An explosive return to form? Back with a bang? A blisteringly good phone? 12 months after the doomed launch of the fire-prone Galaxy Note 7, Samsung is still the butt of plenty of jokes.
Last year, after the company was forced to recall millions of hazardous Note 7s, many people thought the Note brand was finished. But Samsung has bounced back recently (and put a lot of work into making its batteries safe).
First it released the excellent Galaxy S8 and has not skipped a beat in bringing out the Galaxy Note 8, the S8’s bigger, squarer and stylus-packing cousin.
With Apple’s iPhone 8 just around the corner, Samsung has to impress with this one. So thankfully for them, the Note 8 doesn’t disappoint.
In truth, the Note 8 has little that is revolutionary. It looks like a cross between last year’s Note 7, with its boxy glass design, and the Galaxy S8’s edge-to-edge infinity screen design, which dominates the front of the phone and leaves no room for a physical home button or Samsung logo.
Instead there’s a touch-sensitive virtual home button and the fingerprint scanner sits at the back of the phone, to the left of the camera. This is a slightly irritating placement (especially for the left-handed) but the Note boasts alternatives in the form of facial recognition and iris scanning.
It has a dedicated button for Bixby, Samsung’s virtual assistant, below the volume buttons on the left hand side, and mod-cons like wireless charging, water resistance and fast charging that are now standard on high-end Samsung phones.