Android Central

Update: Fresh images have now emerged showing the Note 8.0, its software and the S Pen in greater detail.

We've learned much about the Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 over the past week or so, from specs to a purported release date. Now we have what might be our first proper glimpse of the tablet itself out in the wild -- and it's packing a few surprises. In spy shots obtained by Italian outlet DDAY.it, we see an unknown Samsung tablet sporting a curved chassis similar to the Galaxy S3 and Note 2 -- a far cry from earlier Samsung tablet designs. The size of the tablet, and the "S Pen" holder shown in the bottom right in the pic above, would seem to confirm this as the Galaxy Note 8.0.

More surprising still is Samsung's apparent decision to eschew on-screen buttons in favor of a traditional menu, home and back setup. It's a break from usual Android tablet designs, though it could be argued that changes to Android's action bar in version 4.2 mean that on-screen controls are less important than they were back in the Honeycomb days.

We should also consider the possibility that this might not be the final Note 8.0 design. In the past, Samsung has craftily put out several pre-release versions of devices (like the Galaxy S3) in the hope of keeping the final design secret. Regardless, it's in Samsung's best interest, branding-wise, to make the Note 8.0 visually close to its smartphone line-up, and this kind of design certainly achieves that.

Previous rumors have the Galaxy Note 8.0 debuting at Mobile World Congress in late February ahead of a March launch. Reported specs include an 8-inch 1280x800 display, a 1.6GHz Exynos 4 Quad CPU, 2GB of RAM and TouchWiz'd Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. We'll be live in Barcelona next month to bring you full coverage of the Note 8.0 as it's announced.

Source: DDAY.it; via: SamMobile

 

Reader comments

'Galaxy Note 8.0' spotted in the wild, has traditional button setup

69 Comments

I was expecting something that looked like a slightly bigger Tab 2 7.0. Not a giant S3 or Note 2. Though I can think of two reasons this might be legitimate.

1. It's probably better shielded from Apple lawsuits since it resembles an iPad less than the existing tablet lines.

2. Phones have simply been a much bigger success than tablets for Samsung, so they are drawing their design language from the more successful phone side in hopes that consumers will make the connection and all those S3 owners will pick up a "matching" Note 8.0 over an iPad.

Unlike the nexus ten this will have Phone Capabilities and it comes with a bluetooth head set. Finally nice to see a tablet that can be used as a phone so you don't have to carry a phone and tablet. I hate small screens and would love a Tablet phone but I'm doubtful this will make it to the U.S. since carriers don't like phone-tablets

Agreed. Brand recognition is a good thing for Samsung.

The physical home button for an S-Pen driven device is questionable... though the Note II people out there would know best. I have an S3 and the Note 10.1 (love both!), but use the S-Pen to navigate the back, home, recent apps and notifications all the time. Having to go from pen the finger/thumb seems bulky.

I agree that it does seem odd for Samsung to be sticking to the physical home button. It'll be interesting to see how far into the future they stick to the same design; and if future versions of Android block the use of ANY physical buttons.

For me, it was kinda odd to switch from using my fingers to the S-Pen: I'm sure I would get used to it with time, though.

Internally, I Imagine it'll be extremely similar to the Note 2, 1.6QC Exynos with 2GB of RAM and a Mali GPU.

I don't care what their reasoning is, I am encouraged by this.

I would love to have a tablet with these buttons on the bezel instead of the waste of screen space that is the current onscreen design Google is pushing for.

I wasn't looking to replace my N7 before, but I'm a lot more interested now.

Further, if this is true, this is a good sign that additional GS phones will keep with the winning key layout and not move to the onscreen keys.

-Suntan

I absolutely agree! The one thing I hate most about my GS3 is that physical button. I have a 10.1" Note that I really like but was hoping for a similarly designed 8" version I could carry for work. I'm not interested in a 8" phablet! So disappointing.

Hear, hear! Having temporary use of a Galaxy phone atm, I can whole-heartedly say that PHYSICAL BUTTONS ARE RUBBISH!! Physical capacitive I can live with but that push-button thing is annoying as hell.

+1

The GS3 is not a good-looking piece of hardware, but blown up to 9 inches, it's exponentially worse.

Of course, there's a 100% chance that this thing has TouchWiz, so I wouldn't get it if it were glued to Heidi Klum's ass.

