Samsung is expecting the newly announced Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus to outsell its Galaxy S8 lineup, the company's mobile chief DJ Koh said earlier today while speaking at Mobile World Congress 2018. The tech giant arrived at the latest iteration of the Barcelona, Spain-based trade show to unveil its most powerful Android flagships to date and while the new devices don't debut massive visual changes compared to the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus, they were introduced with more performance and software improvements than many industry watchers were initially expecting. Besides having better chips, both smartphones will arrive with optimizations meant to enable new augmented reality and artificial intelligence applications and also come with blur-adding selfie modes for their front-facing 8-megapixel cameras.
AR Emoji are also part of the package, being designed as a combination of Snapchat's Bitmoji and Apple's Animoji that allow users to immortalize themselves in the form of digital avatars they can animate and share. The larger Galaxy S9 Plus features a dual-camera setup with two 12-megapixel sensors, one of which is positioned behind a telephoto lens enabling 2x optical zoom and Live Focus, Samsung's version of the popular portrait shooting mode. The primary cameras of both devices are also backed by 12-megapixel sensors and variable-aperture lenses which can switch between f/1.5 and f/2.4, depending on the circumstances, i.e. the amount of light surrounding the handsets. Users are also able to change between the two apertures manually through the Pro Mode of the default Camera app pre-installed on the Galaxy S9-series phablets. Samsung additionally improved the biometrics features of the new devices, allowing them to simultaneously rely on iris and facial recognition in order to deliver an authentication experience that's both more secure and convenient.
The initial reactions to the launch of the Galaxy S9 lineup were positive, with the smartphones being set to become available for pre-orders on Friday, though some retailers and wireless carriers around the world are already offering advanced orders in select countries. The Galaxy S8 lineup is estimated to have sold approximately 37 million units to date, with Samsung now presumably targeting a figure north of 40 million. The company is expected to share the pre-order performance of its latest devices in the first half of March.