Release Date: 9/15/2017
Colors: Orchid Gray, Midnight Black
Samsung has been one of the top leaders in the mobile department for a long time and for good reason. They continue to push their products with new ideas and reinvent them. They aren’t scared too as with every 2-3 generations we see an entirely different device. While the Note7 was a fantastic piece of hardware it was seriously flawed, and the Note8 is already a huge jump forward from that device. It shares similarities with the S8+ that was released earlier this year and that’s actually a good thing.
You will notice it looks identical to the S8+ outside of the more rectangle edges and the screen is a smidge bigger. It features the same galaxy black design and gorgeous Infinity Display. From this point, it seemed not much different than S8+ I had earlier so I wasn’t too surprised, but new owners upgrading from older phones will be more amazed.
It’s still quite a beautiful looking phone. However, the key feature of the Note series is the S-Pen. It hasn’t changed at all from the Note7 and that’s not a problem at all. It still feels light and easily fits in the hand. The Bixby button is located a little further down, but if you hated it on the S8 you won’t like it here.
The Note8 does feature the same Snapdragon 835 chipset as the S8, but it has 6GB of RAM instead of 4 so apps do load a bit faster, but the biggest addition to this phone is the camera this time around. It features a 12MP dual lens setup that allows Bokeh focus for fantastic looking images. It’s the first time Samsung has had a dual camera setup on their phones, and it’s the best smartphone camera around, hands down.
Outside of what we saw with Nougat on the S8+ the UI is the same and there’s only one extra software feature and that would be Live Messages using the S-Pen. When you write you can choose between glowing, sparkly, or other inks that turn into a GIF as you write. It’s a neat feature and is a great piece to add to the Note8’s S-Pen suite. Bixby is also rather useful this time around with being a little more of an AI assistant and not an obtuse nuisance. Most people may still prefer OK Google over this, but I liked being able to hold down a physical button and ask Bixby questions. It just seemed faster and more reliable.
The screen is one of the main reason I stick with Samsung and they don’t disappoint with this screen being slightly better than the S8 screens. 4K content looks fantastic at 60FPS on here and playing games never looked better.
Bottom line, you can’t go wrong with the Note8, especially with the great battery life I have been getting. It has only needed one charge in a single day even on heavy use. From the camera, screen, S-Pen, larger RAM, and many other features packed in here, the Note8 is a beast of a phone and the best you can get on the market right now.