back to article Samsung Galaxy's flagship leaks ... don't matter much. Here's why

With Huawei breathing down its neck, Samsung had planned to unveil its flagship just ahead of Mobile World Congress, the firm's usual stage for its launch. But leakers have spoiled the party. After weeks of renders, the disclosure of what appears to be a detailed specification sheet has seemingly ensured every detail of the …

  1. Pat Att

    No jack, Jack.

    Why do these companies all follow along with stupid ideas like removing the headphone jack? Is it just to be able to sell us more disposable crap like rechargeable headphones? (Duh, yes.).

    Please cater also for people who like to stick to our £25 reliable corded ones.

    1. tmTM

      Re: No jack, Jack.

      Does it matter though??

      Well actually yes it does, because there's always another phone out there that does come with the Jack and in such a saturated market it's probably not a great idea to be defined by something your product is missing.

    2. Wade Burchette

      Re: No jack, Jack.

      I've determined that to get a proper phone now you are going to have to make a sacrifice. You will have to decide which things you are not willing to live without and which things you can live without. Three things that I cannot live without are an SD card slot, a headphone jack, and a notch-less phone (Seriously, I cannot believe how many phone manufacturers are copying Apple dumb idea. Just because Apple does something does not make it the future.)

      I will grumble about a fixed battery, but I can tolerate it. I will grumble about replacing the very useful menu button with the less useful app switch button, but I will tolerate it. I will grumble about Google tracking on the phone, but I can put Bloka on it to stop it. I will grumble about the bloat, but I can put Package Disabler on the stop it. These are my sacrifices, things I can tolerate. The things above are things that are mandatory.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Just because Apple does something...

        Of course not. Otherwise we'd all be ham-handling Bluetooth one-button hockey puck "pointing devices". But that only means MS, Logitech, Kensington, Targus, etc. didn't suddenly snap and start believing that we would all want that-- or that we should all want that, back then. Something went terribly wrong after that.

      2. ItsMeDammit

        Re: No jack, Jack.

        I agree about the "notch" or "hole-punch". I don't use the following words lightly, but I absolutely hate this design and absolutely will not buy such a phone because it is incredibly distracting. I am not a fan of the rounded corners and edges on Samsung phones (I have already complained about my S8 elsewhere on El Reg) as it is but cutouts in the screen are just ridiculous. As far as I can tell it's just a bodge to get a "bigger" screen in the same size footprint and BLX to display quality and user experience and sadly people go and buy the damn things so the manufacturers think it's a success.

        Some may say that I am biased because I have never taken a "selfie" (I don't know if the camera on the front of my current phone even works), but I've had phones with cameras, proximity detectors and so on embedded in the front near the earpiece just fine before now that didn't come with a massive screen defect fobbed off as a "feature" forced upon me out of the box.

        Please, any manufacturers reading this, not everyone in your user demographic is a teen selfie addict who takes thousands of photos of themselves every day. Innovate, sure - but gaping holes in the display ? I'm not buying it - literally. Make a phone with a flat screen, replaceable battery, microSD card slot and an earphone socket and we'll talk. Damn, I miss my old S4. Still one of Samsung's best selling phones, I believe. I wonder why that was.

        1. Charles 9

          Re: No jack, Jack.

          The S4 is getting a little long in the tooth for me. For me, it's the Note 4, probably the last serious phone they made with all the stuff you mentioned. Sadly, continually-climbing memory demands (plus a desire to NOT trip the Knox e-fuse) mean I may have to look for something new in the future, as it seems every time I switch apps, the one I just left gets put to sleep. Even the home screen takes forever to load these days.

          1. Nate Amsden Silver badge

            Re: No jack, Jack.

            Curious can you quantify "forever" ? I have a Note 4 though I don't use it too much it is more of a backup of a backup. My daily drivers are Note 3s (my first Android phone). One has Android 4.4(my main) and the other has 5.0 (I prefer 4.4). Anyway performance wise it seems fine. Literally on day one of having the Note 3 I installed Nova launcher and it has been my launcher of choice on all android devices since(am not sure how much if at all that may influence the performance of the device).

            I don't use many apps, no social media, no banking, mainly built in email, SMS, firefox(with ad blockers - mobile is the only place where I use actual ad blockers), the built in gallery app, google maps(I use an older version the newer ones have too much crap in them). I do have about 60 apps installed though overall usage of them is much less frequent/consistent.

