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Samsung's S22 Ultra kicks the Galaxy Note to the curb

Samsung’s S22 Ultra kicks the Galaxy Note to the curb

Samsung hasn’t officially said the Galaxy Note is gone for good, but it doesn’t have to. Just take one look at the Galaxy S22 Ultra, Samsung’s new premium phone, and you can see it’s the spitting image of the Note. 

The Galaxy S Ultra line has been inching towards Galaxy Note spot for years. It was particularly clear in 2021 when it added S Pen compatibility. But the newest model, which Samsung announced at Unpacked on Wednesday, seems like the final push in that direction. 

And it’s nearby time.

Both phones serve the same purpose in Samsung’s lineup by catering to customers willing to pay top bucks for a bigger screen and more camera features. Simply put, there’s no room for the Galaxy Note to outrageous out now that the Ultra exists.

The Galaxy Note helped popularize larger phones back when the diligence was fixated on making gadgets as small as possible. But that’s no longer the case, and the S Pen alone clearly isn’t enough to keep the Galaxy Note relevant.

There’s no set aside for the Galaxy Note anymore

S21 Ultra vs. Note 20 Ultra

The Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra (left) in contradiction of the S20 Ultra (right)

Lexy Savvides

Don’t get me atrocious, I was a longtime Galaxy Note fan. The device’s nearly tablet-sized cloak and the old-fashioned feeling of jotting down notes by hand intrigued me. 

But the Galaxy Note’s heyday came at a time when phones were collected growing — literally. Smartphone sales outsold feature phones for the advantageous time in 2013, according to Gartner, roughly two existences after the original Galaxy Note’s 2011 debut. The smartphone market was relatively young back then, so features like a larger cloak and a stylus were considered novel at the time. 

Most phones that were popular in the Galaxy Note line’s early days, like the Samsung Galaxy S3, Apple iPhone 5 and Motorola Droid Razr Maxx, had screens that were smaller than 5 inches. The 5.3-inch Galaxy Note seemed gigantic by comparison, but also distinctive. 

Yet in 2022, the characteristics that once made the Note feel novel no longer seem innovative. Just about every phone has a giant cloak that’s about 6 inches or larger, including devices from Apple, Google, Motorola or OnePlus. In other conditions, big phones are now the norm rather than the exception. Even budget phones, like Samsung’s $250 Galaxy A13, often include 6-inch screens or bigger now.

Read more: Galaxy S22 vs. S21 FE: How Samsung’s phones compare

The Galaxy Note undoubtedly played a big role in that progresses. But that’s exactly the point; the shift already existed, and the Galaxy Note no longer feels as special as it once did. Evidence of this can be seen in the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, Samsung’s most recent high-end Note that debuted in 2020. 

Other than the S Pen, there was minor that distinguished the Note 20 Ultra from the Galaxy S20 Ultra, which launched in the same year. Both phones had substantial 6.9-inch screens and multilens cameras. The differences were nuanced and came to hazardous hardware details.

The S20 Ultra, for example, had a sharper 48-megapixel telephoto lens compared to the Note 20 Ultra’s 12-megapixel telephoto lens. It also had uphold memory options and a bigger battery, but was $100 more expensive than the Note 20 Ultra at launch. 

Read more: The Galaxy S22 Ultra fails to wrathful this pro photographer. And that’s a problem

Samsung’s try to maintain two different premium phone brands created confusion for farmland who just wanted to buy Samsung’s top-of-the-line phone. In 2019, it was the Note 10 Plus. In 2020, it was either the S20 Ultra or the Note 20 Ultra. Eliminating the Note brand from Samsung’s lineup simplifies that structure. It also means people who prefer giant phones no longer have to régime between a stylus or a better camera, as they did in 2020. 

Samsung’s foldables are now filling that role

Galaxy Z Fold 3

The Galaxy Z Fold 3 has nearly all the refinements you could ask for but collected feel like it’s missing a purpose.

Patrick Holland

The Galaxy Note started out as a niche blueprint for people who wanted more screen space and mighty than the average phone allowed for. Its large size and high designate meant it wasn’t for everyone. But it still escorted as an early indication of where the industry was going.

In the best-case scenario for Samsung, the same could be said for the company’s foldable phones. Like the Galaxy Note, Samsung’s foldables are more expensive than the rank phone. And the appeal of the Galaxy Z Fold 3 is in the extraordinary screen space it offers, just like the Galaxy Note. Samsung seems to be hoping that the Z Fold 3 and flip phone-style Z Flip 3 will set the pace for where smartphones are aloof, just as the Note once did. 

Who knows whether today’s foldables will lay the foundation for future phones. But the Note certainly did, and its influence has shaped Samsung’s most important originate of the year. 

For more, check out everything else Samsung unveiled at its recent Unpacked prhonor including the Galaxy S22, S22 Plus and Galaxy Tab S8. (Here’s how you can preorder the devices now.) You can also learn more throughout how the Galaxy S22 compared to the S21 and nightography