While we tend to hear the most about new phones/hardware releases in the fall there are still a lot of exciting announcements and releases all year long. Between Google, LG, Samsung and Apple we are in for an exciting year in the phone world, and we are here to preview some of the things we may see.
Red iPhone 7 and 7+
As of 8:01 am on March 24th (last Friday) you can purchase the special edition red iPhone with every purchase benefiting (RED). This special edition is only available for the 7 and 7+ starting at $749 for the 7 and $869 for the 7+.
As with all previous iPhones we are expecting the announcement in September. But everything else is really rumor central at this point. The biggest rumors revolve around changes to the screen, an all glass design, and a possible switch to a USB C charge port (the port type that newer Androids and MaxBooks use). How-To Geek offers a good explanation of what a USB-C is and why it could be a good thing. But we will just have to wait and see!
Galaxy S8 and S8+
After the Note 7 disaster Samsung has a lot to prove with the new Galaxy S8(+). The S8 was announced this week, Wednesday March 29th, and was available for pre-order yesterday. According to Samsung the S8 and S8+ are “designed to change how you capture and view your life”, and a big part of this has to do with Bixby, Samsung’s answer to Siri and Cortana. You can check out their original blog on Bixby here, or what they’ve said about it now that the official phone announcement has been made here. Samsung says “Bixby will forever change the way you search”. The overall conclusion before the announcement was that Bixby is meant to be more of a “helper” rather than an assistant to answer questions and perform tasks, but now that it’s been released we should have some clear answers on how it performs. While Bixby is definitely one of the biggest changes with this model, this is also the first phone using their eight-point battery test (which makers hope will fix the Note 7 issues).
The S8 and S8+ also have iris scanning, a 12MP rear camera and 10nm processor. It will be interesting to see what people have to say after the phones have been delivered, and even more interesting to see just how many sell after this past year.
I know we are all waiting for the “Like a G6” puns but the specs for the new LG G6 do look pretty fly. The biggest change from the G5 to the G6 is most likely going to be the switch back to one battery, as the G5 had a removable battery pack. But there are a lot of cool new features that may make up for that. Along with 80% of the phone being screen, it’s also water and dust resistant. You can read all about IP Ratings here, but the G6 is rated IP68 meaning you can submerge it in up to 3ft of water for about 30 minutes and it should be totally fine. This new model also has 2 cameras built in to help increase the amount of content you can fit into one image.
The G6 also comes enabled with Google Assistant and the ability to pair with your smart home device, if you have one.
You can preorder the G6 now with a starting price of $650 depending on your carrier and plan.
Unfortunately there isn’t much to say about Google right now, but since they are making some headway into the mobile device industry we thought it was worth a mention.
We know as of now that the Pixel 2 is in the works, although we are unaware of any specific details.
While we know that the Pixel 2 is happening there are also rumors of another phone in the pipeline that may not be in the Pixel family. The report is that this new phone is codenamed “Taimen” as Google typically uses different sea creatures as code names. We may not know much at this point but if Google follows the trend of their competitors and releases new products at the same time each year, it’s very possible we will hear an announcement in October, a year after the Pixel announcement in 2016.
As with almost all tech announcements and releases, the rumor mill on these phones and others in the works is constantly spinning, but as we know, only a fraction of those tend to be true. That being said, we are definitely ready to see some pretty cool new features and what more they can do with our phones in the future, like this Lenovo “bendable phone” prototype.