This is time of the year when the mobile world eagerly awaits for the new member of Samsung Galaxy Note family. As planned, Samsung unveiled the 6th generation flagship of Note series – Galaxy Note 7 on August 2, 2016. The mobility arena is abuzz with Note 7 related content since then. Such is the popularity of Note around the globe. Since it’s debut in 2011, Note series has been Samsung’s most successful, premium flagship brand. With Note series Samsung literally invented the “phablet” category of phones. When the original Galaxy Note was launched, phone display over 4 inches were rare. Suddenly a huge 5.5 inches high-end phone broke all the norms and a new category “phablet” based on “display size” was born (between “phone” and “tablet”). In general Note devices are considered as the best Samsung phones (quality-wise some even consider “Note” better than Galaxy S series).
This year Note 7 retained only two characteristic features of the Note family – big size (5.7 inches) and the S Pen. Otherwise it can easily be called as a clone of Galaxy S7 Edge sporting same hardware and design. Seriously, Samsung seems to have replicated the S7 Edge (hardware and design-wise) adding a little bigger body and S Pen only.
New (and “First-ever”) features in Samsung Galaxy Note 7
From last year’s Galaxy Note 5, Samsung directly jumped to “Note 7” (skipping the “Note 6”), probably to match the Galaxy S series numbering scheme. Anyway, whatever be the name (who cares?) the new Galaxy Note 7 is an amazing device to own and flaunt. Like its predecessors Note 7 also carries the legacy of introducing new features to the “Note” family. For example it is the first Note series device to have dual-curved-edge display (like S6 Edge+ and S7 Edge) – there are other “firsts” too. Here are few such features you will get in the latest and greatest “Note” ever –
1. The first Water proof and dust proof “Note”
Due to the S Pen and it’s storing space in the phone, older Note devices were not water proof. But this time Samsung decided to make the Note 7 and S Pen completely water proof (can withstand 1.5 meter deep water for upto 30 minutes). Not only water, it is also dust-proof (IP68 certified)
2. The first-ever phone with Gorilla Glass 5 protection
Galaxy Note 7 is not only the first Note but also the first ever device to use the latest Gorilla Glass 5 coating (at both front display and back panel). Corning claims that the new Gorilla Glass can withstand drops from upto 1.5 meters (shoulder height) at a hard surface and is considerably more scratch resistant than Gorilla Glass 4.
3. First Samsung phone (and the first Note) with an Iris Scanner
Iris scanning is a new secure authentication method used in a few phones so far. Note 7 os the first Samsung device to use this advanced biometric method. Along with finger print scanner it adds an extra level of security to protect your phone data from prying eyes. For Iris scanning Samsung has added an extra dedicated camera sensor above the display (along-side the front camera) which can scan Iris even in dark low light conditions using infrared illumination.
4. Adjustable Display resolution
Galaxy Note 7 is the first Samsung phone to have this option of adjusting display resolution to save battery. This option is given under Battery – Power Saving Mode. You can toggle between the native QuadHD – Full HD – HD resolutions as per your choice.
5. Secure Folder
Samsung introduced this option for the very first time in Galaxy Note 7 (other existing and older devices are expected to get it via software update soon). Secret Folder is actually a secure space in the phone where you can store his/her private data protected by any of the available authentication methods (Iris, finger print, PIN or pattern). It is like having a second separate Gallery, Camera, Contacts, Email etc which are visible and accessible only to you. Secret Folder is powered by Samsung KNOX.
6. HDR video streaming support – Galaxy Note 7 is the first ever phone to support HDR video streaming via supported services like Amazon video, Netflix etc. Samsung has added a dedicated chip in Note 7 for this resource intensive function.
Other new features worth noting are –
7. Galaxy Note 7 is the first Samsung phone to have a “now-standard” USB Type-C port
8. It is also the first Samsung phone to have Blue light filter toggle (available under drop down notification shade also) to reduce eye strain under low-light conditions
9. Improved S Pen and Air Command functions
Not only making S Pen water/dust proof, Samsung has completely revamped it’s functionalities. The new S Pen has a thinner tip (only 0.7 mm thick in comparison to 1.6 mm of Note 5) and double the pressure sensitivity for a lot better results. Now you can also create GIF images using S Pen. To take notes quickly Samsung has added the “Screen Off Memo” function – no need to unlock the phone just take out the S SPen and start scribbling at the locked screen. Besides you can also capture any long article or image (scrollable) as a single file using Air Command – Screen Write – Scroll Capture. Thanks to water-proofing and higher pressure sensitivity, S Pen can be used even under water or when the screen is wet
10. Icon-pack support to change app icons
11. Improved Always On display function – now you can also set 3rd party app notifications at the Always On display
12. Note 7 is the first Samsung phone with a base (minimum) storage option of 64 GB (expandable with upto 256 GB micro SD card).
Update – Unfortunately after many reports of battery-bursts and fire-catching, Samsung recalled all the Note 7 units sold worldwide. Later they admitted a battery issue in the phablet and promised to ship the new “rectified” Note 7 in October. This scenario has disappointed many Samsung fans and will definitely affect the sale of Note 7.