Okay, first of all, I will be the first to admit that I’m not great with titles. I’m just not. This title is a huge “Well, duh,” title because, let’s face it, every phone that ever comes out could be a hit or miss, but hear me out on this one. As I go over leaks and rumors released over the past few weeks in anticipation for Samsung’s event tomorrow, I can’t help but strongly feel that the odds are 50/50 in regarding this year’s Note.
First of all, I think the Note will continue to draw people in because of the one thing that makes it stand out so well from other smartphones on the market: the included, docked stylus. While the Note is notorious for being the first real “phablet” on the market (a phone with a 5-inch screen or greater), which is part of what it made it so controversial (and successful) in the first place, over the years many other phones have followed suit; in fact, it’s rarer to find a phone that isn’t phablet sized these days. The Note is no longer synonymous with the term “phablet”, but is still the phone most people think of when it comes to being a master of productivity thanks to the inclusion of the S-Pen and all of its associated features.
The Note has also classically been Samsung’s way of showcasing its most powerful components and features. However, its Galaxy S series, which is released earlier in the year, has slowly caught up to the Note. This rang particularly true last year when Samsung introduced both the Galaxy S6 edge+ and Note 5. Both had the same screen size, processor, RAM, internal storage capacities, rear and front-facing cameras, and even the same battery. The main differences between the two would be that the Edge featured an edged display, and the Note had the S-Pen. That’s about it.
But while both were extremely powerful devices, they lacked two features that Samsung loyalists have grown to love about Samsung before last year: microSD card slots and removable batteries. The fact that both devices (but particularly the Note) lacked both of these seemed to have caused a lot of people to dismiss the Note 5 entirely.
Fortunately, like this year’s Galaxy S7 duo, the Note 7 is set to bring back the microSD card slot at least. No leaks or rumors suggest that the removable battery will make a return anytime soon.
The Note 7 also, according to rumors, negates the need to choose between a non-existent S7 edge+ or a Note 7, as this year’s Note looks to have a pair of edges of its own. This is good news for people who were torn between edge features or a stylus; bad news for people who aren’t fan of Samsung’s signature edged display.
Without a direct rivalry between it and a Galaxy S7 edge+, it would seem like the Note would have smooth sailing this year. However, rumors still point out that the Note doesn’t seem to have much more to offer over the S7 Edge other than a slightly larger display with a 5.7-inch screen, a stylus, an iris scanner, a larger battery, and a USB Type-C port. Rumors suggest that the S7 Edge and Note 7 will share the same processor, RAM, internal storage amounts, and camera.
But as little as the Note 7 will seemingly offer over the S7 Edge, they’re still fairly significant changes. USB Type-C, the “future” of most smartphone chargers, should have been introduced in the S7 earlier this year. An iris scanner and a larger battery could be great implementations for the device – I personally find that fingerprint sensors are preferable, but there is a vocal audience out there that express excitement over iris scanners. Hopefully the larger battery (rumored at 3,500 mAh) will put the Note ahead of the S7 Edge’s already good battery life, although the slight increase in screen size might not make it a significant difference. Also, the S-Pen means the world to a lot of productivity users.
If I had to guess, I would say that the Note 7 will at least receive more positivity than the Note 5 did. The removal of both the microSD card and removable battery in one fell swoop last year really killed it for a lot of people. An edged display (with little indication of a non-edged option) could be a deal-breaker for some, but sometimes I think we underestimate how much power the Note has simply because of the S-Pen. Either way, we only have one more day to wait before we find out.
With that in mind, readers, what are your predictions on the Note 7 before its big reveal tomorrow? Are you hyped for this year’s Note, or are you keeping expectations low? Let us know what you hope to see in the comments below!