We knew another Note was coming. After all, Samsung Mobile head JK Shin confirmed the news back in January. But here at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the tablet’s finally been made official. If you haven’t already inferred from its name, Samsung’s latest S Pen entry boasts an 8-inch 1,280 x 800 TFT display. That puts it on par with the Note 10.1’s resolution, although here users will obviously benefit from a more eye-pleasing pixel density (189ppi) and smaller 210.8mm x 135.9mm x 7.95mm (8.3 x 5.4 x 0.31 inches) footprint. Beneath that love it or hate it sealed plastic chassis, lies the company’s Exynos 4 Quad processor clocked at 1.6GHz and paired with 2GB RAM, radios for WiFi a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, A-GPS, GLONASS and HSPA+ 21 (850/900/1900/2100MHz), up to 32GB of internal storage (microSD expansion available), in addition to a 4,600mAh battery. And, as with most Android products rolling out as of late, the Note 8.0 will ship with version 4.1.2 of Jelly Bean onboard — skinned with the requisite TouchWiz UX.
Consider the Note 8.0 a hybridized offering of the GS III, Note II and Note 10.1’s software innovations. Along with the familiar suite of S Pen apps (S Note and S Planner), Samsung’s new tab also includes support for Smart Stay, Multi-Window and Air View functionality, Popup video and note, as well as AllShare Play and Cast. Also of note (sorry) are two third-party apps that Samsung’s pre-loaded onto the tab: Flipboard (customized to take advantage of the S Pen’s hover and preview capabilities for headlines) and Awesome Note, which is debuting as a one-year exclusive. And, in a major first for the Note line, users will finally have the ability to control those Android navigation keys (back and menu) with the S Pen.
Because this is a mid-sized tablet, Samsung’s positioning the Note 8.0 to double as an e-reader and living room companion. To that end, the Note 8.0 includes “reading mode,” which adjusts the LCD display for an easier on the eyes prolonged reading experience (compatible with third-party ereader apps) and Smart Remote, a Peel-powered application that’s part visual program guide and part remote control (using the inbuilt IR blaster). Oh, and did we mention the Note 8.0’s also a phone? Well, the HSPA+ global model is, anyway. LTE and WiFi-only models are currently in the works, with that latter variant headed to US shores.