            Apps I am less sure of privacy/security wise (that I otherwise want to try or use) go on the 2nd Note 3 or sometimes the Note 4 neither of which have any personal info on them. The wifi in my home is strictly DMZ I guess you could say, I have some ports open on the firewall for my IP cameras to be reached by the phones but otherwise the phones have no need to access internal network so they don't have access.

            I have been interested in a new phone just because well this one probably won't last forever. Though it's hard to decide what compromises to make since all new phones would be some form of serious compromise for me (over Note 3), the only exceptions I think would be camera, CPU performance, and memory (the only areas I care about upgrade wise).

            Everything else - having a removable battery(I change mine once a year to keep it fresh), IR blaster, MHL, flat screen, headphone jack, reasonable bezels, wireless charging and having something reliable (at 6 years this Note 3 is by far the longest I have had a single phone as my daily driver - and I've never needed to repair it. Though the gyroscope has been failing for the past year or two, doesn't matter much).

            At this point I don't care if it's $1200 bucks if it can last 6 years.

    3. Flakk

      Re: No jack, Jack.

      Why do these companies all follow along with stupid ideas like removing the headphone jack?

      To reduce the thickness and weight of the mobile device? To exploit a technology (Bluetooth stereo headphones) that has been available since 2004?

      Don't look at me, I didn't ask for any of that. I also haven't had particular difficulty migrating to the "new" technology, either. Isn't it a bit discordant to complain about £25 headphones to go with a £799 smartphone?

      1. Dave 126 Silver badge

        But there *is* a headphone jack!

        It's even in shown in an image in the article*, as well as being confirmed by other sources. Look again - don't take the Reg's word for anything, especially when they can word stuff just to wind you up.

        * The image that shows the bottom of the phone, the headphone jack is where it's been for the last few years of Galaxy, next to the USB port.

      2. Lee D

        Re: No jack, Jack.

        The excuse was always "size".

        In fact they then just stuck in ten times more rubbish that nobody wanted (quad-cameras and suchlike). So I don't believe that.

        And if you've had to pay £799 for a smartphone, you surely don't want to have to rebuy EVERY accessory that you had to buy with your previous similarly-priced smartphone. So I can understand that frustration.

        If you bought a £1000 laptop tomorrow, to replace a £1000 laptop two years ago, would you be happy about having to buy all-new USB cables, display cables (HDMI), audio cables (ironically), etc. every time you do that? Sure, once for a generation, and then buy a backwards-compatible cable (e.g. you can still your USB mouse with a USB-C -> USB adaptor or hub, etc.) but not every damn laptop.

        New phone = new charger = new case = new car-cable = new car-holder = new USB cable = new headphones and so on... adding to that list doesn't help at all, when cheaper phones don't require that (a double-whammy saving). And that's assuming you don't share that stuff with other phones/audio devices - now you may have to upgrade your in-car aux port, buy bluetooth dongles, keep two cables including one for that old phone you gave the wife, two headphones - one that works at home, one that works on the phones, etc. etc.

        I'd expect an £800 phone to do everything a 5-year-old £800 phone could do... and more. Not less.

        But then, I have literally not spent £800 on phones in my entire life. Not even if you include the landline phones and cordless handsets of old.

        If I was to go to such an £800 phone, I'd have to rebuy and change the way I do everything with my current phone - plugging it in in the car, charging it (the cables on my car, the battery packs - if they are capable of fast charging it already- the chargers at home, etc.), putting a case on it, etc. and it would quickly turn into a £1000 exercise and a complete change of how everything I do on or with the phone works (even signing into it... aren't PINs frowned upon nowadays?).

        Or I could spend £200, get something "one model up" on my current phone that uses the same cables, does everything I already do, and more. Alright it won't be a famous brand but... (shrug).

        There's a reason I stuck on the S5 mini. Nothing else has the IR blaster. And I use that. Sure, there might be dongles that do it, or BluRay players you can control with an app, but now I'm buying those and setting those up too, having to bolt on extras (that don't fit in even the new case), after having spent lots of money on a phone that then can do "What I did before, but has a 4K camera I'll never use".

