Samsung's Galaxy Note7 can look its owner in the eye


— 12:09 PM on August 2, 2016

At its latest Unpacked event this morning, Samsung showed off its next-generation Galaxy Note7 smartphone (and no, that's not a typo). The company's latest flagship phablet offers an IP68 water- and dust-resistant shell (and S Pen), HDR content support, and an iris scanner that provides another layer of security on top of the phone's fingerprint sensor.

Samsung uses the Note7's iris scanner to lock down a secure enclave called the Secure Folder. This lockbox provides owners with a place to store content that they don't want to make accessible to folks who might borrow or pick up the device after it's been unlocked with the fingerprint scanner. The iris scanner also ties into Samsung's Pay mobile payments service and the Samsung Pass centralized identity management service for added security.

The Note7's 5.7" Super AMOLED screen features the same 2560x1440 resolution as its predecessor's, but this model comes with Samsung's latest mDNIe image processor on board to power HDR content. Samsung says it's partering with Amazon to deliver HDR content on-the-go through the online retailer's Prime Video service. Samsung has also brought its Dual Edge styling to the Note7. Both the front and rear edges of the device taper for a thinner feel in the hand.

The Note7 also shares many of the Galaxy S7's internals. Like that handset, US Note7s will be powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 820 SoC, according to Anandtech, while the rest of the world will get the Exynos 8890 Octa SoC. The Note7 also gets the Galaxy S7's 12MP rear camera, f/1.7 rear lens, and Dual Pixel phase-detect autofocus system. The selfie snapper on the Note7 is a 5MP unit with an equally speedy f/1.7 lens.

Samsung will offer the Note7 with 64GB of internal storage, and it has a slot for MicroSD cards as large as 256GB, as well. A 3500-mAh juice pack lets the Note7 surf the web for up to 14 hours on LTE or Wi-Fi. Owners can charge the battery through the phone's USB Type-C port or wirelessly with a Qi-compatible dock.

The latest Galaxy Note will go up for pre-order tomorrow, and CNET says to expect a price tag of $880 on AT&T, $849 on T-Mobile, and $834 on US Cellular in the USA.

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