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Galaxy S8: These are the 5 worst things about Samsung's new phone

The Samsung Galaxy S8 is probably the most important Android phone of the year. It's also really, really good. The S8+ is my daily driver right now, and I love the enormous display, the phenomenal design and the whole direction Samsung's taken its software.

But like any phone, after you've been using it for a while, there are things that start to grate. Some small things, some not so small things, that just make the whole experience less enjoyable.

So with a couple of weeks of use under our belts, it's time to take a look at few of them: These are our five least favorite things about the new best Android smartphone.

Alex Dobie
Alex Dobie

Alex was with Android Central for over a decade, producing written and video content for the site, and served as global Executive Editor from 2016 to 2022.

71 Comments
  • Number one will shock you.
    1. Every site will post 1 million articles about the same phone and all with a similar view.
    2. Samsung
    3. Samsung touch wiz
    5. Samsung
    6. See 4.
  • Ha, yeah it seems it's been a slow few weeks since only two major phones in the flagship worth talking about and got to make it stretch until another drops.
  • Lol this.
  • This phone is amazing but it does have it's flaws, major ones as far as I'm concerned. I'll preface this by saying I've owned every flagship Android phone out there with the exception of Samsung phones because they have always made them too cheesy.. I bought the S8+ because it looked like they broke through that, and they almost did. I also love their laptops so I'm not anti Samsung With that said, here are my top 5 Samsung S8 misses:
    1: Biometrics - You screwed up Samsung, horrible placement
    2: No ambient notifications as on Pixel, OnePlus - It's there, use it stupid. Don't fix what works
    3: Bixby - Get over it, we bought a 900 dollar phone, stop trying to cram more paid advertised crap on us
    4: Double tap to Wake - so simple yet so hard to make companies do this, why?
    5: No way to quickly control sound profiles -. You should have paid attention to the best options on the best phones Samsung. In the end Samsung, you lose, again. I'll dump you, again, probably for the OnePlus5 as soon as it comes out and I won't look back or consider another Samsung phone. Oh, and people that spend 850 on phones don't give a crap about VR, having that will help me sell mine though in a month or so.
  • 1. Patents
    2. Patents Not to mention they look bad and I would never use them.
    3. Bixby Will hopefully be useful one day.
    4. Patents
    5. Possibly patents but I have no problem getting to the sound alive page within seconds of wanting to. One question I have about these other devices is do they quick access to connected blue tooth devices in the notification shade? Like in Samsung's version of nougat. I think you are wrong about the VR I absolutely love it and having the best mobile VR experience available Is just one of many reasons why I bought an $800 phone. Not to mention everyone i show loves it, it is a huge hit at parties, and I know about a half dozen people that went out and bought an s7 Almost immediately after I let them play with the gear VR. Not to mention the experience will only get better and better.
  • Gave the VR thing away unopened.. Zero interest.
  • 1. I don't believe they can have a patent on fps placement. And IIRC they said the placement had to do with their plan of having it under the screen wasn't workable currently (Apple is having issues with this as well) and because of the layout of the internals, having it in a similar place to the Pixel's or LG's location wouldn't have worked.
    2. When he's saying ambient notifications, he means Ambient Display, which is part of stock Android and therefore available to Samsung. For whatever reason they've chosen to eliminate/disable it.
    3. Agreed, but they said the same thing about S Voice, and how did that work out? And to he fair, they did build it up into this next gen assistant and in reality it lags behind the major assistants available.
    4. That started out on LG devices and is now available on other including the Pixels, which means it's now part of stock Android and therefore available to Samsung.
    5. He's referring to I believe a quick tile to control the sound profile (tap to full volume, tap again for vibrate, tap again for silent).
  • 1. The price.
    2. Biometrics.
    3. Bixby on it's own but then to make it worse why does it have to be shoved in my face so much even every time I just want to use the camera sheesh!
    4. Slippery like soap in the shower.
    5. The price. BTW, everything that is said in the video about the biometrics I found out within 30 minutes of owning my S8+. I wonder why so many reviewers made it seem like a minor issue or even no issue at all during their initial reviews. Hmmm.
  • Is it: slippery, like soap in the shower; or slippery like soap, in the shower?
    Commas are important.
  • Sigh, seems, like, there, is, a, grammar, ****, ever, time, you, turn, around,.....and, on , a, international, fourm, And if you really didn't know what he waS trying to Say I don't know what to tell you,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
  • *every
    *forum
    As fun as it is to read, those commas are unnecessary.
