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Samsung Galaxy Note 8 review: An expression of dominance

Our Verdict

Price: $949Bottom line: Samsung's Note line continues to be the company's dominant phone in terms of mind share, if not market share. Excellent hardware is filled with top-end specs and all sorts of hardware features that you desire, and the icing on the cake is the super-powerful S Pen stylus. There are a few quirks in the software and with the fingerprint sensor, but you can look past those to get an amazingly capable phone.

For

  • Best screen available today
  • Very good camera
  • S Pen is a truly unique feature
  • Great set hardware features
  • Top-end specs

Against

  • Software can be overwhelming
  • Battery life not good enough for the size
  • Fingerprint sensor is tough to reach
  • Basic speaker

To the hyper-observant phone nerds, the Galaxy Note 8 was never going to be a mind-blowing new piece of technology. We, after all, are no longer Samsung's target market — even for the Galaxy Note, traditionally its most enthusiast-focused device. The 2017 iteration of the Galaxy Note line isn't designed to necessarily entice and excite all of the most hardcore users — it's now clearly just the top piece of Samsung's three-pronged mainstream phone line.

The Galaxy Note 8 has a couple simple goals. It's aimed at reinstating a confidence in the Note brand after the Note 7's recall, and once again offering an S Pen-toting top-end flagship to act as the face of the Samsung brand. The Note 8 is supposed to be an example of the very best the company has to offer; a culmination of what has made Samsung so successful in the past few years. That means, of course, that the Galaxy Note 8 is mostly identical to the Galaxy S8+ — the previous benchmark for the very best it offered before now.

Samsung is going to market the hell out of the Galaxy Note 8. But what we care about is whether or not it's a phone truly worthy of an amazingly high asking price and all of the hype that brings with it. We answer these questions, and more, in our Galaxy Note 8 review.

About this review

I, Andrew Martonik, am writing this review after 10 days using a U.S. unlocked Galaxy Note 8. The phone was used on T-Mobile in Seattle, WA and on Deutsche Telekom in Berlin, Germany. The phone arrived on software version NMF26X and was not updated during the review period.

In video

Galaxy Note 8 Video review

To get the quick take on the Galaxy Note 8 and see it in action, you'll want to watch our video review above. Once you're done with the video and yearning for even more Note 8 info, you can read the complete review below!

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

Iteration at its finest

Galaxy Note 8 Hardware and display

About 90% of the experience of seeing and holding the Galaxy Note 8 is familiar — that is, if you're one of the millions of people using the Galaxy S8 and S8+ already. But most people won't be looking to buy a Note 8 if they have a GS8 or S8+; they'll be coming from another phone, and should get ready to be impressed by this thing.

The combination of a sleek aluminum frame and sharply rounded glass is still striking, especially in the black and blue colors where the metal is well color-matched to the glass undercoating — which has a different, subtle pattern to it as well. Tolerances are tight, and the bezels are very small all around the screen. Does the narrow frame and bountiful curved glass make the Note 8 more fragile than some other phones? Probably. But changing the design would mean it wouldn't be so darn beautiful. For most, that's a fine trade-off.

More: Complete Galaxy Note 8 specs

Don't let the familiarity fool you — this is still wonderful hardware to see and hold.

Instead of prattling on for too long about things that haven't changed, I want to focus on the parts of the Note 8's hardware that are actually unique. Most importantly, its seriously huge proportions. Looking back to this time last year, when I reviewed the Galaxy Note 7, I found it was the first Note that was actually compact and comfortable enough to use like a "normal" phone. Now, Samsung has gone back in the other direction — the Note 8 is larger in every dimension than its predecessor, most notably being 9 millimeters (5.8%) taller and 26 grams (15%) heavier.

The Note 8's super-tall 18.5:9 aspect ratio for its 6.3-inch display does indeed give you more to look at without making the phone dramatically wider, which is key for being able to actually get your hand around it. But then again that means that the phone is ludicrously tall. Before you get to any part of actually using the screen, you notice how much the extra height influences your (in)ability to reach the fingerprint sensor on the back. It's an annoying placement on the Galaxy S8, but it's a usability nightmare on the Note 8. I really like iris scanning, but it can't (yet) fully replace a fingerprint sensor; and the Note 8's sensor is a hassle to use each and every time.

To put it succinctly, the Note 8 is once again no longer a practical one-handed phone that gives you a big screen in a somewhat manageable size. You do indeed get a whole lot of screen to work with, which is super useful particularly when using the phone with full-screen apps (or multi-window) in portrait orientation. But for anyone with average to small hands, it will be difficult to reach the top third of the display or reach to the opposite side of the screen for a slide-in gesture. And you know what? Some people are totally fine with that compromise — they just want more screen, and that's a key reason they're buying a Note. Anyone who wants something more compact (and still capable) can get a Galaxy S8.

You're rewarded with what is, once again, the best smartphone display available today.

If you're ready to handle the Note 8's body, you're rewarded with what is, once again, the best smartphone display available today. I've been gushing over these Super AMOLED panels for a few years now, and Samsung just keeps outdoing itself. The WQHD+ resolution, which comes out to 521 pixels per inch, offers plenty of density. But what really stands out is the visual clarity, punchy colors and ridiculous brightness.

DisplayMate gave out its first ever A+ rating to the Note 8, and the numbers are staggering: peak brightness of 1240 nits, 112% of the DCI-P3 color space, and reflectivity of just 4.6%. And it passes the eye test, too — I have nothing but great things to say about this screen. I just don't see how you could have a complaint with it. Every company should aspire to have this level of panel in their phone, and every person who sees a Note 8 will feel as though their current phone is inferior — because it is.

One important aspect of Samsung's recent phones is just how many great hardware features they offer that we end up taking for granted just because of how consistent they have been between devices. IP68 water resistance is here, of course, but so is fast wireless charging, a plenty loud speaker, and yes a headphone jack — plus, a really nice set of AKG earbuds in the box to complete the experience. For all of the areas Samsung innovates and switches things up, it has been extremely consistent in these core areas, and they're ones that are easy to market against the competition that are so often missing one (or many).

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

Same solid as ever

Galaxy Note 8 Software, specs and performance

Unlike the hardware strategy of offering three different phones at different sizes with slightly different capabilities, Samsung's software continues to attempt to be all things to all people. The Note 8's interface and features are again near-identical to the Galaxy S8, as well as the Galaxy S7 and Note 5 after their Nougat updates. The interface has definitely grown on me over time, especially as Samsung has moved to a nice combination of whites, grays, and blacks with hints of transparency and pops of color.