        When I went from an S4 mini to and S5 mini the transition was seamless. Last year, I reflashed the S4 mini with LineageOS and use it as a living room remote control and "quick google" device. It's actually faster, smoother, higher version of Android, etc. than the S5 mini is and lost no functionality - it even uses the same cables. The choice I face is now really "new phone" or "risk LineageOS on the S5 mini that's not as well supported". A few-hundred pound phone that did everything I needed, without the junk, and requires no extraneous purchases stands out as a better choice to me than splashing £800 on a phone that then requires all kinds of nonsense that probably won't work on my other phones.

        Smartphone manufacturer's will learn eventually, but it's gonna hurt them to get there. They will have to settle for people like me buying not-so-smart phones at cheaper prices and demanding things like aftermarket battery replacements and legacy ports.

        1. The Dogs Meevonks Silver badge

          Re: No jack, Jack.

          I don;t think I've spent £800 in TOTAL on every smartphone I've had over the last 8yrs... Let's see... £150 for an HTC Desire HD, £86 for a Moto G2, £180 for a Wileyfox Storm and £186 for a Moto G5S+... Yup, roughly £602 plus some change on the last 4 smartphones... If you include the SE 990i that I had for 4yrs and bought for around £160... that's still less than £800 in the last 12yrs.

          On top of that I've got a decent pair of wired earbuds, and I have a pair of BT earbuds with a nice magnetic strap so you can clip them around you neck when not using them, and I also have a set of BT headphones (big ones) for when I want to avoid disturbing people around me... Those cost less than £50... Which would take me up to around the £800 mark over the last 12yrs.

          But I wouldn't buy a sammy phone anyway, overpriced and full of bloat... I'm immune to fashionista marketing.

        2. jbrownman

          Re: No jack, Jack.

          I have been pondering the same issue for over a year now, to upgrade my S4 or not.

          Every time i think about getting a new phone i have to ask myself

          will i use all the bells and whistles?

          will i notice all the bells and whistles?

          As i cannot honestly answer yes and my S4 has more features (headphone jack, ant+,& replaceable battery) than newer phones i will continue to buy a new battery every 18 months or so and hope LineageOS keeps updating it. At least a not so well supported LineageOS is more support than Samsung currently gives

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Isn't it a bit self-defeating to sell a £799 smartphone that openly ignores the requirements of its own target market and lets the Archenemy define what is to be called the Right Thing?

      4. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: No jack, Jack.

        "Isn't it a bit discordant to complain about £25 headphones to go with a £799 smartphone?"

        I've yet to find _any_ bluetooth headphones with audio quality as good as a decent pair of wired ones.

        1. ibmalone

          Re: No jack, Jack.

          Add to this:

          Days when my bluetooth speakers inexplicably fail to connect and I can just plug in a cable instead of trying to sort it out there and then.

          Headphones with 3.5mm jack at home, at work, earbud ones I keep in my jacket, hands-free (with mic) ones that live in my backpack. I do have bluetooth over-ear ones that are handy, but hardly want to carry them round all the time, and bluetooth sports ones for running, for which the battery lasts no time at all (and which don't satisfy the basic sports requirement of not trying to escape from your ears during exercise, but I'll concede that's not bluetooth related, never hard a better sports pair than some long-destroyed Sonys that clipped around the ear).

          Ability to plug phone into stuff like my guitar amplifier or one of those little amplug things.

          Ability to interchange all that kit between different phones, laptops, speakers without faffing around.

          Ability to listen to sound without some protocol negotiation mishap introducing repeated clicking that needs you to go through a rigmarole of unpairing and pairing devices.

          There's one advantage to bluetooth from a user's point of view: you don't have to deal with cables, so no tangling and you can still use a speaker with the phone in your pocket. (Actually, there's two, I can connect to my neighbours speakers at 3am and play Lou Reed's Metal Machine Music, but that's beside the point.) Quality is not going to be better, if the stars align it might be as good (for example every item you own is Apple and all your sound sources are AAC). Sometimes that's worth it, sometimes it's not.

        2. irksum
          Thumb Up

          Re: No jack, Jack.

          "I've yet to find _any_ bluetooth headphones with audio quality as good as a decent pair of wired ones"

          Bravo! You didn't say "I'm yet to find..." so have an upvote from me.

          I've grown somewhat despondent about the state of the English language used in everything from newspaper columns to social media posts/comments, so seeing it's correct use is a ray of light in these times of mis-use/ignorance of the language leading to a so-called evolution of it.

          1. Jeffrey Nonken

            Re: No jack, Jack.

            "so seeing it's correct use is a ray of light..."

