You’ve bought your top-of-the-range smartphone. Now, you’ll want to keep it safe, pristine and comfortable to use. But there are more accessories that are worth considering, too. Here are the ten best add-ons, including slick, smart protective cases, the best-looking battery and even a cool QWERTY keyboard.
Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+
1 LED View Cover
If you fancy a cover that will protect your gorgeous S8 from those everyday knocks or scratches, front and back, but still have instant access to the phone’s functions, the LED View Cover is very cool. You can control functions without even opening the front cover, which displays the time, for instance. When a call comes in, you can reject or accept by dragging your finger across the front – you can also turn off an alarm like this, without even opening the cover. And you can customise the LED icons that appear: there are 54 to choose from or you can even create your own, which means you can turn Caller ID into a whole new thing. There’s also a slot on the inside of the front cover for a credit card, for instance. It comes in six colours: gold, black, blue, pink, silver and an exotic violet. A version in different colours is also available for the Note8.
2 Keyboard Cover
For texting fiends, this is a brilliant add-on. Designed for both the S8 and larger S8+, this is a physical keyboard which snaps on to the front of the phone and offers a full tactile QWERTY complete with numbers and symbols. The phone cleverly knows when it’s attached and adjusts the display so you can see everything you need to. The island-style keys are well-spaced so your fingers naturally find the letter you’re looking for. And when you’re done, you can take the keyboard off and either store it in your bag or, and this is particularly useful, it can be clipped on to the back of the phone, out of sight but ready for your next typing session.
3 Samsung Gear VR4
Virtual Reality is a key current technology but it can be offputtingly expensive, not least because it needs a high-resolution screen and powerful processor. Well, the S8 and S8+ have both those things, so the Gear VR4 headset, which comes with a remote control, is a great solution. You put your phone into the slot at the front and you’re good to go. The helmet is lightweight and has fully adjustable straps. There are over 800 VR apps from games to experimental experiences to be enjoyed. The helmet contains a gyro sensor and accelerometer to ensure that you what you see onscreen moves with buttery smoothness. Oh, and it costs a fraction of a standalone VR system. Works with Note8, too.
4 Battery Pack
The Samsung Galaxy S8 has great battery life, but for the ultimate in peace of mind, slip a battery pack into your bag. And while you’re about it, you might as well choose one that looks good and works at speed. This pack is styled to look like a cute little tote bag, with a useful finger strap to hook it out of the furthest corner of your bag. It comes in two colours, both of which are attractive. It charges fast, too, so you can be up to full strength again quickly – and when you plug it into the mains, the charger recharges fast, to boot. The charger has a combo cable which means it can service gadgets with USB-C or microUSB sockets. It’s small enough to be an easy fit in the hand and the 5100mAh battery means it’s plenty powerful. Also works with Note8.
5 Clear Cover
The S8 has about the slickest design you can find in a smartphone, so you might want to protect it but keep that handsome design on view. The Clear Cover is less than 1mm thick and is entirely clear – but you got that from the name, right? Even so, it’s subtly coloured so it perfectly complements your S8 or S8+. The gloss-plastic finish looks as good as the glass back of the phone itself.
Samsung Galaxy Note8
6 Protective Standing Cover
The Galaxy Note8 has one of the best displays around, so it’s perfect for watching video. Instead of propping it gingerly against your bag, say, choose a protective case like this one which has a neat kickstand to stand it up perfectly for video playback – it’s even designed so that if pressure is suddenly applied the kickstand pops off safely and doesn’t break. It’s not just the kickstand that’s protected: the case lets you see the Infinity Display fully but it also gives you military-grade protection so the Note8 is kept safe inside.
7 Wireless Charger Convertible
One of the neatest features on the Galaxy Note8 (and the S8 and S8+) is wireless charging. Though it may not seem like a big task to plug in the USB-C cable, you’ll quickly get used to the convenience of just placing the phone on a charging pad to let it quickly charge. But this non-slip pad does more. It’s flat enough to be easily portable but it also folds up to work as a stand as well as a pad. That means you can see the phone’s display easily from across the room and because it’s engineered to be especially versatile, you can stand the phone up on end or lie it on its side so you can watch a video while it charges. Clever. Works with the S8 and S8+, too.
8 Alcantara Cover
If you want a cover that’s smooth, light, durable and scratchproof, the luxurious Alcantara Cover is hard to beat. It has a suede-like finish, though it’s a lightweight, tough man-made material that’s often found in high-end cars. Even better, it’s stain-resistant so it stays looking good and if it does get dirty just wipe it with a cloth. The cover also protects the phone inside from knocks and bumps. It also feels high-end because it has Alcantara inside as well as out. An Alcantara case is available for the S8 and S8+ as well.
9 Note8 S-Pen Stylus
The S-Pen Stylus is great-looking and very versatile. Now, the chances are you’re not going to lose it because when you’re done it snuggles back into the body of the Note8 itself. But if the unthinkable happens, it’s good to know a replacement is available. It comes in three colours, black, blue and gold so you can pick the one that matches your Note8. It is affordable – again, in contrast to many rival styluses – and is great for that extra bit of peace of mind.
10 2Piece Cover
But what if you like the feel of the phone itself in your hand? Well, Samsung has a cute, innovative solution which protects the phone’s edges and screen but lets your hand touch the phone at all times. This is the 2Piece cover which clips on to either end of the phone, leaving every lens, button and sensor usable. It means you can feel the glass back and have instant access to the screen while protecting the extremities. It comes in colours to match the shades available for the Note8 (black, deep blue and orchid grey. It attaches firmly thanks to micro suction pads but it is also very easy to detach. A smaller, more colourful version is also available for the S8 and S8+ phones.