Like Huawei in the fallout from the memory substitution scandal, Samsung has also quietly removed specific mention of UFS 2.1 from the Galaxy S8 product spec. Samsung originally highlighted UFS 2.1 memory in its promotional material but actually uses a mixture of UFS 2.1 and UFS 2.0 memory in its new phones. Here’s the before and after if you want to take a look:
Before you resharpen your pitchfork this isn’t quite as bad as it was when Huawei did it, because they were also using eMMC 5.1 memory in the P10, which is much slower than both UFS options. While Samsung was also essentially “lying” about the specs of the S8, Samsung was also careful enough to highlight the fact that essentially everything on the S8 spec was subject to change.
Regardless of how you feel about the old bait-and-switch, it’s obvious the difference between the UFS 2.1 and 2.0 memory Samsung uses in the Galaxy S8 is much less significant than between UFS 2.1 and eMMC 5.1 in the P10. Still, to many, lying is lying, no matter how many options there are or how close to the truth the lie is.
Samsung was careful enough to highlight the fact that essentially everything on the S8 spec was subject to change.
Component substitution is hardly anything new, with Samsung using two different chipsets in its flagship devices to avoid relying too heavily on particular manufacturing partner (among other reasons). The same is often true of camera sensors and other high demand components.
That said, consumers have every right to be annoyed when a company specifically highlights the best possible spec when they know full well it won’t be appearing in every device rolling off the manufacturing line. Now, Samsung does point out that all specs are subject to change, so legally they may be in the clear, but it still smacks of dishonesty when you clearly put UFS 2.1 in parentheses after the memory spec.
On a side note, Samsung does mention the two chipset options but doesn’t call out the two camera sensors it uses. Presumably there’s some degree of interchangeability that’s not worth mentioning, but at the same time there’s a detailed spec sheet for a reason. If nothing else, listing all possible substitutions would avoid situations like this.
If you want to check out which type of memory your Galaxy S8 has, you can install a terminal emulator on your device and then enter the command: cat /proc/scsi/scsi
You’ll then see the specific model number of your chip displayed which you can Google to see exactly what speed it supports. According to XDA Developers, it may be the case that only some Snapdragon 835-equipped Galaxy S8s use UFS 2.0 with all Galaxy S8 Plus versions and the Eynos-equipped S8 using UFS 2.1. Still, if you’re interested, just go the terminal option list.
Does this kind of component substitution bother you? Or are you happy as long as the overall experience is comparable?