It’s almost time. Sure, a number of handsets are already vying for the title of 2016’s best smartphone, but the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is just around the corner and getting ready to take things to the next level. Shaping up as the next big handset release and potential toppler of the iPhone 6S and HTC 10, the big brother to the brilliant Samsung Galaxy S7 is being tipped as a work-centric powerhouse that will pair stylus-packing practicality with camera panache.
Unlike its predecessor, the Note 5 follow-on is also set to hit the UK, with the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 release date expected to bring a massive 5.7-inch smartphone with a 4K screen, the new Android N OS and unrivalled 6GB of RAM. What happened to the Note 6? Well, it’s been suggested Samsung is moving away from traditional counting to help its flagship stylus better fall inline with the S7.
With just a couple of months left before the Note 6/7 arrives, here’s everything you need to know about Sammy’s next flagship phablet, from the Galaxy Note 7 release date to predicted pricing.
Samsung Galaxy Note 7 release date: Keep September free
As important as the Galaxy Note 7 release date is, where the thing is going to drop is equally key. Having surprised and disappointed many last year by failing to bring the Note 5 to the UK – seriously, guys, what was with that? – it now appears that us Brits won’t be missing out on the Note 7. The Galaxy Note 7 release date is going international.
So, when will it land? Well, claims that the handset could drop in July aside Android N, the next iteration of Google’s mobile OS, have been gaining traction. We’d suggest taking these with a sizeable pinch of salt for now though. The Galaxy S7 is currently bossing it as the best smartphone money can buy, and Samsung has yet to stray from an IFA unveiling for its flagship Note phones. As such we can’t see the company breaking with tradition in 2016.
You’ll want to keep an eye on the Berlin-based trade show then if you’re excited for the Note 7’s impending release. Sure, with the show set to run between September 2 and 7 – and press days expected to see new devices drop on September 1 – it will land within a matter of days of the upcoming iPhone 7 and Note-rivalling iPhone 7 Plus, but Samsung’s no longer the underdog in these head-to-head Apple battles.
An IFA release isn’t set in stone, however. Tipsters have also pointed to a mid-August unveiled, in the US at least, with the week of August 15 been lined up as a potential launch window according to reputed leaker Evan Blass.
It’s unlikely the handset will have the launch stage all to itself though. An Apple Watch 2 rivalling Samsung Gear S3 smartwatch and new iPad-rivalling tablets are also tipped to make an autumn appearance.
Samsung Galaxy Note 7 design: Slim, slick and splash proof
Here’s hoping you like big handsets, because, like its predecessor, the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is shaping up as a bit of a beast. Potentially an even bigger beast. Contrasting reports claim it will either retain its predecessor’s 5.7-inch form or jump to a Nexus 6P rivalling 6-inch footprint. These oversized dimensions are set to echo the metal-framed, glass-backed looks of its little brother, the S7, because, well, when you’ve created one of the best looking phones going, why ruin it?
While questions still surround the phone’s size, one design feature that the Note 7 looks certain to take from its smaller sibling is the S7’s impressive dust and water resistant capabilities. Like the S7 and stunning S7 Edge, reported insider sources have claimed the Note 7 will be IP-68 certified. This means it will be able to survive being submerged in 1.5 metres of water for up to 30 minutes without succumbing to a watery demise.、
The design difference that will really set the Note 7 apart from the masses, however, is its incorporated stylus. Slotting into a cutout in the base of the device (we’re unsure how Samsung is going to keep this waterproof), this finger-replacing accessory will enhance the handset’s user options.
As well as the traditional handwriting recognition and annotation options, the Note 6’s stylus will give it the ability to perform more business-centric tasks and even touch up photos, because not only is it big, but this phone’s going to be seriously powerful too.
Samsung Galaxy Note 7 specs: All the power
Those after a high-end handset with plenty of grunt won’t be disappointed with the Samsung Galaxy Note 7. Well, according to the latest leaks, that is. Early reports have suggested that the handset won’t just be Sammy’s most powerful handset to date, but one of the most powerful smartphones ever released. Seriously, this thing could be about to make your laptop look sluggish.
As well as Qualcomm’s next-generation Snapdragon 823 processor, the Note 7 has been tipped to be one of the first phones to pack a massive 6GB of RAM – a massive step up on the current 4GB offering. With a number of internal storage options tipped to make an appearance, from 32GB to 256GB, it’s been suggested that the Note 7 will also echo the Galaxy S7 in adopting coveted microSD storage expansion.
On top of this, it’s been suggested that when you look at the Galaxy Note 7, the phone will be looking back. How? Well with an integrated Iris scanner. Building on the already solid fingerprint-friendly security measures, the heavily tipped iris scanner would map users’ eyes to unlock the device only when they are looking at it. Leaked handset fronts have seemingly confirmed this eye-tracking addition.
That’s not where the impressive specs are set to stop either. Further leaks have pegged the handset to rock a giant 4,200mAh battery – enough to get you well through a full day’s use between trips to the mains. And that’s before you get to the headline features…
Samsung Galaxy Note 7 screen: To 4K or not to 4K, that is the question
Size doesn’t matter – or so we’ve been told – but when it comes to phablets, the bigger the better, right? That’s certainly a mantra that Samsung looks to be following, with the majority of reports suggesting the Note 7 will pack a sizeable 5.7-inch panel. Others have tipped a 6-inch panel to make an appearance, but unless the handset’s got a dual-edged design like the S7 Edge we can’t see this happening.
Mammoth size aside, there’s much confusion surrounding exactly what skills the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 will possess. While a number of claimed insiders have suggested that the Note 7 will feature the same 2560 x 1440 pixel QHD Super AMOLED panel as its predecessor, others have suggested it will push smartphone screens on to the next level, echoing the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium in rocking a stunningly sharp 4K display.
OK, while a 4K screen would be certain overkill that our eyes can’t determine the benefits of, and one that will hit the battery, the prospect of this added image density is still a pretty exciting one, right?
Samsung Galaxy Note 7 camera: Get ready for something special
The Samsung Galaxy S7 and spinoff Galaxy S7 Edge host the best cameras in all the smartphone kingdom. Their 12-megapixel snappers aren’t just capable of capturing crisp, detailed shots either – when the lights come down they leave all the competition in their wake, expertly balancing the minimal light to produce sharp, noise and distortion-free images that leave many high-end dedicated cameras in their wake.
Seriously, if you were still clinging on to your dedicated compact camera, now’s the time to chuck it away (or be responsible and recycle it properly). Samsung would be crazy to look beyond this f/1.7, OIS-enhanced camera for the Note 7.
Despite a couple of reports suggesting the phablet is set to be bestowed with a 16-meg snapper, we can’t see this being the case. Samsung has just raised the bar for smartphone photography, and it’s going to stay at the top with the next Note.
Samsung Galaxy Note 7 price: Get your wallet ready for a beating
It’s a good thing the Galaxy Note 7 release date is still the better part of four months away, it will take you that long to scrape together enough pennies to actually afford one.
Obviously, this far out from launch, official Note 7 prices are yet to be confirmed, but it’s a fair bet that this thing is going to be anything but affordable. The less specs impressive, stylus-bereft Galaxy S7 will already set your back £569 – the S7 Edge a wallet-crippling £639 – and the Note 7 is only going to be more expensive.
We’d suggest saving between £600 and £700 if you’re after a SIM-free Note 7 on day one.