There's still an abundance of features, some of which have roots as far back as the Galaxy S3 and Note 2, but for better or worse Samsung has turned most of them off and effectively hidden them in the settings. If someone has an old Samsung phone and move up to a Note 8 and wants to find some random feature they loved, it's probably here — and at the same time, the start-up experience isn't nearly as chaotic as it used to be. There's room for improvement, and nobody is going to mistake the Note 8 for having Motorola-esque software, but it's the best it's ever been.

Samsung has to keep walking the line of having every feature imaginable while staying accessible.

Samsung's only areas that need real improvement, from my perspective, are its launcher and keyboard apps. The launcher is still quirky with its wasted space in folders, funky app drawer layout and weird grid spacing depending on how you use widgets. The keyboard continues to have poor word prediction and strange auto-fill tendencies. But if you're like me and don't care for either one, you can replace both apps in a snap and move on. The rest of the interface — the parts you can't change — are solid.

Yes, Samsung continues to ship apps that duplicate Google's pre-installed versions, and I really wish there was a way it could just give in and let us actually choose which we want ... but that just seems like a fruitless fight at this point. Samsung is in love with its custom apps.

You'll notice I went through a large portion of the software section without mentioning Bixby. Well, it shouldn't come as any surprise that Samsung went through its whole press conference and the subsequent first week of advertising without highlighting it, either. Bixby is still very much a work in process, and it just hasn't caught on for me anywhere near as much as Google Now and Google Assistant have. Bixby Home is still very slow to load and then not helpful once it does, and something about having to level up and gain "xp" just to get extras like themes rubs me the wrong way. During my time in Germany this past week I attempted to use Bixby Vision to make translations only to find it fail or take so long to produce results I had moved on. Bixby has potential, but my word it isn't there yet.

Performance

Samsung phones have a bad reputation for getting a bit ... sluggish over time, with even the most powerful of its phones eventually succumbing to the weight of all of the features and apps. Granted I'm working on less than two weeks of time with the Note 8, but so far everything has been extremely fast — nary a hiccup, crash, stutter or (gasp) reboot. This is with over 100 apps installed, and everything actively running and syncing in the background with no intervention. That's a great sign.

Performance has been perfect — let's hope it stays that way over time.

I'm using the Snapdragon-powered U.S. model, but I don't see how things would be any different with Samsung's own Exynos processor running the show in an international model. With 6GB of RAM there's plenty of room for old apps to stick in memory, ready to respond. Most of the time I could scroll back in the Recents menu to an app from earlier in the day and it'd still be sitting there ready to go — it seems that's what people ask for in these phones with lots of RAM, and the Note 8 has it. More importantly, a year down the road the phone will still have plenty of RAM for what will surely be evermore resource-hungry apps.

Galaxy Note 8

Battery life

The Note 8 has an understandably conservative battery capacity, with 3300mAh inside — smaller than both the Note 7 and Galaxy S8+ (3500mAh) that came before it. With a more efficient processor running the show, and some software optimization, the hope is that the combination can still provide great battery life; something the Note line has traditionally been known for.

It offers plenty for most people, but that doesn't quite align with the Note line's history.

The most notable characteristic of the Note 8's battery life has been rock solid consistency. Every single day I used the Note 8 in my review period I got almost the same battery life, even though I obviously didn't use it the exact same way each day. From full to dead, the Note 8 was good for 15 to 16 hours, which in my case also includes 3 to 4 hours of "screen on" time. I use the phone at its full WQHD+ resolution, leave all of my apps running and syncing, use automatic brightness, use Bluetooth for audio for a few hours a day on average and leave Always On Display turned on. I get a whole lot of email, send a ton of messages and take plenty of photos.

I absolutely appreciate the battery consistency. I never had a moment where I was surprised about how much battery I had left at a certain point in the day. Nor did I really feel like I had to baby it in the afternoon to get to the evening. I do, however, recognize that not everyone uses their phone like I do — and indeed I don't always have a "typical" or "average" day with my phone. Sometimes I want to sit and watch soccer highlights on YouTube when I have 30 minutes to kill on a train, or want to play a game for the same amount of time, or flip on my hotspot for a couple hours when I need a connection on my laptop. In these cases, it pushed the Note 8 to trigger battery saver (at 15%) around dinnertime — and then if I took it easy I could still end the day without charging.

For most people, getting a solid 16 hours of battery life each an every day will suit their needs just fine. Add in a few drops on a wireless charging pad throughout the day and you'll be golden. Turn off Always On Display, and you'll probably extend that battery life by an hour (seriously, it's that big of a drain) as well. But should you have to make these little compromises or changes in behavior to get great battery life out of one of the biggest phones available today? This level of longevity isn't surprising at all given its specs, screen size and battery capacity — but it may be a little off-putting for those who are used to a big Note delivering bigger-than-the-rest battery life.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

S Pen

Aside from a couple of budget-level imitators, the Galaxy Note 8 is your only real choice for a phone with a stylus — and just like each and every Note, the S Pen is a core part of the experience with special-made software and integrations into the system. The S Pen offers 4096 levels of pressure sensitivity, which combined with the 0.7 mm tip gives you precise control whether you're jotting down a quick note, signing a PDF, or spending time drawing something more intricate.

There are two types of people: those who use the S Pen every day, and those who have never touched it.

Alongside the typical software suite of Samsung Notes, Smart select and Screen write, you now have a new feature called "Live message" that lets you draw out a message and have it turned into an animated gif that you can then send into any app that'll accept that file format. It's a neat thing that you'll use four times and never touch again. Screen off memo, which lets you pull out the S Pen and immediately start writing without unlocking the phone, now lets you expand your notes to a staggering 100 pages. That's decidedly more useful.

I still get the feeling that the S Pen is something that is both a must-have feature for the Note fanatics out there and also something that so many Note users have never used. If you're the type of person that loves the idea of the fine control a stylus provides, and does a ton of writing, the S Pen is probably worth having — then again, I probably didn't need to tell you that. If these features don't immediately appeal to you, you're more likely to leave that S Pen sitting in its silo day after day. Even though I can see the value of the S Pen for the people who need its specific set of features, I'm certainly in the camp who just doesn't find a use for it.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

Good, with a gimmick

Galaxy Note 8 Cameras

Samsung has joined the dual camera club with the Note 8, and it's going with the same combination popularized by the iPhone 7 Plus: a pair of equal resolution sensors behind different focal length lenses. The Note 8's main camera is virtually (if not entirely) identical to the Galaxy S8+, but the secondary is a different sensor type with a longer focal length, about 2X the main, and an f/2.4 aperture.

Despite my slight distaste with the idea of the main camera remaining stagnant, the photos you get out of it each and every time are good, and a majority of the time, they're great. Samsung still has the experience of launching the camera super-quickly and capturing just as fast absolutely locked in. Daylight photos are punchy and always pleasing to the eye, and low light photos are still great with Samsung's typical tendency to have a warm color temperature and slightly over-softened edges in some shots. But those are tiny nitpicks — just look at the photo samples below and see what this thing is capable of.

