Samsung’s next flagship smartphone is the Galaxy S8, which is expected to introduce a few notable design changes. Some of them already sound very familiar because the described features are either incorporated in this year’s iPhone (dual rear lens camera) or expected to arrive with the iPhone 8 next year (no home button with a screen that takes up more of the phone’s face). Xiaomi already beat both Samsung and Apple to market with a phone with a front side is almost entirely dedicated to the display. But Samsung will probably be the first of the three to ship a device like this in large quantities. And it looks like the most exciting feature of next year’s Galaxy S8 phone has already been confirmed.
A Samsung Display researcher did not say explicitly that the Galaxy S8 will feature a button-less, all-screen design, but he did say that considerable resources are being poured into the development of such a device.
“Samsung Display would roll out a full-screen display whose display area ratio (a scale that measures space taken up by a display on the front part of a handset) reaches more than 90 percent next year,” Samsung Display principal engineer Park Wong-sang told reporters at the iMiD 2016 display exhibition in Seoul last week.
According to The Investor, Park added that Samsung eventually wants that figure to reach 99% in the coming years, as display tech matures to incorporate all sensors in every part of the screen.
The engineer even went ahead and demoed an edge-to-edge full-screen Galaxy S7 edge prototype that featured a bezel-less display. Such a display would have the fingerprint sensor incorporated into the screen rather than beneath it. Other sensors that are usually found on the front side of the handset would also be incorporated into the display.
A full-screen display would offer users a more immersive VR experiences, Park said. The company is also developing a bendable VR device that will feature a flexible OLED to cover the user’s eyes completely while in use, an unnamed researcher added.
Samsung is expected to unveil the Galaxy S8 in late February next year, while Apple’s iPhone 8 won’t debut until September.