Samsung’s Galaxy Note 5 was a UK no-show last year, as Samsung decided to focus instead on its curvy sibling, the Galaxy S6 Edge+. However, as we’ve since discovered in our in-depth Note 5 vs Galaxy S7 article, we haven’t really missed out on much, as the S7 (and by extension the Galaxy S7 Edge) is a far superior handset when it comes to specs, battery life and overall practicality.
Of course, there are still some people who want a massive screen and a built-in stylus. The S7 Edge does, at least, bridge the gap to some extent, as its larger 5.5in display makes it a better fit for those after a slightly bigger flagship experience, but it’s still not quite as hand-hogging as the 5.7in Note 5. There’s also no S Pen, which is why all eyes are now trained on the upcoming Note 6 to see if Samsung will deliver the next-generation Note device we’ve been waiting for ever since the Note 4 was released back in 2014. Here’s everything we know about the phone so far.
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So when can we expect to see the Note 6? Samsung traditionally releases its Note devices in the autumn, and so far it hasn’t given us any official information that this is likely to change for the Note 6. This is because it normally shows off its new Note handset at the IFA tech show in Berlin, although it did hold its own event in August for the Note 5’s launch last year.
Of course, there’s always a possibility that Samsung will once again keep the Note 6 for North America and Korea only and give the rest of us in Europe a potential Galaxy S7 Edge+, but this doesn’t seem likely any more, as TechRadar has apparently had confirmation from an unidentified source that Samsung will indeed be releasing the Note 6 in the UK.
“Samsung has no plans to launch a Galaxy S7 Edge+ handset and will instead reinstate the Galaxy Note 6 as the brand’s chief phablet in the UK,” the source stated. “I got the impression that it had been a bit of a disappointment sales-wise and that the decision to keep the Note 5 out of Europe is now considered a mistake. So our information is that the Note 6 will launch in the UK in August and that there will be no S7 Edge+.”
That sounds pretty confident to us, but as always, we’re still classing this as a rumour for now until we hear something more concrete from Samsung itself. Either way, expect an August launch for the Note 6.
Samsung’s Note devices have traditionally shared exactly the same specs as its latest Galaxy S phone. This was certainly the case last year, as the Note 5 had the same Exynos 7420 processor as the S6, S6 Edge and S6 Edge+, the same 16-megapixel camera, and its screen still had a 2,560×1,440 resolution. It also had a 3,000mAh battery just like the S6 Edge+.
As a result, we’d expect the Note 6’s specs to be very similar to the current crop of S7 handsets. That means an Exynos 8890 processor, a 12-megapixel camera and the same waterproof protection and microSD card slot. We’d also assume Samsung would put a bigger battery on the Note 6, although there currently haven’t been any leaks of note to suggest what kind of mAh rating it might have.
We also don’t see any reason for Samsung to increase the current screen size of its Note range either, so we’d expect to see another 5.7in, 2,560×1,440 Super AMOLED display rather than something bigger. There’s a possibility Samsung might finally stretch the Note 6’s resolution to 4K (3,840×2,160 pixels), particularly if Samsung’s going to make a big push with its current Gear VR headset, but we’ll have to wait and see.
Speaking of Gear VR, it’s also unlikely the Note 6 will come with a USB Type-C port unless Samsung releases a 2nd Gen Gear VR, as the current headset only has a Micro USB connection. Still, considering how good Samsung’s fast-charging technology is on the S7, sticking with Micro USB shouldn’t be too much of an issue.
A mobile/laptop hybrid?
One of the slightly more bizarre rumours doing the rounds about the Note 6 is that it might form some kind of laptop-mobile hybrid. Take a look at this Samsung patent found in the US Patent & Trademark Office by Patently Mobile:
This patent first surfaced in May 2015, and it shows a potential ‘phablet’ slotting in to a proposed laptop/tablet dock above the keyboard. According to the rest of the document, it would run Android when used as a phone, but switch over to Windows when docked. The mobile display would also form a kind of second screen when browsing the web, or a potential touchpad.
It’s certainly an interesting idea, but whether we’ll see something like this in time for the Note 6 is unclear. With the Galaxy TabPro S already on its way, it seems unlikely that Samsung would release another big, tablet-based 2-in-1 device later this year to launch alongside the Note 6, so it’s probably more likely we’ll see this sort of device appear next year, or even the year after that. Of course, we’ll be updating this article regularly with all the latest information, so be sure to check back regularly for all the latest news on Samsung’s next big phablet.
We might have missed out on the Galaxy Note 5, but what’s in store for Samsung’s next Note phablet? Here’s everything we know so far