  • The phone is water resistant so it is a safe assumption that he would be using it in the shower. The meaning isn't explicitly obvious. All those commas make you sound out of breath. Also, Zachary you forgot to add "*an" as well.
  • The proper use of the oxford comma is the difference between "Helping your Uncle Jack, off a horse." and "Helping your Uncle jack off a horse." Just sayin'.
  • Please STFU. This isn't an English/grammar forum.
  • +1 F n dicks
  • So, isn't this a great opportunity for learning something? Why are everyone so adverse to being politely corrected on grammar? It's not like he was slamming the guy or anything...
  • The ability to communicate effectively, and without vulgarity, is appreciated in ANY forum. Online, or off.
  • Loving the phone so far, but have to agree the phone is slippery. I have a slide out ledge on my desk that is supposed to be used for a keyboard. It isn't the smoothest surface in the world, it is reasonably flat. In fact, I didn't know that it wasn't completely level. And when I first sat the phone down on it, the surface wasn't exactly clean. There were dried cookie crumbs, which should have gotten in the way if any sort of sliding. But there it was, sliding from a standstill and picking up speed, slipping over the edge, falling three feet and hitting the floor. Fortunately we have carpet rather than cement in our living room. I understand it should likely survive the former without a crack, but this really isn't the sort of thing I would like to test. Incidentally, I have found that one or two blinks may greatly improve the speed of iris-based identification but your mileage may vary.
  • I have maybe 1 finger print fail a day 100+ unlocks I believe it's all in how you initially scan fingerprints onto the device. Only unlock method I like
  • I love the S8 and like the articles about it, but how many small articles do you want to squeeze out of the device? At some point people will get annoyed by it, even the ones who are interested in the device.
  • I have many high end phones. Gave the S8 a try. I LOVE this phone! I thought the fingerprint sensor placement would be a problem but it has not affected me. The iris sensor works like a charm for me too. The screen looks amazing. I run Nova Launcher on it and I am so happy I gave this phone a try. Amazing hardware!!!
  • Know Thyself. No way I could use a phone where I cannot remap or turn off something redundant like Bixby. Also the imprint sensor...just no for me. I have not even been tempted to see one.
  • You can remap it. There are apps for that! And yes some still work after the update
  • There is a way to remap, try the app bxActions out.
  • Can someone Help Please -
    When i open camera & click on Gallery it also shows the ScreenShots/WhatsApp videos and pics
    I want to set it to only see the Camera pics i click like it was in Older phones PLease help
  • What older phones? I've used the s3, s4, and note 4 and the gallery has always shown all the pictures on the phone.
    Concerning your problem, download any good file explorer and create a new file named ".nomedia" in all the folders containing pictures except the camera folder in order for the gallery app not to "see" them.
    Posted via the Android Central App
  • Use Google Photos instead. It only shows camera images, unless you go over to the folders page. An added bonus is that is will automatically back up all your pictures in case you lose or break your phone.
  • How can one of you annoyances with the S8 not be the janky animations. I haven't used one in person, but in this video I saw stutters.
  • Have had the phone 72 hours now and no shudder at all. Been very very impressed with this phone. Touchwiz isn't like what it used to be either.
  • TouchWiz have been what it used to be since the note 5.
  • As a very early (day one preorder) adopter, I'm still very happy with my S8. Yes, the location of the fingerprint scanner is awful and little more than a planned obsolesce reason to buy the future S9, but I can live with it for a year. I don't really care how slippery the phone is because like 99% of Americans I keep my phone in a case, in my case an Otterbox Strata, which is one of the few highly protective cases not to partially block access to the fingerprint scanner. It's a shame that you cannot use both face and iris unlock together to give you an all lighting conditions solution, but I can live with it. Bixby is a disappointment but I never had high hopes for it anyway. Battery life is quite a bit less than my old S7 and I sincerely hope that Samsung abandons its thinness fetish (phone anorexia?) and uses an extra 1-1.5mm to increase battery life.
  • Having just gotten my s8 (I JUMPed from an iPhone 7) I am very happy with the phone so far. No major issues from my perspective. The only real issue is finding a screen protector that actually fits! Picked up a sapphire glass one last night and their was a huge gap between the screen and the protector. As a result it was all but useless... simply didn't work with the phone. Guess I will have to go with a wet apply, soft, protector vs. sapphire glass. But if that is the biggest issue I can personally find with the phone ... which isn't really the phone at all... I guess that is pretty good. I have absolutely no problem with the fingerprint scanner.... yes, it's in a awkward place on the phone, but I have already gotten used to it. I suspect they tried the same thing Apple is trying with the iPhone 8 and putting the scanner under the front of the screen. Technology being what it is right now it just doesn't work at that point in time. In Samsung's solution was to put it in line with the flash and camera lens.. I suspect because it simply looks better there. Should have been in the middle of the back where it would be easier to find. But it is what it is... and for me... no big deal.
