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Samsung prepares to unveil new flagship smartphone

Samsung is expected to unveil its next flagship smartphone on Wednesday, its first since the tech giant was forced to recall its Note7 device in late 2016 over fire and safety fears.

The Korean company is believed to be preparing the Galaxy S8 for launch at events in New York and London, with reports suggesting it will come in two sizes and feature a larger screen.

It will be the first flagship phone the firm has released since its Note7 phablet was withdrawn from sale in October following multiple reports of the device overheating and exploding, a fault eventually attributed to battery issues by an internal investigation.

The incident reportedly cost Samsung more than £3 billion and also drew criticism from environmental groups over what the company planned to do with the more than 4 million unused devices, which the company has since revealed it will refurbish and sell "where applicable" in order to reduce environmental impact.

The expected launch of the S8 is being regarded by the technology industry as a chance for the company to regain its footing after concluding its investigation into the Note7 incident, which found two faults in the device's battery.

Samsung boss DJ Koh said at the time that he "deeply apologised" to Samsung customers, and that the internal investigation which also led to the creation of new stringent safety tests for the company's phones was the "first step to regain your (customer) trust".

Last week, the tech giant unveiled its new artificial intelligence-powered virtual assistant, Bixby, which is expected to feature in the new smartphone and Samsung claims is able to understand context and offer broader levels of help to users than its rivals, which include Amazon's Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple's Siri.

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