Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Review


Photo by William Gangnath

The Galaxy Note 8 was recently released to a mix of reviews, spotlighting many of its new features.

William Gangnath , Staff Writer

Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8 is the Korean-based company’s latest smartphone, unveiled at Unpacked, one of Samsung’s largest news conferences, and officially released worldwide Sept. 15.

The phone has a 6.3-inch display, which is massive compared to the newly announced iPhone X with a display size of 5.8 inches. Though some people may find it hard to grasp because of the large screen.

Love or hate the size of it, the screen’s look is astounding. It does not matter if you are watching YouTube, scrolling through Instagram or doing homework; the Quad-HD screen is vibrant, with its curved edges adding to the sleekness of the phone.

In addition to the gorgeous screen, people can also use multiple apps at the same time with the multi-window feature.

“The serious real estate makes multitasking on this phone a joy,” Washington Post reporter Hayley Tsukayama said in her Sept. 5 review on the phone.

While I agree the ability to multitask could be useful when desperately needed, it is not ideal because of how cramped having two apps open at the same time feels.

The Galaxy Note 8 has its issues, but after getting used to them the phone is one of the best there is because of its awesome screen and camera.

A big selling point of the Note 8 is the two back-facing cameras which take better pictures and let you adjust the amount of background blur in your photos after shooting them. The Note 8 also comes with built in image stabilization and 2x optical zoom, making the camera’s quality unmatched by other smartphones.

Under the volume control, there is a button that summons Bixby, an underwhelming wannabe of Siri. Samsung Electronics is worth $254 billion dollars and has been making smartphones since 2009, so there is no excuse for making such a lackluster virtual assistant. The Bixby button is easily mistaken for the volume button; it is frustrating that when turning down the volume, it is easy to accidently make Bixby pop-up. The button can be deactivated, but Samsung does not allow users to reassign its function.

One staple of the Galaxy Note series has always been the S Pen, a stylus stored inside the phone, that can be quickly popped out when needed. What it does best is allow users to take handwritten notes.

The Note 8 comes with the PENUP app that offers the ability to draw with the stylus, and share drawings with other PENUP users. The stylus can also navigate the phone like a finger, and is ideal to use while working.

The Galaxy Note 8 has its issues, but after getting used to them the phone is one of the best there is because of its awesome screen and camera. The positives greatly outnumber the negatives, and with all the features this phone has to offer, it feels like the Swiss Army Knife of phones. I would highly recommend it to people who want a good looking phone or who like being productive on the go.