            Careful. Possessive "its" has no apostrophe.

            Of course, my phone just auto-filled "it's" for me there. Just luck I caught it. Maybe that happened to you and you didn't notice.

            ... I had no idea "I'm yet to find" was a thing. Just one more peeve to add to my collection, I suppose.

    4. Earache

      Re: No jack, Jack.

      I don't understand how people still have the energy to, year after year, get apoplectic about the lack of a jack. Normally you get a free adapter to the usb port that in the worst case extends your cable by 3 cms. What is the problem? How can that overshadow all the new tech squeezed into a new flagship phone?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: No jack, Jack.

        A free adapter isn't free; it costs you the proper use of that port. And if it's 3cm of a thing, it's more massive than the old jack and the DAC and whatever other discrete bits got "optimized" out. And being a dongly thing, it gets lost.

      2. Lee D

        Re: No jack, Jack.

        "How can that overshadow all the new tech squeezed into a new flagship phone?"

        Because, quite literally, I do not care about all that new tech.

        Faster processor. Cool. But my current phone isn't slow.

        More RAM. Sure. But my current phone has never run out of memory.

        More internal storage. But my current phone has a 128Gb microSD inside it... good luck beating that for the price of a cheap 128Gb card off Amazon.

        More cameras. I literally use my phone to take a photo maybe a handful of times a year. When I do, it's usually to email the photo, and having a HUGE image file result of that just means I need to shrink it to email it. I honestly don't even need HD most of the time, even if I wanted (why?) to take a lovely photo of my daughter to print out at high quality. My current phone is so sufficient, I've never questioned its capabilities in taking a photo.

        Voice recognition. My current phone has it in apps everywhere and it doesn't work for me anyway. I consider it the slowest form of command-issuing that there is, short of getting a machine-learning camera to interpret semaphore that I flag to it.

        Biometric authentication. My current phone has a fingerprint reader. I've literally used it once. To demonstrate how useless it is in terms of security (the old gummy bear tricks).

        My phone has 802.11n 5GHz wifi, Bluetooth, NFC, hotspotting, all the usual. I actually use some of them. NFC I use precisely to demonstrate to people how easy it is to read data off your credit cards in your pocket by just swiping a phone near you (and then explain that that just powers up the cards, and once powered up, I could read the radio signal from half a mile away with the right antenna). I use it to convince people to use RFID-blocking wallets, purses and card-sleeves.

        All your fancy new tech literally means *nothing* to me. Same way that I could buy a laptop tomorrow that could run every one of my 1000 Steam games faster than I've ever been able to run them. But the fact is that my high-end laptop from 2014 can do exactly that, to the point that I can play through GTA V or any of the other most-demanding games that I have without noticing the performance even once anyway. So what would an upgrade gain me? A worse version of Windows, replicating years of my laptop setup, having to reinstall just about everything, finding none of my accessories in my laptop bag fit any more or need adaptors to work, so on a plane the new laptop looks like Jodrell Bank in order to sit and play a game without disturbing others if I dont' want to re-buy every accessory I already have.

        This is what Samsung et al are discovering. I will not pay one penny extra to have a 4K rather than a HD camera. Or screen. I will not pay one penny extra to have edge-to-edge screens. I will not pay one penny extra for the AI chip, or 3D cameras, or any other junk.

        But I *WOULD* pay a proportionate price increase over a base model for a headphone socket, a removable battery, NOT to have an edge-to-edge screen but a plain, flat bit of glass that I can replace for £20, a larger battery, a decent case built-in to the phone, hell I'd even accept it being three times as thick as the "slim" phones they want to sell me. I wouldn't even notice.

        If you gave me a Dell-website-like customisation of a smartphone, I'd happily turn all those new features off. I'd happily PAY to remove some of them. And I'd happily pay to add back in the stuff I need. Hell, I'd pay just to have standard Android and an unlocked bootloader (which some smartphone companies now actually let you do!).

        Just because "it's technically better" does not mean "it adds sufficient value to my purchase that I will automatically part with more money". I can get a ridiculous top-of-the-line graphics card today if I'm willing to part with several grand. But I'd much rather pay less, "only" get 60fps in every game available to me, and then spend the excess on something else that gets me more value.

