The last Samsung Galaxy Note smartphone was the Galaxy Note 5. This year, it's expected Samsung will name its new device "Galaxy Note 7" to align it with the Galaxy S7 and iPhone 7, which is expected to be released in September. Some of the rumored specs of Samsung's new phablet include a 5.7-inch 2560x1440 display, Snapdragon 820 processor, 6GB RAM, 12MP rear camera, 4000mAh battery, and Android 6.0 Marshmallow. Will the Note 7 be your next smartphone?
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We’re going to talk about the Samsung Galaxy Note 7. Before you call me out on not knowing how to count to 10 (let alone 7), Samsung’s expected to ditch the 6 numbering and jump straight to 7; which will help it align with the Galaxy S7 as well as the iPhone 7, which is expected to be released in September. So the Note 6 will be the Note 7.
In terms of hardware, the Note 7 should feature some refined design changes but nothing too substantial. We’re still going to have the Gorilla Glass front and back cover as well as the aluminum sides. So that’s going to stay the same, the build materials are going to stay the same. But in terms of how it feels, that might be tweaked a little bit. Maybe it’ll have slightly more rounded edges, we don’t really know yet. There’s not a whole lot of rumors there. But Samsung is expected to be experimenting with the fingerprint sensor, a new patent actually suggests a new square-shaped home button that also features a fingerprint sensor. Samsung is reportedly also considering placing the sensor on the rear of the phone but I doubt that.
We would likely see an iris scanner (for real this time). It’s been rumored for many years now but the latest rumor suggests that we will actually see an iris scanner. There will be a USB-C port on the rear of the phone, which will be a first for Samsung; the first of many for Samsung. And with that USB-C port, we’re going to find the charging 3.0 technology and there will be fast wireless charging as well.
There were some rumors a few months back suggesting we would see a pressure-sensitive display but the latest rumors suggests that we actually will not see a pressure-sensitive display unfortunately; maybe next year. We should see a display that is curved on either sides though, which is interesting with the inclusion of the S Pen. The Galaxy Note edge was released a couple of years ago and if you remember, that phone had one curved edge. One side of the phone was curved, which was kind of awkward. So the Note 7 is likely to have both sides curved just like the Galaxy S7 edge.
But Samsung’s Touchwiz software has some new features up its sleeve. It’s actually going to be called Grace now so you can kiss Touchwiz goodbye. It’s going to be widgets heavy with various transparent folder effects. The most interesting feature is the ability to swipe up on an icon to view a window that previews more information. Press and hold on a quick access toggle on the notification tray and a window will pop up with various options for you to act on. For example, you can change the flashlight brightness and change the Wi-Fi networks, all without ever really leaving the notification tray.
I think the most disappointing news is the fact that the Note 7 will not be running Android N out of the box. Android N, which will be called Android Nougat, is still in beta and will be released later this summer. And the Note 7’s going to be released sooner than later so it’s going to miss that cutoff point. But we can expect the device to be updated to Android N maybe a few months later.
As for what’s under the hood, what is powering the Note 7? It’s likely we will see the Snapdragon 820 quad-core processor return at least here in the US. But there are some rumors suggesting that we might see the Note 7 with the 821 processor as well as the international variant, the Exynos 8893 processor. The Galaxy S7 and the S7 edge feature 4GB of RAM and it’s no secret that the next wave of flagships will feature 6GB of RAM. We’ve already seen 6GB of RAM in the OnePlus 3 so we can expect a RAM increase in Samsung’s next flagship, which will cost twice as much. What about the cameras? The Note 7 is expected to feature a 12MP rear-facing camera sensor with dual-Pixel autofocus technology and will be paired with a 5MP front-facing camera sensor.
Since this is a Note device, we can expect the S Pen to make a return. I mean it has to, it’s a Note device so it wouldn’t be a Note device without the S Pen. But it’s being reported that there won’t be a ton of fundamental software changes to the S Pen. We’ll still find all the basic functionality and I’m sure Samsung will sprinkle in some new features here and there. I think it’s impressive to think that we’ll have a Note device with an IP68 water-resistance rating so yes it will have IP68 water-resistance that means that the slot for the S Pen is going to be sealed off from water. It’s going to be sprayed with a nano coating. I don’t know why but I think that’s going to be pretty cool. It’s going to be pretty cool how Samsung will be able to do that.
With all the high end specs mentioned, the Note 7 is going to be one of the most expensive smartphones on the market coming in at around $800 off-contract, kind of similar to the S7 and the S7 edge when they first launched. You’ll have the option to buy the Note 7 in black, silver or blue. And it looks like you’ll be able to buy the phone on August 15th, give or take.