It's another year, and now the rumor mill is back at it again: 2020 might be the last time we see a Galaxy Note smartphone. It's been rumored to happen in the past, but obviously the Galaxy Note lineup is still kicking around right now. But, as Samsung has evolved its smartphone lineup over the years, the rationale for keeping the Galaxy S lineup and the Galaxy Note lineup separate has thinned.
So is it time to say goodbye?
It would certainly go out on a high note, wouldn't it? The Galaxy Note 20 family is a solid choice for anyone who's a fan of the lineup in general. I tried out the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra for a bit of time and found it to be a great phone. However, for a daily use handset it was just too big. That's not a bad thing! Just means it wasn't the right phone for me.
I would have gone "down" to the Galaxy Note 20, but I don't think that phone justifies the price all that well. If I could have the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra in a phone the size of the Galaxy Note 20, that may have won me over. (Which is honestly crazy, because the two handsets aren't that different as size goes. But in the handthey certainly feel very different.)
Meanwhile, the Galaxy S20 Ultra is basically the same phone as the Galaxy Note 20, except with a slightly less impressive camera system on the back. What's more, the Galaxy S20 Ultra has a bigger battery, and that matters to some folks out there (even though both handsets have huge batteries under the hood).
I'm of two minds on this one. There are obviously fans of both handsets, but the S Pen is such a good accessory (especially considering it's included with the phone at no additional cost) that I think it improves the overall experience in general. So the Galaxy S lineup getting S Pen support is a huge win. But offering two different handsets with different features/etc. throughout the year isn't a bad thing, either.
So maybe it's not about getting rid of the Galaxy Note lineup altogether. Maybe Samsung should simply tweak the branding of its handsets moving forward. So we get three handsets in 2021: Galaxy S21, Galaxy S21 Ultra (or Plus, whatever works), and the Galaxy Note 21.
Each of the phones would share similar features and elements across the board, but the primary differentiator would be the inclusion of the S Pen with the Galaxy Note 21. This gives Samsung the ability to offer handsets at various price points, with distinct features, but not necessarily cannibalize a lineup in its entirety.
Or maybe we just get a Galaxy S Note and things get real crazy next year.
Samsung may shake things up in a big way in 2021, and that's exciting all on its own. But, if you're a fan of the Galaxy Note lineup and have dedicated to upgrading to the newest model on a regular basis, are you unhappy with the rumors it might be going away? Let me know!