I disagree with the physical home key for a tablet. It's a pain in the neck to have a tablet have a button on the right or left side that you have to feel for when you have it in landscape mode. Additionally, when you do have it in landscape mode I don't what to have to choose if I want to use an onscreen control, or a physical control. My Controls should be in the same place no matter what direction I'm holding my device in EVERY TIME.

I don't really have a problem with physical buttons. I don't personally like it (though, reclaiming screen real estate is nice, less important on a tablet IMO).

What I don't like is the damn menu button. We're in the JB era now. For better or worse, stick to the damn Android standard 3 buttons. Or at least make it programmable so we can choose.

Compared to the many iPhones I've owned, and my Nexus 4, the GS3 is fairly decent build quality. The "plasticy" feel is no different than any other smartphone out there. I might be interested in this if Apple doesn't release a retina iPad mini with high end(not rehashed iPad 2) specs.

My GS3 build quality seems fine. Was there some known defect or something? The back may be plastic but the phone is so thin and the back snaps on so firmly that it feels solid.

I hate the physical home button! Been running AOKP on my S3 pretty much just for the custom virtual navbar with the home button remapped as a power only button which works great with using turning the phone on while lying on a flat surface.

This hasn't dissuaded my desire for this tablet at all. In fact, it's only piqued my interest even more. Can't wait!

Looks good. I love my GN2. I have been looking to replace my TF300T with a GN10.1. I love the s-pen & would love all my tablets to have that option. JellyBean on TouchWiz is beautiful.

Quite so. I had a GS3, coming from a Galaxy Nexus. JellyBean TouchWiz ran very smooth for me. I liked the animations & transitions. The way it handled folders was very nice. I really never understood the hate. Not if you have used a current gen. phone with TW/JB. Now on my Note 2, it is buttery & awesome. Quad 1.6, 2gb ram, huge battery & it looks great, to me.

Since it's styled like a phone, can you use it like a phone? Is there a dialer, mic and so forth?

Probably, but that's nothing new for Samsung tablets. The original 7-inch Galaxy Tab had an earpiece, mic and dialer app.

I have to admit I like onscreen buttons better on a tablet that you will use landscape a lot more often but I like capacitive buttons on a phone since they don't take up the already scarce screen space. No need to waste bezel on a phone. I would consider this device shown here to be a tablet even if it ends up having calling ability. Although I don't really care for the physical home button Samsung uses since you cannot use it as quickly as a capacitive button, especially with one hand. I get that they did it to emulate the success of the iPhone though and they sell like hotcakes so their design choices do seem to be working.

All i can say is whoah!
all i am seeing is bezeled tablet ,S3 design stretched using paint ! and i think no color options
Nexus 7 is better than this (even though it also has no color options )!
No offence to anybody rooting for this device!

Looks like a perfect design; we have 2 Nexus 7 which we love, but with drawbacks.. Most of all, the atrocious loss of screen real-estate in landscape mode due to virtual buttons wasting a precious horizontal band and to add insult to injury making usability suck as you have to move your hand to press them rather than keeping the buttons on the side to easily access them while holding the tab; also we actually do miss the back camera and wish for more storage, and the bezel is quite large; this one can be THE perfect tablet. nice looks, thin bezel, larger screen within same form factor of 7" tablets, buttons not cluttering and wasting screen pixels and expandable storage and nice stylus that actually adds value.. looking forward to it, will buy if it's $350 or less.

There is no physical home button on the note 10, for the reason of it being rotated into portrait or landscape. Although, with this being only 8 inches, I could see it set into portrait as default, like an e reader, to fill that niche.

The Note 10 is decent, but the 16:9 aspect ratio on most 10" Android tablets sucks in any orientation other than landscape.

I am not buying this is legit. They are not going to put buttons on a tab. I am interested in a note 8 tab but not with this setup. I really like my nexus 7 but also like the s pen features.

I love my Nexus 7 as well, but on the other hand feel that wasting screen real-estate on buttons especially in landscape mode is a drawback. Don't you prefer to use all the screen for browsing and apps, and also don't you prefer that on landscape your thumb should access all buttons without losing grip on your tablet, for instance if you like switching pages by swiping from edges in Chrome, you can't do this in landscape using Nexus 7 as you'll have to swipe the buttons first and get Google Now, but with this design, you can freely use left / right swipes in landscape mode, also don't forget the back camera, something I often miss on my N7.

