The Samsung Galaxy Note series has long been thought of as the South Korean phone maker's technical leader. It has been the series where the best tech Samsung had to offer each year got showed off, and that led it to garner much praise from smartphone enthusiasts the world over.
Samsung's Galaxy S series maybe had the more mainstream appeal, but it was the Note series that would wow phone lovers most with next-gen hardware specs, jaw-droppingly large screens and advanced features.
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Well, the good old days appear to be drawing to a close for the Note series, with the incoming standard Note 20 slammed by Samsung's own leakster-in-chief Ice universe. Just a few days ago, when speaking about the phone, Ice said it has "a desperate specification" and that he "can't accept any 60Hz mobile phone".
Wide frame + flat screen + FHD resolution + 60Hz refresh rate.It's a desperate specification.😑June 17, 2020
I don't know what you think. For me, I can't accept any 60Hz mobile phone. It will cause me serious discomfort.June 17, 2020
Here was Samsung's brand new Galaxy Note smartphone, from a range of phones that for years has been at the cutting edge of phone technology, delivering a spec that is already out of date. Any flagship phone of note now has a 90Hz or 120Hz screen, such as Samsung's own Galaxy S20 Ultra flagship or the winner of the T3 Awards 2020 Best Phone Award, the OnePlus 8 Pro, which both launched earlier this year.
And, now, more worrying news has just leaked via Ice universe about the Note 20 series. According to Ice the Note 20 Ultra (which is thought to be the top of the range Note 20 phone) will "cancel" the 100x zoom feature that was seen on the S20 Ultra, and instead the phone will be limited to a maximum of 50x zoom.
Note20 Ultra will cancel 100X, the maximum is 50X, Samsung will strive to optimize the zoom experience of the maximum 50X, more focus on the experience.June 22, 2020
Now, in of itself the backtracking of the 100x zoom isn't too disappointing, and here at T3 we would be more than happy for the zoom to reduced if Samsung can improve the all-round user experience of its smartphone cameras. We'd take better images in general over the ability to zoom in on things from very, very far away — it would just be more practical and useful overall.
However, to have a piece of technology on a flagship phone, and then not have it on your next flagship phone, feels like a ball has been dropped somewhere. Here at T3 never like to see technology go backwards, and had high hopes that Samsung were going to improve the image quality of its 100x super zoom system.
Unfortunately, it looks like that is not the case and the technical leader this year for Samsung will technically feature a weaker camera zoom than the S20 Ultra.
And, naturally, this will no doubt be music to Huawei's ears, who have been dominating the smartphone camera tech market for years now. It was only Samsung that really pushed Huawei in terms of camera system competition, and with the Note 20 looking like a write-off and the Note 20 Ultra having to backtrack in terms of zoom functionality, it looks like market is really opening up for the Huawei Mate 40 series to cement the maker's place as the smartphone camera kings.