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Comparison - Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 2

February 25, 2013
By Loh Ving Sung GooglePlus

With Mobile World Congress starting in earnest, Samsung has revealed its brand new 8-inch Galaxy Note 8.0. The slate straddles the line between its 10.1-inch and 5.5-inch sister devices. With Samsung trying its best to cater to every market, we are lining it up against its most recent predecessor the Galaxy Note 2 and see their differences.



Like the other Notes in the family, the 8.0 and the Note 2 with a Wacom-based S-Pen stylus, which will allow you to scribble a quick note on the device.

However, we are going to categorise the Galaxy 8.0 as a tablet, while the Galaxy Note 2 hover in phablet territory. The 8-inch tablet looks like an elongated novel with a noticeable bezel, on the other hand, the Galaxy Note 2 looks like a steroid addled smartphone.

The Note 8.0’s 8-inch display is pegged at 1280 x 800 pixels with a pixel density of 189ppi. With its 5.5-inch screen, the Note 2 has a 1280 x 720 resolution with 267ppi. Understandably, the ‘smaller’ display on the Galaxy Note 2 has denser display, hence its higher pixel per inch.

On the performance front, both the Note 2 and Note 8.0 are powered by a similar quad-core 1.6 GHz Cortex-A9 along with 2GB RAM. The Malaysian variant of the Note 2 comes in only 16GB, however the Note 8.0 comes in 16GB or 32GB, and they both come with a microSD slot that goes up to 64GB.

In addition, you can use the stylus to interact with the screen if your fingers are wet or oily. Samsung has added a few tweaks to the Galaxy Note 2. For example, a Magic Wand app will launch when you detach the stylus from the device. The device also offers Air View feature that allows you to preview the content of an app by hovering the S-Pen about 10mm above the screen. Nevertheless, the good handy stylus is great for user to sketch an art or simply scribble a quick note down.


The Note 8.0 is slated to come with Android 4.1.2 (Jellybean), whilst the Note 2 has a slightly earlier version of Jellybean (Android 4.1.1). With Samsung’s TouchWiz UI, they should share similar user interface which includes Smart Stay, Direct Call, S Pen apps, and Samsung Hubs, Air View functionality, Popup video, as well as AllShare Play and Cast.

Both devices will likely support Multi-Windows with much more flexibility, especially with the extra screen real estate. The pop-up window feature is likely to show up too on both devices, it allows you to have a resizable, movable movie player along with whatever else you are doing in the background.


The first thing we should note (pardon the pun) is the HSPA+ 8-inch Galaxy Note comes with telephony connectivity, and will be able to make calls just like the Note 2. As the other connectivity options, the Note 8.0 comes in three variants -  LTE 4G, HSPA+ and WiFi only, along with WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, and USB 2.0.

As for the Note 2, it supports all basic connectivity, including WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n, Bluetooth and GPS. The Galaxy Note 2 now offers NFC connectivity as a standard option.


The Galaxy Note 8.0 has a 5-megapixel rear camera, along with a 1.3-megapixel front facing camera. The Note 2 on the other hand comes equipped with an 8-megapixel rear shooter that is able to record 1080p video and 1.9-megapixel front facing camera.


While both devices share many similar functions as each other, the 8-inch Note is for those looking for a device that provides mobility and tablet functionality at the same time. We think making phone calls is a footnote on a device this big unless you have a Bluetooth headset or you can't carry a smartphone along with your tablet. Also, unlike the Note 2, Samsung’s larger Note devices have been released to mixed reception.

Speaking of which, we've had a hands-on with the Note 2 and we must say we are pretty pleased with what we've seen so far. So it boils down to the size of the individual devices, which size you do you prefer to use your stylus on? 


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