Update, Aug. 15, 2018 at 5:57 a.m. EST: ETNews has leant some extra credibility to the claims made by Ice Universe in the article below. The publication has several quotes from Samsung head of mobile DJ Koh, made at the Samsung Unpacked event in New York, about the company’s 5G and foldable phone plans.
First up, ETNews quotes Koh as saying that Samsung already has an agreement with Korea’s three main carriers to release a 5G smartphone and that the company’s first 5G device will be separate from the Samsung Galaxy S10.
Back in 2013, Samsung released a version of the Galaxy S4 in Korea that was the first phone to support the LTE Advanced network. ETNews suggests that Samsung could choose a similar strategy for its upcoming 5G device and release it as a separate 5G version of the Galaxy S10. However, this appears to be just speculation as there are no quotes to back it up.
In terms of the upcoming foldable phone, Koh said that Samsung doesn’t want to give up on becoming the first company to release a foldable phone and that it is not far from being able to officially unveil the device. He is also quoted as saying that Samsung has solved most of the issues relating to foldable phones and that when it releases the phone he wants people to say that the company did it properly.
Previous speculation has suggested that Huawei was set to unveil a foldable device in November this year while Samsung would release its version early next year. However, the quotes from Koh suggest that Samsung could be set to move the unveiling of the phone forward.
Samsung has long said that ensuring a great user experience on its foldable phone was more important than simply being the first company to release one. However, Samsung now perhaps feels confident that it is able to deliver both a great user experience and also be the first company to unveil a foldable phone.
Original article, Aug. 13, 2018 at 12:45 p.m. EST: It seems like every year we see reports out of Korea that Samsung is considering merging its two main smartphone families before the rumor is eventually put to bed as pure speculation. Right on cue, Samsung’s DJ Koh has denied fresh claims that the Galaxy S and Note series’ will be folded into each other while also addressing speculation surrounding the Galaxy S10 and the advent of 5G phones.
In a tweet, ubiquitous Samsung leaker Ice Universe quotes the South Korean giant’s mobile chief as saying that any word of a merger is pure rumor and that the Note range — recently updated with the Galaxy Note 9 — will not be disappearing any time soon.
DJ Koh also reportedly addressed the current hot topic of foldable phones, but merely confirmed what we all already know: Samsung will launch a foldable phone at some point in the future.
Koh was also bullish about the company’s position in the global smartphone market, stating that it won’t be giving up its top spot despite Huawei’s recent rise to second place.
The most interesting part of the tweet, however, is the news that the next Galaxy S flagship will not support 5G technology. In a follow-up tweet, Ice Universe relays Koh’s statements on 5G, which you can read in the embed below:
Samsung will launch 5G in March next year, but only 5G will be opened in few regions of the world. It is reasonable for Samsung not to carry 5G on S10. 5G baseband may bring instability and heat. Samsung will release a 5G dedicated mobile phone.
— Ice universe (@UniverseIce) August 13, 2018
Considering just last week we heard that Samsung has committed $22 billion to the development of 5G, among other future technologies like AI, it shouldn’t be too surprising to hear that Samsung has big plans for next-generation mobile tech.
What is interesting, though, is the insinuation that Samsung considered 5G support but came across technical issues, with the company instead looking towards a “dedicated” 5G smartphone instead of debuting the technology via the next S range phone. Of course Samsung could still launch 5G with the Galaxy S11 (or whatever the next-next-generation S series phone is called) and make that the company’s “5G dedicated” phone, but that could potentially mean pushing back a headline-worthy feature for another whole year.
Could Samsung’s mythical foldable phone also offer 5G support? Time will tell, but it seems like you definitely scratch 5G off your S10 feature wishlist.