The secondary camera in itself isn't particularly revolutionary, but it's great to see how close its results are to the main camera in terms of colors, sharpness and overall quality. The narrower field of view offers a unique shooting option, including for macro shots when there's enough light. Though the unique effect of a 2X lens isn't quite as exciting, in my use, as the dramatic wide-angle shooter available on LG's last few flagships. Having OIS on the long lens truly does help give you more consistently sharp photos in a variety of shooting conditions, though Samsung's software does tend to opt for a digital crop in on the main sensor when you switch to 2X mode in very dark scenes. The funniest thing about it is that I often had to check the EXIF data to find out which camera it used — props, again, for having these two cameras produce such similar results.

Live Focus is the only part of this camera setup that needs work.

The one part of the camera experience I'm not fully behind yet is the "Live Focus" mode, which is the in-vogue feature that uses both cameras at once to detect a subject and artificially blur everything in the background. Just as we've seen time and time again, the computation required to do this effect properly is very hard — and the Note 8 exhibits many of the same struggles as the iPhone 7 Plus, OnePlus 5 and others. Basically, it doesn't always know where the edges of objects are, and when it has to guess it can often get it wrong. The reason why this edge detection is critical is because that's where the software starts to apply the blur — and our eyes can instantly tell when the edge and background blur doesn't look right.

Live Focus shots can be dramatic, beautiful and unique. They can also look like something a free app from the Play Store applied to a photo you took with a single camera. You'll notice there are 29 "regular" photos in the gallery above, and only three Live Focus shots — I think that says something. Yes I may be looking a bit critically at the results, but it shows just how good each camera is on its own versus the potentially hit-or-miss Live Focus. The important part of this is it does look great when it works, and it can get better with software — we saw Portrait Mode on the iPhone 7 Plus, though not perfect, improve over the last year. I expect the same to happen with the Note 8.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

Familiar, but that's a good thing

Galaxy Note 8 Bottom line

At first glance, it's pretty easy to underestimate the Galaxy Note 8 on account of its familiarity after months of seeing the Galaxy S8+ in the wild. But the big thing to remember is that the Galaxy S8 and S8+ are Samsung's best-ever selling flagships, so sharing a basic platform with those phones isn't really a problem. The hardware is easy to love, the screen is absolutely leading the industry, the software is feature-packed and the performance is great. As for Note-exculsive features, the new dual camera setup will give you consistently great photos and the S Pen is great for the people who need the extra utility.

The Galaxy Note 8 is fantastic, but it surely isn't special.

We can go on and on complaining about the minutia of the fingerprint sensor placement or that the battery that isn't quite big enough for everyone. But these are minor missteps with what is otherwise a fantastic choice for the person that wants a phone that represents the best the industry has to offer. But let's remember that a single phone cannot be all things to all people, and the Note 8 surely isn't for everyone — its size is a serious consideration that should give some people pause, and the price tag is eye-watering.

4 out of 5

And that creates a conundrum. For as great as the Galaxy Note 8 is overall, it's somewhat a victim of Samsung's success. The Galaxy S8 and S8+ are such good phones, and have so much in common with the Note 8, that the biggest and most expensive phone in Samsung's lineup just isn't all that special anymore — yet it's asking for a hefty price premium over the other two. But that's something for the tech press to get worried about. For everyone who just wants a fantastic phone with excellent hardware, a massive screen and just about every feature imaginable, the Galaxy Note 8 is here and owners will definitely enjoy it. For those who are drawn to it but need something smaller, or cheaper, Samsung will happily sell you a Galaxy S8.

Andrew was an Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central between 2012 and 2020.

