The Galaxy Note might be back, just not in the way you thought

Opinion
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Last updated: September 25th, 2021 at 15:12 UTC+02:00

The Galaxy Note series is back! Well, sort of, but not yet. As many of you know, Samsung decided not to release a new Note model this year, leaving fans wondering if the series will make a return. And assuming that the latest leaked renders are even close to accurate, it looks like the spirit of the Galaxy Note series will live on through the upcoming Galaxy S22 Ultra, which should be due in January.

If you missed the breaking news yesterday, the Galaxy S22 Ultra showed up in leaked renders via OnLeaks. They depict a smartphone with a Note-like square footprint, an S Pen slot, and an oddly shaped camera housing. So odd, in fact, that it is causing many people to question the authenticity of said leaked design.

To be fair, early leaks aren’t always entirely accurate, so later ones featuring the Galaxy S22 Ultra could showcase a redesigned camera housing. But while this discussion about the rear design is taking place, I’m more interested in the part about the S Pen slot.

The king is dead, long live the S Pen!

There’s some debate as to whether or not the leaked model will be called the Galaxy S22 Ultra or if it will incorporate the “Note” brand. Personally, I’d be fine with either option — or even a third, because I don’t put as much value on the label itself as I do on the experience. If this smartphone can deliver the same experience as a Galaxy Note, then in my eyes, it will be one, even if it won’t carry the name forward.

If the Galaxy S22 Ultra has a dedicated S Pen slot, you could say that the Galaxy Note 21 Ultra was delayed until January 2022 and got renamed. And sorry fellows, the argument that the Galaxy Note series is technically superior to the Galaxy S beyond the inclusion of an S Pen just doesn’t fly and hasn’t for a few years. Probably since 2018. The Galaxy Note 8 is gone. And, let’s face it. The series had already peaked in popularity, and there were no signs of a stronger comeback.

I’m going to say something that’s probably controversial for hardcore Galaxy Note fans, so brace yourself. But if this delay in the Galaxy Note series helps the S Pen become more popular across multiple device series, I’m honestly all for it. Because as I shared last year, breaking the S Pen’s exclusivity could allow Samsung to spend more resources on the S Pen’s hardware and software suite, leading to a better experience for more customers. I’d take that over holding the S Pen hostage for a sense of exclusivity, any day.

Galaxy S22 big leaks season has begun; make sure you don’t miss out

The leaks are promising, and I’m all for dropping the S Pen’s exclusivity and adding a dedicated S Pen slot to the Galaxy S22 Ultra, but let’s not celebrate quite yet. Nothing’s confirmed until it is, so let’s not get ahead of ourselves. If the camera housing design was inaccurate, maybe the S Pen slot was, too. I’m hopeful it wasn’t, but let’s wait and see. Perhaps this is all part of a long-term plan designed by Samsung to proliferate the S Pen, and it’s all starting to make sense little by little.

What’s your take on the future of the S Pen and the Galaxy Note series? Do you care if the “Note” brand itself disappears? Or do you care more about the S Pen and have faith that Samsung will deliver the goods at Galaxy Unpacked in January?

This was the first big design leak pertaining to the Galaxy S22 Ultra, and the rest of the series — including the Galaxy S22 and Galaxy S22+/Galaxy S22 Pro — followed. You can be sure that more leaks will be coming over the next days and weeks, and who knows?! Things can change by the time Samsung hosts the next Unpacked event. So stay tuned, and we’ll keep you up to speed.

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OpinionPhone Galaxy Note 21Galaxy Note 22Galaxy Note 22 UltraGalaxy S22Galaxy S22 UltraS Pen
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