And there it is, folks. Samsung has just unveiled the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 at IFA Berlin. This S-Pen equipped device is the biggest departure yet from Samsung’s typical design language, with the back of the device being covered with a leather-like material. It looks like a nice change of pace from the fantastic plastic we’ve been seeing so much of.
Taking a look at the Note 3 specs (below), you’ll notice that although it’s bigger than the Note 2 display, Samsung said they were able to keep the width the exact same:
- 5.7-inch 1080p HD display
- 13MP camera
- 2MP front-facing camera
- 2.3GHz quad-core processor or 1.9GHz Octa Core Exynos processor
- 3GB of RAM
- 32GB or 64GB storage options
- MicroSD slot
- 3200 mAh battery
- Bluetooth 4.0
- Wi-FI a/b/g/n/ac
You’ll notice we list two processors: whether you get the 2.3GHz version (made by Qualcomm) or 1.9GHz version (made by Samsung) will depend on your local market. Samsung’s homemade variety contains one set of four Cortex-A15 cores @ 1.9GHz with another set of low-powered Cortex-A7 cores @ 1.3GHz).
The 13 megapixel backside-illuminated rear camera with “smart stabilization” is an upgrade over the Note 2’s 8MP camera. Both the primary camera and 2MP front facing camera can record full 1080p HD video. The ridiculous 3GB of RAM is a huge boost over the 2GB of RAM found on the previous Note and it’s a number we’re not used to seeing for mobile devices- in fact, this is the first smartphone (to our knowledge) that has ever contained 3GB of RAM.
That 3GB of RAM will come in handy when powering Android 4.3, the version the Note 3 will ship with on launch.
For the other side of the equation — software — we’ve got Android 4.3 out of the box, and that will obviously come with Samsung’s own custom user interface. One of the bigger changes Samsung has made in comparison to the Galaxy S4 is an updated version of multi-view.
It’s multi-view as we’ve always known it, except know you can run two different instances of the same application at the same time. This will allow you to, say, chat with two different people at once in Samsung ChatOn, or check out two different emails at the same time.
Of course, Samsung has also added some cross-functionality with their newly-announced Samsung Galaxy Gear smart watch. You’ll be able to see incoming texts, emails and more without having to reach for your phone, and can even act on several of these right from the watch. You can read more about the Galaxy Gear and all that it’s promised to bring in our announcement post here.
Samsung has announced that the Galaxy Gear would be launching starting this September, and that all major US carriers will get a crack at it before too long. Let us know what you think — is this a homerun or a bit of a yawn fest? We’ll see you in the comments section!