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Samsung hits the right Note with the powerful Galaxy Note8 smartphone

A year ago Samsung’s Note smartphone brand was all but dead when the troubled Note7 was discontinued after explosive battery issues. But now it has been reborn after Samsung unveiled the Galaxy Note8 in New York.

The Note7 issues cost Samsung billions and tarnished its otherwise spotless brand.

But Samsung has shown it isn’t a company that gives up easily and the new Note8 is proof.

It is a powerful new smartphone aimed at the user who wants to get things done – whether that’s completing tasks and juggling documents, running two apps side by side, consuming the latest content or capturing high-quality images.

The device has a 6.3-inch Quad HD+ Super AMOLED Infinity Display – similar to what we saw with the Galaxy S8 and S8+ – but slightly wider at 7.5 cm to allow more writing space with the improved S Pen.

The Note8 can be pre-ordered from tomorrow and will go on sale in Australia on September 22 for $1,499. It will be available in two colours – Midnight Black and Maple Gold.

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Customers who pre-order the device between August 25 and September 21 will also receive a Samsung Convertible Fast Wireless Charger valued at $119.

TECH GUIDE’S HANDS-ON LOOK AT THE SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE8

Australian customers who are worried they may break the Note8 Infinity Display, can rest easy with the introduction of Samsung’s Screen Assure program.

Anyone ordering the Note8 between August 25 and October 31, 2017 will be given one free screen repair within the first 12 months of receiving the device.

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“The Galaxy Note8 builds on features that Samsung has pioneered across our flagship Galaxy devices including, Infinity Display, fast and wireless charging capabilities, biometric security, as well as the much-loved Note S Pen which provides a beautiful handwriting experience.” said Garry McGregor, Director, IT and Mobile, Samsung Electronics Australia.

“We believe innovation only becomes meaningful when it can create a purposeful outcome for our customers, which is why we always focus on improving the features that our customer love most while at the same time pioneering experiences that breaks new ground for our smartphone offering.”

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The Note8 includes a range of new and enhanced features and multitasking capabilities to make it one of the most powerful smartphones ever produced.

The larger Infinity Display provides a lot of room for multitasking and enjoying high quality content.

Samsung’s Note8 also includes a dual lens camera system – the first time this feature has been included on a Samsung mobile device.

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INFINITY DISPLAY

The Note8 Infinity Display provides the same edgeless look to the display that we saw with the Galaxy S8 but with Mobile HDR, a resolution of 2960 x 1440 and 521ppi (pixels per inch).

That added screen space comes in handy to run two apps at the same time. This is made even easier with a new feature called App Pair which allows users to group apps in saved pairs and launch them from the App Edge.

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For example, you might include Google Maps with your music player app when you’re driving so you know where you’re going and have access to your songs without having to switch between apps.

CAMERA

The dual pixel camera aboard the Note8 has two lenses – a wide-angle and a telephoto – with optical image stabilisation for both.

Each has a 12-megapixel resolution with 2X optical zoom and up to 10X digital zoom.

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A new feature for the camera is Live Focus which gives users the ability to control the depth of field and preview it before taking the photo. It’s even possible to adjust the bokeh effect after you’ve taken the picture.

There is also a Dual Capture mode with both rear cameras taking pictures at the same time – one a close-up shot from the telephoto lens and the other a wide-angle to show even more of your image.

S PEN

It wouldn’t be a Galaxy Note smartphone without the S Pen and with the Note8 it is better than ever before.

It now has a pen tip diameter of 0.7mm giving it the same feel as a regular pen along with 4.096 levels of pressure.

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Now you can do even more with the S Pen including lock screen memos that can run for up to 100 pages without unlocking the device.

So when taking the S Pen out while the device is locked, users can write shopping and to-do lists and pin them to their home screen.

It is now possible to edit these lock screen memos or cross items off the list.

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You can also create and send Live Messages and save them as animated GIFs.

One of the new features for the S Pen is translation. You can hover the S Pen over an entire sentence for a translation in up to 71 languages instantly. It can convert amounts of money to the relevant currency.

POWER AND PERFORMANCE

The Samsung Galaxy Note8 is powered by two 2.3Ghz 64-bit octa-cores in a 10nm processor with 6GB RAM and expandable memory through the microSD card slot that can increase storage by up to 256GB.

Note8 also boasts 4G LTE Cat 16 support which means it’s capable of speeds of up to 1Gbps on compatible networks.

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SAMSUNG DEX

The powerful Samsung Galaxy Note8 is compatible with Samsung DEX which was introduced with the Galaxy S8.

This means it will support the Note8 and create a stunning desktop experience.

Users can extend the device’s already impressive capabilities to a larger monitor screen and run several applications at once, watch YouTube videos and edit documents – all at the same time.

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WATER AND DUST RESISTANT

The Note8 has an IP68 water and dust resistance rating so you can take your Note8 just about anywhere and even write on the screen when it’s wet.

BATTERY

Samsung has paid particular attention to the battery for obvious reasons.

After the issues with the Note7, Samsung put in place an eight-point Battery Safety Check – the most thorough in the industry.

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The Note8 has 3300mAh battery with fast charging through the device’s USB-C port as well as wireless charging that’s compatible with WPC and PMA.

PRICING AND AVAILABILITY

The Samsung Galaxy Note8 will be priced at $1499 and available to pre-order from August 25 before going on sale on September 22.

Customers who pre-order will receive a free Samsung Convertible Fast Wireless Charger valued at $119, redeemable through Samsung.

* Stephen Fenech travelled to New York as a guest of Samsung

About Stephen Fenech

Stephen is the Tech Guide editor and one of Australia's most respected tech journalists. He is a regular on radio and TV talking about the latest tech news, products and trends.

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