Since its inception some half a decade ago with the first Galaxy Note in 2011, Samsung’s Galaxy Note series has gone from strength to strength with an ever increasing array of capabilities and features, all defined by its unique stylus that have made it the de facto business phablet in the smartphone world. Now, in less than a week, the Galaxy Note9, Samsung’s heir apparent to the phablet throne is going to make its global debut in New York.
To commemorate the upcoming launch of the Note9, Samsung has just released a rather novel teaser that is a walk down memory lane that showcases how the Note series has grown from its first incarnation to the immense powerhouse that will be making its way to the market about a week from now.
The progenitor of the line, the first original Galaxy Note made its global debut at IFA Berlin in 2011 and cemented the reputation of the phone as a solid business phablet. For its time, it was surprisingly powerful with one of the largest displays on a phone of its era at 5.3-inches while packing a now quaint 1.4GHz dual-core processor, 1GB RAM, either 16GB or 32GB of storage as well as what would become the mainstay of the series – an integrated stylus.
The original Note proved so popular that Samsung debuted its successor the Galaxy Note2 the following year at IFA 2012. Launched with the slogan of ‘Be Creative. Be Different’, the Note 2 rolled out with a 5.5-inch HD Super AMOLED panel, either an Exynos or Snapdragon CPU depending on region, double the amount of RAM at 2GB and, depending on region 16GB/32GB or 64GB of memory. New features added to it are considered commonplace today including the Air View and Quick Command modes. For its time, the S Pen stylus was immensely responsive with 1,024 levels of sensitivity. Needless to say it, like the original Note, sold like hotcakes enough that they debuted the Galaxy Note 3 the following year.
The Galaxy Note3 dialled everything up a notch further with an even larger 5.7-inch 1080P display, a 4K-video capture capable 13-MP rear camera, a faux leather backplate and some hefty hardware under the hood including either a 2.3GHz Snapdragon 800 CPU or an Exynos 5420 processor, 3GB RAM and up to 64GB of storage. The stylus also had additional tricks added to it, making it a more potent business phone with handwriting recognition and even a robust means of managing multiple instances of an app.
The Galaxy Note4 bumped things up with an impressive set of stats for its generation with one of the first Quad HD Super AMOLED displays in a massive 5.7-inch size and a crisp 515ppi, either a Snapdragon 805 or Exynos processor, 4GB RAM and a larger, better 16-MP rear camera with 4K video capture capability as well as OIS for judder free snaps.
The Galaxy Note5 was an interesting diversion from the lineage as it was one of the only examples to have non-expandable memory but to compensate it had up to 128GB of storage in some variants. The Note5 has held up pretty well considering its age and is still immensely capable with a 5.7-inch Quad HD Super AMOLED display, 4GB RAM and a 16-MP camera with an f/1.9 aperture, OIS and 4K video capture. It was also one of the first Samsung phones to have a Screen Off Memo function, allowing you to doodle stuff onscreen by simply ejecting the stylus without having to turn the display on.
Currently, the Galaxy Note8 remains latest and most powerful phablet from Samsung’s foundries on account of its humongous 6.3-inch Quad HD+ Super AMOLED Infinity display that’s currently one of the largest displays in service from Samsung, a chart-topping 6GB RAM and a rear dual camera array that had 2x optical zoom, something of a rarity on smartphones on account of the complexity involved in miniaturising a movable lens small enough to fit in a phone. It’s also one of the first in the line to eschew a home button entirely while moving the fingerprint reader to the rear.
Now, we stand on the cusp of a new era as Samsung’s latest addition to the line is about to make its grand appearance. A lot has been bandied about the upcoming Galaxy Note9 and we’ve seen plenty of leaks about its capabilities which look set to define it as one of the most powerful phones in the market in all the ways that matter. Teaser videos have been released hinting at enhanced storage capabilities, a beefed up battery for extended endurance in the field and, if it follows the usual playbook, a powerful processor that will likely be the Exynos 9810 currently used on the Galaxy S9 and S9+ along with a rear dual camera array that will also integrate, in all likelihood, the S9’s Dual Aperture tech along with optical zoom from the S9+. Still, we won’t have long to wait for Unpacked and we’ll keep you apprised of the details as they happen.