With the Galaxy A8s, Samsung introduces two major changes: The debut of the much-anticipated Infinity-O "punch hole" display, and the removal of the headphone jack, the latter of which it had promised never to do.
Things change quickly in the smartphone landscape, of course. One minute Google is making fun of Apple for not putting a headphone jack on the iPhone 7, and the next minute it's dropping the port on the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL entirely, much to the chagrin of those who'd rather lug their wired headphones along instead of Bluetooth ones.
With Samsung now joining the bandwagon, the trend seems to be evolving into a pattern, and sooner or later, that'll become the standard, especially as manufacturers increasingly push for wire-free setups. The lack of a headphone jack on the Galaxy A8s, however, isn't the main talking point here. The spotlight is rightfully on the display, which not only marks the debut of Samsung's new screen technology but also hints at the design of its future flagships.
Samsung Galaxy A8s First To Get Infinity-O Display
The Galaxy A8s features a distinctive punch hole design, marked by a circular camera cut-out on the top-right corner of the display, seemingly "floating" and as such entirely divorced from the upper bezels. Vastly different from current notch designs, Samsung has cleverly figured out a way to avoid the highly polarizing design trend — a trend that a number of users say hinder the experience or take up too much screen real estate.
With its Infinity-O display, the device offers a cleaner, more streamlined, and highly uniform look. It's got a 6.4-inch screen with a resolution of 2,340 x 1,080, which is pretty decent for a mid-range phone. That's right — despite the technological marvel of the display, the phone remains in the mid-range category. That's because Samsung has said it intends to debut new features on lower-tier phones, and the Galaxy A8s is an example of that strategy.
Samsung Galaxy A8s Specs
Under the hood, the phone packs a Qualcomm Snapdragon 710 processor coupled with either 6 or 8 GB of RAM, plus 128 GB of onboard storage that's expandable up to 512 GB via microSD. On the back is the same triple-camera setup found on the Galaxy A7, while the front's punch hole shooter features a more-than-decent 24-megapixel lens.
Pricing and release date are murky as of writing, and it's equally unclear whether the phone would make it out of China. In any case, the Galaxy S10 is rumored to have an Infinity-O display as well, so stateside folks shouldn't fret about not getting Samsung's latest display tech.