        Smartphone companies are slowly waking up to this. There will always be "But I must have 4K/8K/HDR/128Kbps FLAC/etc." guys. But they are niche. Most people just need a phone "good enough". Same way most people just need a laptop "good enough". Once you get past that point, people are loathe to pay extra, especially if they LOSE features they are accustomed to (e.g. find a cheap laptop that has an optical drive - and, no, I don't want to carry one round with me separately everywhere I go).

        Companies found it out with PCs and laptops. A few years later, the bottom started to drop out of the market because people didn't WANT that extra rubbish, as the market had reached full penetration so nobody was buying something that they hadn't seen a million times before and learned that if they follow every possible upgrade, they cost themselves money for nothing and eventually lose functionality.

        P.S. I also would not pay ANY extra to have, say, Samsung or Apple logos on my phone. It means nothing to me. I don't mind having the former on there. The latter is a big no-no to me because of what it means in terms of other features. But I wouldn't pay anything extra between two otherwise identical models to get the Samsung or the Apple model.

        1. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: No jack, Jack.

          Jesus fucking wept. Peoope here are still leaving posts about the supposed absence of a 3.5 mm port *after* I've pointed out that there is one, and that they can see it for themselves by looking at the images in the sodding article?

          And no correction from the article's author? Really?

    5. kezersoze

      Re: No jack, Jack.

      My issue with Apple getting rid of the headphone jack is replacing it with the lightning interface. It's a propitiatory interface that every vendor pays a fee to Apple to use, therefor raising the cost of the headphones. While I prefer to have the standard headphone jack at least Samsung and others use USB-C which is industry standard and does not artificially inflate the price.

      At the end of the day it's just buying a new set of headphones, which I will do sooner or later anyway. Every so often we have newer, better standards. If not we'd still be connecting our accessories to 25 pin serial connectors

    6. Boo Radley

      Re: No jack, Jack.

      I use a credit card reader for my work, and it plugs into the headphone jack. No jack, f*ck you, I can't use your phone.

  2. Dan White

    Headphone jack? Meh. Kill Bixby and I'm in...

    Much as I'm annoyed about the lack of a headphone jack, if I honestly look at how much I have used it, the answer is... hardly ever since the S7 was bundled with Bluetooth headphones.

    Bixby, on the other hand, I would happily see removed. At the very least, give me the option to choose my own assistant. Those who know better will probably choose the Google assistant, and those who don't can stick with Bixby if they want.

    1. Irongut

      Re: Headphone jack? Meh. Kill Bixby and I'm in...

      Those who know better don't want any of these pointless spysisstants.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Headphone jack? Meh. Kill Bixby and I'm in...

      It has a headphone jack? The picture shows it. Don't believe everything you read.

  3. Irongut

    I've owned every other Galaxy S since the original but the headphone jack is a deal breaker. No Jack = No purchase. Guess my S8+ will be my last. >:(

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      It has a headphone jack? The picture shows it. Don't believe everything you read.

      1. ibmalone

        We don't know yet I suppose, and leaked pictures can be mock-ups, but the GSM currently listed specs do also say it will have a 3.5mm jack. (Though since I read them I'm not sure what to believe...)

  4. Warm Braw Silver badge

    Station idents become invisible to the TV viewer

    I suspect I'm not the only person for whom that is untrue.

    1. Brenda McViking

      Re: Station idents become invisible to the TV viewer

      I can confirm you're not.

      I also sit in the no headphone jack, no purchase category too. I use headphones daily, frequently charge whilst listening, and am not buying other headphones when my current set cost over £200.

      Another flagship device that doesn't meet requirements. NEXT.

    2. Tikimon

      Re: Station idents become invisible to the TV viewer

      THIS is why I don't have cable TV or any of the other media distribution. It does NOT become invisible. It's like an annoying guest constantly talking and pulling me out of the story I'm TRYING to get immersed in.

      Seriously. Every year or two I get the urge to sign up and open the floodgates of entertainment. Then I see a video with a Station Bug prominently displayed in the corner and remember why I never do it. Not even going to rail about the popups, pop-ins, scrolling tickers and other ad-related crap they inject, but that's a factor as well.

      1. Charles 9

        Re: Station idents become invisible to the TV viewer

        You DO know the station idents appear over the air, too, meaning there's no escape even with an antenna? For them, they have you by the short-and-danglies. You want their programs from their networks, you put up with their watermarks (and that's what they really are: watermarks to identify recorded programs and so on). Unless you're willing to just cut all cords and go without television (including the news) forever.

