back to article Leaks point to Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra with mammoth 108MP camera and ... what? 16GB of RAM

There's just a few short weeks until the Samsung Unpacked launch event, where the South Korean giant will unveil this year's ultra-pricey flagships. Predictably, most of the pertinent details have already dripped out. The latest pertains to the potent Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra*, which packs some unbelievably meaty specs. The …

  1. Def Silver badge
    Coat

    No amount of RAM is excessive when Android is involved.

    1. toejam

      If it supports 4K DisplayPort over USB so I can use it as a proper desktop, that 16 GB of memory might come in handy when I have several dozen tabs open in Chrome while in full screen.

      1. Timmy B Silver badge

        "If it supports 4K DisplayPort over USB so I can use it as a proper desktop, that 16 GB of memory might come in handy when I have several dozen tabs open in Chrome while in full screen."

        I do pretty much that on my Tab S5e with Dex and IIRC that only has 6Gb (Monitor is good but not quite 4K)

      2. BuckeyeB

        Just show me where to plug in the keyboard.

        1. zuckzuckgo Bronze badge

          Bluetooth?

        2. toejam

          Use a laptop docking station. If I attach my Dell USB-C dock to my phone, it detects my keyboard, mouse, monitor, and GigE port. No need to fuss with any Bluetooth accessories.

        3. Timmy B Silver badge

          I too use a usb c dongle. It has 3 usp ports, HDMI and VGA out 2 card readers and usb c input for power, etc. Everything works apart from the VGA port and that's only because I've not tried it. It cost me less than £20.

  2. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
    Coat

    Oh, did we forget to mention?

    and winter gave spring and summer a miss and went straight on into autumn…

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Surely you're going to need plenty of memory to manipulate 108 mega pixel images?

    1. cirby

      Yep - that was my first thought. That 16 gigs will fill up in just a few seconds if they're buffering in RAM.

      1. jswitte3416

        Yep

        My first thought too. That's 1.7 GB per image (maybe - I'm assuming 16 bit color uncompressed; =108*10^6*16/10^9)

  4. heyrick Silver badge

    How big is the imager?

    I mean, 108 megapixels? Surely the laws of physics would require a fairly large imager, with an appropriate lens? How does all that fit into a phone where the trend is to make them ever thinner?

    1. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: How big is the imager?

      Even on full frame DSLRs, the increasing pixel count means evermore processing to deal with noise, putting 108MP on a microscopic phone sensor is mostly a marketing ploy in my opinion. It will however, be interesting to see results from this 'camera'.

      1. nekomoto

        Re: How big is the imager?

        Maybe it's "108MP (interpolated)" like they used to say with Flatbed Scanners.

        1. Is It Me Bronze badge

          Re: How big is the imager?

          It will probably be the other way around.

          There have been articles on here about using multiple pixels to cope with low light etc.

          1. Lazlo Woodbine Bronze badge

            Re: How big is the imager?

            Commonly known as Binning, combining four pixels into one, my P20 does it and gives spectacular images, although there's an enormous amount of processing goes on between pressing the "shutter" and the final image being displayed.

      2. Matt_payne666

        Re: How big is the imager?

        Have a look at the current off the shelf Samsung 108mp camera...

        It maybe a bit of a marketing gimmick, but DXO deem it worthy of the best phone camera currently on the market...

        https://www.dxomark.com/the-best-smartphone-cameras-of-2019/

    2. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: How big is the imager?

      It's a marketing ploy. Even if the laws of the physical universe would allow that many pixels on a tiny little sensor, the optics will not resolve that level of detail. To take advantage of a 50-60mp full frame (35mm) sensor, it takes a lens with a whopping great price tag. DXOmark is a good place to look for details on that sort of thing. A serious photographer isn't going to show up on a job with their cell phone and live to book that customer again.

      If you need a good camera, the last place you would shop is at the phone store. An adequate camera on your phone is a good enough tool.

  5. NoneSuch Silver badge
    Devil

    But Wait, Act Now And Get...

    ...All the spyware you don't need, at a price you can't say no too.

    1. FozzyBear Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: But Wait, Act Now And Get...

      OMG! Shut up and take my money.

    2. jmch Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: But Wait, Act Now And Get...

      "All the spyware you don't need"

      Maybe that's what all the RAM is for

  6. IGotOut

    I thought

    We'd got over the stupid mega-pixel arms race with digital cameras...

