As expected, Samsung officially unveiled its highly anticipated Galaxy Note 8 smartphone, a follow-up to the ill-fated Note7, here in New York City today. To further distance the Note 8 from the notoriety surrounding last year's Note7, which was banned from passenger planes after reports of the device's defective batteries catching fire and then recalled, Samsung is incentivizing former owners to give the Note 8 a shot.
Samsung is offering Note7 owners who lost their devices to the global recall up to $425 off the Note 8 when they trade in their current device. Many buyers may take Samsung up on its offer.
"I frankly think that Samsung is past the battery issues, as most consumers have forgotten (or forgiven them) for the battery failures in the Note7," said Jack E. Gold, principal analyst at J. Gold Associates. "As long as there are no major problems with the 8, it won't be an issue (my take is that 95-plus percent of consumers hold no negative feelings about it),” he added, noting that iPhones, e-cigarettes and hover boards have also been in the news of late for battery problems. "Lithium ion batteries are inherently dangerous, in any devices," he added.
Giving those users another reason to trade up, Samsung has stuffed the device with class-leading components and a 6.3-inch AMOLED screen (2,960 pixels by 1,440 pixels) that closely resembles the near-bezel-less look that gave the Galaxy S8 and S8+ their distinctive look when they were released earlier this year. A dual-camera setup on the device’s back features optical image stabilization on both the wide-angle and telephoto shooters, an industry first.
The included S Pen style is thinner this time around and supports more levels of pressure (4,096 levels), allowing users to add more details to their sketches. Inside, it contains up to 256GB of internal storage, 6GB of RAM and an eight-core, 10nm chip that provides processing speeds of up to 2.35GHz.
Buyers can further expand the device's storage capacity by an additional 256GB with a microSD card. Travelers and those who want to use both a personal and business number on a single smartphone may appreciate the dual-SIM version of the new Note 8.
Taken altogether, Samsung's Galaxy Note 8 offers consumers and business users a compelling reason to register their preorders starting Aug. 24 or pick one up when it hits store shelves on Sept. 15, according to Gold.
"It's an upgrade for the many consumers who are Note fans, and it has business features with connection to DeX that makes it more attractive to enterprise, particularly those verticals where data capture via forms is used," said Gold. The DeX dock, introduced alongside the Galaxy S8 earlier this year, turns the Note 8 into a desktop with keyboard, mouse and monitor support.
"The screen is slightly bigger but without making the device too big itself due to the bezel-less design," continued Gold. "And the pen not only adds some very nice capability in marking up texts (should be very popular with the SMS crowd), but the taking notes on the dark screen is also a nice feature that is highly useful."