About those Galaxy Note III floating around, are they plausible?

BY Stefan Constantinescu

Published 29 Apr 2013

Rumors are a dime a dozen, and a new one gets published seemingly every other day. One phone I’m looking forward to hearing about later this year is Samsung’s Galaxy Note III, so of course I’ve been keeping track of what people are saying about it.

Right now there are two rumors, each from SamMobile, that have received the most attention. One says that there are three prototypes of the device currently being tested. One looks like a jumbo GS4, one has a new unseen design language, and one uses the company’s new plastic substrate based AMOLED technology. The other rumor says the Note III will have a 5.99 inch screen, an Exynos 5 Octa clocked at 2 GHz, and 3 GB of RAM.

Can any of this be true? Starting with the multiple prototype rumor, it’s highly likely to be accurate. Companies like to explore their options, so making several variants of one device before picking the right one to mass produce is a given. I’ve witnessed this first hand at Nokia.

As for the screen size, that’s a tough pill to swallow. I did the math, a 5.99 inch panel, just the display itself, measures 132.6 mm × 74.6 mm. The Note II, the actual device, measures 151.1 mm x 80.5 mm. In other words, Samsung could put a 5.99 inch display inside a phone with the same body as the Note II, it just wouldn’t be easy. It would have to have sub 3 mm bezels on the sides, and only 9.25 mm on the top and bottom.

Then there’s the RAM. That number, 3 GB, is just ugly. Memory sizes typically double, they don’t go up by weird increments, but then I started thinking about the recently announced Galaxy Mega portfolio. Both of the Mega phones have 1.5 MB of RAM. And that leaked Samsung Galaxy Core, it has 768 MB of RAM. For Samsung to stack a few of these oddly sized memory chips on a motherboard and come out to 3 GB of RAM wouldn’t be too difficult. Why not jump to 4 GB of RAM? Samsung would need to switch to 64 bit ARM Cortex A53 or A57 cores, and those are at least 18 months away.

In the end, what am I really expecting? I just hope Samsung doesn’t make the Note any bigger than it already is. I tolerate my Note II’s form factor, and it fits in my pocket, just barely, so anything bigger wouldn’t be welcome.

At least for me.