‘SamFAIL’ roots device without tripping Samsung Knox

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SAMSUNG HAS OFFICIALLY LAUNCHED the Galaxy Note 8, its big-screened flagship for 2017.

Naturally, Samsung has been keen to extinguish the controversy surrounding last year’s Galaxy Note 7, which was binned following reports of handsets catching on fire and exploding. The Note 8’s battery, it claims, has undergone rigorous testing to ensure it isn’t hit by a similar scandal.

Related: Galaxy S9 price, release date and specs

If you’re looking to pick up a Galaxy Note 8, we’ve rounded everything we know about its UK availability below. You can also check out our full Galaxy Note 8 review. 

Release date
The Samsung Galaxy Note 8 went on sale in the UK just moments after its unveiling and started shipping on 15 September – the same day that iPhone 8 pre-orders are tipped to begin.

Some early buyers reported that their Galaxy Note 8 arrived ahead of Samsung’s promised 15 September date. Punters in the US who have ordered the smartphone via Samsung, Best Buy, Verizon and Sprint reported early shipments, but UK retailers didn’t appear to follow suit.

The Galaxy Note 8 has been quick pre-order records too, according to Samsung. “More people in the US have purchased the Galaxy Note 8 than previous Samsung Note phones during the same time period,” the company said, albeit failing to mention how many handsets it has managed to flog. 

Price
Samsung’s own website is, naturally, selling the Galaxy Note 8. The smartphone, along with a dual-SIM variant, can both be picked up for £869 SIM-free.

Carphone Warehouse is offering the Galaxy Note 8. It’s on sale for £869 SIM-free, and the retailer is also offering handset on tariffs with EE, iD, O2 and Vodafone, with prices starting from £56 per month for a 24-month contract with 10GB monthly data. It’s also throwing in a free DeX station worth £139.99.

EE, who offered a free DeX dock to those who ordered before 14 September, is stocking the Note 8. The firm is recommending its £62.99 per month tariff, which comes with 15GB data and an upfront cost of £49.99. 

Over on the O2 website, the Galaxy Note 8 can be picked up for £49.99 on a choice of £56, £66, £76 and £96 (!) tariffs, which come with 3GB, 10GB, 30GB or 50GB monthly data.

Three is offering the Note 8 with 1GB data for £48 per month (with a £99 upfront cost), 12GB data for £56 per month (£79 upfront) and 100GB data for £64 per month (£79 upfront). 

Virgin Media’s mobile arm is stocking the Note 8 and is offering it for free from £43 a month with 1.2GB monthly data. This can be increased to 6GB for £49 per month, or 16GB for £52 per month. 

Vodafone, finally, is also offering Note 8. Prices start from £44 a month with a £300 upfront cost, which gets you 500MB data and 500 minutes per month. If you’re after more data, Vodafone is offering 16GB and 32GB for £60 and £66 a month, respectively, with a £50 upfront cost. 

If you’re looking to pick up the Galaxy Note 8 in the US, it’s available from Samsung, Best Buy, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon. 

Specifications
– 6.3in 1440×2160 Super AMOLED curved Infinity Display with 18.5:9 ratio
– S Pen support
– 163mmx75mmx8.6mm
– Iris scanner/fingerprint scanner
– Built-in ‘Bixby’ AI assistant
– Samsung Exynos 8895 CPU, 6GB RAM
– 12MP dual rear-facing camera, 8MP front-facing camera
– USB-C connectivity, 3.5mm headphone jack
– Android 7.0 Nougat
– IP68 certification 
– 64GB built-in storage, microSD expansion
– 3,300mAh battery. 
– Fast charging, wireless charging support
– Midnight Black, Maple Gold, Orchid Grey and Deep Sea Blue colour options. 

Latest news
20/9/17:
Samsung has today announced that the Galaxy Note 8 sold in “record numbers” over its first weekend on sale, making it the firm’s most successful Note device launch to date. The firm has yet to cough on sales figures, though. 

18/9/17: Samsung is finally allowing Note 8 users, along with owners of the Galaxy S8 and S8+, to disable the handset’s Bixby button. This comes after users complained that they found themselves accidentally summoning the virtual assistant, while others questioned the lack of a need for a physical shortcut to Bixby Home, which can be accessed by swiping right on the screen. The software update is starting to roll out to devices now, SamMobile reports, but there’s no word yet as to whether Samsung will allow users to remap the button. 

23/8/17: The Galaxy Note 8 is official, and it has few surprises in store. There’s a 6.3in QHD+ AMOLED Infinity display with an 18.5:9 aspect ratio at the forefront of the Galaxy Note 8 and, unsurprisingly, and this comes with support for Samsung’s new-and-improved S Pen which supports a finer tip and better pressure sensitivity.

The S Pen also comes with a new ‘Screen Off Memo’ feature that lets users doodle on the display while it’s switched off, while Live Message allows users to scribble animated doodles and easily turn into a GIF. 

Looks wise, the Galaxy Note 8 sports the same metal and glass chassis as that first seen on the Galaxy S8. It boasts the same IP68 resistance against water and dust, and unlike the iPhone X, both fingerprint sensor and iris scanners for unlocking the device. 

Under the hood, in the UK at least, you’ll find Samsung’s homegrown Exynos 8895 processor, which comes paired with 6GB RAM and 64GB built-in storage, which can be expanded up to 256GB via the built-in microSD slot. There’s also a 3,300mAh battery, and Samsung has been keen to point out that this has gone through rigorous testing and probably won’t, er, explode.

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This supposedly fire-proof battery comes with support for both fast charging via USB-C and wireless charging baked-in. 

Camera-wise, there’s a dual 12MP sensor setup on the rear of the phone, which packs Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS) on both the wide-angle lens and the telephoto lens. There’s also an 8MP camera on the front, which offers both OIS and optical zoom. 

Despite the recent launch of Android Oreo, the Galaxy Note 8 runs Android 7.0 Nougat, which comes topped in Samsung’s usual custom user interface. Bixby, unsurprisingly, is included and can be accessed via the smartphone’s dedicated Bixby button.

Samsung DeX support is also included, when means when the Galaxy Note 8 is docked, it will offer a desktop experience. 

At launch, the Galaxy Note 8 will be available in Midnight Black and Maple Gold colour variants in the UK. There’s talk that two additional colours, Orchid Grey and Deepsea Blue, will be made available at a later date. µ

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