128 Comments
  • Mine is 'Out for Delivery' now! Can't wait to get my hands on her!
  • Same here, can't wait!
  • I went with standard shipping at Tmobile. It will ship out between the 13th and 15th.
  • my TMo device was upgraded to free 2 day shipping and should ship tomorrow
  • Same here!! I'm suppose to get mine today!!
  • Just got email from AT&T that mine will be delivered tomorrow! Whole week early, YAHOO! Thank goodness I ordered screen protector and case from Amazon and they will be here today. I'm in Northern California.....
  • I'm not complaining in the slightest about having the best job I could hope for ... but this "OMG my new phone is on the truck!" feeling is one of the things I miss about "civilian" phone nerd life. Enjoy!
  • Did you order through a carrier or Samsung? If carrier, which one?
  • Carrier, Sprint.
  • I need help. If I purchase an Unlocked Samsung Note 8 from Samsung or Best Buy, Xfinity says that I can't use an Unlocked phone with the Xfinity (Comcast) system and I'd have to buy a phone from them. Is it really true that an Unlocked Samsung Note 8 or S8 + would not work with Xfinity or are they just saying that to sell a phone? I do know that Xfinity doesn't have a Sim card available at this time. Does anyone Really know about this?
  • It would've made more sense for the second camera to be wide angle instead of the zoom. But whatever. I hope those who get their Note 8 today will enjoy them! I have to wait until the 15th.
  • I want one to fill the void left by the 7. Too bad I can’t right now.
  • I'm sorry but I refuse to spend the amount of money for these phones. You can get a nice gaming laptop for the price you would pay for these phones. After years of buying the top tier cell phones every year, my Moto G5 Plus w/64 gig rom finally taught me a lesson. You can have a great quality phone without spending over $700 - $1000.
  • But a lot of people already have a nice laptop. And having a second nice laptop isn't nearly as good as having a new phone :) All about perspective. A $950 phone isn't for everyone. But there are tens of millions who are happy to drop that kind of money.
  • I see his point though. A $950 starting point is relatively new territory, unequaled really, for a 64GB Android phone, so it makes sense to want every single aspect of this device to have no equal...and that's not the case since there are so many devices out there that rival or excel what this phone does, and while I'm sure there certainly are millions of people out there "happy" to drop this kind of money for it, that doesn't mean such superfluous behavior (which is what this Note is btw) should be rewarded by making it become the standard.
  • That's going to be different for everyone. Most people will subsidize the cost and spread it out over a few years.
  • I understand that. Heck, I paid $360 for my S8 when it came out, so I know pricing will vary, but the fact is the industry IS heading towards these sky-high prices now, and it used to be the case that those prices also meant specs and performance that were noticeably superior. In fact, I remember the old adage when I worked at Verizon that if you wanted the best battery life, best screen, and best camera, get a Note phone. Yeah, it was expensive, but it was worth it for those reasons. But that's not the case being made here, not really anyway, due to the way the lines between the S8+ and Note 8 have been blurred, and all I'm saying is that if you're going to act like a $1000 *****, at least be buck up and be a $1000 *****.
  • Let me know when one comes out with an S Pen or Samsung Pay
  • I can agree. I think if the phone can replace a PC abit like Microsoft tried with the lumia 950xl then you can justify the cost of the phone and in a way the note 8 dose this but I would love to see this vs continnum on what it can and can't do when docked. But for me I just don't think we need to upgrade every 12 or 24 moths anymore unless something is really wrong with the phone. I have just upgraded from the g5 to the xz premimum as I missed a camera button that I had on my 950xl but there is not really a massive difference betwen the two phones. I'm sure the note 8 and new iPhone will sell millions they always do but I do feel the hype is built up that much it stops people seeing what they already have with their current devices. For me the smart phone is now getting old and needs to change but to what I don't know maybe the continnum and dock mode on Samsung will be the way they go.
  • Not only are there many people who will drop the $950, but there's another huge group of people who will get a good deal on it and spend a couple hundred less. I could get a Verizon model at best buy, trade in the V10 (Verizon says they'll give $240 off for it) I have sitting in a drawer somewhere, and get the note 8 for about $600 after tax. People said the Galaxy s8 was too expensive too but it was on sale at Best buy for $420 for almost a month. I feel like there's always good deals out there to keep people from needing to pay full price.
  • These are also a completely different class of devices and the Note in particular brings unique functionality that might be worth the premium to some people, especially since (in the US) carrier financing/subsidization is so common. Its certainly worth it to me. ...that said, I am of the opinion that flagship smartphones I'm general need to be 100-200 dollars cheaper, and I'm holding out for the Note 8 to get a nice holiday price drop before I get one, as opposed to getting an even cheaper S8. While amazingly convenient for my work, it's not such an urgent need that I'm running out to buy one right now.
  • a) I agree, everyone has a different willingness to pay and you better bet Samsung has done their research and knows this price will make their highest profits yet. b) If your "gaming laptop" is the price of this phone, it's probably not worth it. c) I agree with Andrew's comment.
  • I sorta have to disagree with b). There are a fair few gaming laptops worth around a grand that are extremely good for their price. The Inspiron 7567, Helios 300 and Y720 come to mind. The Inspiron is my personal pick out of the 3 though. A refreshed model with a GTX 1060 Max-Q is coming soon.
  • You don't have to pay full price upfront. I'm leasing monthly from Sprint with Galaxy Forever, after 12 months of payments I can trade it in & lease the next version. For me, this is better than buying a phone & hoping I can get a good price for it when I want to upgrade.
  • I have never had, nor expect to have, a situation in which I need to decide between buying a laptop OR a phone. If I want a laptop, I will buy the one that I want, and same goes for a phone. A laptop is difficult to use as a mobile phone and my pockets are not big enough to carry it I am in agreement that it is a high price for the Note 8, but I also cannot remember the last time that I spent the MSRP to buy a phone. I find that pre-ordering, just to be first, is not financially prudent.
  • After my trade in it was only $450 And $20 a month . This was thru Verizon
  • I'm not going to, either. But the fact that it doesn't fit my budget doesn't mean there isn't a big market for it.
  • Moto G5 Plus LoL
  • I think it’s an understatement in how good midrange phones have become. Although those looking for a Note likely already has their mind made up, even though the price is indeed very high.
  • Agreed.
    I'm still loving my moto g4.
    It does everything I want it to and it's still a pleasure to use.
  • A friend of mine commented earlier that the S8 note is nothing but a status symbol for people to brag about their status in society just like cars, houses, furniture..etc. to the ones that snickered at my Moto G5 Plus, I do all my social media, emails, video watching..etc. on my Galaxy Tab S2 9.7, and I use my cell phone for what it was intended for initially, phone calls and texts. (The only time I use it for anything else is when I'm waiting somewhere). In closing, everybody don't use their phone as the everyday, all day tool.
  • Tell your friend he's wrong. The vast majority of buyers are enthusiasts who have become accustomed to, and depend on, the features the phone offers to increase their productivity. Status symbol? Sorry, but that sound very sour grapes-ish.
