That Samsung is working on a 5G smartphone isn’t really news to anyone; the company has made much of the topic over the last few months. Just last week we saw a 5G enabled handset at CES (admittedly, under glass, and it didn’t do anything) but even this little step shows that we’re close.
How close? Well, the answer might be “just months away”.
Not long ago, Samsung put out a press release titled “A Journey of Mobile Innovation“, in which the brand spoke of its development of the Galaxy series of smartphones and other technology over the last ten years.
As you would expect in such a press release, Samsung trumpeted a number of its achievements, but left perhaps the biggest announcement at the end:
Samsung isn’t just changing how smartphones will look. It’s also changing how they’ll connect. We’re working hard to usher in the next generation of connectivity with 5G. Samsung has more 5G patents than any other company and was the first company to receive FCC approval for its 5G network equipment. Our technology brought 5G networking to South Korea, and in partnership with U.S. carriers, we’ve already brought the first wave of 5G to the United States.
We’re committed to putting 5G in consumers’ hands with a 5G smartphone in the first half of 2019.
There’s a few ways to interpret this.
Will the first 5G smartphone be launched alongside the Galaxy S10 in four weeks time? It seems more doubtful, because that timeframe is wide open, and the Galaxy S10 will launch on February 20.
While we were expecting a 5G variant of the Galaxy S10, it now seems unlikely that this will be released next month. I’d suggest it might come at a separate event later in the year.