Samsung Electronics is working on two members of the upcoming Galaxy S9 family, industry sources said on Friday, claiming that the South Korean original equipment manufacturer already started the development of the firmware for its 2018 Android flagship duo. The stock firmware being in the works at Samsung is reportedly marked by the build numbers G960FXXU0AQI5 and G965FXXU0AQI5, with the former presumably denoting the smaller device and the latter likely referring to the larger one. In other words, the international variant of the Galaxy S9 is said to feature the model number SM-G960F, whereas the same edition of the Galaxy S9 Plus (possibly stylized as the Galaxy S9+) will also be known as the SM-G965F. This development would be in line with Samsung’s previous product naming practices as the company’s Galaxy S8 carries the model number SM-G950X and the Galaxy S8 Plus is alternatively identified as the SM-G955X.
With the Galaxy S8 lineup launching in late March and being commercially released in the second half of April, news of the firmware development for the Galaxy S9 devices already starting may suggest that the upcoming duo will debut earlier in the year than its predecessors did. Samsung’s galaxy s-series handsets traditionally debut in late winter or early spring, often at mobile world congress (MWC) in Barcelona, Spain. This year marked a notable exception to that pattern as the Galaxy S8 lineup was reportedly delayed following the Galaxy Note 7 fiasco, prompting Samsung to dedicate more time to make sure that its next two premium smartphones are as safe as possible. It’s currently unclear whether the company is planning to revert to its previous android flagship release schedule next year but if it is, starting related firmware development in early fall would be in line with such a strategy.
The Galaxy S9 series is largely expected to be powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 845 and Samsung’s own Exynos 9810 SoC, depending on the region, in addition to featuring 6GB of RAM and 64GB of expandable storage space at a minimum. The transition to a two-sensor imaging system introduced with the Galaxy Note 8 will presumably translate to two rear cameras on the back of the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus, and the same goes for the relatively bezel-free design characteristic of Samsung’s recent Android flagships.