Samsung's new Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus will be available Friday, March 16. Perhaps the biggest addition to the Galaxy S9 flagship lineup is the upgraded camera with dual aperture lens. Here's a closer look at the Galaxy S9's camera specifications and features ahead of its debut to take on the iPhone X's powerful camera...
Read: Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus first impressions: Improving upon the S8 Plus just where it was needed
The Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus' main camera is a 12-megapixel Super Speed Dual Pixel (f/1.5, f/2.4) lens with a variable aperture. It adjusts depending on light conditions.
Samsung claims it's the first manufacturer to put an adjustable aperture lens in a smartphone. If the Galaxy S9 is taking a picture in the dark, the lens opens to F1.5 mode to pull in light for a bright and clear photo. In the daylight, the lens shifts to F2.4 mode to help reduce the amount of light filtering into the photo for a sharper look.
CNET has a great explainer on variable aperture.
The Galaxy S9 only has one main camera on the rear, while the Galaxy S9 Plus has dual cameras.
Independent camera tester DxoMark called the Galaxy S9 camera the mobile camera to beat. It gave the Galaxy S9 a score of 99, its highest ever, beating out the Pixel 2 at 98 and iPhone X at 97.
Samsung's beefier Galaxy S9 Plus adds a second 12-megapixel telephoto (f/2.4 aperture) lens that supplies 2x optical zoom.
Samsung outfitted the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus with a dedicated image processor, called the Super Speed Dual Pixel Image Sensor. It's made up of an image sensor, a fast readout circuit, and a smart dedicated DRAM memory chip to provide faster image processing and focus.
Samsung is extending its artificial intelligence platform Bixby to the Galaxy S9's camera to provide more real-time information over the Galaxy S8. When a user points the camera at an object, Bixby will recognize what it's looking at and presents information related to that object overlaid on top of the image.
Bixby features nine different camera modes including Text, Food, Makeup, Wine, Shopping, Image, QR Code, and more.
Samsung's Galaxy lineup has featured slow-motion video before in the range of 240 frames per second. The new Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus add "super slow-mo" that shoots at 960 frames per second. This is powered by the new super speed dual pixel image sensor.
Composed of an image sensor, a fast readout circuit, and a smart dedicated DRAM memory chip, this sensor allows Super Slow-mo to record content that's 32 times slower than normal video, and four times slower than any other slow-motion mobile technology. That means that just 0.2 seconds of normal video can be transformed into approximately 6 seconds of stunning footage.
Samsung left the 8-megapixel front-facing camera on its new Galaxy relatively unchanged. It should gain crisper focus and speed thanks to the Galaxy S9's new image chip.
In an attempt to fend off Apple's Animoji, the Galaxy S9 includes AR emoji. From a single selfie, the Galaxy S9's uses machine-learning to generate a personalized 3D avatar that looks like you and can mimic movements. Here's early impressions, and they're not great.
AR Emoji are compatible with messaging apps that tap Samsung's keyboard. They can also be shared as GIFs or PNG files to non-supported smartphones.
The Galaxy S9 lineup adds a new feature called Intelligent Scan that combines iris scanning and face recognition. The thing is, it might not be as secure as what Apple offers.