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Samsung Galaxy S8 Mini release date, news and rumors

Update: According to tech site The Leaker, Samsung won't be releasing the Galaxy S8 Mini after all. On the other hand, a new Geekbench listing has suggested the phone may launch with a chipset inside that hasn't even been announced yet.

Samsung's Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus sit as two of the top phones in our best phone of the year list, but if you want a small screen there isn't currently a high-end option from the manufacturer.

Now new Galaxy S8 Mini rumors are beginning to kick off, suggesting there may soon be a smaller alternative to the flagship Samsung devices.

Samsung hasn't created a Mini variant of its flagship device since the Galaxy S5 Mini back in 2014, so it would mark a significant change in the way the company is making smaller and cheaper devices if it reverts back to the Mini model.

Below you'll find everything we've heard so far about the rumored Galaxy S8 Mini.

Samsung Galaxy S8 Mini release date and price

Little is known about the Samsung Galaxy S8 Mini at this stage, but we’d expect it to be released reasonably soon if the leaked marketing material (which you can see in the section below) has already been created and shared around the company.

Nothing is confirmed yet, but if Samsung is making this device we'd expect to see it by the end of the year, to keep it away from the expected March 2018 launch date of the Galaxy S9.

A report from site The Leaker suggests Samsung won't release the Galaxy S8 Mini, but it was at one stage working on the phone. We asked Samsung to confirm or deny the reports of the phone, but the company refused to comment.

We’d also expect the phone to cost less than the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus, but it might not be as cheap as you may have expected. The design looks high-end and it doesn't seem to be missing many of the headline features from the Galaxy S8, so it may just be slightly cheaper than the other two phones.

All we can say for now is that we'd expect it will cost less than the £689 ($725, AU$1200) price of the Galaxy S8.

Samsung Galaxy S8 Mini design and display

If the leaked image below is to be believed, Samsung will be keeping a very similar design for the Galaxy S8 Mini compared to its big flagship phones.

Chinese site IT Home has posted leaked images of the expanded Galaxy S8 lineup, with the main phone and the Plus pictured alongside the Galaxy S8 Mini.

The promo image suggests the phone will look much like the two larger versions, but it will just be shrunk down a little to fit in a smaller screen.

Specs leaked alongside the image suggests the phone will have a 5.3-inch display but this will feel like a 4.7-inch screen in the hand as it has an extra-wide aspect ratio of 18.5:9.

Hopefully this small yet premium design will allow the Galaxy S8 Mini to feel even more comfortable in the hand than its larger siblings.

Samsung Galaxy S8 Mini rumors

The site that shared the image above, IT Home, is reporting the phone will come with slightly lower specs then the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus.

It will likely launch with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 chipset inside, which is a step down from the Snapdragon 835 powering the most recent phones from Samsung. 

It's not clear if there will be two versions of the device – one with an Exynos chipset alongside the Qualcomm variant – as is the case with the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus.

Another Geekbench listing spotted by German blog suggested the Galaxy S8 Mini or "Lite" may come with the as yet unannounced Snapdragon 840 chipset.

If this is accurate it could mean the phone is even more powerful than the variants of the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus already on the market.

The report also suggests the Galaxy S8 Mini will come with 4GB of RAM onboard and 32GB of storage, which is less than the 64GB you'll find in the Galaxy S8.

We'd expect the Galaxy S8 Mini to come with microSD support of up to 256GB though, so you can fill it up with all the media you'll want to enjoy.

The leak also suggests Samsung will include the same 12MP rear shooter camera from the Galaxy S8, as well as an iris scanner for unlocking your phone. What's less clear is whether Samsung plans to include its voice-powered assistant Bixby on the phone.

Where does it sit in the market?

The Galaxy S5 Mini was the last smaller version of a flagship we saw from Samsung, but if the Galaxy S8 Mini turns out to be real it looks like it'll be quite different to that device's place in the market.

Samsung has cheaper yet high-spec devices in the form of the Galaxy A3 (2017) and Galaxy A5 (2017) and it looks like that will remain the case for the Galaxy S8 generation.

So rather than being marketed as an affordable option it looks like the Galaxy S8 Mini will still be an expensive device that will sit alongside the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus, but will just appeal to those looking for a smaller screen experience.

Samsung is also expected to launch the Galaxy Note 8 phablet very soon.

James Peckham

James is Phones Editor for TechRadar and covers all the big announcements from the best manufacturers making mobile phones, tablets and wearables. Based in London, James is often testing out the latest and greatest mobile phones, smartwatches, tablets, VR headsets and - when he can be motivated to go outside - fitness bands. Be sure to follow him on Twitter for all the latest from the mobile world.