Here are the 11 must-knows about Samsung's latest flagship.
The South Korean electronics giant is all set to conquer the premium smartphone market after the Note 7 fiasco last year.
Stepping up the heat on its nearest rival Apple in the premium smartphone category, Samsung Galaxy Note 8 -- worth ₹67,900 -- was launched quietly in India this afternoon, even as the Cupertino-based Apple will celebrate iPhone's 10th anniversary with a big bang at its $5 billion spaceship-like campus in California.
But for the moment, the Galaxy Note 8 is hogging all the spotlight with bells and whistles that are worth your attention.
So, what does Samsung's newest flagship sport that is worth Rs 68k?
1. To begin with, it sports 12 MP rear dual cameras, both equipped with optical image stabilisation, and ones that shoot pics at f/1.7. Basically, both OIS and smaller aperture help get great low-light photographs and the always-sought bokeh effect (the smaller the aperture, greater is the light that falls on the sensor helping blur the background and allows more light on the sensor).
2. The front camera too is no pushover either with 8 MPs (f/1.7 autofocus) for clicking those sexy/awkward (take your pick) pouts.
3. The S-Pen that Samsung introduced with the Note 2, is jazzed up to take quick notes, send live messages, select pics smartly, read memos, create creative (animated) gifs, and make notes without unlocking the Note 8 (earlier introduced in Note 5).
4. On the design front, Samsung continues with its 'Infinity Display' that not only easily fits into your hand and is optimised for one-hand use, but also offers more of an edge-to-edge wider view.
5. The bezel-less 6.3" Gorilla Corning 5 screen offers a quad HD display: basically higher resolution, that is, 4k resolution for greater clarity.
6. While Samsung's homegrown voice assistant Bixby did make its mark with the Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+, Samsung is yet to make it fully operational for Indian users as 'some Bixby features may not be currently available in India' notes its website.
7. The memory specs are quite impressive too: not that anything less would justify the 'flagship' tag for the Note 8: 6GB RAM, 64GB internal storage (expandable up to 256GB) and 3300 mAh battery.
8. Also, given Samsung's policy of going with the home-made Exynos chipset for EMEA countries and Qualcomm's Snapdragon for China and America, the Note 8 too sticks to the basics. So, you have the Exynos 8895 Octa chipset for Note 8's that will sell in EMEA countries and Qualcomm MSM8998 Snapdragon 835 for USA and China.
9. The phone will sell for the launch price of ₹67,900, but as has been the experience of Indian users, the street price is always a tad cheaper than the launch price and as time progresses the Note 8 too will be available for prices lower than its launch price (one wonders how much the next wave of iPhones will be priced at launch tonight, India time).
10. Like most flagships from the Samsung stable, the Note 8 is IP 68 certified, that is, dust and water resistant for about 30 minutes at 1.5 metres depth.
11. And before we forget, we would like to have our own take on the position of the fingerprint scanner on the Note 8.
Many observers have criticised the position of the fingerprint scanner on the rear of Note 8, just next to the dual cameras.
We believe, Samsung has found the sweetest spot one could ever find for a fingerprint scanner, and is much more user-friendly than those smartphones having the scanner in the front.
Single-handed use of the Note 8 would easily help unlock the phone using this feature as the forefinger of your holding hand directly reaches the scanner instead of holding it in your left hand and then pressing your right hand's forefinger against the fingerprint scanner placed on the phone's front.
Lead photograph: Tabatha Fireman/Getty images