Also, overall size is similar though thinner than N7 but you get a larger screen and stylus. My only worry would be lack of or lag in OS updates, that's always going to be an advantage for N7, but looks like Samsung is getting better in that..

Ugh, physical home buttons need to go away. It makes even less sense on Tablets. The on screen keys at least make it easier to not worry about orientation since they rotate with the screen appropriately.

Thank goodness for Nexus 7.

oh wow, I hope this is a joke. Not on a tablet. I like the ability to rotate the tablet on any direction without worrying about the control buttons on my Nexus10. I was going to get this one but I might still get it, but it's already looking aweful...

Really? I mean really?

Is it that hard to chase the button down as it moves from bottom to side? I mean, it only moves about 5 inches.

"Now where did that home button run off to...?"

-Suntan

I love my Nexus 7, but on the other hand feel that wasting screen real-estate on buttons especially in landscape mode is a drawback. Don't you prefer to use all the screen for browsing and apps, and also don't you prefer that on landscape your thumb should access all buttons without losing grip on your tablet, for instance if you like switching pages by swiping from edges in Chrome, you can't do this in landscape using Nexus 7 as you'll have to swipe the buttons first and get Google Now, but with this design, you can freely use left / right swipes in landscape mode, also don't forget the back camera, something I often miss on my N7.

Also, overall size is similar though thinner than N7 but you get a larger screen and stylus. My only worry would be lack of or lag in OS updates, that's always going to be an advantage for N7, but looks like Samsung is getting better in that..

That button. Oh god, that button. On-screen buttons make so much sense when you're supposed to use a pen/digitizer combo for input. I could multitask much better with S-Pen in hand if I could just tap an on-screen button.

DEAR LORD! Is that Steve Jobs using a pre-released Samsung Galaxy device!?!?!?
I knew he faked his death... and this is why. ;D

My rumor has it being a 8.0 tablet phone... I won't be surprise if you can use has a phone. They will definitely win the world's biggest cell phone.

Itll proaly release with carriers like the Gaalxy tab 2 7.0. The Carrier model has a spearker, and phone features but the WIFI Modeal dosnt

The ONLY thing I dislike about my note 2 is that I can't use the s pen to hit back or menu, and I really shouldn't be using it to hit home either - probably not good for the pen. It's not a dealbreaker on a phone, but on a tablet? Yeah, that would be a dealbreaker for me.

Also, on my a500 tablet, the placement of the front camera irritates me to no end - every time I go to use it, my thumbs covering it up. Videochatting in landscape is nearly impossible. I don't WANT anything on the bezels I'll be using to hold the device. Especially with Samsung's uber-sensitive capacitive keys - if be backing out of apps ALL THE FRIGGING TIME!!!

IMHO, I severely hope this is fake, because if it is, I won't be able to use this device.

The ONLY thing I dislike about my note 2 is that I can't use the s pen to hit back or menu, and I really shouldn't be using it to hit home either - probably not good for the pen. It's not a dealbreaker on a phone, but on a tablet? Yeah, that would be a dealbreaker for me.

Also, on my a500 tablet, the placement of the front camera irritates me to no end - every time I go to use it, my thumbs covering it up. Videochatting in landscape is nearly impossible. I don't WANT anything on the bezels I'll be using to hold the device. Especially with Samsung's uber-sensitive capacitive keys - if be backing out of apps ALL THE FRIGGING TIME!!!

IMHO, I severely hope this is fake, because if it is, I won't be able to use this device. However, this probably is real, as it matches the leaked renders phandroid posted the other day. So... *sadface*

Its like a GIANT Note 2. I thin kthey will add the S-Pen because its a "Note" device.. Thats what all of them release with..right? And maybe NOW! I see why Samsung updated the Galaxy tab 2 7.0 to have the Phone UI rather than a tablet UI.. I can tell my the notification bar that it will probaly have a phone UI, or something similar to it. Also, I dont really think they should have added a button O.o...

Went into a Verizon store today. Checked out the Xoom 2 8.2", the Samsung 7.7 and the Tab 2 7". This 8" size really might be perfect for me.

Gestures should be the standard for tablets no buttons. I'm also hopping for the ability to make calls in the US version. Having to carry two devices isn't cool.