Samsung’s Galaxy S8 is a beautiful, successfully executed Lumia 950

Ever wondered what Microsoft’s Lumia 950 and 950 XL might look if they were executed competently? We just may have our answer.

Samsung today announced the Galaxy S8 and S8+, its latest flagship smartphones for the Android platform.

Windows 10 Mobile users may recognize the following features. An ability to turn your phone into a computer, Iris Scanning and a competent digital assistant that aims to help you get along your day.

Microsoft may have promised all that with the Lumia 950 and 950 XL, but the delivery was wonky and the execution half-hearted. With the Galaxy S8, Samsung takes those half-refined ideas and builds a desirable product.

The S8 comes standard with a 5.8-inch screen (6.2 for the S8+) in a near bezel-free body, stocks the latest Snapdragon 835 processor and comes equipped with staples like USB-Type C and a headphone jack.

In terms of design, the device looks like a typical Samsung device from being – an aluminum and glass sandwich with a square camera. On the front, however, users are treated to a beautiful curved screen that dominates the entire face of the device.

Like The Xiaomi MiMix and the LG G6 before it, the Galaxy S8 eschews excess bezel and fits a huge screen in a body that compares favorably to smaller phones. It also takes design cues from the S7 Edge and Note 7 by incorporating a more refined, subtle Edge screen into the mix. Simply put, it is gorgeous.

For biometric authentication, the device sports a fingerprint scanner and a face unlock mechanism that unlocks quickly and consistently.

Less desirable for practical use than for making headlines are Samsung’s Bixby and Dex. Bixby is the firm’s answer to Cortana, a personal assistant that knows it all, odes it all and interfaces with your apps. Like all personal assistants, it is likely to be played around with for a few days and then promptly abandoned.

With Samsung’s DeX,  Galaxy S8 users can make use of s pseudo-desktop environment by plugging their device into a larger screen through Dex. Using a custom OS based on Android Nougat, users can run multiple apps in floating windows (stares pointedly at Microsoft) and work with a keyboard and mouse interface.

These features aren’t new, they aren’t novel. Much like Android users around new iPhone launches, users will be quick to point out which of their pet features that has been appropriated by an “enemy firm”, That doesn’t matter. For the average Joe or Jane, it is not important which manufacturer of expensive shiny baubles got which feature first, just that these features work and work reliably.

Samsung may no longer be a Windows Phone OEM, but its Galaxy S8 is still a beautifully designed, powerful and desirable phone. For the vast majority of phone buyers, that is enough.

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