Samsung fans may have to wait a bit longer for the next big thing in wireless.
At a press event in Korea, Samsung CEO Koh Dong-Jin (known as DJ Koh) made several important announcements concerning Samsung's upcoming phone, the Galaxy S10. Among them was the fact that the S10 will not be the company's first phone with 5G. The announcement was first reported by ZDNet.
Koh did not make clear which Samsung phone will debut with 5G connectivity. It could be the next in the Note series, likely to drop in the second half of 2019, or the foldable phone Koh confirmed the company is working on (also known as the Galaxy X or Galaxy F).
The choice to delay a 5G phone, while surprising, makes sense. While countries like the U.S., China, Japan and South Korea are likely to see widespread 5G adoption within the next year, many other countries will have to wait longer. On the other hand, a 5G chip might take up more space in a smartphone, or use considerably more battery life. It makes sense for 5G to debut on a more expensive phone that will be more concentrated in western nations.
Koh made several other hardware announcements as well.
Samsung still hopes to be the first manufacturer to release a 5G phone, Koh noted. He also stated that Samsung still plans to be the first company to launch a foldable smartphone, in hot pursuit of likeminded competitors such as Apple and Huawei.
Koh also denied rumors that the Galaxy and Galaxy Note brands are being combined.
Finally, Koh said that the company will launch the tools necessary to develop for Bixby and its new Galaxy Home at its upcoming developer conference in November. Samsung is preparing Bixby for the next "five to ten years."