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Unboxing the Galaxy Note 8Is the Galaxy Note 8 worth the $400 price tag? Molly Wood and Jeff Cannata unwrap the 8-inch Samsung tablet and offer up their first impressions.
Today, we are unboxing the Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0. I'm pretty excited about this little tablet. It is sort of bucking the 7-inch tablet trend by going all the way to 8 inches-- although that trend, let's be fair, was first bucked by the iPad Mini. So, let's get this thing out of the box, and check it out. Do not accept if the seal is broken. This is a really nice box. It sort of feels like it's like all recycle-y, you know. Old, slightly more responsible-seeming box. It's not shiny. So, we have the Wi-Fi 16-gig version. Unfortunately, there is a three-- version that has 3G connectivity built in, but that one's not coming out in the U.S., only in the U.K. Galaxy Note 8.0. I love this new trend towards stickers. I'll tell you everything that's going on inside the tablet. The tablet itself though, nice. Lightweight, nice big camera right on the back, and it's-- let's see what else is in the box. All right. So, we have our little manual, our white charging cable, which I see is-- my favorite. Micro USB. Pretty good-sized power brick. All right. And that is it. And then I am sure we could just recycle this. No problem. I'm gonna go through some setup, and in the meantime, here are the specs on the Galaxy Note 8. The Galaxy Note 8 runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean with Samsung's custom TouchWiz UI. It does have a stylus, which they like to call the S-Pen. I do not like to call it that. I like to call it a stylus. It has a 1.6 gigaHertz quad-core processor with 2 gigs of internal RAM. The Note 8's display is 8 inches with a 1280x800 pixel resolution. That's not bad compared to the iPad Mini, which has just 1024x768. Samsung claims you'll get 14 hours of battery life which is not bad, but of course, we'll have to test that. The front-facing camera is not impressive, 1.3 megapixels. The rear-facing camera is also not that impressive at 5 megapixels. In terms of ports, you'll get micro USB, a slot for the S-Pen, and a microSD card slot. The Note 8 is expandable up to 64 gigs. Now, for the bad news. The iPad Mini costs $329 to start. The Note 8, which is probably its best competitor, is $399. Wah-wah. So, let's compare the Note 8 to its primary competition, the iPad Mini. Now, the screen is better. And I actually prefer the size a little bit. The Note 8's a little bit taller than the iPad. But what I really like about it is that it has this sort of extra bezel space on the side. That actually makes it easier to hold than the iPad Mini-- because if your thumb kinda strays on to the screen, you'll start making things happen. This one, if you're using it as an e-reader or something like that, you actually have a place for your thumb. All of that said, this is a wonderful tablet with a truly bummer price tag. When I found out it was $399, I was crushed because I think it has so much potential, it's so nice to use, and it's such a nice size. But with all those 7-inch tablets being $200 or less, that $399 tag could be a killer. Now, for the most part, our CNET editors do agree with me. But go on over to CNET.com to read the full review yourself.