    I guess the buyers of these are to young to realise how pointless it was.

    Now I'm off to listen to my super-cd on my 64bit 500x oversampling hifi that has a 10,000 watt PMPO amp connected to some Amstrad speakers.

    1. Steve Aubrey
      Facepalm

      Re: I thought

      Don't forget your gold interconnect cables, that make digital signals sound so much smoother. Tight this way, just three thousand a meter - and well worth it (to somebody).

      1. Zarno Bronze badge
        Trollface

        Re: I thought

        I'll just leave this one here...

        https://hackaday.com/2020/01/06/organic-audio-putting-carrots-as-audio-couplers-to-the-test/

        1. zuckzuckgo Bronze badge

          Re: I thought

          But will the carrot connector give me root access?

          1. Aussie Doc
            Trollface

            Re: I thought

            Probably not, but you'll be able to see the connections really well.

      2. Timbo

        Re: I thought

        "Don't forget your gold interconnect cables, that make digital signals sound so much smoother. "

        Anyone who knows anything about audio cables, knows one uses gold connectors and not gold conductors...there's plenty of better signal carrying conductors one can use, most based on silver.

        If you want digital cables to sound better, you need to specify properly shielded cables to keep out all the RFI, 4G, 5G, Freeview and other digital gunk floating around in the ether.

      3. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: I thought

        "and well worth it (to somebody)."

        Yeah, the guy selling you the cables. A couple sales and month and he's laughing.

    2. commonsense

      Re: I thought

      There is one advantage, if you look beyond the likely huge amount of noise in anything other than perfect lighting. You can crop a lot more and still have a usably large image.

  7. John 104 Silver badge

    Here's to hoping that it actually does come with a 5000mAH battery - and doesn't need it to run for 4 hours...

    To manufacturers: No one gives a shit about thin. Give us decent batteries please. An extra mm to the phone thickness is worth it....

  8. chivo243 Silver badge
    WTF?

    Mobile Server!

    Damn! I recently(2-3yrs ago) retired 3 servers that had 16gigs, in total! Do Ras-Pis come with that much RAM??

    I wouldn't carry it in my front pocket either...

  9. jaywin

    More importantly

    Will there be a 3.5mm headphone socket?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: More importantly

      From what I read elsewhere, no.

      1. jaywin
        FAIL

        Re: More importantly

        Another phone off the list of possible upgrades in that case

      2. BuckeyeB

        Re: More importantly

        That's terrible. I hate the bluetooth headphones.

      3. Lazlo Woodbine Bronze badge

        Re: More importantly

        Hidzis make a great USB-C to 3.5mm DAC, I bought one last year for P20.

        Accidentally left the DAC and my Sony earphones in my trouser pocket once and put them through the wash, they still work fine...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Will there be a 3.5mm headphone socket?

      as an

      eco-friendly remote dongle

      powered by

      cable-free powermat

      wirelessly

      recharged from

      a windmill*

      *organically-certified

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Will there be a 3.5mm headphone socket?

        is it vegan though?

        1. Anonymous Coward
  10. Shadow Systems Silver badge

    You can never have too much RAM.

    The more the computational device can utilize, the better & faster it will run.

    Between multiple open tabs, streaming music/video, an email client, & processing all those megapixels, you'll want as much as you can afford to have installed. This goes for desktops, laptops, & your SmartPhone.

    You can have ludicrous amounts installed, like 1Tb in a SmartWatch, but that's merely silly/overkill.

    Or is 640Kb still enough for you? ;-)p

    1. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge

      Re: You can never have too much RAM.

      Feels a bit like you refuted your own argument.

  11. TWB

    Problem with too much RAM

    Developers will start to think it is 'normal' and write even sloppier code. It's the same as having a bigger work bench, you just fill it up with more junk - unless you are well disciplined.

    This is not aimed at those developers who still believe in and strive to make lean, compact apps which manage and use resources efficiently.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Problem with too much RAM

      1KB chess anyone?

    2. sw guy

      Re: Problem with too much RAM

      Maybe you just gave hints to secret plan at Samsung:

      1. Have developers assume plenty-full RAM is available on phones

      2. People start complaining other phone vendors are too slow

      Either 3A More Samsung phones sold

      Or 3B Phone vendor buy lots of (Samsung) RAM

      In both cases: 3. Win!