        1. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: Station idents become invisible to the TV viewer

          On a 2:1 ( aka 18:9) OLED screen that's playing common 16:9 video the hole (or notch) won't be visible.

          That said, Samsung's useful web video player lets you zoom and crop 16:9 video, stretch it, or just watch it nativily with invisible ( OLED is nice) black bars at either side. I just wish BBC iPlayer for any OS would allow adjustment of aspect ratio rather than assuming everyone has a 16:9 screen. My laptop is 16:10 and my phone 2:1, so there have been times I've been forced to watch iPlayer video with black bars on *all* sides (4:3 footage on 16:10 screen and 2.39:1 footage on a 2:1 screen).

    3. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Station idents become invisible to the TV viewer

      Of course, we can all see the ident if we look for it, but usually our focus is elsewhere and it requires some effort to find it again. Lots of studies about the stuff we think we see but Richard Wiseman's videos can be recommended.

      I fucking hate the notch and am not enmoured of the hole but could live with it even if I'm happier with a bezel. Thinking about replacing my S5 at some point but not in the least interested in spunking around € 1000 on anything new, but the bigger (4100 mAh) battery is worth a mention.

      Headphone jack?, Meh. Used Bluetooth for years because it means no catching cables. Bluetooth also doesn't get shorted if dipped in beer (happened a couple of months ago, took a couple of days to dry out and during that time phone though headphones were permanently connected) But just say no to underpowered and eminently losable buds! Music time needs to be > 8 hours and the damn things should be as well attached to the body as children's mittens!

  5. Tomislav

    It has a jack...

    Just look at the picture in the article, you can see the jack to the left of the USB port...

  6. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: No headphone jack..

      The S10 has a headphone socket. The reviewer is thinking of some new midrange A series Samsung phone that is their first Android to not feature a headphone socket.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: No headphone jack..

        Thanks for the clarification.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Convergent design ?

    My current phone is just over 3 years old - an original WileyFox Swift.

    The only thing I'm missing which might be nifty is NFC capability. All else is ... well froth.

    It's all very well advancing the camera side of phones, but ultimately, who *really* uses them at that level ?

    My requirements of a phone are much less technical. It has to be unlocked, and not preloaded with operator/manufacturer cruft. And they FAR outweigh being 0.01mm slimmer, or in this years colours.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: Convergent design ?

      My requirements are even less than that, just a key pad, microphone, speaker, and maybe the ability to make and receive calls.

    2. TechDrone

      Re: Convergent design ?

      Yep. I managed to get a spare battery just after WileyFox went TITSUP. I occaisionally look around for a replacement given the lack of updates but have yet to see anything that comes close (proper dual SIM and an SD card at the same time). I guess Easter could see me take the plunge with LineageOS, although I'd like to have a fall-back candidate just in case.

    3. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Re: Convergent design ?

      an original WileyFox Swift

      You mean the one with no updated firmware from anyone at all? The one stuck on an old and vulnerable version of Android?

      Now I don't particularly care about beels and whistles but I do care about up-to-date firmware (either manufacturer or custom ROM) because of the many and various holes in Android (and, to be fair, in iOS - but at least Apple are somewhat more proactive about OS updates than any of the Android OEMs).

      So, enjoy your easily pwnable phone.

  8. ibmalone

    reverse / buddy wireless charging

    Can someone tell me what the use case for the reverse wireless charging feature phones are starting to have now is? I've seen others advertised with this. Is it: you've got a phone and always let the battery run down, you know someone else with a compatible phone who doesn't, they are frequently willing to lend you their phone for at least ten minutes (I'm assuming it's a pretty quick charge and you're not going for 100%) to donate some battery to you. And they have to be the people buying the phone for that feature.

    (Charging your earbuds seems about the only plus here, or you could just use wired headphones that you wont need to charge and that this phone apparently does have a jack for.)

  9. juice

    Don't jack it all in...

    The leaked spec sheet doesn't say anything about a headphone jack, but OTOH, it doesn't say that there isn't a headphone jack, and render leaks have generally shown that there's still one present. So I'll hold fire on any indignant-rage posts until/unless we get confirmation.

    Similarly, there's nothing on there to indicate whether or not the S10 supports the use of Micro-SD cards.

    Beyond that, glancing at the specs sheet shows a couple of interesting points.

    The first is that there's not much difference between the S10 and S10+:

    1) The S10+ has a 6.3" screen rather than 6.1" (though both have the same resolution - ironically, this means the S10 has a higher PPI!)

