Wait what?! So the Samsung Galaxy A8 (2018) and A8+ (2018) are here to replace the Galaxy A5 (2017) and A7 (2015)? That sure makes perfect sense.
Although, from a more serious perspective, what better way to show continuity with the acting flagship Galaxy S8 line? And since one is small, the other is larger, the latter gets a ‘plus’, right? It does make more sense now.
With Samsung’s portfolio so thoroughly dissected (or rather, our amateur musings in marketing aside), let’s move on to the actual Galaxy A8 (2018) we have here. We managed to obtain the smaller of the two phones that were just announced and we’re going for a quick hands-on, with a review on the way, potentially, maybe, eventually.
Let’s get a few of the most important things about the Galaxy A8 (2018) out of the way first. It packs an 18.5:9 display – staying on top of the trends. There’s also a brand new chipset inside, with a CPU in a novel 2+6 core config. Around here we should mention the A-series now come with support for Gear VR.
A dual camera has made its way to the A8 (2018), only it’s not where you’d expect it to be – it’s on the front. Flip over to the back, though, and you’ll find something to like too – the fingerprint sensor has been moved to the center axis of the back, right below the camera.
The good stuff from the old models have been kept – for one, that’s the IP68 certification for dust and water resistance. We’ve also got nothing but praise for Samsung’s decision to fit in a dedicated microSD slot – that’s the second year in row in the A-series. There’s support for Samsung Pay too, for those in the select lucky countries where the service is live.
Samsung Galaxy A8 (2018) at a glance
Body: Aluminum frame, glass front and back; IP68 rating for dust and water resistance.
Display: 5.6″ Super AMOLED display, FullHD+ 2,220×1,080 resolution Infinity display (18.5:9 aspect ratio), 441ppi pixel density; Always On Display.
Rear camera: 16MP, f/1.7 aperture. Phase detection autofocus. 1080p/30fps video recording.
Front cameras: Primary: 16MP, f/1.9 aperture. Secondary: 8MP, f/1.9 aperture. Fixed focus. Selective focus (portrait mode). 1080p/30fps video recording.
OS/Software: Android 7.1.1 Nougat; Samsung Experience 8.5 custom overlay.
Chipset: Exynos 7885: octa-core CPU (2×2.2GHz Cortex-A73 + 6×1.6GHz Cortex-A53), Mali-G71 GPU.
Memory: 4GB of RAM; 32/64GB storage; dedicated microSD slot for expansion.
Battery: 3,000 mAh Li-Po (sealed); fast charging.
Connectivity: Dual SIM; LTE Cat. 11 (600Mbps download); USB-C (v2.0); Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac; GPS, GLONASS, Beidou; NFC, MST; Bluetooth 5.
Misc: Rear-mounted fingerprint reader (centered, hurrah!); single speaker on the side; 3.5mm jack; Samsung Pay support; Gear VR support.
Okay, we’re not thrilled with the OS version – Oreo has been around for months, but the A8s launch on Nougat. On the other hand, A-series have historically never been ahead of the curve in this respect, plus the S8 hasn’t yet gotten official Oreo, so we can imagine it wouldn’t have looked good for the A to beat the S to it.
Samsung Galaxy A8 (2018)
Aaand, that’s about it, really. At least at first glance there’s hardly anything to complain about when it comes to the Galaxy A8 (2018). Perhaps we will find something when we dive deep for the review, but for now we’re staying on the surface with some initial hands-on impressions on the next page.