  • It all depends on your usage. I work as a field tech and although I carry a descent laptop with me in my vehicle I almost never use it. A laptop is too big, boots too slow, can't take great pictures, doesn't have integrated LTE (at least mine doesn't), isn't water and dust resistant and doesn't fit in a pocket.
    I can justify the expense because my phone is my primary devise and I use it all day long every day.
  • No point in arguing with one of my most used aspects of modern day smartphones and that is the camera. If the LG V30 passes the test I will definitely be getting it but if not I will wait it out for a smaller, more reasonably priced Galaxy S9. Loving the image quality as always from Samsung. I just appreciate LG's push for more creative control behind the image/video a little more than what anyone else is doing. If the Pixel 2 throws in a manual mode in the stock camera app, I'll give that a consideration as well.
  • You might want to check out the piece ARS Technica did on the V30's screen. Hopefully that's a pre-production glitch but it doesn't look good until some other evidence contradicts the photos of the screen in that story...
  • I'll wait until next year. More evolutionary than revolutionary. I was hoping they'd kick ass with crazy new features this year.
  • After being stuck with this S7Edge for a year I'm looking forward to the Note8 arriving at my door-step.
  • Samsung has really nailed the consistent battery life without rogue battery drain.
    Coming from a s8+ I wish they did reduce top and bottom bezels because the phone is extra tall.
    Battery size and fingerprint location are my biggest gripe.
    The rumors were that samsung experience 8.5 would deal with frame drops, battery and performance optimizations. Looks like so far it has improved in those areas.
  • "When Samsung makes a move, big or small, everyone takes notice." should have been :) When Samsung makes a move, big or small, everyone takes NOTE Great review as usual Andrew !!! Can't wait mine to get delivered.
  • After a year with the Pixel XL which I hated, still missing the Note 7, I am pretty excited that my Note 8 is out for delivery today. As for the price, I got half off of it by trading in my paid off Pixel XL, and device payments make it pretty painless. I have serviceable laptop, and I use it a lot, but not in the same way or with the same delight as I use a good phone. I am pretty low income and on a fixed income but it's a matter of what your personal priorities are. I don't go to overpriced movies (most will end up on Netflix or Amazon eventually) and I don't drive. This is the thing I spend on and I have found it worth it. As for Samsung, I spent a bunch of money and time loading vanilla android up with apps to try and replicate the functions I was used to on the Note 7, and I appreciate them even more after a year away.
  • Nice though it's not for me, I'll wait for the Mate 10 or Mix 2
  • Just wanna know does it have quick charge 3.0
  • Very unlikely since they use their own adaptive fast charge technology. I don't think they can use Qualcomm Quick Charge on Exynos so they put their charge tech on their snapdragon phones for feature parity between regions.
  • A bit dissapointed in the battery life assessment. Both of my active phones, a regular S7 and a Note 3 get better battery life. Really beginning to think what carrier you have and where you are relative to the towers you connect to have a huge impact on battery life.
  • $950 for a phone is absurd.
    I am a Note fan, and was looking forward to the Note 7, to the point that my day I was going to order it was the day of the second recall. So I was REALLY looking forward to getting a Note 8 and upgrading from my Note 3
    But for that price, no way.
    I am not a fan of the curved display, the 64gb is too little storage for the price, couldn't care about the fingerprint sensor, the proportions are wacky... It's not even a splurge purchase.
    Guess I will be waiting for the Note 9, and get a deal on an 8 then.
  • But you were willing to buy the Note 7......
  • And since the reply button isn't working for me today, to everyone that said something to the effect of "But you can break it up into payments",
    YOU ARE STILL PAYING $950 FOR THE PHONE!!!!"
    Whether it is one, 12, 24, 36, or however many payments, you are still paying $950 for the phone. With advance purchase, that's almost two round trip tickets to Hawaii from CA.
  • Depends on the carrier and where you’re buying it from. Some carriers have enticing promos that lower the actual MSRP of the phone. It’s absurdly expensive, but depending on your carrier or retailer, you may get the phone at lower-than-MSRP
  • The phone will be around longer than the trip
  • I preordered mines. Hopefully i'll get a notice to get it this week :)
  • Not complete specs...where is list of supported LTE bands?
  • Wish it would let of me out of my s8plus contract to upgrade as a former note7 owner. Rather than trade in. Also, I didn't think I'd like the stylus since I have big hands but I used the note 5 and 7s all the time. And dropped and drew more than I thought I would. Samsung prediction is seriously jacked they need to buy MS keyboard and prediction from Windows phone so much better and fluid.
  • Thank God I got the 64GB version of my Note 5. I'll save up for the Note 9.
  • Can't wait to try the dual cam setup and live focus. Samsung always has great screens so no worries there. Wish I coulda got a blue one but stealth black will be just fine. Spigen case and 128gb sd card ready.... C'mon with the shipments!
  • Same here, just got email from AT&T my pre-order Note 8 shipped today FedEx shows it for Delivery tomorrow. AT&T offered me an upgrade from the S8+ to the Note 8 for $130 if I trade in S8+.
  • Just got my Note 8 in hand from UPS a few minutes ago!!!
  • Really looking forward to seeing the Note 8 photos from forum users, particularly using the live focus and 2nd camera. The dual camera set up is the only thing that made me wish I'd held of on the s8 and s8 Plus.
    Also looking forward to people claiming the FPS ain't an issue and is in a great position 😉
  • My wife's came today from Verizon. I haven't seen it yet but, I'm really excited to check the phone out...
  • This review,to say that every other phone is inferior is rubbish. I have had Huawei phones with cheaper hardware and they perform better than Samsung handsets do especially over time. What's the issue with Samsung phones using far too much ram in standby,apps activating and using ram even when never opened?? Cannot uninstall apps you don't want or disable many either. Am sad to say Samsung has gone off the boil for me. This tall design is too much,too big and too much glass is not worthy of it's asking price when from experience they break too easily. And Samsung's terrible camera over sharpening is awful,I hate all glass phones wish they would make metal unibody too.
  • You can try my backup. You can’t disable any app at all. I had to live with Hangouts firing off every single time with no way to even silence it without silencing Hangouts on all my other devices. It’s a non-Samsung BTW. Even Samsung does it way better than that backup I have. If you’re going to do a skin, do it right. Even Huawei has figured it out.....
  • Opinions are like A**Holes. everyone's got one. Pure subjectivity
  • I'm left-handed and hold the phone with my right. I have my case already (phone shipped today!) and the placement of the fingerprint sensor is a non-issue for me. I currently have a V20 so it's not far off from what I am used to. Reviewers are just bashing the hell out of the placement but it's really not a big deal at all, especially if you hold the phone with your left hand; it's actually closer to your index finger.
  • .1 inches larger than the Galaxy+? Smaller battery than the Galaxy+? Hardly dominance. You honestly have to wonder what they were thinking.
  • Android dominance... Absolutely
  • You're kidding. Right?
  • They were thinking there's a massive base of Note owners and fans out there who wanted a new Note.
  • That's fine. But this phone is hardly a dominate phone. Curious to see what the Xiaomi Mi Mix 2 brings.
  • Spyware
  • What's wrong with that? It's much more efficient now giving you better battery life,