    2) The S10+ has a 4100mAh battery rather than 3400 mAh

    3) The S10+ is 175g rather than 157g in weight

    4) The S10+ can be spec'd with up to 12GB of ram and 1TB(!) of storage, while the S10 "only" ramps up to 8GB and 512GB.

    Also, the secondary "selfie" camera is given a bit more info for the S10+, but it's not clear how exactly it differs from the secondary camera on the S10 and S10e.

    It'll be interesting to see what the pricing delta is like - as much as the extra battery life would be welcome, all the other S10+ "enhancements" look pretty superfluous - the high-end RAM/storage options look like marketing ticks rather than actually adding any significant value - is an Android phone ever really going to need 12GB (or even 8GB) in standard daily use?

    (Current indications are that there's a £100 markup between the S10 and S10+ and a distinctly excessive £200 markup if you want to upgrade from 128GB storage to 512GB)

    Personally, I've been eyeing up the S10 as a potential successor to my beloved V30, primarily for the camera upgrades. If it doesn't have a headphone socket, that'll be a strike against it. If it doesn't support external storage, that'll be another strike.

    And the size may be a third strike, as these ever-growing handset sizes is introducing significant issues with pocketability, usability and fragility - my V30 (with it's 6" screen) is already at the edge of what I consider comfortable for one-handed use[*]. But that'll have to wait until I get a chance to actually handle a physical demo unit.

    [*] Feel free to insert (f'nar) any comments about why I'm using it one-handed ;)

    1. 's water music
      Big Brother

      Re: Don't jack it all in...

      ...this means the S10 has a higher PPI!

      You could be owed thousands S10!!!! Call now!!!!

      He knows who really had PPI----->

  10. Howard Hanek

    Primitive Communication

    100 hundred years ago two youths experimenting with communicating via two tin cans connected by string probably (just once) experimented with cutting the string. Their spirit lives on though at at Apple and Samsung.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    ZombieLand Generation

    "Just Don't do it" (Buy the phones).

    If you guys would just Not, that would be it, pretty fast too.

    But most of you can't even leave the phone alone for more than two hours so...

  12. Demogenes

    Just a general comment from someone converting from Apple to Samsung (for now at least)

    Hmm I changed from Apple because I didn’t want to fork out for the iPhone Excess. I bought a Note 9. Altough I love the hardware on the Note 9...that bixby button that can’t be remapped/disabled without 3rd party app. Sorry even in iPhone you can disable Siri. I find the android nagware from Samsung a real bummer. Two app stores, why not use one?

    Oh and just a again... BIXBY... plus Google assistant everything is doubled up... apart from my experience which is double down.

    And one more thing, the jack is a very old technology, even Apple gives you a headphone that fits into the charger. I am quite sure Samsung and others will do the same. You are more than likely not forced to buy a new (wireless) headset.

  13. Psion1k

    General smartphone design . . .

    . . . leaves a bit to be desired these days, to my way of thinking.

    (The following are my personal opinions. Obviously people will have their own opinions and preferences, which they have every right to. I can't help it if they are wrong. :P )

    Not affecting just Samsungs (though they do seems to lead the charge), I am not a fan of wall-to-wall glass for the display. Trying to pick one of those up always tries to activate something on the screen. Taking one out of your pocket can do things like activating the camera etc., even if locked, when combined with gestures etc. You effectively NEED a case just to use it, because just holding/gripping it causes screen presses.

    I like to have areas at the top and bottom of the screen, and the actual sides of the phone that are "dead", so no reactions. Designed along those lines, a notch becomes unnecessary, so no need to gnash teeth over that one. You also gain the ability to have dedicated buttons (not on-screen ones) for Home / Back / etc. functions. My personal preference was a design like the HTC 10.

    Another gripe is battery life. With apps on phones pulling juice like it is unlimited (I'm looking at you Pokemon Go) options for bigger (or swappable) batteries is something I want to see.

    The arguments for having smaller batteries generally come down to weight. If its an option, people can select what they want. I don't mind a heavier phone myself. Also makes it harder to have it slip out of a pocket unnoticed (or at all).

    The arguments for non-swappable batteries come down to water-proofing, generally. While nice, I suspect it has a lot more to do with making the phones less serviceable, so you feel forced to buy a new handset when the battery life becomes useless. I'd prefer to be able to carry extra batteries that I can swap in as needed.

