Though the Galaxy Note 8 won’t be confirmed for several months, speculations about the device are slowly surfacing. Samsung has stated the device will return to the market during the latter half of the year to cater to the niche market of productivity-minded smartphone users.
So far, rumors suggest the Galaxy Note 8 is codenamed “Baikal,” after the ancient Siberian lake. However, not much else is known about the device. Early speculation suggests the Galaxy Note 8 may include several features previously seen on the Galaxy Note 7 and Galaxy S7. These features include a dual-edge display, an iris scanner, IP68 water resistance, a Blue Coral color option, expandable storage and USB-C.
In addition to these features, there may be some clues to Galaxy Note 8 specs, amid the Galaxy S8 prelaunch season, and the recent announcement of other Samsung products, such as the Galaxy Tab S3.
Samsung recently announced its Exynos 9 Series 8895 chip, which is expected to power the manufacturer’s 2017 flagship smartphones. These include the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy Note 8. While the Exynos 8895 chip has not yet been confirmed for the Galaxy S8, its announcement is on par with the Galaxy S8 release. On Sunday, Samsung confirmed its March 29 Unpacked event for the Galaxy S8. The smartphone is rumored for an April 21 market release.
Typically the Galaxy Note device features the same processing chips as its counterpart Galaxy S device. For example, Galaxy S7 and Galaxy Note 7 both featured the Exynos 8890 chip and Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chip, depending on the market.
Qualcomm announced the Snapdragon 835 chip in November 2016, also announcing its collaboration with Samsung on the component. The Snapdragon 835 and the Exynos 8895 feature the same 10nm FinFET technology, making them the ideal supplementary chips to be used interchangeably on Samsung phones.
Samsung is known to use both Exynos chips or Snapdragon chips on different models of the same flagship devices in order to keep up with consumer demand.
Samsung’s recent teaser for the Galaxy S8 also gives a huge clue about what consumers can expect for the Galaxy Note 8. The teaser hints at phones with home buttons being old, but Samsung’s upcoming device without a home button is the “new smartphone.” Again, as the Galaxy Note devices often adopt features from Galaxy S devices, the Galaxy Note 8 is sure to have a design similar to the Galaxy S8. This could mean the smartphone may similarly have no home button.
The Galaxy Note 7 was particularly similar in design to the Galaxy S7 Edge, featuring a dual-edge curved display, and both devices are phablets.
Recent leaks have shown possible Galaxy S8 handsets with on-screen navigation keys instead of capacitive keys, which are typically located on either side of the home button on Galaxy smartphones. If the rumors are accurate for the Galaxy S8, there is a good chance such features will also be included on the Galaxy Note 8.
Samsung’s Galaxy S8 teaser also hints at the device having super-thin upper and lower bezels, allowed but the removal of the smartphone home button. Rumors suggest the device’s display will have a 18.5:9 aspect ratio, which will allow for most of the display to be a functioning screen. These features may also roll over to the Galaxy S8.
The Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus are expected to adopt some Galaxy Note features, with both devices rumored to be phablets, having 5.7-inch and 6.2-inch displays respectively. The 5.7-inch display has been a traditional Galaxy Note size for several generations. The Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy Note 4, Note 5 and Note 7 have all had 5.7-inch displays.
However, the combination of a high aspect ratio, thin bezels and no home button could make it so the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus are no larger than the Galaxy S7 Edge and Galaxy Note 7. If rumors are accurate, Samsung may use a similar design to increase the Galaxy Note 8 display size without increasing the overall size of the phone.
Samsung Unpacked Invite Photo: Samsung
Leaks, rumors and hints from Samsung also suggest the Galaxy S8 fingerprint scanner will be located on the device’s rear panel, to the left of its camera module. A late-March leak from tech informant Evan Blass shows a Samsung-branded smartphone with a rear fingerprint scanner. If the design is confirmed on the Galaxy S8, it will likely also be seen on the Galaxy Note 8.
Samsung’s collaboration with AKG Acoustics has brought audio upgrades to several new and upcoming devices. The recently announced Galaxy Tab S3 features 4K HDR video, while Samsung also hinted that its upcoming flagship would ship with AKG wireless headphones. The Galaxy Note 8 may similarly ship with AKG earbuds.
Android 7.0 Nougat is the Android operating system, which will be featured on most 2017 smartphones. The Galaxy S8 is expected to run Android Nougat so there is a good chance the Galaxy Note 8 will as well. Google will likely showcase the upcoming Android O during its 2017 I/O conference in May and the operating system may release sometime in the summer. The software may release too soon to be featured on the Galaxy Note 8.
Android 7.0 Nougat released in July 2016, while the Galaxy Note 7 released in August running Android 6.0.1. Marshmallow, for example. However, if the Galaxy Note 8 releases with Android 7.0 Nougat, it will likely be among the first devices scheduled for an Android O update.
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