Smartphone reviewers throw around the term “flagship” pretty loosely, to the point where it’s come to mean “a high-spec phone from a major or mid-level manufacturer.” But when you get your hands on a phone with the technical excellence and attention to detail of the Samsung Galaxy S8 series, you’re reminded that there’s more to a great phone than a bunch of chips.

Like Apple and Google, Samsung has something more in mind than just selling phones. The Galaxy S8 and S8+ are devices that bring you into a useful ecosystem in exactly the same way that Apple does with the iPhone and Google does with Android.

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