Galaxy S8 may be the fastest phone on every network

A Samsung Galaxy S8+ smartphone is pictured at the introduction of the Galaxy S8 and S8+ smartphones during the Samsung Unpacked event in New York City, United States March 29, 2017.    REUTERS/Brendan McDermid - RTX33983


The Galaxy S8 looks like a powerful smartphone for all four major US carriers. It gets special abilities on T-Mobile, Sprint and AT&T, the carriers told us before the phone's launch today. And Verizon's absence from the list may just be because the carrier is being bashful.

On T-Mobile, the S8 can achieve "gigabit LTE" speeds by combining 3x carrier aggregation, 4x4 MIMO, and 256 QAM, which no other phone yet has done, T-Mobile's VP of engineering Grant Castle said. The first is a technique to bond different airwaves to make a very wide path. The second multiplies antennas for stronger signal, and the third is a more efficient encoding system. The Galaxy S7 had these three technologies, but could only use two at a time, Castle said.

"With all of those tricks turned on, it becomes our first gigabit-capable device," Castle said.