Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 Hands-on review

Chris Martin - 25/02/13

Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0

MWC has kicked off in Barcelona and Samsung has gone and introduces an 8in phone and tablet (phablet), the Galaxy Note 8.0. Here's our hands-on review of the Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0.

Like small tablets but get frustrated when you can't make a phone call? We'll the Galaxy Note 8.0 might be your answer. This 8in tablet has a SIM card slot and therefore the ability to make phone calls, send text messages and the usual things you take for granted with your smartphone.

See also: Apple iPad Mini vs Google Nexus 7 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 comparison review.

"The Galaxy Note 8.0 breaths fresh life into the category as it delivers the perfect fusion of portability and everyday productivity - the result is a pioneering, pocket-sized solution that enhances and enriches our everyday lives, whether at work or play," said Samsung.

Design-wise the Galaxy Note 8.0 is instantly recognizable as a Samsung device. It looks like a huge version of the Galaxy S3 but with a wider bezel either side of the display. It's nice and light at 338g which is a good start but not as easy to hold as the iPad mini and Nexus 7.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 vs Galaxy S3

The 8in screen has punchy, bold colours like most Samsung Galaxy smartphones and tablet but doesn't pack an exciting resolution – just 1280 x 800 for a pixel density of 189ppi. Under the hood is a 1.6GHz A9 quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM promising excellent performance. The Galaxy Note 8.0 certainly felt nippy to us.

Storage comes in the form of 16GB or 32GB and there's a microSD card slot for up to 64GB more. The cameras aren't anything to shout about at 5Mp and 1.3Mp on the front and rear respectively. We'll give them a proper test when we get the Galaxy Note 8.0 into our lab.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 S Pen

The Galaxy Note 8.0 runs Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean and Samsung's recognisable TouchWiz interface. As with other Note devices, there is an accompanying S Pen stylus and software to go with it including S Planner and S Note. For the first time, the stylus can be used with the back and menu buttons which is a welcome addition.

Connectivity includes dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, A-GPS and microUSB. There's no NFC which is a bit of a surprise but there is an infrared sensor with which to control your TV.

We obviously haven't been able to test battery life but the Galaxy Note 8.0 has a 4600mAh battery inside.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 phone mode

Overall it's an interesting concept, for those that want a tablet and smartphone in one device, aka a phablet, and think the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 and rivals aren't big enough then this will be a likely front runner. However, you will look rather silly making a phone call if you don't use a hands-free method.

There's no pricing information for the Galaxy Note 8.0 yet but it will be launching globally in the second quarter. Look out for our full review.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0: Specs

  • OS: Android OS, v4.1.2 (Jelly Bean)
  • Storage: 16/32 GB storage, 2 GB RAM - microSD, up to 64 GB
  • CPU: Quad-core 1.6 GHz Cortex-A9
  • Camera: 5 MP, 2592?1944 pixels, autofocus
  • Video: Yes, [email protected]
  • Secondary camera: Yes, 1.3 MP
  • Dimensions: 210.8 x 135.9 x 8 mm
  • Weight: 338 g

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