Samsung unveils Galaxy Note 7 with iris scanner

Manny Pham
August 2, 2016

It’s the unveiling phablet fans have been waiting for, Samsung has finally taken the drapes off the Galaxy Note 7. One of the worst kept secrets ever. 

Samsung, a company you may have heard, has just launched the Galaxy Note 7 today in London. It’s the large-screen phone we’ve all been waiting for, what Samsung has confirmed today (none of it surprising), is spinning the Note 7 to be the de facto phablet choice of 2016.

Samsung revamped the design language of all of their devices, seen also in last year’s Note 5. The UK never saw the Note 5 released, meaning the Note 7 is the first time we get to experience premium phablet goodness from Samsung.

Iris scanner

galaxy note 7


You’ll see a lot of similarity with the S7 Edge with the Note 7, a noticeable difference is the iris scanner on top of the device. By using your biometrics you can quickly and easily access your device by holding the Note 7, 30cm from your face. Out of the five times we tested it, not once did it fail to recognise our tired retinas. Impressive yes, but is it really easier than using the fingerprint scanner? Something to find out in the full review.

Unsurprisingly the iris scanner will be used as extra security slapped onto Samsung Pay, to keep those pesky thieves at bay. If that wasn’t enough security for you, Samsung’s industry grade Knox security is present.

Galaxy Note 7 or S7 Edge spec sheet?

galaxy note 7


The Note 7 is indistinguishable from the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge inwards and outwards. Specs are virtually the same with the Exynos 8890 powering the Note 7 as it does the S7 Edge. The US will instead use the Snpadragon 820 due to carrier issues. If you really need to know, the Exynos 8890 is faster but by a margin. Only 4GB accompanies the processor, despite the rumours of 6GB.

The similarity extends even further: fast charging, wireless fast charging, 12-megapixel front-facing camera with OIS. Water-resistance is present with an IP68 rating just like on, you guessed it, the S7 Edge.

An old sight for sore eyes is that beautiful Super AMOLED QHD screen from the S7 Edge. It’s here on the Note 7, so expect eye-popping colour with excellent contrast. The display is the first dual-curved screen on the Note line, allowing the Note 7 to be 2.5mm narrower than its predecessor, and not obstruct the S Pen. The curvature of the Note 7 is different from the S7 Edge because the S Pen had to be kept in mind. If it was curved like the S7 Edge, the S Pen wouldn’t be as effective. The curved panel is Gorilla Glass 5, more gorilla and less shattering (hopefully).

Samsung made the wise decision of making 64GB the new base model, if that isn’t enough microSD will also be supported up to 256GB. Another notable difference is the bump in battery capacity to 3,500mAh, over the 3,000mAh seen on the Note 5.

Notably the Note 7 took a leap into the future and supports USB-C. To make sure Samsung don’t anger fans, a microUSB converter will be in the box.

S Pen scribbling over Marshmallow



Samsung are promising more precision and better detail with the new S Pen. The S Pen has been shaved down from 1.6mm to 0.7mm and upgraded to 4,096 levels, as opposed to 2,048 on earlier models. The S Pen, can be used at any given moment on the screen, without even waking up the Note 7. Quickly scribble a note down on the dormant screen and the Note 7 will save it for you.

Some new features have also come to S Pen. The most useful would be Translate, where if you hover over a word you’re unsure of, the Note 7 will immediately translate it for you. Smart Select should be rebranded as GIF maker, as it can take a part of a video and loop it for you.

Android 6.0 Marshmallow run straight out of the box, but Samsung did confirm a Nougat upgrade will come.

The Galaxy Note 7 will be released in onyx black and blue coral. A silver titanium finish will follow, after the European release, September 2nd. Pre-orders start on August 16th, doing so before the 30th of August will bag you free three day delivery and most importantly, an upgraded Gear VR.



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