Samsung Galaxy Note 8: Full, in-depth review

Samsung Galaxy Note 8
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 8
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 8
  • Expert Rating

    4.50 / 5

Pros

  • S-Pen
  • QHD+ Display

Cons

  • Battery life burns down fast
  • Exynos can't keep pace with Snapdragon

Bottom Line

With the arrival of the Note 8, the brand has finally - and maybe inevitably - risen from the ashes to reclaim its past glory.

Would you buy this?

  • Price

    $ 1,499.00 (AUD)

Performance

The performance of the Note 8, while nothing to scoff at, is one area where it falls a little behind. At least, for the Australian variant of the phone.

The Samsung’s Exynos processor definitely has its strength - outperforming the best out there when it came to the GeekBench Compute test - but across the board it struggled to keep up with smartphones running on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 processor in the same way that the Australian S8 does.

Credit: Fergus Halliday | IDG

Beyond benchmarks, the Note 8 runs really, really well but didn’t quite blow us away. It has its strengths and weaknesses.

When it comes to multitasking, the Note 8 doesn’t miss a beat. If you’re a fan of watching a TV show on half the screen and trawling Twitter on the other, this is the phone for you. It makes great use of the extra screen space available and, short of a full-blown tablet, it’s second to none. However, we did encounter some small but noticeable sluggishness whenever Bixby’s found its way into the mix, deliberately or otherwise.

Battery Life

Given recent history, it shouldn’t surprise that Samsung play things pretty safe with the Note 8’s battery life. It’s hard to be too hard on them over this, but it does leave the Note 8 with another clear weakness.

On PCMark’s Battery Life test, the Note 8 took 7 hours and 28 minutes to fall to 20%.

Credit: Samsung

In our time with the device, it sometimes managed to hit an even 10 or so hours of use before needing a top up. However, this wasn't always a sure thing. With regular usage, it feels like you’d struggle to make it last through more than day of regular use. You might be able to "Think Bigger" with the Note 8 than its competition but the cost makes itself known here.

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