      ;-)

    3. Baldrickk Silver badge

      Re: Problem with too much RAM

      Guilty as charged. For some personal things anyway - Running what amounts to a full DB in memory is nice and fast. I could save to disk, but while I get to control both the data and hardware, what's the point?

      1. TWB

        Re: Problem with too much RAM

        Oddly, I don't mind that (in fact I like speed for that kind of thing), it is when you get what should be a really small simple app that takes GBs when it should be KBs.

        1. jswitte3416

          Re: Problem with too much RAM

          > it is when you get what should be a really small simple app that takes GBs when it should be KBs.

          It amazes me that you need a gigabyte of ram to do pretty much anything, when 30 years ago, the Mac classic had one thousandth that much (1MB - yes I had to look that up), and about a thousand the processor speed too (1 core 8MHz v. 4-core 2 GHz). Of course, MacOS at the time did almost no multitasking (user level at least), was BW, etc. Still.

  12. Aladdin Sane Silver badge
    Trollface

    But can it run Crysis?

    1. DiViDeD Silver badge

      Re: But can it run Crysis?

      I'm sorry, but it's official

      nothing can run Crysis

  13. DrBobK

    Noise

    I guess if you average over, say a 4 by 4 grid of pixels to suppress all the noise in those tiny pixels you'll end up with a decent image (from a 6.75 mega-pixel 'effective' sensor).

  14. Baldrickk Silver badge
    Flame

    Obviously, you should take this with a grain of salt. Phone rumours are occasionally wrong — although, thanks to notoriously leaky supply chains and regulatory filings, the leaks are increasingly accurate.

    As long as it isn't the 5,000 mah battery that leaks (and subsequently ignites) then I suppose we can all be happy.

  15. BuckeyeB

    I just hope that the release of this will drop the prices on the S8, S9, and S10s. My J7 needs to upgrade and $500+ for a now 4 generation old phone is ridiculous.

  16. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge
    Flame

    Turn in your geek card

    108 mpix behind a crap lens may be excessive but how dare you complain about having too much RAM!

    PhotoMate R3 (camera RAW file editor), OsmAnd+ (offline maps), PDFs of technical documents, and probably lots of games would perform better. The only catch will be deactivating 10GB of new Samsung shovelware and spyware.

  17. Big_Boomer Silver badge
    Trollface

    Bring on the BLOAT

    Sammy phones already have a vast amount of mostly useless bloat on them, so they need more RAM to cope with the increasing amounts of crap that nobody wants but you cannot uninstall. Chances are it will also have a price tag to rival top-end laptops. One for the "must-have-latest-top-end-penis-extension" brigade.

    1. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: Bring on the BLOAT

      It took me most of a day to cleanse my phone and tablet of bloatware when I first got them. It's a never ending fight to keep them from reinstalling all of that crap automatically. I need both of them to do work so I want them as streamlined as possible. My old mobile is my mini tablet that I'll put some apps on as I don't do anything serious on it. Mostly it's used with the Pi, Arduino stuff and with Torque in the car. Financies? never on a mobile device.

      1. dajames Silver badge

        Financies? never on a mobile device.

        I recently had a conversation a gentleman at $BANK who told me that their mobile banking app was more secure than online banking with a desktop PC. When I suggested that he was a jester with a fine sense of irony he told me that transactions on the mobile app were subjected to more than twice as many secondary checks as those from PC-based banking.

        From this I infer that $BANK are more than twice as worried about dodgy transactions from mobile as from other online banking.

        1. MachDiamond Silver badge

          "I recently had a conversation a gentleman at $BANK who told me that their mobile banking app was more secure than online banking with a desktop PC."

          That's ok. I don't use a PC online (I have a Mac). Aside from that, I don't do banking online at all anyway.

          The thing I run into frequently is when I call customer service somewhere and they've identified me from caller ID. If someone nicks my phone or spoofs the number, they can get in at many places. I also don't like it when the ask to "verify" some information. The problem is they don't understand the word "verify" and I don't want to volunteer information over the phone. It wasn't that long ago there was a story on Rip Off Britain or some such show where they told of a guy that got a job at a bank and was passing on people's security information via text to some accomplices when he spotted nicely stuffed accounts. He was something of an idiot but the people paying him for the info weren't and they hadn't been collared in a year's investigation.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2020