Documents submitted to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) reveal that a variant of the Samsung Galaxy S8 Active will support Band 71 LTE, the newly acquired spectrum of T-Mobile. Earlier this year, the company stated that both LG and Samsung are developing handsets that will be compatible with its spectrum. While LG has already released the LG V30, which could connect to LTE networks running on the 600MHz frequency, Samsung has yet to release a smartphone that sports the same connectivity feature. Now, it seems that a new model of the Samsung Galaxy S8 Active will support the spectrum, in addition to the other frequencies that T-Mobile already uses.
T-Mobile has previously stated that the 600MHz spectrum will help the carrier compete with its larger rivals Verizon and AT&T. The two carriers have substantial low-band spectrum possessions, with LTE networks running on these frequencies boast wider reach and better indoor penetration compared to the networks running on higher frequencies. The carrier obtained licenses of the 700MHz band from Verizon and a number of regional carriers to improve its coverage. To further boost its network's reach, T-Mobile has acquired numerous 600MHz spectrum licenses in an incentive auction organized by the FCC. T-Mobile has already started the deployment of its 600MHz network and the first market where the Band 71 base stations were turned on is Cheyenne, Wyoming. It will take until 2020 before the company finishes the rollout, although T-Mobile is actively seeking partnerships and deals with TV broadcasters in order to deploy the network faster.
If the rumors are correct, it is the first time that a Galaxy Active device has been offered by another US carrier aside from AT&T. The Samsung Galaxy S8 Active sports a metal body that complies with the MIL-STD-810G military standard and it also includes an IP68 certification for water and dust resistance. Like the Samsung Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8 Plus, the Galaxy S8 Active is powered by a Snapdragon 835 chipset, which is comprised of an octa-core Kryo CPU and the Adreno 540 GPU. The handset also sports a 5.8-inch Super AMOLED display with an aspect ratio of 18.5:9, although it lacks the curved edges seen in recent Samsung flagship offerings.