The upcoming Galaxy Note 8 is expected to be Samsung’s first flagship smartphone to feature a dual camera system on the rear panel. In fact, Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities has said that its dual camera would be even superior to the iPhone 7 Plus. The Korean electronics giant may just have revealed the Galaxy Note 8 dual camera sensors at the Mobile World Congress in Shanghai.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Dual Camera Sensor
Image Source: Samsung.com (screenshot)

Galaxy Note 8 dual camera to use ISOCELL Dual sensors

Samsung did not mention that the new sensors would be used in the Note 8. But the timing of the announcement and a plethora of leaks indicate that the sensors may indeed end up in the Note 8. The dual camera sensors use Samsung’s own ISOCELL technology. The Korean company unveiled four new sensors at the MWC Shanghai. The ISOCELL Bright delivers sharp and bright images with reduced noise in low-light conditions.

The second sensor, ISOCELL Fast, provides fast autofocus on both moving and still objects. The ISOCELL Slim sensors are designed to adopt the smallest pixel sizes out there and still produce high-quality images for slim devices. What may excite the potential Galaxy Note 8 buyers is the ISOCELL Dual sensors. The Galaxy Note 8 dual camera sensors can be mixed and matched in different combinations to meet consumer demand.

An RGB sensor and a monochrome sensor

The press shots Samsung shared at the MWC Shanghai showed that the company had been working on a dual camera system, which consists of a monochrome sensor and an RGB sensor. The Korean company claimed its “dual camera solution” produces “superior image quality” even in low-light conditions. Ming-Chi Kuo has also said that the Galaxy Note 8 dual camera sensor would be better than iPhone 7 Plus, and could even match the iPhone 8.

Both sensors included in the dual camera system are 13-megapixels and have an f/2.0 aperture. Samsung first introduced the ISOCELL technology in 2013. The ISOCELL camera has a physical layer in between each pixel to reduce crosstalk and enhance image quality. According to Kuo, the Note 8 dual camera would offer 3x optical zoom and a DSLR-like depth of field.

A Weibo post claimed earlier this month that Samsung had decided to source the Note 8 dual camera sensors from its sister firm Samsung Electro-Mechanics rather than Sony. The company uses Sony’s IMX333 sensors in the Galaxy S8 line. It’s unclear why Samsung ditched Sony, one of the best camera sensor makers in the world. It could be part of Samsung’s larger plan to use more in-house components in its flagship devices.

Galaxy Note 8 3D renders reveal its design, specs

Meanwhile, noted Twitter tipster OnLeaks has created 3D renders and a YouTube video of Galaxy Note 8 in collaboration with 91Mobiles. The renders show the upcoming flagship from all angles. The device features a 6.3-inch OLED Infinity display, similar to the Galaxy S8. Its front panel is only slightly larger than the 6.2-inch Galaxy S8 Plus.

The Note 8 rear panel looks entirely different from the Galaxy S8. It has a horizontally arranged dual camera system in the top center. Previous reports indicated that the dual camera would be arranged vertically rather than horizontally. The LED flash and the fingerprint sensor is located right beside the dual camera setup. The back panel is made out of glass.

At the bottom of the phone are a 3.5mm audio jack, a USB Type-C port, the S Pen slot, and the speaker grille. The Bixby and volume buttons are located on the left side, while the power key sits on the right side of the phone. Though OnLeaks and 91Mobiles show the device only in black, it would also be available in blue and gold color options.

According to the render, the Note 8 display would offer 2K resolution and 18.5:9 aspect ratio. The phone is tipped to have 6GB RAM and 128GB of storage. However, Samsung is rumored to launch an 8GB RAM model especially for the Chinese market. It is said to be the first device to run Qualcomm’s upcoming Snapdragon 836 processor, which would be a minor upgrade over the current SD835. The device is expected to pack a 3300mAh battery.

What happened to the optical fingerprint scanner?

Samsung was planning to integrate the fingerprint scanner into the Note 8’s OLED display, but eventually opted to place it on the back panel. A Samsung executive told Korean site Naver that the electronics behemoth made every effort to use the optical fingerprint solution on the Note 8. However, the feature was still facing “technical limitations such as security.” The Galaxy S8 was also rumored to have in-display fingerprint solution, but it came with a rear-mounted one.

Industry sources told Ice Universe that the fingerprint sensor under the Note 8 display was causing the circular area where it was placed to appear brighter than the rest of the display. It left a “ghosting effect” on the screen. Samsung will continue to work on fixing the technical issues. The feature is now expected to debut with the 2018 Galaxy S9.

Galaxy Note 8 price and release date

The Note 8 was previously rumored to be unveiled at the IFA event in Berlin, which starts on September 1. IFA executive director Jens Heithecker had also indicated that the Note 8 unveiling could take place at the trade show. However, Korean site The Investor has learned from inside sources that the device would be announced at an Unpacked event on August 26. Samsung executives were in the process of finalizing the venue for the event.

The Galaxy Note 8 could be Samsung’s most expensive smartphone ever. According to reputed tipster Evan Blass, the phablet would cost 999 euros ($1,132) in European markets. In the US, it could set you back by at least $1,000 if the report turns out to be true. Apple’s iPhone 8, the Note 8’s key competitor, is also rumored to cost upward of $1,000.