It feels like every day brings a new Galaxy S8 rumor, fueling anticipation for what was expected to be the handset's reveal event at Mobile World Congress next month. But it turns out that the smartphone Samsung hopes will banish the memory of the Note 7 won’t be appearing at Barcelona after all.
The head of Samsung’s mobile business, DJ Koh, confirmed to Reuters that for the first time in four years, the latest S series will not be revealed at the world’s biggest phone show. The event was where we got our first look at the S7, S6, and S5, following the Galaxy S4’s New York unveiling back in 2013.
The news comes just after Samsung announced that two battery defects led to the Note 7 fires. Koh didn’t say why this year’s S8 unveiling was being delayed, but it’s likely to be the result of extra testing and quality assurance processes – another handset failure on such a grand scale would cause huge damage to the company.
Samsung is using a new eight-step battery validation procedure in all its future smartphones, which involves actively powering the handsets on and off – something it hasn’t done in the past.
There is also the chance that the unexpected move could be related to the scandal surrounding the acting head of Samsung, Jay Y Lee, who was accused of instructing the company’s subsidiaries to make payments totaling $36 million to foundations run by Choi Soon-sil, a close friend of South Korean President Park Geun-hye.
Koh didn’t give any indication as to when the Galaxy S8 may finally be revealed. It’s been heavily rumored that the handset will go on sale this April 15, whether that date will also be pushed back is unclear.