First look at the Samsung Galaxy Note7

NEW YORK - The Samsung Galaxy Note7 is not just a head-turner with its symmetrical dual-edge design and its glass-clad body. For me, the biggest draw is its iris scanning technology.

In short, you unlock the phone by scanning your eyes, providing high-end protection for the most confidential data stored in the device. The device also comes with a Secure Folder for storing classified documents and apps, accessible only by fingerprint or iris scanning.

Samsung could be the company to make iris scanning commonplace in this part of the world, even as more handset makers are looking to incorporate high-end biometric security features in smartphones.

Samsung is not the first company to equip smartphones with an iris scanner. Forerunners such as Japan's Fujitsu and China-based Vivo have already launched phones equipped with an iris scanner.

From the brief hands-on I had with the device, my impression of the Note7 is nothing short of amazing. Rumours had it that the phone would come with 7GB of system memory. Even though this is not the case, its performance is not hampered. Armed with a 64-bit octa-core (2.3GHz quad-core and 1.6GHz quad-core) processor and 4GB of system memory, the phone is super fast.

Gripping the phone with one hand is easy, despite its large 5.7-inch display. I also like the new Translate and Magnify features of the S Pen stylus. The former allows users to tap the S Pen on a word and receive an immediate translation of the word. The Magnify feature enlarges an area the S Pen hovers over by 250 per cent - handy for the elderly.

Another plus is the S Pen lets users write on the display when both the stylus and the smartphone are wet or partially in water.

 

Samsung's decision to use USB-C instead of the ubiquitous micro-USB will disappoint many users - for now. I think USB-C will gain popularity overtime.

I expected Note7 to sport a dual-lens camera, like the Leica P9 and LG G5. As it turns out, the Note7 has the same front and rear cameras as the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge.

Now all eyes are on Apple with its upcoming phone launch.