Taking a look back at seven days of news and headlines across the world of Android, this week’s Android Circuit includes new details about the Google Pixel 2 screen, Samsung testing the Galaxy Note 8, the iPhone 7’s defeat by the S8, where to buy the OnePlus 5, why the Nokia 9 could be bound for America, Microsoft debuting new version of Skype, Apple’s update of Apple Music for Android.
Android Circuit is here to remind you of a few of the many things that have happened around Android in the last week
Google Pixel 2’s New Screen Details
Thanks to the appearance of the Pixel 2 on the popular internet based GFXBench tool, we have more details on the screen that will grace the ‘difficult second album’ smartphone from Google. Forbes’ Gordon Kelly has the details:
Popular benchmarking software GFXBench has recorded information for a handset listed as the ‘Pixel XL2’ and it lists top of the range specifications which include a larger 5.6-inch, 18:9 aspect ratio, 2560 x 1312 display.
How do we know the pixels connect to an 18:9 aspect ratio? Because the wider 16:9 ratio used on the Pixel XL resulted in a 2560 x 1440 native resolution. But is it a bad thing the new Pixels would lose some of their resolution? Not necessarily because the aspect ratio suits reading very well and being longer but narrower makes phones easier to use one-handed.
Samsung Tests The Galaxy Note 8
With an expected reveal in mid-August, Samsung’s new phablet – the presumptively titled Galaxy Note 8 – has popped up in the HTML5 online browser testing tool. Even if the external design may be tweaked before the launch, the Note 8 running Samsung’s own browser software is going through the motions!
HTML5test, a web application designed to test browser capability, has records of being used to test the web browsing performance of a device with the official model number of SM-N950F. Or, in other words, what seems to be the Galaxy Note 8.
Thought to be destined for a proper reveal in September at IFA 2017, the device has seemingly been spotted running Android 7.1.1 and the Samsung Internet 5.2 web browser. It is likely that Samsung are simply testing the phablet’s performance ahead, in which the Note 8 was awarded 488 out of a total 555.
iPhone Meet Galaxy S8, Galaxy Meet iPhone 7, Now Rumble
The launches are always six months apart, so at this point in the year Samsung should have the advantage over Apple in the battle of the high-end smartphones. Is that the case when you like up the S8 and the iPhone 7? Gordon Kelly looks at the two current flagship handsets to decide which is best, starting with the respective screens:
Quite frankly Samsung’s new OLED ‘Infinity Display’ is in a different league to the iPhone 7’s ageing LCD Retina Display. Not only is it almost 20% larger, it is brighter, sharper and – as the first Mobile HDR accredited mobile screen – it offers dramatically better contrast.
…If there is a downside to the Infinity Display, it is that Samsung was forced to reduce the default resolution to 2220 x 1080 to save battery life (more later) – but this is still far higher than the iPhone 7’s frankly outdated 1334 x 750 pixels and it can be cranked back up if you prefer.
Galaxy S8 Beats The iPhone 7
From an individual viewpoint to a wide-ranging consumer survey, Samsung cam chalk up another victory over Apple in the flagship head-to-head. The Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus have captured the top spots in the annual Consumer Reports survey of mobile hardware. Alex Schiffer looks at the rankings:
According to Consumer Reports, the Galaxy S8 Plus won the top spot in the annual ranking because of its high-quality camera, extended battery life and its long, slender appearance. Its little sibling, the Galaxy S8, came in second. Samsung also took the top spot in the 2016 consumer rankings with its Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge.
The phone’s high ranking puts more pressure on Apple to deliver on the release of the iPhone 8, which is expected to be on shelves this fall. Samsung holds the lead in smartphone sales worldwide, according to consulting firm IDC, despite relatively flat sales in the first quarter from both companies.