Samsung has officially announced the Galaxy Note Fan Edition (FE), thereby affirming its belief in resurrection, at least as it applies to the ill-fated Galaxy Note 7. The new Galaxy Note FE is Samsung’s attempt at an “eco-friendly project,” and though not stated, also as a way to mitigate the losses from its Galaxy Note 7 recall that hit the company to the tune of an estimated $5.3 billion.
It was previously assumed that the Galaxy Note FE would essentially be refurbished Galaxy Note 7 devices. That is still true, though it does not look like Samsung will be using any of the parts that were returned to the company after being in use by customers. Instead, Samsung said the Galaxy Note FE is being built from unsealed and unused Galaxy Note 7 parts. In other words, Samsung is breathing new life into its stockpile of Galaxy Note 7 handsets that were never sold or shipped to customers, rather than dumping them into a recycling bin.
The hardware inside is the same (save for the faulty batteries, presumably), and so is the overall physical design, though the software has been upgraded to adopt the same interface as the Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ handsets. Other than that, about the only thing that will make the Galaxy Note FE distinguishable from the Galaxy Note 7 is a “Fan Edition” logo on the back.
As to the pesky battery issue that caused all the fiery fuss with the Galaxy Note 7, Samsung ensures customers that the Galaxy Note FE is safe. It now wields a 3,200 mAh battery, and Samsung says the battery has undergone its new 8-point battery safety test to ensure it does not overheat and catch fire.
Now around a year removed from the Galaxy Note 7’s debut, it is still a capable handset from a hardware standpoint, and by extension so will be the Galaxy Note FE. It will feature a 5.7-inch Super AMOLED display with a 2560×1440 resolution, Exynos 8890 64-bit octa-core processor, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of expandable storage. It also has a 5MP front-facing camera and 12MP rear camera.
For the time being, Samsung is limiting availability to South Korea (hence the Exynos 8890 processor instead of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 SoC found in the U.S. version) with a limit of 400,000 units. Users be able to choose between Black Onyx, Blue Coral, Gold Platinum, and Silver Titanium color options. Samsung will sell these for 699,600 won, which is around $611 in U.S. currency versus $850 when the Galaxy Note 7 debuted. It will launch on July 7.
Samsung said it has not yet decided on whether it will sell the Galaxy Note FE in other markets.
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