Samsung Unveils Note 9, Upgraded Watch and Home Speaker

Nichole VegaAug 10, 2018

You can pre-order in the United Kingdom from 5pm GMT on 9 August via Samsung. Samsung has also upgraded the processor inside the Galaxy Note 9, packing an octa-core Snapdragon 845 processor into its new flagship, and the battery has gotten a bump to 4000mAh. Samsung has been conservative on battery improvements ever since its Note 7 phone in 2016 developed a tendency to burst into flame, prompting an expensive recall and delivering a hit to the company's reputation.

Its partnership with Samsung is a big deal (the Android beta is early access for Samsung Galaxy users, for example) but that doesn't mean that the Galaxy deal will last forever. Well, that's because you can use the S Pen as a remote control. You better start saving now, because Samsung's watches won't be cheap with a starting price of $329.99. The 4G version comes with 1.5GB of RAM, while there's 768MB of RAM inside the smaller one. It is good to see the rear camera with telephoto/wide lenses have even wider apertures and dual OIS. It's an evolution of the Galaxy Note 8 but one with some notable upgrades.

Today Samsung announced its first smart speaker with the Bixby virtual voice assistant, the Galaxy Home The announcement was made at the company's Unpacked event in Brooklyn, New York, alongside the Galaxy Note 9 phone.

In addition, the leaked "Galaxy" skin is also confirmed as an exclusive for Samsung Galaxy owners who download the game. Users can choose between 128GB or 512GB. Samsung said that it's working with Spotify and Google to integrate Bixby into their products.

Samsung blamed itself partly for the disappointing performance, saying on an earnings call that it's played too safe with smartphones too long. It's still largely similar to the Note 8's S Pen, and it works just as well too. It'll also allow more accurate writing and drawing on the phone's screen. Purists can turn the feature off to get images that reflect what the eye sees - an option unavailable with Pixel.

Solid cash reserves also helped the South Korean company set up the world's biggest smartphone factory in India this year, a banner event that drew the leaders of the two countries along with Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee, Samsung's de facto head. And Samsung also teased its first Bixby-powered home speaker, Galaxy Home, a distinctive tripod design that resembles a hipster barbecue.

With up to 8GB of RAM and the Exynos 9 CPU, the Note 9 comes tooled for the level of processing necessary for gaming, and Samsung will be keen to make the most of partnering with Fortnite developers Epic Games.

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