The Samsung Galaxy S8’s headline features are its edge-to-edge Infinity Display and striking new design. Of course it still comes packed with the latest hardware and technology like previous Galaxy phones, including iris recognition, wireless charging, and a flagship SoC. Actually, there are two different SoCs for the S8 and S8+. Most regions around the world will get Samsung's Exynos 8895, while regions that require a CDMA modem, such as the US and China, will get Qualcomm's Snapdragon 835. Both SoCs are built on Samsung's 10nm LPE process and are paired with 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM and 64GB of UFS NAND.

While no market receives both types of phones through official channels, with the wonders of modern shipping, anyone with a bit of time and patience would have little trouble tracking down the out-of-region version of the phone. Consequently, for the nerdy among us, we simply have to ask: how do these dueling SoCs compare? Which SoC – and consequently which phone – is better?

Today we’ll delve into the performance differences between the Snapdragon 835 and Exynos 8895 to help answer those questions. We'll also see how well they work with the Galaxy S8’s other hardware and software when we evaluate its system performance, gaming performance, and battery life.

Samsung Galaxy S8 Series
  Samsung Galaxy S8 Samsung Galaxy S8+
SoC Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 (US, China, Japan)
4x Kryo 280 Performance @ 2.36GHz
4x Kryo 280 Efficiency @ 1.90GHz
Adreno 540 @ 670MHz

Samsung Exynos 8895 (rest of world)
4x Exynos M2 @ 2.31GHz
4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.69GHz
ARM Mali-G71 MP20 @ 546MHz
Display 5.8-inch 2960x1440 (18.5:9)
SAMOLED (curved edges)
6.2-inch 2960x1440 (18.5:9)
SAMOLED (curved edges)
Dimensions 148.9 x 68.1 x 8.0 mm
155 grams
159.5 x 73.4 x 8.1 mm
173 grams
RAM 4GB LPDDR4 (US)
NAND 64GB (UFS)
+ microSD
Battery 3000 mAh (11.55 Wh)
non-replaceable
3500 mAh (13.48 Wh)
non-replaceable
Front Camera 8MP, f/1.7, Contrast AF
Rear Camera 12MP, 1.4µm pixels, f/1.7, dual-pixel PDAF, OIS, auto HDR, LED flash
Modem Snapdragon X16 LTE (Integrated)
2G / 3G / 4G LTE (Category 16/13)

Samsung LTE (Integrated)
2G / 3G / 4G LTE (Category 16/13)
SIM Size NanoSIM
Wireless 802.11a/b/g/n/ac 2x2 MU-MIMO, BT 5.0 LE, NFC, GPS/Glonass/Galileo/BDS
Connectivity USB Type-C, 3.5mm headset
Features fingerprint sensor, heart-rate sensor, iris scanner, face unlock, fast charging (Qualcomm QC 2.0 or Adaptive Fast Charging), wireless charging (WPC & PMA), IP68, Mobile HDR Premium
Launch OS Android 7.0 with TouchWiz

Our initial look at Snapdragon 835 revealed that its Kryo 280 performance cores are loosely based on ARM’s Cortex-A73 while the efficiency cores are loosely based on the Cortex-A53. Samsung's Exynos 8895 also has an octa-core big.LITTLE CPU configuration, but uses four of its own custom M2 cores paired with four A53 cores. Samsung introduced its first custom CPU core, the M1, last year. Compared to ARM’s A72, integer IPC was similar but the M1 trailed the A72 in efficiency. The M2 does not appear to be a radical redesign, but rather a tweaked M1 that offers the usual promises of improved performance and efficiency. Are the changes enough to top Qualcomm’s flagship SoC?

Battery life is one of the most important metrics for a smartphone. A bunch of cool features and lightning quick performance will do little to temper your frustration if the phone is dead by lunchtime. This was an issue for the Galaxy S6, which came with a small-capacity battery that contributed to its at-times disappointing battery life. Samsung increased their battery capacity for the S7 models, but there’s no further increase for the S8s. The smaller S8 retains the same 3000 mAh capacity as the S7, while the the S8+ drops 100 mAh compared to the S7 edge. Any improvement to battery life for this generation will need to come from more efficient hardware, and indeed at least for Qualcomm, this is precisely the angle they've been promoting to hardware developers and the public alike.

