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Samsung to launch Galaxy Home smart speaker in challenge to Apple's HomePod

10 August 2018
Samsung to launch Galaxy Home smart speaker in challenge to Apple's HomePod

The new Samsung Galaxy Note 9 has been officially presented and starting tomorrow, you can pre-order yours. But we learned a bit more about the Watch at this event. We managed to get a brief hands-on with the device and here's our first impressions.

You can compare the new Samsung Galaxy Note9 with the Note8 easily by checking out Samsung's infographic (linked). The Note also got curved edges before that became standard on Samsung's flagship phones.

The only way to tell that it's a Galaxy Note9 is by looking at the rear camera module. The fingerprint sensor is now below the camera, whereas the Note 8 had the sensor next to the cameras.

"We expect the Note 9 to sell more than its previous model and we will mobilise all our sales and marketing resources to ensure the successful launch", KyeongTae Lee, Samsung's vice-president of mobile communication, told investors on the company's earnings conference call last week. That's right, I'm talking about the camera module. It has your usual screen off memo, smart select and live message but they have added something extra on the inside.

Specifically using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), the S-Pen can now be used as a mini remote for the phone to trigger selfies or group shots if you place it out of reach, switch slides in a presentation or pause video. The phone's body is slightly thicker at 9mm and heavier at 205g, accommodating a significantly larger 4,000mAh battery, which Samsung says should provide all-day battery for the heaviest of users.

It will come as a surprise to absolutely no one that the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is now official following the company's Unpacked event. Tizen works on both Android and iOS, so users will not be limited by the operating system of their smartphone. While this is great for hot desking situations, it isn't as flexible for moments where you just need to project something for a meeting. And, for a limited time you can also get a free Samsung Galaxy Note9, S9 or S9+ when you buy a Samsung Galaxy Note9. Spotify was introduced as a strategic partner across all of Samsung's consumer electronics, and will be inserted into the setup process. Will you be playing this on keyboard and mouse?

However, Amazon's Alexa software has a wider range of skills on offer that enable it to link up with and control more third-party devices around the home. The 128GB model also comes equipped with 6GB of RAM, while the 512GB model gets a bump to 8GB of RAM.

Samsung does not break out shipments of its smartphone models, but analysts reckon it has shipped around 10 million Note 8 models so far.

Not using a Samsung device? Its liquid cooling system has been upgraded with 3x larger thermal spreader which allows faster dissipation of heat. The adjustable aperture module debuted on the Galaxy S9, and was one of the only upgrades over the GS8.

Additional disclosure: Investors are always reminded that before making any investment, you should do your own proper due diligence on any name directly or indirectly mentioned in this article.

The camera in the Note 9 will use artificial intelligence to detect what's in a scene - whether that's food, flowers or a sunset - to automatically tweak images to make them pop.