Samsung’s reputation took a serious hit in 2016, when the flagship Galaxy Note 7 phablet it released was quickly recalled, due to battery issues, before it could even arrive in the UK. Handsets igniting on international flights and various other potentially dangerous hardware failures hit the headlines globally.
If getting worldwide gadget insurance had seemed like a moderately good idea before there was a chance of your mobile exploding unexpectedly 10,000 feet above the Atlantic, Samsung inadvertently drove this message home with the Note 7. But rather than retire the Note range altogether, it has instead released a follow-up, which it hopes will wipe the slate clean and restore its relationship with customers.
Enter the Galaxy Note 8, a device packed to the brim with powerful components and wrapped up in a stylish design that does much to disguise its monster size. So is it a fresh start for Samsung, or is it too little too late?
Everything about the Note 8 is bigger and better than the devices which precede it. The 6.3 inch screen, which curves at the edges and hugs the sides of the handset, is a full inch larger than that of the original Galaxy Note, which launched half a decade ago. There are two cameras on the back and 6GB of RAM under the skin, providing it with class-leading photographic capabilities and massive amounts of pure power. As you might expect, all of this adds up to make it very expensive indeed.
With an official asking price of £869, it makes a lot of sense to get cheap phone insurance to protect the Note 8 against all manner of disasters. So far, since its release less than a month ago, there are no signs of any serious hardware faults, which means people concerned about exploding batteries can breathe easy.
One of the main reasons that the Note 7 had to be recalled last year was that its battery was a little too big, meaning that it was prone to overheating in the cramped conditions within the phone. In recognition of this, Samsung has actually made the battery of the Note 8 smaller. That is good news from a safety perspective, but it does have its own downsides. Chiefly, the battery life in real world usage conditions might leave a little to be desired. Most people accept that modern smartphones can last a day at most on a single charge, but this model is more power-hungry than most and could prove problematic under heavy use.
Another feature that Samsung is hoping will win people over to the Galaxy Note 8 is Bixby, its voice-controlled personal assistant that sets out to rival Apple’s Siri and Microsoft’s Cortana, amongst others. From reports, it is very clear that there are still a lot of improvements that need to be made in order to make Bixby competitive, as it seems to have quite a bit of trouble actually understanding the requests made by users. Since this is an Android device, there are other options available and so users are not going to be tethered to this sub-par service forever.
Long term prospects
Many see the Galaxy Note 8 as a return to form for Samsung, after it botched the launch of its predecessor. But for many buyers, the price could be an obstacle, especially as even contract offers for this phone still require upfront payments of hundreds of pounds. With the best gadget insurance, it is possible to mitigate the risks associated with buying a high end handset like the Note 8, or its more compact stable mate, the Galaxy S8. Our mobile phone insurance packages are built to provide precisely that peace of mind.