    A small battery, which is non-swappable, combined with an app that sucks power (you would think an in-built Pikachu would extend the battery life), means you have have to use a powerbank to keep it going. Surprisingly (yeah, not so much), this causes the battery to heat up considerably, and can cook the battery into ineffectiveness. This usually shows up as the phone turning off earlier than the percentage gauge would indicate (worst I have seen inside 12 months is turning off at 65% on a 3000mAh battery). Bigger batteries either obviate the need for power banks, or do not generate the same sort of heat while being inline charged by a powerbank.

    I also noticed people griping about the inclusion (or lack of) a 3.5mm jack for headphones. My personal preference is to have one built in, but most phones come with a USB-C-to-3.5mm jack adapter, if it does not have one, so not really an issue, unless you need to have the headphones in AND charge it simultaneously.

    Personally, I am not inclined to ever have a Samsung phone, as have always felt that they are too restrictive in their UI design, and the physical units have always felt rather "cheap" in the construction department, though I admit that they do look shiny. To be fair, I have always preferred the metal bodies of phones like the HTCs.

    As a last comment, the "in-screen fingerprint reader" is a two-sided thing. On the one hand, it allows more screen real-estate for those that want wall-to-wall screen on the phones, but on the other hand, forget about using a screen protector overlay, if you want to use it. The thing is sonic; a screen protector will block it. So you get to choose to have an extra layer of protection for your screen, or using the fingerprint reader.

  14. Big_Boomer Silver badge


    It's the Tenties, not Twenty-Teens!! Eighties, Nineties, Noughties, Tenties, and in 10½ months time it will be the Twenties. As for yet another overpriced, overhyped phone for those muppets who just have to have a phone that is "Considerably better than yows",... yawn! I'll stick to a nice cheap mid-range that does more than I need anyways. Nothing on any of these flagship models from any brand are worth the extra they are charging for them.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Twenty-Teens

      Hell yeah it's the teens, as it's two thousand nineteen. Get it? If temperatures can be in the teens, so can years. Deal with it. Besides, it can't be "tenties" because it's "ten", NOT "tenty" unlike all the multiples of ten past 10.

    2. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: Twenty-Teens

      > The arguments for non-swappable batteries come down to water-proofing, generally

      That's not the reason behind non-swappable batteries. Batteries inside phones dont have a case around them, but instead live inside a thin polymer bag. This is fine if they are protected from puncturing inside a phone, but if they were swappable then some people would inevitably leave the spare in the bottom of a tool bag amingst screwdrivers or on a hot car dashboard. Fire. You know it. The extra few mm of material that would be required to protect a swappable battery is instead used to make the battery capacity bigger or phone slimmer.

      Then of course there is the fact that phone vendors would rather you buy a new phone than replace an aging battery.

      There have been waterproof phones from Sony and Samsung with swappable batteries, and there are lots of non-waterproof phones without swappable batteries.

  15. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

    "sadly getting worse for the nagware Huawei is introducing this year"

    Interestingly, when my Honor 10 upgraded to Android 9 a month or so back, the usual Huawei Cloud nagware that it had suffered from previously disappeared completely.

  16. ninjakidd

    Taking the mick

    I will not be getting this phone. Taking the headphone jack away is a massive deal breaker for me. I don't like wireless headset and won't be forced into getting rid of my wired devices. This is all Apples fault, as what they do, other manufacures follow. Over £1000 for a phone? Get lost! no headphone jack? JOG ON SAMSUNG, I will keep my Galaxy S7 and S9+ for a long time.

    1. Charles 9

      Re: Taking the mick

      I won't even go that far. I'm sticking with my Note 4 (which I've had to change the battery a couple times already) until someone comes along that actually forces the issue. Frankly, I wouldn't mind a law or declaration that a sealed battery is a fire risk.

  17. BGatez

    Just give me some decent hardware and a rom to load so I can dump the crap and spyware

    1. Charles 9

      Start building your own. Phone OEMs know a Captive Market when they see it.

  18. ItsMeDammit

    And another thing...

    ... if the notch is such a good idea, why haven't we seen TV's with it ? The infra-red receiver, power LED and the like in the surrounding frame / bezel is so 2018...

  19. Test Man

    The Samsung Galaxy S10 and S10+ DOES have a 3.5mm jack - here's the video proving it

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