The Note 7 has caused major headaches for Samsung. Now discontinued, fans are looking forward to the Note 8, which has not been dropped by Samsung and is apparently codenamed Great (not Baikal as previously thought).
We investigate when is the Note 8 coming out, plus all the details you want to know about Samsung's next phablet. See also: Best phone 2017.
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The Galaxy S8 launched at an Unpacked event on 29 March and goes on sale on 28 April. It competes with the Galaxy Note family on size: with a 5.8in screen as standard and 6.2in on the Galaxy S8+, the Note 7's 5.7in screen is comparatively small.
We'd expect Samsung to make the same design changes in the Note 8 in response, which means we'll see a larger, taller and potentially pressure-sensitive screen, with the fingerprint scanner moved to the rear and the home button gone altogether.
And that's exactly what we see in this first photo alleged to be the Galaxy Note 8 (via):
You can also expect it, as usual, to be faster than the Galaxy S8.
This Galaxy Note 8 is not to be confused with the Galaxy Note 8.0 tablet from back in 2013.
When is the Galaxy Note 8 release date?
Samsung Galaxy Note 8 UK release date: August 2017 (TBC)
Traditionally Samsung has unveiled a new Galaxy Note flagship every year at the IFA tradeshow, which takes place in early September. For the past two years it has announced its new Galaxy Note early in August to get out ahead of the new iPhone, which is always revealed mid-September.
The most likely release date is August 2017.
There were whispers to suggest Samsung would be dropping its Note family, but dropping its second annual flagship launch could have an enormous impact on Samsung's profit margins.
Fortunately the company has now confirmed that the Note 8 will exist, and that it will in Korea offer Note 7 buyers 50 percent discounts if they upgrade to the Galaxy S8 or Galaxy Note 8.
“I will bring back a better, safer and very innovative Note 8,” Samsung's mobile chief, DJ Koh, has recently told CNET.
All that said, we can't ignore the fact the Galaxy Note 8 already exists as an Android tablet from 2013 - read our Galaxy Note 8.0 review. We think that if Samsung is going to release a Note 8 it’s possible it could look to change the name. Also see: Best Samsung phone
What are the rumoured specifications?
The Note family is best known for its large, high-resolution screen and S Pen stylus support. Rumours say it could get an upgrade and integrate a new speaker. According to Patently Mobile, in September 2016 a patent was published by the US Patent & Trademark Office for the new stylus.
It says: "When the pen is being stored in the Galaxy Note body, the speaker, which is in the pen shaft, carries sound through the pen and exists at the top of the pen via a new speaker. When the pen is removed for the Note device the sound simply travels from the internal speaker through the pen shaft opening."
We would expect the Note 8 to come with a Quad-HD+ or even 4K SuperAMOLED display, and there is increasing talk that it could get the latter, making the Note 8 Samsung's first 4K smartphone. With the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus display size increases to 5.7in and 6.2in respectively - in part due to much slimmer bezels - it's likely that the Note's traditional 5.7in display will also be increased to around 6.2in.
The Note 8 is tipped to get a pressure-sensitive display, too.
It’s likely to be under 8mm thick, waterproof, and feature dual cameras and a high-capacity (circa-3500mAh) battery with adaptive fast charging, fast wireless charging and USB-C support.
It will run Android 7.0 Nougat, with an update to Android O within a few months of its release. Samsung’s usual sensors - the heart-rate scanner, fingerprint scanner and iris scanner - should all be present, though with the fingerprint scanner now moved to the rear and the home button gone entirely.
In terms of core hardware we know that the Note series is traditionally a slightly more powerful version of the S series that is released earlier that year, though the Galaxy S8 is already a hugely powerful phone. The S8 comes with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 and 4GB of RAM. Expect the Note 8 to come with a minimum 6GB of RAM and 64GB of storage.
Samsung has announced that it will be acquiring car audio maker Harman for $8bn with its eyes firmly on the connected car market. However, the brand is best known by consumers for its Harman Kardon audio label, which could spell very nice things for the upcoming Galaxy Note 8, as it has for the Galaxy S8.
Samsung says it will utilise Harman's audio brands, which also include the likes of AKG and JBL, to "deliver enhanced customer benefits and elevate user experiences across Samsung's complete portfolio of consumer and professional products and systems". (Via Android Central.)
One thing we can pretty much guarantee is that the Note 8 will feature the same software as the Galaxy S8, which means Android Nougat, TouchWiz, and the brand-new Bixby AI assistant. Also see: What is Bixby?
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