Samsung and Huawei are both reportedly planning to launch new flagship smartphones at Mobile World Congress 2018 in February, putting two of the top three vendors head-to-head.
Samsung’s Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+ are expected to closely resemble this year’s Galaxy S8, which saw Samsung introduce its Infinity Display concept. It had been mooted the company would introduce a device with even smaller bottom bezel, although this now appears not to be the case.
Among the more radical suggestions is there will be a 5-inch screen “mini” Galaxy S9, sharing the high-spec of its siblings. While Samsung offered mini-badged devices in the past, these have generally come with stripped-down features.
Galaxy S9 is also expected to see Samsung adopting a centrally mounted fingerprint scanner on the rear, as opposed to the off-centre reader on the current devices. This also means the South Korean vendor will not use an underglass fingerprint scanner on the front, which is tipped to soon become a popular smartphone feature.
Also mooted was a dual camera for the Galaxy S9+, with the Galaxy S9 featuring single lens camera.
The Samsung device is also likely to feature Qualcomm’s latest processor, Snapdragon 845, in some markets, with Samsung’s own high-end chip, Exynos 9810, used in others. Other potential changes include higher capacity battery and new, high-speed, onboard storage.
Huawei, meanwhile, is focusing on upgrades to the imaging capabilities for its P11 smartphone.
The device may feature a front-facing camera which uses a technology called Point Cloud Depth, which was previewed at the recent launch of Honor View 10. This uses multiple infrared sensors, allowing accurate face mapping for identification or to generate animations based on facial movement.
Huawei’s chosen technology is said to be both faster and more accurate than the face identification technology used in Apple’s iPhone X.
And that is not the only comparison with iPhone X: apparently P11 will also include a slim bezel design with a “notch” on the front to house the imaging tech. While a 4K display is mooted, Huawei has not gone above full HD for its P-series smartphones in the past, making this quite a jump.
In terms of camera, a three-lens set-up is suggested for the rear, co-developed with existing imaging partner Leica. This could enable images of up to 40MP, according to reports. A 24MP resolution was suggested for the front camera.
It will be powered by the artifical intelligence-enhanced Kirin 970 chip used in Mate 10 and Honor View 10.