With less than 48 hours to go before Samsung’s Unpacked Episode 2 IFA 2013 event, it is all but certain that the Korean giants will be unveiling its latest smartphone, the Galaxy Note III. Thanks to the the amount of rumours and leaks that have made their way online, there appears to be more that we do know and less of what is still under wraps for Samsung’s next flagship phablet.
From 4K video recording to a special lower-priced variant, here’s all you need to know about Samsung’s next phablet.
Article continues after the jump.
No Change in Design
Rumours about the Galaxy Note III began as early as May, when it was rumoured that Samsung execs were mulling a drastic change in design language, but was quickly shot down by the higher ups in the company. Why? The use of materials such as metal would increase production times, and hence impact product availability at launch. So it’s back to the tried and tested design from the Galaxy S3 then.
A leaked document, believed to be the user manual, also appears to confirm the design of the Note III.
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Later on, the rumoured specs of the Note III began trickling online, with some amazingly powerful specs such as a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 chipset, 13MP rear camera with 3x optical zoom and Optical Image Stabilisation – which was then later banished with a newer rumour (and again, OIS was dropped due to “production issues”). The Adreno 330 GPU on the Snapdragon 800 chipset also supports 4K video playback and recording, which then gave rise to rumours that the device will support the feature. And, judging by the recent announcement of the Acer Liquid S2, the Galaxy Note III may very well have native 4K video recording as well.
As for the display, the rumour mills initially put the GNote III as having a 6-inch Super AMOLED display. It was then rumoured that Samsung were also testing three different screens sizes for the device, before appearing to settle on a 5.7-inch Super AMOLED display. The screen resolution remains a mystery, for now.
Finally, the international variant of the Galaxy Note III is also rumoured to come in two different flavours: 3G-only and 4G LTE. The main difference between the two variants are in the chipsets used – the former using Samsung’s refreshed Exynos 5 Octa chipset, while the latter will be powered by the Qualcomm chip mentioned earlier. And, just like the Galaxy S4 before, Malaysia will have the honour of having both variants available for sale when it makes its way here.
An Emerging Market Variant?
Perhaps the most interesting rumour to have come out recently about the Galaxy Note III is the one which states that Samsung will be producing a variant specifically for emerging markets. For now, there’s not much to know what’s different, besides the change in display panels to an LCD one, and the shift to a smaller 8MP sensor. The main reason behind this, apparently, is to ensure a stable supply of parts for the Galaxy Note III. The production line will be split into a 70:30 ratio, where the smaller portion set aside for the “emerging market” – or perhaps even an “Active”, judging by the similarity in specs to the Galaxy S4 Active – variant.
Even the wallpaper for the Note III has been leaked (Source: @evleaks)
Finally, it looks like the decision to scrap the plans for a new design language and metal chassis seems to have worked its magic, as Engadget reports that the Galaxy Note III may be available in the UK from September 16 – less than two weeks after the global launch on September 4.