  • Um... What about actually using the screen you paid for instead of covering it with some two dollar piece of plastic and cheapening the whole experience? It amazes me that so many people completely sacrifice the feel of their expensive phone so that it can be scratch free when they no longer use it.
  • Why does this amaze you? Personal preferences differ. Some prioritize feel, others protection/peace of mind. Not everyone has your priorities. To each their own.
  • I had my S8+ in the box for weeks cuz I was putting it off. I hate it, coming from the Note 5. I'll wait until September. Samsung, the phone is frustrating. Why create something to write on and there is NO SCRAPBOOK? I LOST ALL MY PASSWORDS (54) CUZ NO SAMSUNG SCRAPBOOK
    ................
    ...............................................................................................
  • Some of us use their phone in such conditions, that require additional protection. Gorilla Glass is the second line of defence.
  • You have a good point in terms of the screen. I did return the so called "sapphire glass" screen protector as it simply didn't work and, it was way too thick for this phone. But knowing that I am a bit rough on my phones, I will always use a screen protector. So I got the Spigen NeoFlex wet apply protector in its place. It is the old/new school thin, wet apply, material. Once it cured overnight you literally can't tell I have a screen protector on the phone. It has a very nice feel to it as well... much better than that old wet apply materials of a few years ago. So as much as I agree it would be nice to use the phone without a protector on it... I can imagine within days I would have marks and scratches on it. And for as much as I spent on the phone, I'll take the high road and protect the screen. Also, I'm on T-Mobile JUMP and they can refuse taking back a phone that has excessive wear on the screen.
  • Don't use a tempered screen. Gorilla glass is hard enough to withstand scratches. All you're doing is creating a gap for dirt to really grind into the screen and do some damage. You're setting yourself up to do the exact thing you're trying to avoid.
  • Gorilla glass only protects against scratches where tempered glass protects against drops on pointed objects as well. Yes, dust can get under it because it is a curved screen, but better than a potentially shattered screen, in my opinion.
  • My biggest annoyance is that I can't send pics though Android messages with WiFi on. I can't stick with stock Sammy messaging app because it is so darn slow.
  • So Alex, you hate the FPS on the S8+ because of the reach... but for you personally, would you then prefer to go to the smaller S8 to have the easier reach or stick with the Plus because the benefits of the plus over the regular such as the bigger battery and screen. What are your + and - for it. For me I prefer the smaller S8 size but the battery size difference and overall battery life I think may outweigh my decision even though I'd have to live with doing the Samsung Shimmy to the FPS everytime. The idea of that sounds annoying though. Thanks.
  • I've been using the s8+ for two weeks now coming from the note 4. I've gotta say this is the best phone I've ever used. For me:
    - Fingerprint reader works 99% of the time and very quick (I do have E.T. fingers though so maybe I'm in luck)
    - Battery charges fast, at least a bit faster than my note 4
    - Battery life is simply incredible. When it comes to previously demanding tasks like YouTube, Netflix, Snapchat and best of all the awesome Gear VR, the s8+ destroys the competition. Honestly I don't know about the s7 battery life but a co-worker is always charging his at work whereas I can still have 70% after 12hrs with the always on display and full resolution.
    - I also go back and forth with the iris scanner and the fingerprint reader and while I prefer the finger most times, the eye scanner comes in handy often and works 80% for me.
    - I admit the hard press home button has little to no purpose for me and i wish it had more applications. Overall, you can knit pick all you want but this is the best phone on the market today and anyone that picks one up will be hard pressed to complain about it.
  • Please let me know what miracle battery came with your model. Thanks.
  • Should have been $700 for the S8+ after I had mine for a week I sent it back. Just not worth a grand (since I buy my phones outright). Back to my Note 4 and IP7+.
  • Am I the only one that knows you can double tap the home button from the AOD screen to wake it? This guy said in the video the home key does nothing when pressed from the AOD screen and I've heard other reviewers say the same. Double tap it and you get your lock screen.
  • Or you can simply press it once.
