back to article When Samsung reveals the S9 at MWC, at least try to act surprised

There's rarely such a thing as a "genuine" phone leak in our experience – glimpses of unreleased models are carefully choreographed by professionals months in advance. Apple is the obvious exception. A stupendous data dump on the eve of the iPhone launch left presenters with nothing new at all to announce. Samsung's big night …

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Can I take the battery out?

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Will it blend?

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Can I take the battery out?

You already know the answer.

Judging by the various reports, what is being launched contains a few tiny incremental changes on the current model, and the most innovative development is that the model number increments by 12.5%, and the faithful will see enough value in that to fork out.

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Joke

Yes, but only once!

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@Ledswinger

This does seem to be the Tock model, to use slightly out of date intel terminology, although I get the feeling that Samsung works on four beats to the bar for innovation as opposed to two.

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So big, little, medium, little?

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2 simple questions...

As you say..can i take the battery out.

And can i put an sd card in?

Thats it really.

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Re: 2 simple questions...

It 's almost certain to support SD cards, they blew it with the s6 and I really don't expect them to make that mistake again. And they will gladly sell you their 512gb card. But I doubt the battery will be removable, Apple really screwed up the market for that by proving their customers are dumb enough to put up without removable batteries, and that has messed it up for everyone as they try to out do each other on thinness.

Just add a couple of mm and boost the battery by 50% or more and I won't mind the nonremovable battery so much.

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How many times do owners of phones with user-replaceable batteries actually do so?

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I replaced the one on my Note 4 which gave me a year of better performance before shifting to the 8, which is worse in many respects that I still use the 4 alongside it.

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How many times do owners replace replacable batteries?

I can only speak for myself. my Last 10 years I've had 5 phones. The first three, I never replaced the battery, they went obsolete too quick (Nokia N95/HTC HD2/LG Opt3D), the 3rd (Galaxy S4), I had 3 spares, swapped them virtually daily. Lasted me 4 years before a power key broke.

My current LG V20 has just one spare. I swap it out probably once a month when I absolutely need the 0-100% in 15 seconds that only a replacable battery can do, but the phone is only 10 months old - the batteries are for when it gets to a couple of years and the one inside is aged to the point where it's no longer performing adequately.

And I'll be the first to admit, yes, it's dead Jim. Planned obsolesence via welded in batts is just too good a prize for manufacturers to hand over to the customer in the age of peak smartphone. Nonetheless, the reason LG got my custom on my last phone was because it had a swappable battery. The only manufacturer left listening to power-users got my hard-earned. Nonetheless, the grass isn't greener - it last had a security update in Sept 17. 5 months ago. Unacceptable.

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Anonymous Coward

Galaxy 9... far, far away... and even further over priced!

Save your money - Buy a £400 OnePlus 5T... or £250 Honor 7X..

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I have the S7 which I got just after it was released. Overall I've been very pleased with it especially the camera.

I do notice that the software is still Android 7.0 although the security patches seem to come through regularly, the latest security patch says January 2018.

Do Samsung ever update the software, I'd like to try Oreo having read a few favourable reports

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Samsung's OS support is generally a bit shitty: they like to do no more than 18 months after which you're on your own. I'm sort of surprised that no trading standards authority has gone after them over this, but I guess that says a lot about how little we consumers care about our rights.

OTOH Samsung flagships are easy to root and install an AOSP like LineageOS on. These releases are generally about 6 months behind Google when it comes to the next version and this seems to be the case for many manufacturers. More important is getting the monthly security fixes within a week of their availability. I have Android 8.1 build on my spare S5 and, while not everything is supported, it does look pretty nice.

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Anonymous Coward

Probably not, you could always go down the LineageOS route but it's not for the faint of heart or the non technically minded. The XDA developers forum usually have lots of different custom roms. I did this with my S4 and while the initial process was well documented I had to learn about modem versions and a whole host of other stuff before I was comfortable with it and how to do it properly. I'll also have to do the same with my Wileyfox Swift 2 which I'm actually looking forward to. I think when it comes to tech I'm a bit of a masochist.

Edit: I see someone else beat me to it while I was writing this, a beer to you sir.

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I did this with my S4 and while the initial process was well documented

It's probably not for the faint-hearted but the process, especially updates, has a got a lot better. I guess it's legally a grey area (no warranty) but probably worthwhile to let someone in a phone repair shop do.

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"no more than 18 months after which you're on your own. I'm sort of surprised that no trading standards authority has gone after them over this". A lot of manufacturers won't even do that long. Not sure quite what Trading Standards could do unless Sammy stated that they would provide software updates for X number of months. A device doesn't suddenly become unusable just because updated software isn't available for it.

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I've ordered the £120 iPhone X knock-off - the Oukitel U18. Don't much care if I break it or it bricks. Took my bricked iPhone 6 plus along to the apple store and the cheerful hipster at the Genius bar thought it was perfectly fine for an expensive phone to just die after three years. Seemed genuinely surprised when I advanced a differing opinion.

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Apple has expressed in a court of law that it only designs/expects the iPhone to last one year at most.

