10 Nov 2017
3 min read
A little backstory before I begin: This is the phone whose predecessor created an explosion last year, quite literally, and a series of them for that matter, going kaboom all over the world. Those unfortunate events subsequently resulted in a massive global recall of the phones. And yet, Samsung's Galaxy Note 8 has become one of this year's most highly anticipated smartphones--despite the faulty batteries of its previous iteration, the Note 7.
If it were any other company, last year's fiascos alone would've cratered the company's shares and brought the company to its knees. But we're talking about Samsung here. After the incident, the South Korean electronics giant did not merely rectify that unforgivable manufacturing error, but also proved to the world that it could get going again, by immediately releasing the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus. But now they have outdone themselves yet again--with the Note 8. And if you haven't already familiarised yourselves with its features and offerings, here are five things that you need to know about the finest Galaxy Note yet.
With the initial offering price of approximately Rs 1,03,000, the Galaxy Note 8 is the most expensive Note till date. And in a market such as ours, where phones with price tags of Rs 10,000 to Rs 30,000 are most preferred, the Note is beyond the reach of many people. But, then again, this isn't a phone for the average Nepali. It is for those who can afford it and want to make a statement. The Note is more than just a phone; it is a premium personal assistant for those who want the very best of what Samsung has to offer. Remember the first rule of buying smartphones: The more you pay, the better you get.
The Note 8 is eye candy of the best sort--it knows how to carry its sleek and sexy aesthetics unabashedly and boldly. The Note's exterior is something that consumers have grown into, with many of its Samsung siblings sharing very similar design cues--and the Note 8 does not feature quite radical a design change. The front and the back are crafted with glass panels wrapped around a metal casing, allowing the unit a bit of sturdiness. The use of glass, however, has made it a fingerprint magnet. The body is much more angular and more square than its predecessors', and even the trademark curved display has a less prominent presence this time around.
The big 6.3-inch display may not be for everyone, but for those who can utilise it to its full extent, the Note 8's massive display is truly a gift, which is why it happens to be one of the most obvious draws for many buyers. Owing to its infinity display, you now get the largest screen ever on a Note. The screen measures at 6.3 inches, but with an 18.5:9 aspect ratio (much more than in last year's Note 7 or the Fan Edition), it doesn't feel very different from earlier models. You also get the usual Samsung Super AMOLED technology with high contrasts, more details, vibrant colours and an impressive resolution of 2,960 x 1,440, or 3K QHD+, but the phone defaults to 1080p, as is the case with Galaxy S8.
With a Snapdragon 835 and 6 gigs of RAM to back the performance, the display on the Note looks and feels great. Multitasking on the big screen is what makes the Galaxy Note a dream. In addition, the phone's HDR playback capability ratchets up the contrast and colours even further.
The fourth reason is obviously the inclusion of the dual camera system. But this is not just another dual camera system; this one comes with dual optical image stabilisation, among other things. It offers a wide-angle and telephoto lens setup, similar to the iPhone 7 Plus or the One Plus 5, with the telephoto lens now allowing for a 2X optical zoom. Both the sensors are 12 MP with f/1.7 aperture on the main sensor and f/2.4 on the secondary, but the availability of the dual pixel autofocus is only limited to the main camera. The main attraction here is that both the sensors feature optical image stabilisation, which is a first for any smartphone utilising dual cameras, and that guarantees optical stabilisation regardless of which lens you decide on using.
The S-Pen happens to be a feature unique to the Note series, and in this phone it comes with a few new tweaks. It does everything that the previous one did, but the changes come in the software side of things. The Translate feature now works with whole sentences, and the Screen-Off memo now allows you to write 100 pages of notes and pin them on the Always-On display. But the key new feature has to be the Live Messages. This feature lets you record the pen strokes as a short message, and turn them into animated GIFs, leaving you room to customise them, of course.
These are the five key features in the new Note besides the regular offerings of a Galaxy smartphone (such as tougher glass material, fast and wireless charging, extensive and expansive storage, supercharged batteries and impeccable software). All these features, old and new, come together to make the Note 8 rather formidable, future-proof and classy, but also super expensive at the same time.