  • Yep, who needs that double tap ****?? It was good on my oneplus cos no other device had it but my home button (or should i say icon?) Wakes the screen by double tap or long press. Either works for me. X
  • TouchWiz lag (inevitable)
    Crappy crappy speaker
    Too expensive
    Should be a 4500mAh battery
    No real camera advancements
  • i suggest a hearing check. i had iphone 7 plus and the sound is almost the same minus the extra speaker, or you need the right app to hear it right.
  • I'm not finding any 'TouchWiz' lag - nor did I on my S7 or S7 Edge before the S8. I use Nova Launcher.
    The speaker sounds the same to me as the Pixel speaker - but TBH no-one listens to anything where quality is an issue through the internal speaker.
    The S8 is cheaper than the iPhone 7 Plus which is probably its nearest competitor.
    The battery easily lasts me all day - mine shows 50% at bedtime after a day's usage - better than any other phone I've owned
    The camera on the S7 was superb, the one on the S8 is slightly better. It is MUCH better than the Pixel camera since it doesn't exhibit the Pixel lens flare and halo issue which Google has admitted is a hardware fault affecting all Pixels. I returned my Pixel as I found this a deal-breaker. I can take photos directly into the sun on my S8 and only get minimal flare and no halos.
  • i wont ever trust or agree on any opinion of a non user of the s8 series. its a waste of space. hacing had 2 note 7s, iphoney, v20, s7edge, the s8 is in all ways better in all respects. TRUTH BE TOLD. ALL THE WHINING are those with iphones and ones who cant get over themselves with note 7. why the hll wait 7 mos or more for a pipe dream or note 8 or iphone 8 or 9. its like predicting the future and assuming life is locked in and we all will live to see 110 years old. OMG. people return to terra firma.
  • Having this phone (s8+) since launch day the only gripe I have is the damn Bixby button. I cannot recall how many times I press the damn button by accident when I'm taking pictures. I like using the volume keys as a shutter button. Also with the damn placement of the Bixby button the volume keys were placed way to high on the phone.
  • Not sure if that was nitpicking. Those seem to me to be the kinds of things that will REALLY start to piss me off over time. Here's hoping those issues get ironed out by the Note 8.
  • Am I the only one that thinks the buttons on are on the wrong side? I find my thumb is much more nimble for adjusting a volume rocker and it would make more sense to have the rocker under the right thumb for when holding in your right hand. I really like the add aspect ratio -- I feel the keyboard on my 6P was always covering too much of the screen when filling in fields. I can also get a lot more widgets on my primary screen. Bixby is a waste. Question -- do right-handed people hold the phone in their right-hand and use their left fingers for poking around? Or Visa-Versa?
  • So essentially major features used to justify the $900 price have major flaws.
  • 1 - Size. The S8 is way too tall and such a large display is pointless (there's the S8+ for phablet freaks). I'd rather see 5.5" screen on the body of the S7 than an even taller and more unusable phone with one hand. 2 - Edge display. Sorry but I don't buy into gimmicks. It looks pretty but in use it provokes too many problems. 3 - fingerprint scanner placement. Absolutely useless. Of course, this will certainly be corrected on the S9. 4 - No dedicated camera key but a pointless Bixby button. For now you can trick the software to remap the Bixby button but Samsung should let this out of the box. 5 - Still a 12mp shooter. The S8 has likely the best camera on Android (haven't tried the G6 yet) like the S7 had definitely the best camera on Android. However 12mp is way too low a resolution. For post-shot zoom and crop it's terrible. And it requires the phone to oversharpen, which wouldn't be necessary if the sensor had more megapixels to work with.
  • So, you want a bigger phone with a smaller screen? The physical dimensions of the S8 are smaller than the S7, but with a bigger screen. Its roughly the same height, just thinner. So really the S7 is actually taller, just fatter so it feels shorter.
  • Several things: 1 - "So, you want a bigger phone with a smaller screen". No, I want a smaller phone with a bigger screen. The S7 packs a 5.1" display in a 14cm tall phone. If you do to its bezels what Samsung did to the S8's bezels, you can put in a 5.5" screen while keeping the phone only 14cm taller... 2 - Which brings me to "The physical dimensions of the S8 are smaller than the S7". NO. They are not. The S8 is 15cm tall. The S7 is 14cm. I'm not sure if you understand how the metric system works but even then, 14 is smaller than 15.
