Samsung launched Samsung Galaxy Note 8 on 23rd August 2017 and the Samsung Galaxy 8 Note hands on review is here. Here is our take so far.
Last year Samsung Galaxy Note 7 was prone to explosion, but we have seen an improvement to Samsung Galaxy Note 8 this year even though it has its own downs too.
Samsung promised its rigorous battery checks as with Galaxy S8 will prevent being prone to explosion. So you can disregard the problems with last year if you want to go for the new, powerful Samsung Galaxy Note 8…… aside from the possible mocking and questions you will have to cope with when bringing it out for the first time.
Of course, you will have to be Samsung’s phablets fan to be drawn towards the Galaxy Note 8 over the Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus. This is because despite having a larger and sharper screen and more power than any phone launched by Samsung, it has a smaller battery than the Galaxy S8 Plus and it is more expensive.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8 release date & price
You can pre-order the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 in the US on August 24 and in the UK on August 23. It will be available in the US stores on September 15, and will likely be available in the world key territories such as the UK the same day.
In term of its price – get prepared for an expensive phone. It is going to be $930 for a Note 8 unlocked through Samsung, and the carrier like Verison will be charging a whopping $40 per month. T-Mobile will charge $30 per month but with a $210 downpayment. You can get Note 8 deals in the US though.
In the UK it is going to be £869 SIM-free. The Galaxy Note 8 deals begin at around £60 a month if you want a free phone.
You can order the Galaxy Note 8 in the US through AT&T, T-Mobile, Samsung, and Sprint as well as carriers like Cricket Wireless, US Cellular, Xfinity Mobile, C Spire and Straight Talk. Walmart, Best Buy, and Target will also carry it.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8 with more screen
One big thing about ‘8’ series from Samsung is the Infinity Display; the Samsung’s name for bezel-less and edge-to-edge display that adorns the front of series ‘8’ handset.
The Note 8 has the biggest version of this display so far, with a 6.3-inch QHD+ that looks just sublime. There has not been much upgrade to the quality of screen from Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus – it is all the same Super AMOLED technology with HDR support baked in.
The design of Note 8 complements its display, with the slightly rounded edges on its back having a great touch of sharpness to make the phone easier to grip.
All the buttons protrude very well to be easily clicked and surprisingly for the size of this phone, it didn’t feel too cumbersome in our palm. You can even reach the full width of the phone with your thumb, although you can forget hitting the corners.
With an S Pen port and microSD slot (up to 256GB supported), there is a lot to pack into this Note 8. Samsung also packaged it to be IP68-rated water resistant and dust resistant phone.
However, the glass still feels lightweight and borders on feeling a bit like plastic but does save weight, and its overall construction feels premium.
Fingerprint mistakes again?
We are really disappointed that Samsung has chosen to maintain its stance of putting the fingerprint scanner on the back beside the camera. We expected Samsung to have the biometric unlocking method on the rear this time around, but they maintained putting it at the back.
Though the scanner is easy to hit, but it is not comfortable and annoying. Samsung always claim they use iris scanning to unlock their phones most, but our testing did not find this accurate enough.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Camera
The camera on this phone is probably the biggest upgrade, with 12MP dual sensors on the rear.
As found on iPhone 7 Plus from Apple, one of the cameras is telephoto, meaning you can zoom in 2x the subject with no loss in its clarity.the two sensors can also be used together to create a background blur effect, either when you are taking a photo or after shooting it.
We like the ability to see the wide-angle ‘normal’ photo when you have shot a snap in Live Focus because it gives you the opportunity to find a better picture in what you have pictured.
The picture quality is excellent as your snaps always look brilliant, even if you take it quick. You should be able to get low-light performance from the Galaxy Note 8 with its one sensor on the rear taking wide-angle, f/1.7 images and the other taking zoomed f/2.4.
However, in our low-light comparison with the iPhone 7 Plus, our result from Apple’s setup looked brighter, though with more noise. We will not pass judgment now because we need to take more look at it.
The best S Pen ever made
The S Pen comes with raw power inside – the thing that defines the Galaxy Note series, and the new version is even better than ever. Its more flexible tip, nice weight and 4,000 levels of pressure sensitivity make it a pleasure to use.
Once again, Samsung has wheeled out an idea that ‘this feels like writing on paper’ though it utterly doesn’t because it is rubber on the glass, but it is highly accurate and closer than ever before.
It offers new features like creating animated GIF from your doodles and also to translate more words in just a single swipe.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Bixby
We should call Note 8 the phone that brings Bixby – the Samsung’s digital assistance. The full features enabled from launch. This means that the Bixby Home screen alongside Bixby Vision offers full range ways to interact with your phone.
It means you will be able to press the Bixby physical button and have your phone perform all types of tasks and we can confirm the voice assistant is powerful and accurate.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Battery
The 3300mAh power pack with Note 8 feels too small for a phone with this kind of specs. 6GB RAM, a powerful CPU (either the Exynos 8895 or the Qualcomm Snapdragon), and a wider functionality mean people will be using the Galaxy Note 8 a lot.
The Galaxy S8 Plus came with 3500mAh, which means Note 8 sports smaller battery and could be an issue for the Note 8 users.
One thing Samsung is desperate to promote is that its new range of phones brings DeX desktop experience, which means you can plug your phone into the dock and have a complete desktop experience if there is a keyboard, monitor, and mouse.
It seems the Galaxy Note 8 will be more useful in this form than the Galaxy S8 because the Note 8 is designed to be a more productive tool.
So much power
The Note 8 power will attract a lot of users who want 6GB of RAM and the latest CPUs on the market. Sincerely, we can see people purchasing this phone because of its larger display and much improved S Pen. So despite the high price, the two factors could attract an audience.
As long as the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 doesn’t run into the similar problems of last year, we are going to be treated to a big battle between Samsung and Apple this year.