Samsung’s head of product management for mobile at Samsung UK and Ireland, Paul Scott, talks cutting edge camera tech and bold colours in this spotlight on the new Galaxy S9 range – now available to buy from Vodafone UK…
From a new lilac purple hue, to AR emoji and the dual aperture lens, it’s hard not to be excited by Samsung’s flagship S9 range. But what did it take to bring the S9 to life? And what’s next for the smartphone giants?
We put the questions to Head of Product Management for Mobile at Samsung UK and Ireland, Paul Scott, who says the S9 marks the beginning of a whole new mobile world…
How do you follow the Galaxy S8?
TechRadar described it as “the phone to beat in 2017”, while Gizmodo said “the Samsung Galaxy S8 blows its Android competition out of the water”. So, how do you improve on a smartphone that’s impressed both critics and consumers? It all comes down to customer insights and what users have to say…
“The S8 was, and still is, an amazing phone,” Paul explains, “But we know the way people are interacting and connecting with their phones is changing faster than ever before. They’re using the camera more than ever. And it’s not just what they’re shooting, but how they share their photos and what they’re sharing.
“With the S9, it was a matter of redesigning the camera from the ground up, to not only improve photo capabilities, but also what the camera could be used for.”
“With the S9, it was a matter of redesigning the camera from the ground up.”
They’ve certainly achieved this; much like a human eye, the S9’s revolutionary dual aperture camera intelligently switches between apertures of f/1.5 (wide) and f/2.4 (smaller) to capture the best picture in both low-light and well-lit conditions.
It’s the feature that’s captured the headlines, but it also provided Samsung’s biggest challenge:
“How do you get such strong camera technology in such a thin smartphone body?”– it’s a rhetorical question, but having the dual aperture on-board the camera, coupled with software that supports it with the likes of machine learning, he says, is most impressive.
What else is new in the Galaxy S9?
Another popular feature of the S9 is the new lilac purple colour option. Paul describes this as “a bold new addition” to Samsung’s flagship range.
And, going back to that clever camera, it’s not just still photos that will benefit. A new ‘Super Slo-Mo’ function lets you capture slow motion videos at 960 frames per second (fps).
You can even create your own digital avatar using its AR capabilities. Simply smile into the front-facing camera to create an emoji of yourself. Then, of course, there are the upgrades to Samsung’s AI assistant Bixby and Bixby Vision – which enable real-time object detection, recognition and translation.
“The S9 looks at how customers are using their smartphones and gives them the best display for watching content, the best camera for capturing and sharing what’s important to them, and the opportunity with software to express themselves in more ways and more easily than ever before.”
It’s an exciting time for Samsung fans, but as the future’s always on our mind we had to ask…
What comes next?
“We’re very fortunate at Samsung to always lead with the most innovative technology, both in terms of software and hardware,” Paul says, “But it’s fundamental that we place our customers at the front and centre of that experience.
“If we have the best hardware – which we do in the camera – we also make sure we have the best software to support it. The S9 provides a great example of this in action with machine learning. In Slo-Mo mode, your camera is able to detect movement and automatically capture this – you don’t have to be at the ready to press the button.”
In terms of further innovation, he also says Samsung’s far from done:
“Our focus has always been on improving our smartphones and delivering some of the most meaningful innovations to our customers year after year. We will continue to push these boundaries and use technology to allow you to ‘do what you can’t’.”
Paul believes the next generation of smartphones will be defined by advanced technologies: Artificial Intelligence (AI), Augmented reality (AR), Internet of Things (IoT) capabilities, and the whole new world of 5G tech to come. And Samsung’s investing in technologies to ensure they’re providing you with the tech and features you really want.
“It’s about making sure we think about design and functionality to make sure that when we launch, our devices are always the most beautiful, the most powerful and deliver on what you want from your smartphones in an ever-changing world.”
Tune into our live unboxing to win your own Samsung Galaxy S9!
All you need to do to be in line to nab yourself a brand new Samsung Galaxy S9 is tune into our live unboxing on Facebook from midday Friday 16 March. As always, you’ll find full terms and conditions below. See you there!
Don’t forget, you can trade in your Samsung Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge when you buy or upgrade to a brand new S9 or S9+, saving you up to £190!