By now even those with only a passing interest in technology will be aware of the Galaxy Note 7 explosion issue. It has undoubtedly been the biggest story in the mobile marketplace this year, and will have a profound impact on the immediate future of Samsung. The Korean manufacturer must now consider its strategy for future device releases, and whether or not it will resurrect the Galaxy Note range.
Some have suggested that Samsung could completely eliminate the Galaxy Note series from its portfolio of devices following the appalling PR that the Galaxy Note 7 has resulted in. However, a new report indicates that the Korean consumer electronics giant is intending to release a sequel to the ill-fated Galaxy Note 7.
Samsung has already indicated that it will offer South Korean consumers who purchased the doomed Galaxy Note 7 an exchange option. This encompasses the ability to swap their defunct smartphones for another Samsung device with a discount built-in. Similar opportunities are also available in the United States and Europe.
But the South Korean offer apparently includes the option of swapping the Galaxy Note 7 for a Galaxy Note 8 once it becomes available. While offers related to the Galaxy S7 series have been prevalent in the Western world, Reuters suggests that Korean consumers will be able to swap for the next generation Galaxy Note 8 device, of course suggesting that Samsung will indeed renew this range next year.
It will be difficult for Samsung to restore the reputation of the Galaxy Note range, but clearly it is determined to do so. This would nonetheless seem to be a wise move for the Korean company, as the Galaxy Note series has been lauded in recent years. Indeed, the Galaxy Note 8 actually received excellent reviews before the explosion disaster befell the phablet.
Reuters initially reported on the Galaxy Note 8 rumour, prompting Samsung to issue a response to the media organisation. Perhaps unsurprisingly this statement was rather less committal than the original article, pointing out that Samsung has yet to officially communicate any information about a new Galaxy Note device. It was instead dismissed as being merely speculation.
But despite the response of Samsung to the Reuters article, the consensus of opinion among analysts is that the Korean company will indeed release a Galaxy Note 8. Patrick Moorhead, president and principal analyst with Moor Insights & Strategy, believes that the Note brand will be continued, and that the next device in the series could even be unveiled in January at CES or March at the Mobile World Congress.
And Moorhead also predicts that the new Galaxy Note 8 will retain the high-end reputation that the series has built up over the last few years, targeting both premium consumers and enterprise. This will please fans of the series, and Samsung has certainly built up a loyal following for the Galaxy Note range due to the sheer quality of devices produced. Although it is obvious that the Galaxy Note 7 has done considerable damage to the range, it does not mean that it cannot be resurrected with an impressive Galaxy Note 8 in 2017.
Galaxy Note 8 features
Obviously it is rather early to speculate about what features and specifications may be part of the Galaxy Note 8 when it is released. But it is already suggested that Samsung will completely redesign the S-Pen for this phablet release next year, ensuring that the device has improved functionality. This would seem to be a sensible move, as the S-Pen was something that made the Galaxy Note 7 stand out from the crowd in the past.
Additionally, early murmurings from close to the Samsung supply chain suggest that the next generation Galaxy Note 8 may benefit from a significant external redesign. In particular, it is believed that the phone may feature a new color choice and coating when it is released. Apple has also been linked with new colors and a significantly redesigned exterior for the iPhone 8, so Samsung will naturally want to keep up with its biggest competitor, particularly as the Galaxy Note 8 is likely to release around the time that the iPhone 8 goes public.
Elsewhere, it is suggested that the Galaxy Note 8 could be the first ever device from Samsung to feature 4K resolution technology. This is also possible for the forthcoming Galaxy S8, but it has been traditional in recent years for Samsung to reserve its major innovations and higher specs for the Galaxy Note range.
Rumours have been rife for several years that Samsung would introduce a 4K mobile, with the company often relying on superior screen technology to attract consumers. Samsung pioneered the curved screen in both its range of televisions and smartphones, and has been the largest seller of TV panels since 2008.
This reputation could lead the corporation to finally introduce 4K when the Galaxy Note 8 is released, presumably in the third quarter of 2017.