  • Great looking device, I own a S8 plus and I dont plan on switching over, but it is definitely a great device. I just wish the writer of the article would stop saying it earned the first ever A+ rating from displaymate that was done by the S8. I do understand their are refinements in the display and a higher nits level but lets just toss this out their all 3 Samsung flagships this year were and will remain fantastic devices. I hope everyone enjoys their new Note 8s, im happy your not bowing down to the Apple fanboy machine lol.
  • The Galaxy S8 is the first in a new generation of OLED Smartphones that have a Full Screen Display design. It is the most innovative and high performance Smartphone display that we have ever lab tested, earning DisplayMate’s highest ever A+ grade.  
  • This was taken from DisplayMate’s own site.
  • http://www.displaymate.com/Galaxy_S8_ShootOut_01.htm
  • I'm sorry I cannot deal with the fingerprint scanner placement and it should have had a bigger battery. Also the phone is too tall and skinny it looks weird. I will either be getting a V30 or Pixel 2 XL. I'm disappointed in Samsung. I think LG hit the nail on the head with the V30 and if the rumors are true the Pixel XL 2 will be awesome as well. I do miss the S Pen but I can live without it. I know the V30 and the Note 8 have the same battery size but the V30 has a smaller display and their ui is less of a resource hog.
  • To each their own, the V30 looks to be a great choice, I just cant trust them any longer as all the boot looping, than my brand new 4k tv took a dive on me after 2 weeks and my 4k dvd player also literally went up in flames after 1 month. The pixel 2 xl looks to be strong. I say rock what you like at this point so little separates the Note 8 from the S8+ I just cant justify paying that price tag when I could pay my mortgage and utilities with the same price tag. Plus I like sleeping in my bed and not on my couch, as my wife would probably go nuts lol.
  • I am enjoying my Galaxy S8, but I am probably going to wait for the Huawei Mate 10 Pro. Like Andrew, I didn't use the S-pen very often on my note 2, note 3, and note 4. I'm not a fan of the aspect ratio as I like my phone's a little wider. The curved edges suck when trying to type specific numbers and letters like; 1, 0, q, and p. Everything else types easily enough. Outside of those issues Samsung makes amazing devices.
  • Since the S8 and S8+ are already available at discounts and the S7 and S7 Edge are also great phones it's really hard to justify the price premium for the Note 8 UNLESS you are a big fan of the stylus. If you are the average consumer then there are any number of really great phones that get you to 90% of the Note experience for half the price. Pass.
  • The Note was never meant for an "average consumer". Stick to your budget phones :)
  • Lmao budget phones, you said phones, these are smart devices with a side of phone. Are you here to bash people who wont spend upwards of 1000$ for a hand held device? As a Marine I get sucked into the AR15 battles everyday, id rather spend my cash on a mark 5 SPR than a 1000$ electronic device unless its a set of night vision goggles or a IR beam for marking tangos. On top of all this a S8+ is hardly a budget device given I cant use either while deployed because they dont meet military security standards. So bash somewhere else spoiled one.
  • Let me correct Im a Force Recon Marine, look it up wise guy I dont see any high end devices in the Kandahar province, except for SATCOM.
  • I guess some people want the best or 100%
  • I can wait for the normal price reduction in 3 to 6 months. I personally dont think this phone is worth the price tag they are throwing on it. I guess they need to make money back from Note 7 and the endless advertising.
  • It won't go down much. You can still sell the Note 5 for $300 two-years later
  • Note 5 user here, and I was hoping the Note FE would have shown up on our shore, as I would have grabbed one.
    I really have a hard time paying $975 for a Note 8 that would be worth half very quickly. Do I NEED the nice camera and the S-Pen... no- but they are nice to have. I held and looked at the S8+, and was not a fan of the 18.5:9 display. As much as I love my Note 5, I wanted a change. So this time around- I went with a Moto Z Play 64 Gig. Granted it only has the mid range qualcomm chip, but it has mostly intact plain Android, and with its 3500MAH battery- insane battery life. Oh- I got it with the MotoMod/JBL Speaker for just under $400. Some display tweaks with Nova Launcher- and I love it!!! Chris
  • That's last year's model right?
  • Are all these Samsung reviews sponsored?
  • I currently use the s8+ & the display is amazing. Waiting for Black Friday then will upgrade to the note. I have used many flagship's in the past. This display is unmatched, never have I seen anything like it. Samsung definitely has the best on the market!
  • Great review Andrew. Though one question. I plan on getting the unlocked variant directly from Samsung. How does it fare on T-Mobile's network? Any major differences I should take note of? Or would I be better off getting the tmobile variant grin the get go?
  • I've learned when you get an unlocked phone, do not get it from a carrier because it will probably have bloatware from that carrier on it. I like to get my unlocked phones from the manufacturer or somewhere like Best Buy.
  • My worry isn't bloatware more than the phones being specifically tuned and optimized for a carrier's network. Performance wise, there's no difference between an unlocked and carrier variant?
  • The author asserts that the iris scanner can't totally replacement fingerprint sensor yet--why not? I use Samsung Pay and only use the iris scanner....
  • I went into the Samsung experience store and tried out both the S8 Plus and Note 8. S8 Plus actually feels better in hand because it's less boxy. One thing I still can't stand is the new Touchwiz. Still fugly and confusing labyrinth in the settings with ugly icons.
  • Andrew, Overuse of superlatives in both your video and written review of Note 8 isn't persuasive. Instead it seems forced.
  • PRE-ORDERED through bestbuy ( verizon ) 8/25 early am, received delivery notification for tomorrow delivery - cant wait!!!! Midland - "Oil Country" - Texas
  • Just got mine tonight, after the LG V20, I'm so happy....
  • I got mine around 4pm today. Haven't put it down. LOVE it (with exception of fingerprint scanner) .
  • How do people brush off the fingerprint scanner as no big deal? We unlock or phones like a hundred times a day!!
  • From an S8+ owner - First get a case. My preference is for the clear cases like the speck Presidio Clear which IMO add to the looks. in addition they have bevelled edges around the sensor array which guide your finger more easily to the FP reader by feel. Second - Use Smart Lock. Almost any Bluetooth or NFC device can be set up in Smart Lock to bypass Biometric security as long as that device is present. You could use a Bluetooth headset, your car's hands-free, even things like NFC rings. I don't recommend this but you can also use location i.e. your home address or the presence of your Wi-Fi SSID the same way.
  • i love my note 8, live in michigan and got just got it around 2:30 p.m.wed the 6th.But I talked to a Samsung tech online and asked him how some have gotten theirs and why, simple answer he said it was all on who ever re ordered first and what color or what size gb you were getting all plays a factor!
  • Rather get the note 7 fan edition
  • A few points worth repeating: Unless your phone is at least 2 years old, the Note 8 is a 'want', not a 'need.' If the phone is too tall for you... well, there is no law that states you must place app icons in the top two rows. Fingerprint scanner? Please, who seriously cares? I've managed 20 years on cell phones without using one. I looked at the Note 8 in store and was shocked at how similar it is to the S8+... the Note 8 is only a tiny fraction larger. The real difference is the extra RAM. Agree 100% with the review... the Samsung predictive keyboard is pure garbage. The SwiftKey keyboard should be the first app you switch to on the Note 8. In fact, if Samsung can only butcher the intelligence of the keyboard, why would I even consider enabling the Samsung bixby assistant? No a chance! With a minimum $70/month (not including data) plan from Bell Canada on a two year plan the Note 8 will cost me $549.... $749
  • $749 < $60/month, $1500 no contract. My data, 12GSB is $60/month. All carriers are identical on price. My only complaint is the 6 to 8 week wait to receive the 128GB micro SD card and wireless charger from Samsung.. the two bonus items available in Canada if you preorder the Note 8.
