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Galaxy S9 Price Leaked, And It Doesn’t Look Good

The early success of the iPhone X proves that there's an appetite for pricier phones, so it's not a surprise that Samsung could be testing the waters with a more expensive Galaxy S9.

But how much more expensive are we talking here?

Credit: Evan Blass

(Image credit: Evan Blass)

According to a new report from Tech Radar, which cites a source in the "UK mobile phone deals industry," the S9 will start at £789, which would translate to $1,114 U.S. dollars. That would be insane.

But if you look at last year's Galaxy S8, the cost overseas was £689. So if you assume a similar jump stateside, you would be looking at a price of $850. So the starting cost of the Galaxy S9 could be as much as last year's Galaxy S8+.

Why So High?

What would justify the price hike? For one, Samsung is promising to significantly boost the camera quality on the S9 and S9+. In fact, just today some leaked camera samples appeared, and they look darn impressive. A new Super Speed Dual Pixel camera could dramatically improve low-light performance as well as speed.

MORE: Samsung Accidentally Confirms Killer Galaxy S9 Feature

Other rumored upgrades include a much faster (and more efficient) Snapdragon 845 processor and a revamped interface that places a bigger emphasis on artificial intelligence. On the design front, the S9 and S9+ will likely look very similar to their predecessors, but the fingerprint sensor should be located beneath the camera instead of awkwardly placed to the side of the lens.

When it comes to security, Samsung may be rolling out a new way to unlock your phone that leverages both the iris scanner and face unlock tech simultaneously, which could give Apple's Face ID on the iPhone X a run for its money. It could be called Intelligent Scan.

S9 Price vs the Competition

Will these and other improvements be enough to just the premium? Maybe. If the price holds true, the S9 would still cost $150 less than the iPhone X. But if Samsung keeps the same $100 premium for the S9+ over the regular S9 that separated the S8 and S8+, the S9+ would be priced identically to the Galaxy Note 8. Such a move could wind up confusing shoppers.

In the Android camp, the Google Pixel 2 XL starts at $850, so that would be the same price as the Galaxy S9 if this report proves true.

Samsung is announcing the Galaxy S9 February 25th at a press event in Barcelona for Mobile World Congress, and we'll be there to bring you our hands-on impressions.

Mark Spoonauer

Mark Spoonauer is the global editor in chief of Tom's Guide and has covered technology for nearly 20 years. In addition to overseeing the direction of Tom's Guide, Mark specializes in covering all things mobile, having reviewed dozens of smartphones and other gadgets. He has spoken at key industry events and appears regularly on TV to discuss the latest trends. Mark was previously editor in chief of Laptop Mag, and his work has appeared in Wired, Popular Science and Inc. Follow him on Twitter at @mspoonauer.