Leak Reveals Samsung Galaxy S10 Will Not Feature 5G Capability For Most Models

Samsung Galaxy Note 9, this year's model.
Beer5020 / shutterstock

The worst nightmare of many tech enthusiasts hitched to the Samsung smartphone train appears to be coming true, according to Forbes. The leak comes to Forbes via The Bell, a South Korean media outlet that the financial news site offers a great degree of credibility in their past reportage. Though the article from The Bell is written in Korean, when translated, it suggests that the Galaxy S10 will — by and large — not be possessed of the ability to participate on 5G mobile networks.

One glaring exception is said to exist, with a superior model to the mainline offering bearing 5G capability to be produced in extremely constrained numbers. Current estimates being offered up purport that only 2 million 5G capable Galaxy S10 units will be produced and distributed globally, as compared to the 40 million units planned for wider sale.

The 5G option will also almost certainly increase the retail price point of the smartphone substantially. Given that the baseline S10 is likely to retail for about $999 in the United States, the 5G enhanced offering is certain to exceed that number by a few hundred dollars at the very least — making the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G the most expensive smartphone at launch that the South Korean tech giant has ever produced.

While the deployment of 5G capable networks has yet to take hold as a major replacement for contemporary LTE data delivery methods, it seems a matter of when — rather than a matter of if — that changeover will eventually take place. A lack of 5G data on Samsung’s cutting-edge flagship may hurt the legacy of the brand as this new, faster, and more secure form of data exchange becomes the industry standard moving forward.

That’s not to say the news surrounding the upcoming release of the tenth iteration of the flagship S series Samsung Galaxy handsets is entirely negative — there are, in fact, many positive aspects to the newest model that counterbalance this rumored news.

The new S10 will feature an in-display fingerprint reader to unlock the device, reduction of both the top and bottom bezels, and a promise of faster Android updates. The base S10 will feature four cameras producing a high-resolution composite image, with the larger S10 Plus having a whopping five cameras attached.

These details may not mitigate the lack of a next-generation modem in next year’s top smartphone product lines — with the iPhone unlikely to produce a 5G competitor in 2019 either — but they certainly do show a commitment to improving upon the existing product by Samsung.