That's actually the argument they presented, on record, to try to avoid offering the statutory 2-year European warranty.

Why people do business with them, I still can't fathom.

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Wait what?

Why would anyone ever give themselves the horror of having a notch through *choice*?

(I'm not posting anoymouse, as I at least think Apple can command a price and form factor for their user experience and build quality... but why on earth do you want a notch on the device?)

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They fell foul of Australian Consumer Law too. Long story short, if they sell a device with a 2 year plan then the device should last 2 years minimum.

Now with handset prices >$1500 starting to appear it won't be long until 3 year contracts are the norm, then it'll be required for a device to actually last that long.

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Still need more detail on the S9+ cameras

Aka: what is the purpose of the second lens?

The Note 8 uses it's second lens to provide a 2x "optional zoom", but personally, I'm hoping it offers a fisheye wide-engle view - the latter is a lot more useful when it comes to the stuff I photograph[*].

Still, the contract on my S7 Edge doesn't run out for another 6 weeks or so yet, so I've got plenty of time to debate the merits of either picking up the S9+ or switching back to LG and their V30...

[*] Graffiti/street art, if anyone's interested, which by it's nature is often in awkward places - narrow alleys, behind parked cars, etc. There's distinct limits to how effective perspective correction and/or panoramic shots can be for this!

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Anonymous Coward

It's going to be a bit embarrassing if you pull it out of your pocket upside down.

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Everyone wants

Better battery capacity. 3000 mah isn't great but they won't put a bigger battery in.

Probably no-one gives a shit about slow motion video and Bixby but that's what Samsung's R&D is getting spent on.

Sad.

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Re: Everyone wants

"Probably no-one gives a shit about slow motion video and Bixby but that's what Samsung's R&D is getting spent on."

And anybody who really wants the 960fps can already get a Sony for a lot less money.

I wonder how many people actually have a use case for a phone that does absolutely everything? Apple and Samsung seem to be trying to make pickup trucks with Ferrari performance that are the size of a Fiesta but, alas, have the longevity of a Fiat 127, to coin a confusing metaphor.

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Re: Everyone wants

I wonder how many people actually have a use case for a phone that does absolutely everything?

Nobody and it's not how they're sold. It doesn't matter if it's a phone, car or handbag, good marketing of luxury items works on the emotional side, creating a desire or even a need for the object. The technical stuff is taken as given and provides post facto justification.

This isn't to say that the technology isn't important because it is. But nobody really wants it all. Some peope will love the slow motion, others will want something else.

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Re: Everyone wants

"good marketing of luxury items works on the emotional side, creating a desire or even a need for the object"

You're saying that like it is a good thing ("good marketing"). My point was that I don't think it is. Selling people stuff they will never use may make the economy keep going but it leads to absurdities like 18 year olds paying £60 a month for a phone many of whose capabilities they never use, and ensuring that they come out of university with even more debt.

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Re: Everyone wants

You're saying that like it is a good thing ("good marketing").

I'm not really saying I agree with it as a principle, merely explaining how it works. We're all susceptible to difrering degrees and for different products. Remember when someone posted a link to some kitchen gadget porn? And my allen key wrench with torque setting…

Marketing itself doesn't encourage debt. It sets aspirations but also polices them so that people know they can only afford second or third class. It's credit that encourages debt.

As for me: I'm happy on my second, second-hand S5 though I was seduced by the Gemini and sincerely hope these start turning up any time soon™.

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Arse

Nokia is the Sevco of the mobile world.

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Re: Arse - Nokia is the Sevco of the mobile world.

Apart from the fact that the subject is Samsung, HMD Global/Nokia appears to be having some success. I don't quite follow the analogy.

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How hot does it burn ?

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I got the S8+ on a finance deal with Samsung and will probably upgrade to the S9+ at the first opportunity. For all the arguments, the S8 is a great phone and I'd expect the S9 to be a great increment on that.

The DEX Dock is going to be what i use to replace my main PC.

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See I don't. The S8 is a great phone but the S9 isn't a leap up I'd want. I normally cycle Samsung phones every two years as then I notice a difference.

You'll get a slightly better camera - S8 already takes epic photos

Slightly quicker CPU - Not convinced anyone can really notice the difference these days

Finger print sensor still in a daft place but not quite as daft

Dex - Buggy release and not enough support from app developers a bit of a gimmick still. I got one free used it one and it went back into the box where it still remains.

IMO I'd stick with the 8+ and wait for next years phone or hope that all the stuff they should have put in the S9 ends up in the Note 9 later this year. I suspect they'll do an Apple and have a big release next year as they hit the magic number X, sorry 10.

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IMO I'd stick with the 8+ and wait for next years

It's a free market and if he's got the spare cash and wants to essentially beta-test DeX then I'm all for it, because the more testing it gets the better it'll get and the more people buy into it, the more resources will be devoted to it.

Samsung is now ahead of Apple on the curve so I wouldn't expect it to want to ape the X next year because with customers as happy as Christopher it doesn't need to.

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