The Samsung Galaxy Note7 emanates the aura of a premium flagship with its neat metal alloy frame holding the glass rear and dual-curved display together. The smartphone also has curved rear edges which give it a more symmetric and ergonomic, bezel-free design. The new S Pen sits flush with the bottom and the inclusion of the USB Type-C port makes the Note7 the first Samsung device to upgrade to the technology. The heart rate monitor of the phone is located on the back alongside the camera module and one can find the iris scanner on the front side. The Samsung Galaxy Note7 comes in four colour options – Black Onyx, Silver Titanium, Gold Platinum and Blue Coral.
The iris scanner housed on the front side is one of the main highlights of the Galaxy Note7, which offers a novel approach to unlocking the device with your eyes. To unlock the phone with the iris scanner, you need to hold it 25-35cm away from your face and position your eyes within the two circles shown on the screen. For people who do not wish to unlock their devices with a glance, the company has also equipped the new Note7 with a fingerprint sensor, which is integrated into the home button as usual. Apart from unlocking the phone, the iris scanner would also let you log into websites and authenticate purchases made via Samsung Pay.
In another first for the Galaxy Note Series, the new Note7 flaunts IP68 certification for dust- and water-resistance making it perfect for those with an active lifestyle and/or butter fingers. The display and the glass back are protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 5, which is supposed to be 1.8 times tougher than its predecessor and should be able to withstand drops from shoulder height on to concrete around 80 percent of the time. Interestingly, the new S Pen stylus is also as durable as the device when it comes to exposure to dust and water.
The signature S Pen stylus offers a finer 0.7mm tip with improved pressure sensitivity (4,096 levels, as opposed to 2,048 on earlier models). Remarkably, it can also work when the display is wet. While most of the features from the previous S Pen iterations have been carried forward, users can now also translate text quickly, magnify selections and create GIFs from videos on the fly using the Smart Select feature. Samsung has also taken care of the Pengate fiasco and now users cannot accidentally damage the tip of their stylus, as the S Pen stops at around the 2-3mm mark when inserted the wrong way.
The new phablet has a lot in common with its sibling, the Galaxy S7 edge (review), and its not just the dual-edge curved quad-HD Super AMOLED display. For instance, the 5.7-incher carries the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor and 4GB RAM. The camera department on the Galaxy Note7 includes a Dual Pixel 12MP rear snapper with a dual-tone LED flash, f/1.7 aperture and Smart OIS, and a 5MP front shooter with f/1.7 aperture, which is identical to the ones found on the Galaxy S7 flagships.The battery has been bumped from the 3,000mAh core on its predecessor to a heftier 3,500mAh pack and the internal storage has been boosted to 64GB. The phone also supports fast charging technology, for both wired and wireless charging.
The Samsung Galaxy Note7 runs on Android Marshmallow with the company's updated TouchWiz Grace UX overlaying the stock Android experience. The device will also be getting the Nougat update when it becomes available. The device now lets you access and scribble memos with the S Pen without even unlocking the smartphone thanks to its always-on display. The Note7 also lets you save and access images, files, contacts and apps in an encrypted ‘Secured Folder’, secured by Samsung Knox, which only the user can open via their iris scan. The HDR display works hand-in-hand with the software and improves the color fidelity of HDR content for a more true-to-life experience.
Samsung generally launches its devices in India within a fortnight of its global announcements, and it seems the Note7 will also continue with that trend. As per our sources, Samsung is expected to hold the launch of the Galaxy Note7 by the end of the second week of this month, on August 11th. It will go on up for pre-order on the launch day, with the market availability to follow after a few days. The Note7 is expected to cost about Rs 57,000 but stay tuned for our India-specific coverage when the exact pricing for the Indian market should be unveiled.
Major US telcos are bundling offers on launch day and we might see the same promotional offers extend to the Indian market as well. The freebies include a choice between the Gear Fit 2 wearable or the Samsung EVO Plus 256GB microSD card which was recently launched here. Buyers of the device will also be treated to 15GB free storage space on Samsung Cloud. There might be an offer on the new Galaxy VR headset as well but take this information with a pinch of salt, for we will get to know the exact details only when the device launches in India.