  • I have the Note4. It would be just fine with 6GB and 64GB internal storage. It has lasted because of replacing the stock battery with a 3rd party battery after it had issues within a 2 year period. The question is: what happens when the sealed battery INEVITABLY loses it's ability to charge/function properly Note 8 (or any future Notes that prevent battery removal without heat guns and possibly compromising the phone by doing so either yourself or by an authorized tech.)? What then happens?? It's not a lease, it's YOUR device. Yet, you also get updates that cannot be delayed for long and may or may not be welcome (not so much the security patches, but they can too of course) or wanted for one reason or another (like on my Note 4, although at this point I think the OS updates are no longer available to the Note 4, which is probably a good thing w.r.t. keeping it functional). Can't say no, can't roll-back (factory reset, sure, then it comes right back on after a while - I assume). Guess you can root the phone and apply your own mods, etc...void the warranty too. Of course, most people aren't going to understand how to do that and maintain that, etc anyway. So yes, easy consumer-level battery removal is still needed or else I am for all practical purposes 'LEASING' this device only to have to buy it again (sorry, lease it again) every 1.5 - 2 years or sooner depending on the battery.
  • I don't really respect your battery comment... This isn't 1995... Mobile batteries have come a long, long way. The fast charging capability today eliminates the battery change out argument. My Note 5 completely charges in 1.5 hours from zero. Android has also vastly improved. The ability to turn off background app refreshing, and multiple options to limit data use are more than adequate to get your phone through a 12hr day, etc... My Note 5 is 2 years old and really the only internet access I use, yet I observe no abnormal battery drain. Your concern about one fixed battery is just no longer valid. My only concern with my soon to arrive Note 8 is I plan on storing a near max 128GB of music on the micro SD card... A full storage does absolutely appear to be a strong drain on phones. Samsung went away from replaceable batteries once issues like battery memory were no longer an issue... It's a total myth long term battery use today is a problem.... Data and processor demands have significantly increased... that there is no doubt... demanding more than ever from batteries.
  • Oilsabdguy - Agreed... battery tech has improved. My M8 is three years old and I used it hard, and it's battery life is still all day and then some.
  • Good for you, it happens, but that's not proof of anything I'm talking about.
  • It is actually proof. Your premise was battery life sucks after a short time so how do you replace the battery.
  • Why would it be akin to 1995, i don't respect your mocking. Have they come a long way since 2014? Not really. So what are you talking about? The fast charging doesn't eliminate anything...wow, my Note4 charges very fast too, and?? My first sentence was about having to change it out to be able to use it since last year. I'm not talking about changing it out for a fresh one and charging the other one like a photog or camera guy. Not the issue, but those folks have their own gripe that comes the same conclusion with respect to the sad trend of sealed/inaccessible batteries. By the way, I love the Note series. Have a Note 2 still, albeit the 2 GB of memory makes it a relic at this point. My Note 4 with 3GB would be ok for another year or two if it had the 64 GB of internal and perhaps one lousy more GB of RAM. Otherwise I'm afraid to lose/break it one day and therefore have to become part of the 1000$ a year (and a half maybe) club. This has nothing to do with daily usage. I'm VERY efficient about my usage and very aware of app sucking, etc. Android OS and performance improvements mean nothing if lithium-ion batteries cannot last more than 18-24 months. Some can go another year, maybe a little longer with less usage (i.e. you bought a new primary device and, like my Note2, lay off it a bit). Battery jackpot is great, but not the norm and doesn't address the issue of having NO OPTION once the battery is hosed. My concern about 'one fixed battery is just no longer valid' because you noticed not abnormal drain on your Note5?? More nonsense, not addressing the concern and therefore your response is invalid. How's that logical fallacy? Battery memory?? Data and processor demands increased and that's proof? Seriously? It's not a myth that your lithium-ion battery will eventually fail or cause issues where you need to replace it or do a hard reset by taking it out and replacing it. Maybe soon, maybe not, but there are millions of these phones out there and your device doesn't set the bar for all. It's luck of the draw, it's sometimes people's usage and treatment of the device, but it happens because that is an inevitable thing with such materials. WHEN THE DEVICE BECOMES INOPERABLE BECAUSE OF THE INEVITABLE LOSS OF BATTERY POWER/FUNCTIONALITY POSSIBLY OVER A YEAR OR TWO, WHAT DO WE THEN DO WITH OUR "$1000 PHONE" (which of course can be subsidized with a carrier plan for perhaps under $300, as it usually is)? This shouldn't be rhetorical, but it is the elephant in the room that no one seems to care about because folks "don't see them complaining". That's acceptable?
  • Trade it in?
  • Here's someone's response to my concern and my reply. Just in case it was brought up...again: "Most people don't care about these issues and upgrade about 2 years because technology moves that fast.. The battery is the best on the market whereas buying a lot of aftermarket batteries can degrade performance." [Reply]
    You don't know what 'most people' care about. Most people upgrade every 2 years because their carrier has a 2-year plan that allows them to get the subsidized price of the device. In this case the $1000 Note8 would become what, about $300 (here in the US)? I don't know everything, I'm not that old, but I'm also not that young...for crap sake...I've been coding on computers since I was 9 and building 'IBM clone' PC's from scratch as an employee when I was 14. I think I know how technology moves. And it depends. All well and good, but I had that option in 2016 and i skipped it, and I'm still thinking of skipping it - but the more time passes, the more i fear my Note4 will eventually have something happen to it (lost/stolen/break/drown it) that's outside of it malfunctioning or becoming inoperable due to the latest OS pushes that kill resources on 'older' hardware (which fortunately ended long ago for the Note2 and now the Note4). In 2014 I had a 2012 Note2. I took the 2-year plan to subsidize the Note4, why? I knew the Note2 was not going to last resource-wise. It has 2GB of mem and only 16GB of internal storage!! (yeah, of course I used a SD card, but that's not helping the apps that the fact you start with like 11GB due to the OS and bloatware on there). I still use it here and there when my Note4's in the other room, etc. but the last OS upgrade or two and capacity hurts performance too much. So... I got the Note4 after the 2 years (2014)...hoped for 4GB, got 3GB, oh well. At least we are over the 2GB line and I also at least got 32GB (kinda like 24GB with the OS/bloatware). Nice camera, nice 2K screen, can take 4K video. Pretty damn nice phone, even for 2017. And what's this? Oh my Samsung stock battery is messing up my phone and rebooting it, yada yada...bought a 3rd party battery, popped it in, Bamn, resolved. I have my phone still where I was GOING TO GET THE NOTE7 for my 2-year upgrade...hahahahahaha thank you batteries! I would have to get another Note4 or Note5 I'd be in limbo waiting for the damn Note8 and having to get another phone, costing me that amount in the meantime. How does 'buying a lot of aftermarket batteries' degrade performance? Where are people getting these statements from? Future OS releases may be stable enough on the Note4 and especially the Note8 and up due to that 6GB of mem and 64GB of internal storage (and octa-core processor helps a bit). However, will they deny the Note8 OS updates in order to push consumers to purchase the Note10? Of course, there are actual reasons of features and functionality within the firmware that may not jive with the OS (or other overlaid OS's like TouchWiz), and at that point moving to later hardware becomes normal and understandable. Again, 6GB and 64GB internal (or hey, 128GB!) is VERY much future proofed within that respect and therefore WHAT HAPPENS WHEN MY BATTERY INEVITABLY LOSES THE ABILITY TO CHARGE/KEEP CHARGE FOR PRACTICAL USE? Sorry, had to repeat the original question since your comment didn't explicitly address it outside of having to buy another $1000 phone (that's $2000 in 4-years! ;) Bottom line: i KNEW that the Note4 with 3GB would be cool for a bit longer than the 2-year span. I also wondered if device makers kept the memory upgrades down on purpose for another year longer or so. If the Note4 had 4-6GB, i'd be fine for like 5 years...with security updates at least. it's also kinda durable I must say, not that I drop it much. I have NO case too...living on the edge! ;) So, with Note8 having 6GB and the 64/128GB internal? We would all be set for a while...oh wait...the LITHIUM-ION BATTERY will NOT LAST and oh wait, we can't replace it easily without possibly breaking our $1000 phone to open it and somehow remove it like a surgeon.
