Forget the Galaxy Note 20 and Galaxy Fold 2, here’s a wishlist of what we’re hoping to see out of Samsung 2021 flagship:
3D Face Unlock
It’s been a solid three years now since Apple first wow’d the world with FaceID: their take on 3D biometric unlock.
Since then, plenty of other Android manufacturer brands have tried to match Apple tit for tat. Samsung even experimented with Iris Recognition as an alternative but eventually retired it to rely entirely on 2D Face Unlock tech.
Though mostly functional, this is a problem because, in addition to sitting a distant second to the convenience and reliability of Apple’s solution, it’s downright disappointing that Samsung have let brands like Oppo and Huawei outpace them here given their prior emphasis on security and user safety.
Hopefully, the Galaxy S30 remedies this shortcoming. Samsung are one of the biggest smartphone manufacturers in the world and for as long as they rely on 2D Face Unlock for their flagships, it sends the signal that the best Android can do is offer an inferior version of what Apple does.
For more on how 2D and 3D face unlock tech compare to one another, click here.
Love them or hate them, the once-heated discourse around display notches has mellowed out in 2020. Maybe it’s because we all have slightly bigger things to worry about.
Regardless, where other Android brands have worked to shrink or hide notches with more and more inventive solutions, Samsung have more-or-less sticking with the house-style they introduced with the Samsung Galaxy S10.
It’s not hard to expect a little more from the smartphone brand known for their cutting edge tech when it comes to smartphone screens. Back in 2018, Samsung teased an edge-to-edge display with a front-facing camera located underneath the screen. Where did that tech go, huh?
It’s been a long time coming but debuting the first compromise-free notch display flagship would be a great way for Samsung Galaxy S30 to elevate the stakes and change the conversations when it comes to smartphone screens in the same way that curved displays did.
For an explainer on notches, click here.
Bring back the headphone jack
Look, it’s a little bit of a trite marketing ploy but fuck it. It’s time for Samsung to bring back the headphone jack.
When Apple first cut the legacy port back in 2016, their rationale was that it would allow for slimmer and more capable smartphone form-factors. It hasn’t. Sure, there have definitely been advancements when it comes to displays and camera tech but the overall form-factor in the smartphone space hasn’t changed that much in the last few. If anything, the physical footprint of modern smartphones has gotten bigger rather than smaller.
Bringing back the headphone jack in the premium space is an easy win for Samsung. Even if it means admitting it was wrong to remove the feature in the first place, it puts them well ahead of basically every other major Android manufacturer.
In a world where the differences between the various players in the smartphone world become more and more software focused, bringing back the jack would allow Samsung to stand out easily among the most hardcore of Android fans.
For a round-up of where the headphone jack is at these days, click here.
Fix Me, Bixby
I’ve written about this one before but, if Samsung is going to insist on keeping their smart assistant around, it would be nice if they actually went to the trouble of making Bixby good or at least a passable alternative to the other options.
As we wrote back in 2018, Samsung needs to “Show off Bixby in a way that gets people talking in the same way Google did with Google Duplex a few months back. Give customers a more-tangible, everyday reason to want to use Bixby over the other options.”
Get me excited about Bixby again.
Make 5G Easy
To date, Samsung's strategy around 5G connectivity has been comprehensive but confusing. For every new 5G-capable flagship shipped in the last two years, Samsung have shipped a 4G-enabled counterpart as well.
This has turned the usual process of buying the latest S or Note-series device into a weird is-5G-worth-it-or-not dilemma for consumers and it's time that Samsung embraced next-generation connectivity as standard.
Keep it simple. Make 5G easier for everyone. For more on 5G, click here.