Previous Galaxy phones delivered good performance, but shortfalls in one or more performance metrics have kept them from being a class leader. Will the updates to the S8’s hardware and software finally smooth away these performance wrinkles? Will efficiency improve with the new 10nm SoCs? Did Samsung reduce power consumption in other areas? It’s time to take a closer look at the Galaxy S8.

CPU & Memory Performance
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  • D3v - Thursday, August 03, 2017 - link

    Never tried double pressing the home button to move around your opened apps? The ones with a need for a back button have a soft button on screen. I'm an android guy but still, iOS is easy AF to move around in. Reply
  • Dosi - Friday, August 11, 2017 - link

    so you never tried to swipe? from left to right or right to left? (it is a very handy feature i missing from android or WP) don't even mention the ForceTouch/3DTouch or whatever you call it...
    and the wireless charge...that's a feature i never used it with my SGS4 or L1520 or N6, why?
    slow, and you have to place into exact place (or it worked that way by that time) and i wanted to use lifted up used for 10 minutes took 5 percent off, put it back charged 2% used again for 10 minutes 5% off again...like trying to revive a person 100 times who's gonna die anyway, and again it was back then 3-4 years ago (still works that way with my N6), while i'm on cable, i can use my phone and yet charging. Until the phones have Wireless Electricity charging option ( works like WiFi) i don't care about WirelessCharging. I still can use my phone for 2 days( bowth N6 and i6s+) without charging as an it, with my samsung s7 or s6 had 1 day battery life with same usage...
    and who says it's feature phone(not you), just simply give an android phone to a Blind person...
    NOT-A-FREAKIN-FEATURE phone, come in more handy for persons who has disability
    yea bit bulky(and after 5 years getting software update), but in this year igonna change
    samsung's Edge version phones mostly not working when holding like normal phone as grabbing on both sides, because has bad side rejection, tried mate, had s6-7 i had problems with these. First thing was for me to disable anything related to "edges".
    and don't tell me to hold a phone with 2-3 finder on the bottom while "standing" try it for 2-3 hours...
    I tried the all the sides, each one of them has their Pros/Cons for, constantly using stock Android and iOS(non-jailbroken)/macOS device and Windows(PC/Phone) as well (working in IT).
    So i know the sides, understand most of the person's view, but not accept if somebody has problem with sightseeing...if you are not 100% used the systems, you were just a guest.
    There is no Good without Bad...
    Reply
  • 12552 - Sunday, January 07, 2018 - link

    Ever try spwiping from the edge of the screen Reply
  • Smartphoneuser - Monday, September 25, 2017 - link

    Can't stand fanboy sheep Reply
  • Galid - Saturday, July 29, 2017 - link

    ''There's no doubting Apple are top of the heap at the moment with their hardware design. It's just a shame they've got to couple it with iOS really.''

    Really funny comment, ''AT THE MOMENT'', more like since the very first freaking iPhone... Is there any phone designed by apple that didn't dominate at least 50% of the benchmarks for nearly a year after it's release? I remember seeing new phones rolling out comparing against 1 year old iPhones and loosing in some benchmarks... Most of the complaints they had was for the design that stayed the same for a while but never for performance EVER.

    Android owner for the last 4 years, Nexus 4 died, galaxy s6 died nexus 6p died and now on a galaxy s7. I'm a performance freak, what am I doing with MY LIFE?
    Reply
  • milan982 - Monday, July 31, 2017 - link

    You are the only one who claims that Snapdragon 835 is faster than Exynos 8895. LOL Reply
  • Cbo2plus2 - Wednesday, November 08, 2017 - link

    you are so very wrong - where do you get your information from? apple is by far the largest tech company in the world with Samsung coming in a distant 2nd. its closer to apple being 1.5x what Samsung is - you need to do your own research instead of regurgitating fun facts you hear at a party. SMH Reply
  • Cbo2plus2 - Wednesday, November 08, 2017 - link

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/kristinstoller/2017/0... Reply
  • djc208 - Friday, July 28, 2017 - link

    Really?! Troll much. There are so many reasons you can't really compare iOS and Android on anything other than a generic level it's not even worth discussing. Reply
  • siamms - Friday, July 28, 2017 - link

    YOU SIR know what you're talking about;-) Reply

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