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Samsung to release Galaxy Note7 in Singapore from Aug 20

The 64GB Note7 will cost S$1,168 including GST, and come in black, gold and silver. New features not found in the Note5 include iris-recognition technology and an updated stylus.

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SAMSUNG unveiled the latest phone in its flagship Galaxy Note line in New York on Tuesday.

The Galaxy Note7, which will go on sale in Singapore from Aug 20, is the successor to the Note5, which was released last August. However, the South Korean tech giant has skipped ahead to the 7, to bring the model number in line with its Galaxy S7 series; some industry watchers also reckon it is to align itself with major competitor Apple, which is expected to announce the iPhone 7 in September.

With a dual-edge curved screen, Samsung's latest phablet sports a 5.7-inch QHD Super Amoled screen and is powered by the company's own octa-core processor. It comes with a 3,500mAh battery, and has built-in wireless charging.

As widely speculated in the run-up to the announcement, the Note7 features iris-recognition technology, which can be used to unlock the home screen, sign in to websites as well as authenticate Samsung Pay for mobile payments. This is on top of the fingerprint scanner, a feature already present in the Note5. Meanwhile, personal information can be kept safe via a Secure Folder, which adds an additional layer of security.

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The Note7 also features an updated design stylus with a smaller pen tip and double the pressure sensitivity for greater accuracy. Both the phablet and the S pen are water- and dust-resistant.

A "Smart Select" function enables the creation and sharing of GIF animations, while Air Command functions lets users zoom in or convert languages by just hovering the S pen over the screen.

Other features include high-dynamic-range (HDR) video-streaming capabilities, a USB Type-C connector and dual SIM card slot, which doubles up as an external memory slot of up to 256 GB when the second SIM is not in use. This marks the return of the microSD slot, which was lacking in the Note5 and seen as a drawback.

The Note7 uses the same, highly lauded 12 megapixel rear-facing and 5 megapixel front-facing camera introduced on the Galaxy S7.

The 64GB Note7 will go on sale at S$1,168 (including GST), and will come in black, gold and silver. The coral blue model will not be sold here at the launch.

The new device was unveiled on Tuesday morning (US time) at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City, with satellite events taking place simultaneously in London and Rio de Janeiro.

Eugene Goh, vice-president for IT and mobile at Samsung Electronics Singapore, said: "With smartphones being an integral part of our daily lives, the Galaxy Note7 is designed to enhance the way users experience life and get things done more easily than ever."

Registration of interest with the telco operators, as well as with major consumer electronics stores, starts at noon on Aug 3. Consumers may also pre-order the phone at select Samsung stores; collection of these pre-ordered units be on Aug 19.

To mark the launch of the Note7 in Singapore, Samsung will host its Galaxy Studio consumer event at Ngee Ann City from 7pm to 9pm on Aug 3, and from 11am to 9pm from Aug 4 to 28; visitors may take part in activities that test the features of the new phablet.

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