Samsung Galaxy Note 7 official with iris scanner, improved S Pen, and more

After being the subject of a multitude of leaks, the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is now officially official.

While the Galaxy Note 7 may look similar to the Galaxy Note 5, there are a few subtle tweaks that make it a very different handset. First up is the display, which is a 5.7-inch 2560×1440 Super AMOLED screen like on the Note 5, but the Note 7’s display features dual curved edges. The addition of these curved edges means that the Note 7 gets the Edge UX software features found on the S7 edge. The Note 7’s screen is also covered by Corning’s new Gorilla Glass 5.


Above that display is an iris scanner. This iris scanner gives the Note 7 added security, letting you use it to unlock your phone, authenticate Samsung Pay purchases, and authenticate other apps that support Samsung Pass.

Finally, the bottom of the Note 7 is home to a reversible USB Type-C port. This is notable because the Note 7 is the first Samsung smartphone to offer USB Type-C. Because the Note 7 has USB Type-C, Samsung today also announced a new version of the Gear VR that supports the Note 7 and its USB Type-C port as well as the other Galaxy S6, S7, and Note 5 flagships that use microUSB. The new Gear VR will launch on August 19 alongside the Note 7.


The rest of the Note 7’s feature set is about what you’d expect from a Samsung flagship in 2016. It’s got a Snapdragon 820 processor in the U.S., China, and Japan, while all other regions will get a Note 7 outfitted with an octa-core Exynos 8 Octa 8890 chipset. Also included is 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage, a microSD slot, and a 3500mAh battery that supports fast charging over both wired and wireless methods. Rounding out the hardware features is a Dual Pixel 12-megapixel rear camera with OIS and a 5-megapixel front camera. All of those features are wrapped in a body that’s IP68-rated for water resistance.

Since this is a Note device, you’re also getting an S Pen. This S Pen features a smaller 0.7mm tip and improved pressure sensitivity, and like the Note 7 itself, the S Pen is also IP68-rated for water resistance.


Finally, the Note 7 runs Android 6.0.1 beneath Samsung’s custom user interface. That custom UI includes several software features, including Always On Display and Samsung Knox. There are several S Pen features, too, like the ability to quickly create GIFs using Smart Select and new Air Command features, including Magnify and Translate.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 will be sold in Black Onyx, Blue Coral, Silver Titanium, and Gold Platinum color options, though the gold model doesn’t appear to be coming to the U.S., at least not initially. Samsung will launch the Note 7 on August 19.


In the U.S., the Note 7 will be available from AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, T-Mobile, and U.S. Cellular. The big four will kick off pre-orders on August 3, while U.S. Cellular will start on August 4. No matter which carrier you buy from, you’ll be able to choose either a free Gear Fit 2 or 256GB microSD card to go with your new phone. Additionally, T-Mobile subscribers will have the option of getting a free year of Netflix instead of the other two gifts.


Here’s what the Note 7’s U.S. carrier pricing looks like:

  • AT&T: 30 payments of $29.34 with AT&T Next or 24 payments of $36.67 with AT&T Next Every Year. Buyers can get $695 in monthly bill credits to put toward a second Note 7.
  • Sprint: No pricing announced as of this post.
  • Verizon: $36 per month for 24 months.
  • T-Mobile: $69.99 down and 24 payments of $32.50.
  • U.S. Cellular: 30 monthly payments of $27.80. Also offering 20 and 24 monthly payment options.

So now that it’s official, what do you think of Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7?

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