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It’s finally here. In the immortal words of Teri Hatcher, and I’m paraphrasing, the Samsung Galaxy Note8 is real and it’s spectacular. Samsung is daring us to do bigger things complete with a dedicated Bixby button that probably still can’t be remapped, an upgraded camera system, and the biggest Infinity Display to date.

As has become tradition these last several years, the Samsung Galaxy Note8 borrows much of its inspiration from the Galaxy S8 and S8+, tossing in the S Pen for good measure. It gets a similar Infinity Display, 6.3-inch QHD Super AMOLED (2960 x 1440 pixels) in this case, but the curved edges aren’t quite as curvy as its S8/S8+ counterparts. This is meant to provide a larger surface area for you to use your S Pen.

The final design of the new phablet aligns perfectly with the leaked renders we saw some time back. The physical home button is gone, as expected, replaced by the pressure sensitive virtual button and the fingerprint sensor is moved to the back next to the cameras.

Yes, cameras. The Note8 comes equipped with dual 12MP cameras on the back, thankfully without a protruding camera hump. One is a wide angle and the other is telephoto. This allows for some fun faux bokeh effects, especially since you can capture a photo on both cameras at the same time. Based on some early impressions at the event, this camera setup is stellar.

As far as the S Pen goes, we don’t get the rumored vibrating S Pen, but we do get something called Live Message where your doodle becomes an animated GIF you can send across whatever messaging platform you want. Apps Edge also lets you launch two apps at the same time in split-screen mode and the Screen Off Memo now lets you take up to 100 pages of notes for when you’re feeling especially verbose.

The spec sheet is a little less exciting. It’s not that it’s underwhelming; it’s that the Galaxy Note8 is exactly what we expect it to be. It’s got a Snapdragon 835 (Exynos Octa-core for international markets), 6GB of RAM, 64 GB of storage (128GB/256GB models in some markets), microSD expansion slot, 3300mAh battery, IP68 certification, dual wireless charging, USB-C and Android 7.1.1 Nougat out of the box.

The Samsung Galaxy Note8 is set for release on September 15th. In Canada, we get the Midnight Black and Deepsea Blue models, whereas Americans will get the Midnight Black and Orchid Grey variants. Some international markets will get treated to the Maple Gold edition. Word is you can expect to pay $1,299 CAD outright or around $550 to $750 up front on a contract.


If you’re up here in Canada, the pre-order bonus is a Samsung Wireless Charger Convertible and a Samsung 128GB microSD card. And if you were rocking a recalled Note7, you can probably get the Note8 on a discount if you followed the prescribed instructions.

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