Vulcan Post had the chance to attend a rather exclusive NDA briefing ahead of the Samsung Galaxy Unpacked 2020 event, and our main takeaway was that the two versions of the Galaxy Note20 phone will be the stars of the show.
Leading up to the event, there’s always much speculation on what exactly will be revealed, and we’ve got to say that many sites have been pretty much spot-on with their predictions.
Aside from the new phones, however, some software updates and completely new features for various devices were announced too. But first, we’ll focus on the stars of the event.
What’s Noteworthy About The Galaxy Note20?
Galaxy Note20 will come in a regular 6.7-inch display and costs RRP RM4,290 for the 5G version, and RRP RM3,899 for the LTE version.
Galaxy Note20 Ultra has a 6.9-inch display, Quad HD+ Dynamic AMOLED 2X, and a refresh rate of 120Hz, and costs RM5,199.
The S Pen for the Note series is now faster with only 9 milliseconds of latency, which means that as you write, you’ll see the pen’s motion on-screen in real-time with close to no delay.
Both phones run on a similar 7nm 64-bit Octa-Core processor.
Look At The Cameras
In terms of front cameras, the Ultra and regular version stand on the same ground with a 10MP Selfie Camera.
The rear ones are where differences lie, barring the 12MP Ultra Wide Camera, which is the same for both versions.
Note20 Ultra’s rear camera will have these main specs:
- 108MP Wide-angle Camera,
- 12MP Telephoto Camera,
- Laser AF Sensor,
- Space Zoom with 5x Optical Zoom and up to 50x Super Resolution Zoom.
Note20’s rear camera will have these main specs:
- 12MP Wide-angle Camera,
- 64MP Telephoto Camera,
- Space Zoom with 3x Hybrid Optic Zoom and up to 30x Super Resolution Zoom.
The above specs will allow users to film in 8K on both Note20 phones.
While they sound rather impressive, we personally thought that the rear camera bulges of the Note20 phones were a little ridiculous, as they’re almost as thick as the S Pen. This time, we’re not sure if a case will keep the phones flat on a surface.
The Other Differing Specs
|Memory||5G with 12GB RAM and 256GB internal storage||5G and LTE, both with 8GB RAM and 256GB internal storage|
|Colours||– Mystic Bronze|
– Mystic Black
– Mystic White
|– Mystic Bronze|
– Mystic Green
– Mystic Gray
Take Note Of The New Samsung Notes
Another update to Samsung Notes includes a feature that lets you record audio while taking notes, and when you review your notes while playing audio, you can click on the note and it’ll show the audio that was playing at the exact time you were taking down the note.
This is useful if you write slower than someone speaks (like in lectures or meetings, for example), because the written notes can act as an audio note for you to skip to a relevant portion of the recording.
Samsung Notes will also straighten the scribbled notes you’ve taken, so you’ll no longer have wonky notes.
The new version of Samsung Notes will let you sign electronically through the app itself too, mitigating the need to download a separate app just to open and sign PDFs.
Like AirDrop, But Not Really
You can also expect to see Samsung to finally roll out something similar to Apple’s AirDrop function for the Note20 Ultra, using Ultra-Wide Band (UWB) technology.
It’s where you can use point your Note20 Ultra towards another UWB equipped device to share files using Nearby Share.
Unfortunately, it still seems like you’d have to physically close for it to work, so its coverage isn’t wide.
Editor’s Note (updated 05/08/2020 at 10:29PM): At the time of writing, the details on this feature and which devices it would be available on weren’t explained to us in full detail at the NDA briefing, but we’ve since updated the above paragraphs upon receiving more information.
Note20 Phones Aside…
You’ll no longer need a cable to use Samsung DeX, which enables users to extend their device (usually phones) into a desktop-like experience by connecting a keyboard, mouse, and monitor.
Our previous experience with Samsung DeX went a little more complicated than we would’ve have liked, so it’d be great if the new wireless version could solve our problems then.
Samsung is also releasing new wireless earbuds called Samsung Buds Live. In a nutshell, they look like jelly beans as they have no eartips—they simply have small speakers.
Due to the current climate, we didn’t try them out at the NDA briefing, so we can’t comment on whether they’ll be loud or leak audio.
We were told that they would also have active noise cancellation (ANC), though we do wonder how that will be achieved without eartips.
If you’re a fan of Samsung’s tablets, you might want to keep a lookout for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 and S7+, both of which will have similar Samsung Notes features as the Note20.
They’ll come with an S Pen and keyboard packaged in the bundle. On the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7, a 6-month free version of Clip Studio Paint, a professional drawing programme, will come pre-installed.
We also learnt that there will be a Samsung Galaxy Watch3 coming out in 45mm and 41mm versions.
The 45mm model costs RRP RM1,799 and comes in Mystic Black and Mystic Silver, while the 41mm model costs RRP RM1,699 and comes in Mystic Bronze and Mystic Silver.
After two foldable phones and the user feedback that followed, Samsung is also releasing the Galaxy Z Fold2 with a main screen of 7.6 inches, making it larger than the Galaxy Fold.
This will come in 2 colours: Mystic Black and Mystic Bronze.
Overall, what we saw at the NDA briefing was pretty exciting. While there don’t seem to be too many major upgrades, it’s clear that Samsung’s paying attention to and putting effort into creating a better and more pleasant user experience across its devices.
The upgrades also seem productivity-driven, which makes sense considering the new normal of remote working, WFH, and working on-the-go.
Editor’s Note: At the time of writing, no prices for these devices have been revealed yet, as the NDA briefing didn’t mention them either. Once the prices have been properly revealed, we’ll update this piece with the new information.
Editor’s Note (updated on 05/08/2020 at 10:30PM): Multiple parts of this article have had information added to reflect greater accuracy or provide more details.
Editor’s Note (updated on 06/08/2020 at 2:54PM): The prices for the Galaxy Note20 devices and Watch3 devices have been added.