Galaxy Note 8 is still a thing, coming with 4K screen, Bixby

JC Torres - Jan 4, 2017
Galaxy Note 8 is still a thing, coming with 4K screen, Bixby

Why throw the baby out with the bathwater? That might be the very question crossing Samsung execs’ mind in trying to decide the fate of its Galaxy Note brand. After the utter mess that was the Galaxy Note 7, there have been repeated calls for dumping the Note brand, believing it to be cursed, or at least irreparably tainted. A single incident, however, may not be enough reason for Samsung to throw in the towel, and, at least according to an unnamed company official, it will still put out a Galaxy Note phablet later this year.

It’s really a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” kind of predicament for Samsung. On the one hand, the memories, even trauma, of the Galaxy Note 7 will definitely be still fresh in people’s minds after a year, which will cause no small amount of scrutiny and probably some fraudulent claims as well. But on the other hand, the Galaxy Note is undoubtedly an icon already, in a good way, helping define the phablet category and popularizing the stylus, despite Apple’s push.

For now, it seems that Samsung will tempt fate and test the market by still putting out a Galaxy Note 8 in the second half of the year. It would have learned its lessons by then, but that probably won’t stop the Korean tech giant from pushing the envelope again. The smartphone is believed to sport a 4K screen, a first in a Samsung smartphone. Although Sony came up with such a device first, with the Xperia Z5 Premium in late 2015, back then it looked more like a gimmick. Today, however, 4K on a smartphone might have a valid use case: virtual reality. VR headsets basically split the screen in half, so you’ll want to pack as many pixels in each half to make the illusion work better.

The Galaxy Note 8 will also feature Bixby, Samsung’s alleged smart AI assistant. That, however, might first debut in the Galaxy S8 in just a few months. If Samsung decides that the software is too new and too raw, it might delay it for a more experimental Note model. The phablet is also expected to have an improved iris scanner, which might be too late to make it to the Galaxy S8.

If the Galaxy Note 8 is a sure deal, the next question becomes “when?”. The last two models were unveiled around late August, but it might go easier on the device if Samsung delays it just a bit. But then it would collide with the iPhone 8, which will undoubtedly steal Samsung’s thunder. That is, unless Apple has decided to launch an iPhone 7s instead.

VIA: Business Korea

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