[THE INVESTOR] NEW YORK -- Samsung Electronics took the wraps off the much-anticipated Galaxy Note 7 smartphone at its annual Samsung Galaxy Unpack event in New York on Tuesday.
Although the latest large-size smartphone -- often called a “phablet,” a combination of phone and tablet -- is the sixth in the Note lineup, it has been dubbed the Note 7 to align the numbering with the Galaxy S lineup.
It comes with a slew of new features that will probably provide reason enough for those currently using outdated smaller-size phones to switch to the phablet that features a whopping 5.7-inch (14.5 centimeters) curved display.
Two of the most appealing factors of the upcoming Samsung smartphone will be its iris scanner and stylus pen, a signature feature of the Note series that launched in 2011.
Koh Dong-jin, Samsung Electronics’ mobile communications business chief, introduces the firm’s new Galaxy Note 7 flagship large-sized smartphone in New York on Tuesday. Samsung Electronics
“Samsung has spearheaded the phablet segment and set new smartphone standards with the Note 7 that features a large-size screen and S-Pen, the stylus,” said Koh Dong-jin, the chief of the tech giant’s mobile communications business, at the launch event of the new flagship smartphone.
“Samsung will provide diverse mobile experiences through the Galaxy Note 7 as well as new wearable devices and mobile services,” Koh said.
Coupled with the Knox, the tech firm’s security software, the iris scanner is expected to make the Note 7 more secure.
Users can double up on smartphone security by utilizing both the fingerprint sensor and iris scanner to unlock the phone. They can also make use of the iris scanner for user identification when using the mobile payment solution Samsung Pay.
The iris scanner will eliminate a series of hurdles, such as digital financial authentication certificates in Korea when using mobile financial and banking services secured with intricate user verification processes.
Samsung Pass, a new software solution for log-in identification, will also strengthen the security of the new phone.
The stylus pen, as well as the phone itself, will be water-resistant and users will be able to take notes with the digital pen on the screen even when the display is off.
Samsung has doubled the levels of pressure of the digital pen from 2,048 for the Note 5 to 4,096 for the Note 7, and reduced the diameter of its tip from 1.6 millimeters to 0.7 millimeters.
The pen, which will likely be much more versatile than any of its preceding models, will enable the user to create a GIF animation file from a video clip and share the file via mobile messengers with ease.
The automatic translation of text on webpages or in images will also be one of the useful features available with the pen.
On the design front, the Note 7 will be fitted with a display curved on both sides to provide a better grip.
The curved display used to be featured only in the Galaxy S lineup, but Samsung has recently put more weight on its curved-panel smartphones over their flat-screen siblings.
Samsung recently said that the Galaxy S7 Edge, featuring the curved screen, has started to outsell the flat-screen S7.
The Note 7 comes in four colors -- Blue Coral, Gold Platinum, Silver Titanium and Black Onyx -- and will sport a Type-C USB port, 64 gigabytes of internal storage memory, with a memory slot expandable up to 256GB and a 3,500 milliampere-hour battery.
Samsung Electronics’ new virtual reality headset Gear VR. Samsung Electronics
Also unveiled at the New York event was the new Gear VR headset, which boasts a 101-degree field of view, up from the previous Gear VR’s 96 degrees.
Supporting both the USB Type-C and conventional USB Type-B ports, the new Gear VR support can be hooked up to game consoles and other devices.
By Kim Young-won (firstname.lastname@example.org)