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IFA 2013: 5.7-inch Samsung Galaxy Note III officially announced

After months and months of rumours, leaks and fakes, Samsung’s third generation Galaxy Note smartphone-cum-tablet has become official.

The Samsung Galaxy Note III was made official by Samsung at its press event during IFA 2013 today, with the new 5.7-inch Android gadget taking centre stage alongside the also new Galaxy Gear smartwatch.

Looking like a cross between the Galaxy S4 and Galaxy Note 2 from the front, the Galaxy Note 3 is a bigger, faster and lighter version of its predecessor, and sporting an upgraded and symmetrically designed stylus, the Galaxy Note 3 rocks a larger Full HD touchscreen display, faster processor and upgraded camera amongst other high-end features.

The display, a 5.7-inch Super AMOLED, is bigger by 0.2-inches than last year’s model but overall the device isn’t much bigger at all thanks to Samsung cramming more into virtually the same size of case. It’s also a Full HD display, meaning that the picture quality will be much sharper than the previous Note II. The processor has also been bumped up to a quad-core 2.3GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 chip, which is augmented with 3GB of RAM and an even bigger battery.

On the back of the phone we have a 13 megapixel camera which offers a more powerful flash and much improved low light capabilities. The rumours about 4K video recording turned out to be true, as the Note 3 can capture Ultra High Definition quality video at 30 frames per second – it’ll also do Full HD at 60fps.

The large phone will come running Google’s latest version of Android – 4.3 Jelly Bean – right out of the box. You’ve also got Samsung’s touch to compliment Android, including new ‘Air’ features, which allow the user to control the phone by hovering the S Pen stylus just above the screen – much like you can with the Galaxy S4.

All of this new technology has been crammed in to a phone that’s overall only 0.1mm longer and 1.3mm wider than its predecessor. The Note 3 is also slimmer at 8.3mm and much lighter too, weighing 168g compared to the hefty Note II’s 183g. This could have something to do with Samsung’s outlandish designing of the phone’s rear, which is no longer smooth plastic but faux leather with hand stitching around the edges. It’s different, but we’re not convinced just yet.

The Galaxy Note 3 will launch in black, white and pink from September 25th around the world, with the US said to be getting it later in the year. 32 and 64GB versions are coming, with compatibility for 4G to boot. No word on prices just yet.