Galaxy Note 8 Arrives Boasting Dual-Lens Camera, Better Security

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Galaxy Note 8 Arrives Boasting Dual-Lens Camera, Better Security

After months of speculation, rumors and reports, Samsung unveiled its Galaxy Note 8 at the Unpacked event in New York City Aug. 23. Samsung’s latest handset features a design that’s nearly identical to the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+. It also runs on the same operating system—Android Nougat—and runs on the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor as its predecessors. But the Galaxy Note 8 is different in a few ways, such as an included enhanced S Pen stylus, bigger screen and, perhaps most importantly, a new dual-lens camera. This eWEEK slide show digs into the Galaxy Note 8’s features and discuss how it compares to the Galaxy S8 line as well as its chief competitor, Apple’s iPhone.

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A Familiar Design

The Samsung Galaxy Note 8 took its design cues from the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+. The Galaxy Note 8’s screen nearly entirely covers the device’s face and curves on either side, providing more viewing area than a flat panel. Also, the fingerprint sensor is located on the rear next to the cameras.

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Serious Power Inside

The Galaxy Note 8 runs on an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor, the same chip found in the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+. The smartphone comes with 6GB of onboard memory. The chip and the memory together should deliver a decent user experience.

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Users Won’t Find Oreo

Android Oreo, the latest version of Google’s mobile operating system, won’t be included in the Galaxy Note 8. Rather, the device will come with Android 7.1.1 Nougat. Like the Galaxy S8 line, the Galaxy Note 8 will run on the Samsung software skin, providing access to the company’s many apps.

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A Dual-Camera First

The Galaxy Note 8 is the first from Samsung to feature a dual-camera array on the rear panel. One camera is a wide-angle 12-megapixel dual-pixel lens, and the second is a 12-megapixel telephoto lens for more dynamic pictures. The camera has 2x optical zoom and up to 10x digital zoom.

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No Storage Concerns

On the storage side, the Galaxy Note 8 should deliver. The device starts with 64GB of storage, and models with 128GB and 256GB will be available. Additionally, the Galaxy Note 8 has a microSD card slot that allows for a card capacity of up to 256GB.

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The S Pen Gets a Boost

As expected, the Galaxy Note 8 comes with the S Pen stylus, which has been enhanced with a finer tip and better pressure sensitivity. There’s also an enhanced S Pen for Business that has additional features such as the ability to annotate documents and photos and take secret notes when the screen is off.

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Some Notes on the Battery

Samsung emphasized the Galaxy Note 8’s battery is safe, thanks to its new process to test and ensure proper functionality. The Galaxy Note 8’s 3,300mAh battery pack supports wireless charging and will last up 22 hours during continuous talk time, according to Samsung.

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A Bunch of Security Features

The Galaxy Note 8 comes loaded with myriad security features, such as a fingerprint sensor on back of the device near its rear-facing camera. Also included is an iris scanner for those preferring that biometric option. The device even supports facial recognition.

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A Galaxy Note 7 Surprise

Samsung isn’t turning its back on Galaxy Note 7 owners with the Galaxy Note 8. Galaxy Note 7 owners can turn in their current smartphone for an up to $425 discount on the Galaxy Note 8. Samsung said the trade-in is available only to former Galaxy Note 7 owners who purchase the Galaxy Note 8 on Samsung.com.

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Pricing and Availability Notes

Samsung will accept preorders for the Galaxy Note 8 starting Aug. 24, and release is scheduled for Sept. 15. The device is available unlocked and can run on any carrier network. Pricing will vary depending on the carrier, with Verizon charging $960 and T-Mobile charging $930 for the device. But in general, users should expect to pay around $950.

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