  • Your whining about a fixed battery is irrational. For the past several years, batteries do not lose performance over time.. they just don't... Measurable, testable, provable. Truth (pragmatism) is a modern cell phone battery has to last three years... In two years a consumer is due for an upgrade... and after the third year, their prior years phone model is free to upgrade. Saying you see no need to upgrade from a Note 4 to an 8 is an acceptable argument if your phone is not your primary internet access.... I have a very nice desktop pc I built many years ago that is in storage... I just don't need it... My smartphone is my internet. Granted, there is no free Note 7 upgrade for you... And it's ok to be unable to afford a Note 8 this week... But the free stuff with the preorder does matter... 128GB premium micro SD is $200 here in Canada... the fast charging freebie here... meh... it's slower than a cable... and my Note 8 that arrives next week will be in a Defender Otter box that has already arrived. I guess I'll take my monitor out of storage for use with DeX. Cheers... May I never hear lies and garbage about fixed batteries again... If that's your justification for a smartphone solution a step or two below a premium, best in class Note 8... then ok, go get that Vwhatever that gets you excited about carrying batteries you can swap out...
  • Most people don't keep a device more that 2 years.
  • Excellent review Andrew! Mine is out for delivery today.
  • Good article. The only point I would argue is the issue of Samsung apps duplication of Google apps. Many of the Google apps are just plain dated looking. As an example, Google calendar has a horrible looking home screen widget compared to say Business Calendar 2 yet many still insist on slapping it on your home screen. The squared-off corners amd lack of transparancy settings no longer look right on a screen with rounded corners. I prefer Samsung's calendar over Google's. Same with the web browser. I'm a die hard Chrome fan and I love it's desktop features but as soon as I realized you could sync your Chrome shortcuts and other features to Samsung's browser via a Chrome desktop extension I've started using Samsung's browser most of the time on my S8+. It allows finger print authentication and various ad block apps which Chrome does not. Samsung Notes is more integrated with S-Pen than Keep although I still use Keep. As for Samsung launcher, for me it's a non-issue as I use Nova launcher instead. Still have my Note 4. When I was stupider I use to run my screen brightness all the way up so that phone has a minor screen-burn issue. Had a Note 7, Replaced that with an S7e which is now my back-up and I currently use an S8+ which I'll probably trade in for the Note 8 in another month or two because I really miss the Stylus.
  • Not really much better/bigger than an S8+. I'll wait a lil while & see whats still on the way. My Nexus 6 still works fine, & the Note 8 doesn't stand out, except for maybe the 6GB RAM.
  • You have an S Pen on your Nexus?
  • I got my Note 8 Thursday. And I just love it. And I don't mind the finger print sensor for me it works wonderful. But I could also be a stretch for some on with smaller hand. I just have to say again I just it love it!!!!
  • Best phone I've ever had. The fingerprint sensor location is in the worst possible place for me, since I hold the phone in my left hand and I don't have big hands. But I'm already used to it (it helps to have a case, where the case window lip makes it easy to locate). It's nice that I can swipe down on the fingerprint sensor to pull down notifications. I use the S Pen constantly, so for me, there's no competition. Zero.
  • I'm sure it's a top notch phone but there are so few compromises in the $200-$400 segment these days that there's a legit debate whether it's worth dropping an addition $500+ for minimal upgrades. For me that's an easy no
  • Like who? In that segment. Dual cameras, s pen, 6gb ram, etc
  • "Before you get to any part of actually using the screen, you notice how much the extra height influences your (in)ability to reach the fingerprint sensor on the back." This is the first Samsung phone i have owned (I've been a Moto fan from the beginning of Android, but I hate the new phones that require Moto Mods, and there are no cases for the phones with the mods attached). I have had zero, I repeat, zero problems with the placement of the fingerprint sensor. I have an Otterbox Defender, and I use it upright, but with the phone in upside down. That way, when i release the phone from the case, my finger is in the exact spot it needs to be to get to the fingerprint sensor, and when I raise the phone up to use it, it is right-side-up.
  • Different people are different. I'm 5'4". My hands aren't even approaching large. The sensor on this phone would literally be unusable. Same with the HRM; it mind as well not exist. I'm not getting it. People with small hands cannot hold a phone this big in the way you're describing. It would make it too easy to drop it, and the device is certainly not built for durability. Also, I find the amount of black space when looking at photos in the gallery to be laughably bad. I'm right handed and tend to use my phone home-based in my left hand, which makes the sensor position that much worse, because I cannot reach my finger that far. Even my kindle Fire 8" I hold on my left hand when using reading or using apps while holding the phone in one hand. It's Maybe I'm a bit of an oddball...
  • Note 8 has no real competition. There are a lot of buyers are in it because of S-pen. Otherwise, they'd go for S8+/Iphone 7+/other large phones with top specs.
  • I don't understand where is the massive Note 8? I held it up to my Note 3 and my Note 3 is wider. I'm very disappointed that Samsung did not make the Note 8 symmetrical. What good is having more screen if it's All in One Direction? I'm disappointed
  • I agree! I still have my Samsung Note 3! I looked at a Note 8 in a store and thought to myself - Who thought making the Note 8 thinner and longer was a good idea?
    I was REALLY hope the Note 8 would have at least the same dimensions as my Note 3. It is perfect for viewing photos on a side angle.
    I am SUPER disappointed and really hope Samsung re-thinks their dimensions on their Note 9!
  • If I purchase an Unlocked Samsung Note 8 from Samsung or Best Buy, Xfinity says that I can't use an Unlocked phone with the Xfinity (Comcast) system and I'd have to buy a phone from them. Is it really true that an Unlocked Samsung Note 8 or S8 + would not work with Xfinity or are they just saying that to sell a phone? I do know that Xfinity doesn't have a Sim card available at this time. Does anyone Really know about this?
  • No, that's not true. Xfinity can't tell what phone you have.
  • The Samsung Note 8 is the Swiss Army knife of phones: just a beautiful, feature-packed monstrosity of fun and functionality. I purchased mine from Samsung Direct and received a $300 discount for trading in my trusty LG G4 and got a free Gear 360 to boot. I have an LG V20 to cover the wide angle thing while my Note's dual camera set up nicely covers the zoom shots. This is just an all around great piece of technology and I'm so glad I purchased it. Hats off to Samsung.