Samsung Galaxy Note 'Phablet' Debuting Aug. 29 in Berlin

Samsung has confirmed that it will unveil its next Galaxy Note at a Berlin event Aug. 29. Rumors suggest it will feature a larger, 5.5-inch display.

Samsung plans to introduce its next Galaxy Note tablet at a Samsung Mobile Unpacked event in Berlin Aug. 29, a spokesperson for the company told Reuters. The unveiling will come two days before the IFA Consumer Electronics Unlimited show kicks off in the same city.

The South Korean media has speculated that the next Note will feature an unbreakable, 5.5-inch display with a resolution of 1680 by 1050. This would be a bump up from the current Note€™s 5.3 inches, which have earned it the moniker of €œphablet€€”half phone, half tablet.

On Aug. 2, Sam Mobile also furthered the rumors of the Galaxy Note 10.1. Based on what it says is a leaked Samsung service model, the device will run Android Ice Cream Sandwich, with an imminent update to Jelly Bean, and a 1.4GHz quad-core processor€”just like the Samsung Galaxy S III. As of Aug. 3, some retailers are accepting preorders for tablet; Negri Electronics has priced it at $749.50.

The distinguishing feature between Samsung€™s Galaxy Tab tablet line and the Notes are the latter€™s built-in S Pen, a modern take on the stylus that lets users take and email handwritten notes, annotate any type of document or get artistic. Samsung T-Mobile has promoted the idea that, thanks to the Note, gone are the days of the cocktail napkin brainstorm.

The timing of the new phablet€™s release is widely thought to have been arranged to intentionally stymie the new iPhone. Samsung timed the release of its Galaxy S III for the summer lull before the iPhone€™s fall introduction and fourth-quarter release, and the new Note should likewise help to deter sales of a few more iPhones.

Since the introduction of its Galaxy device line, Samsung has proven itself to be Apple€™s No. 1 competitor, both in the smartphone and tablet markets. During the second quarter, Samsung set a new quarterly smartphone shipment record for a single quarter, moving more than 50 million units, IDC reported July 26. Meanwhile, Apple, while growing 27.5 percent year-over-year, shipped 26 million iPhones€”a dip from the quarter before, as consumers held out for the upcoming iPhone 5.

While Samsung has trounced Apple in the smartphone space€”and during the first quarter even unseated Nokia, ending its 14 years of dominance€”Apple still retains the lead in tablets.

During the second quarter, Apple blew past its holiday-timed shipment record, moving 17 million iPads, compared with 11.8 million the quarter before and 9.2 million a year ago.

Samsung€”again pulling ahead of the Android pack and proving itself Apple€™s real competition, shipped 2.4 million tablets, up from 1.1 million a year ago. Amazon, in third place, shipped 1.3 million during the second quarter, while fourth-place Asus didn€™t break a million.

In an Aug. 2 report, IDC analysts said that, come the holiday season, the tablet market may in fact be so crowded as to be confusing to consumers€”which could work out in Apple€™s favor.

€œConsumers baffled by the differences between Amazon and Google versions of Android, or [Microsoft] Windows 8 and Windows RT,€ wrote Bob O€™Donnell, an IDC program vice president, €œmay well default to the market leader, Apple.€

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