Whether you’ve liked previous iterations of Samsung’s Galaxy S range or not, it’s hard not to be curious about what its next steps will look like. Right now rumors are pointing towards a Galaxy S8 and, more surprisingly, a Note 8. However, many believe that the former is more likely, and as such prefer to go with what the rumor mill says about that. Today there’s a new S8 rumor which makes it the first smartphone to feature Bluetooth 5 tech.

Galaxy S8 Concept wrap around display
Image Source: DBS Design – YouTube.com

What is Bluetooth 5?

A group named SIG, otherwise known as the Bluetooth Special Interest Group, has announced Bluetooth 5, the next upgrade to the wireless standard. With it comes some serious gains over the older 4.2 version of the technology, including an increased range of up to 4x, double the transfer speed and up to eight times the message capacity. These features will make the new standard more stable, more secure and less power-hungry.

However, many industry insiders see the biggest gain with this new standard as being its inter-operability with other wireless technologies. They believe it could open the doors to previously not-thought-of functions and abilities.

Coming to the Galaxy S8?

If the rumor is accurate, the Galaxy S8 will benefit from Bluetooth 5. This new standard will better enable it to communicate with other Samsung products wirelessly, including wearables, tablets, and devices from other manufacturers.

In fact, Bluetooth 5 offers such an increase in connectivity/communications that it will have far-reaching implications for home automation and many industries. While it’s thought that the Galaxy S8 will be the first phone to have it, other pieces of technology could start to hit the shelves with it in around two to six months’ time.

Galaxy S8 concept image by Veniamin Geskin
Image Source: Veniamin Geskin – Twitter

Galaxy S8 rumored features

If the Galaxy S8 does feature Bluetooth 5, it will usher in a new world of connectivity for mobile devices, and you should expect to see many other manufacturers including this tech in their flagship devices.

According to the blog TechSpot, the S8 will use Bluetooth 5 with a pair of its own wireless earbuds. The improvement in range and speed of the next Bluetooth iteration means that the audio quality will be improved, as will the distance the listener can be from their device.

Optical fingerprint sensor

Rumors which suggest the Galaxy S8 will feature an edge-to-edge display are rife, and for the most part, baseless. However, a recent piece of news has given some weight to the possibility. One of Samsung’s manufacturing partners, Synaptics, has developed its own optical fingerprint sensor.

There’s no real talk of this appearing on the S8, but seeing as this fits with the edge-to-edge display chatter, many a support of the rumor mill. Using this tech in the S8 would remove the need to include bezels, which means the handset itself would not need to grow to get a larger display. Apparently, this optical fingerprint sensor is what Samsung has been looking for / trying to develop.

Not only will it enable the company to embed features usually requiring a bezel, but it will also use much less power than the technologies currently being used.

There will be a headphone jack

Recent reports that Samsung would follow Apple and abolish the 3.5mm headphone jack have been a little hasty. According to The Verge, dropping the tried and tested technology could alienate Samsung from many of its customers, and after just going through such a tumultuous time over the Note 7.

This is something the South Korean company desperately needs to avoid. Imagine how you would feel sitting on the train or bus after having forgotten to charge your headphones. You would feel pretty irritated, so forcing such a situation on customers is a no-go.

Final thoughts

Whatever new technologies make their way to the Galaxy S8, it goes without saying that some tech from the Note 7 will too. In September, Samsung used the phablet to launch features such as the iris scanner and Y-OCTA. So there’s more than a reasonable chance that we will see those features included the S8.

The problem for Samsung, however, is trust, because it has managed to alienate almost every Note 7 owner because either their handsets were faulty or they were forced to send them back to the manufacturer. Neither situation makes for a great consumer experience, so Samsung will have to offer a great phone and some incentives to previous customers.