Samsung Galaxy Note 7 goes official with USB Type-C, iris scanner, water-resistant body and more

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Last updated: August 2nd, 2016 at 17:02 UTC+02:00

Samsung has officially taken the wraps off its latest flagship, the Galaxy Note 7. The Galaxy Note 7 is a notable leap forward for Samsung’s Note lineup – it is the first Galaxy Note device with an Edge display that curves on both sides, and also the first to have a water-resistant body. At first glance, the Note 7 might look like a Galaxy S7 edge with a bigger screen and the S Pen, but it brings many new features to the table for Samsung’s smartphone lineup.

The switch to a USB Type-C port has actually happened with the Note 7, as we had exclusively revealed earlier this year. Also on-board is an iris scanner for enhanced security and for quick payments through Samsung Pay. The iris scanner has a ton of restrictions, but when it works, it works extremely quickly. Of course, the fact that the Note 7 is resistant to water and dust is a major bonus, and the S Pen will work even when the screen is wet. The Galaxy Note 7 is also the first Samsung device to come with 64GB of internal storage out of the box, with the microSD slot making a return after it went missing on the Galaxy Note 5.

The Galaxy Note 7 has a 5.7-inch Edge Super AMOLED display of Quad HD resolution. There’s Corning Gorilla Glass 5 on top for damage protection, which is a first for any smartphone in the industry. Under the hood lies an octa-core Exynos 8890 processor or a quad-core Snapdragon 820, depending on market (the US, China and Japan are likely to get the Snapdragon variant). 6GB of RAM hasn’t made the cut on the Note 7, although that might be a good thing – unless individual apps start using higher memory, 6GB of RAM is only going to be a battery guzzler if more apps are allowed to run in the background.

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The S Pen stylus has also gained new functionality. Screen off memo, which lets you take a note simply by removing the S Pen from its slot even when the device is locked, now allows you to pin your notes to the Always On Display feature. There’s also a new translate feature in Air Command – the S Pen can be hovered over foreign text to instantly translate it to the user’s prefered language.

The Galaxy Note 7 comes with a 3,500 mAh battery. It’s a tad smaller than the S7 edge’s but considerably bigger than the Galaxy Note 5’s, and it remains to be seen what kind of battery life it will offer. That USB Type-C port means there should be support for Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0, at least on the Snapdragon model, but the Note 7 will also charge quickly through existing fast chargers. Fast wireless charging support is present as well.

On the imaging front, the Galaxy Note 7 retains the same cameras as the Galaxy S7 lineup – a 12-megapixel camera with Dual Pixel autofocus and f/1.7 aperture at the back, and a 5-megapixel camera with f/1.7 aperture at the front. The device runs Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow out of a box with a visually updated version of TouchWiz, and Android Nougat is likely to arrive sometime later this year or in early 2017.

The Note 7 will go on sale in select markets on August 19th in Blue Coral, Gold Platinum, Silver Titanium and Black Onyx color options (Blue Coral will launch worldwide, if you were wondering). Frankly, we’re rather excited about the Galaxy Note 7 despite the fact that it isn’t as big an upgrade as the rumors had said it would be. Check out our hands-on post for our initial impressions, and do let us know what you think about Samsung’s newest flagship smartphone!

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