’s high-powered Snapdragon 835 processor, and could boast up to 8GB of onboard RAM. Some have reported that the S8 could even offer a “Beast Mode” for delivering short bursts of power when you need them.

Samsung’s flagship will likely come with 64GB or 128GB of storage and fairly big batteries, although the larger model could offer slightly less capacity than last year’s S7 Edge. (Safety first!)

Early Advantage: Galaxy S8.

The iPhone 7 is currently one of the fastest phones out there, but it looks like Samsung could jump ahead and even keep its lead when Apple releases the iPhone 8.


Galaxy S8

This one’s important in light of the Galaxy Note 7 debacle. Samsung is reportedly working hard to deliver a big battery in the Galaxy S8 that will allow the phone to run all day and night without worry. One report has the 5.7-inch S8 coming with a 3,000-mAh battery, and the 6.2-inch S8 featuring a 3,500-mAh pack. Those numbers are close to the 5.1-inch S7 (3,000 mAh) and 5.5-inch S7 Edge (3,600 mAh.)


Evan Blass leaked this image, which may be the Galaxy S8. (Credit: VentureBeat)The Galaxy S8’s batteries will also be the first from Samsung to get the new inspection treatment to ensure their safety. Here’s hoping that process will work out. The Snapdragon 835 should also help, promising 25 percent better efficiency.

iPhone 8

Apple is also reportedly planning to offer a “big battery” in the iPhone 8. We don’t know yet how big the battery will be, but its higher capacity, coupled with the A11’s power efficiency, should combine to deliver far more juice than what you’d find in the iPhone 7.

Early Advantage: Draw.

The iPhone 7 Plus lasted longer than the S7 Edge on our battery test, as did the iPhone 7 over the S7. We’re waiting to see who finishes on top in the ever-changing race for top battery life.


iPhone 8

Apple is reportedly planning to deliver the iPhone 8 in September. The phone will likely be made available alongside the iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s Plus, which will both offer iterative updates over last year’s models.

Galaxy S8

Samsung has already said that it won’t unveil the Galaxy S8 at Mobile World Congress in February, leaving us with hopes for a late-March or early April unveiling. Either way, the device is expected to reach store shelves in mid-April.

Early Advantage: iPhone 8.

Samsung has the first-mover advantage, but Apple will have the benefit of launching closer to the holiday season and getting the buzz around the iPhone’s 10th anniversary. Plus, if Apple so desires, it can better target any perceived weaknesses in the S8 when the company starts its marketing blitz.


Galaxy S8

There’s little debating that the Galaxy S8 will be an expensive handset. But exactly how expensive is unknown, because Samsung hasn’t announced pricing. However, the device is expected to cost several hundred dollars when it’s made available in mid-April.

One report pegs the 64GB version at $885, while the 128GB model could cost $943. But that’s pricing for Asian markets.

iPhone 8

The iPhone 8 could cost a pretty penny. (Credit: Handy Abovergleich)Apple’s pricing won’t be revealed until the handset makes its debut later this year. But a recent report suggested that the smartphone would go for $1,000 or more. The price, the report claims, would be based on all of the advancements Apple is planning to offer in the device, including the OLED display, and would make the new phone the most expensive iPhone ever.

Early Advantage: Galaxy S8.

Based on early reports, both the Galaxy S8 and iPhone 8 will cost a pretty penny, but it looks like the iPhone 8 will have an even higher premium.

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