Week after week you've seen alleged leaks, rumors, and specs pointing to Samsung's follow-up to the fiery Note 7, but now it's finally here. The company has just unveiled the Galaxy Note 8, and if at first look you call it a Galaxy S8 Plus with an S Pen, you wouldn't be entirely wrong.
The Galaxy Note 8 has a screen that's a hair bigger than the Galaxy S8 Plus — 6.3 inches vs. 6.2 inches, respectively. It's also got an Infinity Display that looks just as gorgeous, albeit with the edges less curved. Top to bottom, it's undeniable that this phone is basically a spitting image of the Galaxy S8 line, but that's not a lack of creativity and more of a decision to continue a consistent design language after the "S" and "Note" lines of yesteryear.
Around the time when Galaxy Note 7 devices started exploding randomly, Samsung didn't know it was in the midst of a forthcoming colossal consumer tech crisis that would sorely hurt its name and coffers. After several recalls and heated media coverage, Samsung had to act fast. There was no undoing the damage, so it needs to exploit it and make a worthy comeback. It was clear from the controversy that consumers were apprehensive. No one would dare to even touch a Note 7 phone or any phone the company plans to release, for that matter.
So came the Galaxy S8. Quite simply, it was a revolution in design, in specs, and, most importantly, in the battery. Samsung took a potentially damaging situation and turned it into gold. Fast forward to present time, and we have the Galaxy Note 8, the proper sequel to the Note 7. It bears no resemblance to any Galaxy or Note phone before the Galaxy S8. The Galaxy S8 marked a new era; the Note 8 continues it. But has it evolved?
Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Specs, Software, New Features
• Processor, memory, and storage: In some ways, the Note 8 is an evolution, but in many ways, it's not. However, that's not necessarily a sore point. First, there's a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chip under the hood, the mobile chip industry's best one. Samsung also went above and beyond by putting 6 GB of RAM on all models. That's right. Every Note 8 will come with 6 GB of RAM, no questions asked. There's up to 256 GB of memory too.
• Cameras: For the first time, Samsung has put two cameras on the back: one's a f/2.4 telephoto lens, and the other is a f/1.7 wide-angle lens. Both offer optical image stabilization, and you can take two photos from each at once. The 8-megapixel front-facing camera is the same one in Galaxy S8 models.
• Software: The device runs Android 7.1.1 nougat out of the box, but it will most definitely support Android O. It looks and performs the same as the Galaxy S8, which means Bixby is here too. There's a new mode in Apps Edge that lets users pair two apps in split screen so they'll launch together in split-screen mode.
• S Pen: A Galaxy note phone will never be complete without an S Pen, Samsung's smart stylus. This time, it comes with a few useful tricks. Users can now take up to 100 pages in the Screen Off Memo mode. You can also write or draw Live Messages that'll be saved as GIFs so they can be shared easily across devices. It's also possible to highlight sentences using the S Pen and have it translated into 71 languages.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Pricing And Availability
Make no mistake: The Galaxy Note 8 is undeniably an excellent phone. Design, specs, and a slick user interface prove it. When you look at the $930 price, however, you can't help but wonder: "Why can't I just get the Galaxy S8 or S8 Plus instead?"
You'll have to answer that question yourself.
Preorders begin Aug. 24. It launches Sept. 15 in select countries, including the United States. The global rollout is tipped for October. There's deep Sea Blue, Maple Gold, Midnight Black, Orchid Grey, but not all will be available in every country.