A couple of months ago, reports coming out of China claimed Samsung was working on an Emperor Edition of the Galaxy Note 8 for select Asian markets. The Emperor Edition was rumored to feature 8GB RAM and 256GB of internal storage. A new report claims that the 256GB Galaxy Note 8 is indeed coming, though it may not launch in the US or European markets.

256GB Galaxy Note 8
Image Source: Evan Blass / Twitter (screenshot)

Evidence of 256GB Galaxy Note 8 surfaces in Korea

Samsung will unveil the Galaxy Note 8 at an Unpacked event in New York on August 23rd. With the phone’s unveiling only about two weeks away, the rumor mill has gone into overdrive. We have seen the leaked Note 8 batteries, color options, design, specifications, and more. Twitter tipster and WinFuture blogger Roland Quandt has tweeted a list of Note 8 SKUs from Samsung’s home country.

Interestingly, the list includes 256GB Galaxy Note 8 models. We wouldn’t be surprised if the report turns out to be true. Some may argue that 8GB RAM is too much for a smartphone. Maybe, or maybe not. But Samsung is packing more RAM and storage on its flagship phones to compete with the Chinese vendors. Over the last few years, Chinese vendors have been increasing RAM, megapixel count, and storage to differentiate their products and lure customers.

Earlier this year, Samsung launched a special version of Galaxy S8 Plus with 6GB RAM and 128GB of built-in storage for the Chinese and Korean markets. The rest of the world received the device with 4GB RAM and 64GB of storage. Samsung has been losing the ground in China, the world’s largest smartphone market. It will do everything it can to regain the market share. The 256GB Galaxy Note 8 model won’t be available in the US or Europe.

It’s unclear whether the 256GB storage variant would feature 8GB RAM. The rumored Emperor Edition, if it’s real, would offer 8GB RAM and 256GB storage. Regardless of the built-in storage, the Note 8 would come with a microSD slot that would support 256GB of additional storage. The Asian version of Note 8 will likely be powered by Samsung’s Exynos 8895 chipset built using 10nm manufacturing process.

Galaxy Note 8 to come with a free case. Eight color options tipped

In a separate leak, the Note 8 color options and wallpapers have surfaced on Chinese site Weibo and Vietnamese platform Samsungvgn.com, respectively. According to the Weibo post, the phablet will be available in eight different colors: Arctic Silver, Midnight Black, Orchid Gray, Coral Blue, Deep Sea Blue, Dark Blue, Pink, and Gold. The front panel on all color models will be black. The S Pen stylus matches the color of the accompanying phone.

Meanwhile, ETNews has learned from industry sources that Samsung would offer a free transparent case inside the Galaxy Note 8 box. However, the cases will be offered only in select regions. Markets such as the US, Russia, and Europe would not get the free cases. Sources told the publication that the actual price of these cases is between 20,000 – 30,000 Korean won ($17-$26).

The free accessory would at least offer protection until you buy a new case of your choice. It would be interesting to see what percentage of customers will actually use the free cases. Just like Galaxy S8, the upcoming Note 8 would be a fragile smartphone due to its Infinity display. The S8 was dubbed the most fragile smartphone on the planet by SquareTrade.

What should we expect on August 23?

The Galaxy Note 8 is said to sport a 6.3-inch Quad HD Super AMOLED display. The device will have the same Infinity display as the Galaxy S8 phones, but its corners are more squared off than the S8. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has confirmed that the Note 8 would not feature an optical fingerprint sensor. Samsung won’t introduce the in-display fingerprint scanner until the next year’s Galaxy Note 9. It means the Note 8 will have a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor.

The Note 8 is tipped to feature a dual camera system on the back, consisting of two 12-megapixel sensors. One of them will be wide-angle lens while another will be the telephoto lens. The Note 8 camera is said to offer 3x optical zoom and optical image stabilization. The device is expected to come with 6GB RAM and 64GB internal storage, which will be expandable via a microSD card.

The phone’s recent appearance on Indian certification body’s website indicates that Samsung will launch a dual SIM variant of the device for India and other Asian markets. The rumor mill claims the Note 8 will retain the 3.5mm headphone jack. There will also be a USB Type-C port and a 3300mAh battery. It would run Android Nougat out of the box. The Galaxy Note 8 is rumored to be Samsung’s most expensive smartphone till date. It could set you back by as much as $1,000 or more.

Citing executives at Korean wireless carriers, ETNews reports that the Note 8 will go on sale on September 15th, about three weeks after the phone’s unveiling. Leaked Samsung internal documents suggest that pre-orders would begin on August 25 in key markets.