    "So really the S7 is actually taller"
    You have no clue how measurements work, do you? No, it's not taller. You pick up a ruler and measure it yourself. The s7 is 14cm tall, the S8 is 15cm tall. It's absolutely irrelevant is the width of the S7 is larger than the width of the S8. It doesn't compensate for anything. Specially when a taller phone makes it HARDER to reach the top while a slightly wider phone (like the S7) doesn't make it harder to reach the sides since your thumb will continue to be able to touch your ring finger across the device.
  • Boy are you way off base. All the measurements matter, not just the ones you fuss over.
  • I did make a mistake. I was looking at 7 Edge, which is taller than the 8.
  • "such a large display is pointless" -- I'm loving the taller screen for web and email. Especially for writing email where the keyboard use to cover up so much of the screen. The 3-Day view in Outlook App's calendar is actually useful now in landscape mode. Previously it was so squished you couldn't see what the appointments were. I'm tempted to super-glue a small bump of plastic between the fingerprint sensor and the camera. At least I'll know when I'm on the sensor.
  • if i used the FPS at all, i was going to do what you said...just trim a small narrow piece of velcro or something and put it right between so i knew when to stop at the FPS and not smudge up the camera. it's a really simple "fix" (workaround)!!
  • Normally I'm not a fan of cases and would never recommend this, but get Samsung's silicone minimalist case. It fixes the slippery problem and gives the phone some minor protection in case of falls. It also makes it very easy for your finger to find the fingerprint sensor when you pick it up. Your finger naturally falls into the cutout and makes the fingerprint sensor much more usable. The case also looks good and adds almost no extra bulk, typically my biggest complaint with cases. My only complaint is Bixby. Make it usable or let us remove it, Samsung.
  • Traded in my S8 for a G6 and couldn't be happier. In every regard. Main gripe is a common one. That silly, useless, edge display. All the problems are still there. Glare, narrow useable space, image distortion, accidental touches etc etc. The G6 feels like a bigger display. It's easy to pick up off a table. It's even faster, snappier than the S8. It really is. I'm a die-hard Sammy fan. Owned every Galaxy ever made...and several Notes. Unfortunately, I will never try another edge display. Really hope Sammy starts making a flat flagship again. At least give us the option.
  • Hell yeah, that edge display is a load of ****.. but this device is fantastic. All you lot are spoilt and would find fault anywhere..!!
    The only time a device will be perfect is if u made and designed it urseves. I was once a HTC fanboy, when sammies push out them plastic shittie phones BUT wow have they pulled their socks up since the S6. The S6edge got my attention with its fantastic look and build. Even after giving my note7 back with tears in my eyes .i was still eagerly awaiting the next offering and i wasnt dissapointed with this S8+ BUT hey Sammie, where is the IR blaster and the S pen??
    The S8+ is as big as a note so why not an S pen after all, the note devices in the UK are all now antiques.!!! But hey the S8 is still amazing. I had to really think hard to find a couple of gripes. While HTC are going backwards compared. My once loved brand HTC no longer interest me in tthe devices they are recently offering... x
  • Has anyone else had a problem with saving contacts to their google account verses the phone? Every Android phone I've ever had would allow you to click in contacts, change from Phone to Google account and from then on, it would save every contact to Google. Everyday I am entering new customers into my phone and now I have to manually remember to change it from Phone to google. Anyone else having this problem? If so, how did you fix it?
  • Has anyone else had a problem with saving contacts to their google account verses the phone? Every Android phone I've ever had would allow you to click in contacts, change from Phone to Google account and from then on, it would save every contact to Google. Everyday I am entering new customers into my phone and now I have to manually remember to change it from Phone to google. Anyone else having this problem? If so, how did you fix it?
  • Apparently Alex has lost the ability to write, and expects me to waste my time listening to him instead. Sorry, I'm still literate, and could get this information in about 1/4 the time if it were written. tl;dl (too long, didn't listen)
  • Yep. +1
  • Alex was never much of a writer anyway. But his writing is still preferable to amateur video hour and wasting time watching a video when reading is much faster and more comprehensive(assuming he could actually write).
  • touchwiz is gone. The UI is called Samsung Experience now. it's NOTHING like TW from S5 days.
    The phone is NOT too expensive, A high end phone deserve to make PROFIT, it's called staying in business.
    I bet if Any of you scrubs ever made a product that sold, you wouldn't take $10 profit if you could get $100 in profit. hypocrites.
    stick with cheap china knock offs if you can't afford it. The only negatives I see is the dumb spot for FPS and not getting the latest OS for a year after release.