The Galaxy Note series is one of Samsung's most popular. It is often groundbreaking, introducing a run of new features you don't get elsewhere. In 2014 we saw the release of the Note Edge, and we've also seen advanced camera performance, as well as UI tricks from the S Pen in recent times.
Samsung has often targeted the second half of the year for new devices in the family, launching the Note at IFA in previous years, which generally proves to be a highlight of the event and Samsung's mobile portfolio, but rumours have it that plans are different for the Note 5.
So with 2015 ticking away, we turn our attention to the growing influx of Galaxy Note 5 rumours. What will be the Galaxy Note 5 release date? What specs will the Galaxy Note 5 feature? We've drilled through the leaks, to tell you everything you need to know.
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 release date
As we mentioned, the Samsung Galaxy Note typically launches during IFA, a consumer electronics trade show that takes place in Berlin at the beginning of September, although that is seemingly not the case this year. Samsung will unveil its next Galaxy smartphone or phones on 13 August during a "Galaxy Unpacked 2015" event.
You'll be able to watch the presentation live here. It's suggested that date is set in August in order to avoid conflict with an updated iPhone 6 Plus, expected to unveil in October. There's nothing official from Samsung, but some are saying it might launch in Asia first, before coming to Europe and the US.
Its existence is indisputable. A handset appeared on the IMEI database thought to be the Note 5. It came under the codename Noble with the product name SM-N920F, which is similar to the current Note 4 that goes by SM-N910.
There was also the codename Zen that appeared, which was at first considered to be a new variant of the Galaxy S6. Rumours have since suggested that the Zen device was referring to the Note 5 Edge, which then became "Project Zero 2" and is now believed to be the Galaxy S6 edge Plus, also expected to be revealed at the same time.
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 display
Rumour has it that Samsung is working on a 5.9-inch 4K Ultra HD Super AMOLED panel that could be used in the Galaxy Note 5. It is said to be unveiled in August, which would fit in with the Note release time scale, although if accurate, this would put it into Nexus 6 and Huawei P8 Max-size territory.
Phone Arena claims it was told the display panel will have a 3840 x 2160 resolution and would deliver a pixel density of 746ppi. Mass production will also begin in August, allegedly, although we're not sold in the 4K resolution, as the detail wouldn't be visible. The site also claims a dual-edge Note 5 could appear with a 5.78-inch display.
There has been a patent granted to Samsung for a device with curved displays on both sides, which could perhaps be referring to the Zen device, although it could also be referring to the S6 edge Plus smartphone as another rumour claims the Note 5 will have a 5.66-inch Super AMOLED QHD display at 2560 x 1440 resolution for 519ppi.
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 design
Samsung opted for a metal and glass design for its recently launched Galaxy S6 and some are suggesting the Note 5 will follow the same direction in terms of design.
Phone Arena published some Note 5 renders that were created with the Galaxy S6 as the inspiration. Of course, they are just renders, but they gave an idea of what the Note 5 could look like if it takes the same path as the S6. The renders presented a 7.9mm-slim handset. There have also been leaked CAD files, said to be from a reliable source, which suggest the Note 5 will be close in design to the SGS6.
One thing we can be certain of is that the Note 5 will come with the S Pen stylus the Note series is known for. There's some speculation that a new version of the Note Edge won't be getting the S Pen and if that's the case, it's more likely because of a double-curved display, like the SGS6 edge.
Case renders have started to reveal the position of buttons, but we've often seen these case renders to be based on rumours, rather than actual dimensions. One specific case render that has appeared on Amazon.com, which also renders the Note 5 itself, shows that the S Pen could be flush against the shell of the device and might even have an auto-eject function. It will eject whenever you open an app that supports the stylus.
More interestingly however, leakster Evan Blass, better known as @evleaks, revealed not only specs but also a photo showing off the new smartphones. Here are what appear to be the official Note 5 and S6 edge Plus in a photo.
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 camera
The Galaxy Note 4 features a 16-megapixel, OIS-enhanced primary shooter, but Gizbot has claimed the Galaxy Note 5 will take things up a notch with a 18-megapixel rear camera and 5-megapixel front camera. However, Valuewalk is reporting that the camera could be 21-megapixels in resolution, paired with a 6-megapixel front-facing camera.
According to EvLeaks however, the cameras in the Note 5 are expected to be 16-megapixels in the rear and 5-megapixels for the selfie snapper, which is the same as the S6 and S6 edge.
Incremental increases in resolution don't yield better results, and with Samsung enjoying the successes of the SGS6 cameras, we'd be surprised if there was any change in this department.
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 specs
This leak of the Galaxy Note 5 box gives away plenty of specs, presuming Facebook source Horoor is accurate.
Phone Arena has suggested the Note 5 will feature up to 128GB of internal storage, USB Type-C port and a fingerprint scanner. However the recent CAD leak clearly shows a Micro-USB in place, so it might not step-up to the latest connectivity just yet. The site also speculated that a 4100mAh battery capacity would appear on the Note 5, while others have claimed a 3900mAh capacity would be powering the handset.
In terms of processor, Gizbot and Valuewalk.com have both suggested the octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor, supported by 4GB of RAM. However, GSM Arena has said the Galaxy Note 5 could take the same route as the Galaxy S6 and S6 edge by moving the processor in house.
It has been speculated that an Exynos 7420 chipset will be under the hood instead of Samsung's latest, for instance. Some rumours have even dabbled with the Exynos 7422 paired with a chip that combined RAM and storage into one component, and there has also been talk of the Exynos 7430, which is still in development, so we would expect the latter is unlikely for the Note 5.
The Exynos 7422 is the one that pops up in speculation the most, also mentioned by EvLeaks with the suggestion of 4GB of RAM and storage topping out at 32GB with no microSD expansion option. The lack of microSD was also suggested in leaked schematics. It could be a mistake for the Note though, as it's been widely criticised on the Samsung Galaxy S6.
In terms of the Zen model, PocketNow sourcing SamMobile, suggests that while it should come with a curved display, the specs will be less than the Noble with rumours pointing towards a Snapdragon 808 processor, 16-megapixel snapper and 8-megapixel front-facing camera.
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 pricing
The original Galaxy Note cost £599 including VAT when it launched, while The Galaxy Note 2 cost £550 including VAT. And both the Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Note 4 cost £599 including VAT when they launched.
With that in mind, the Galaxy Note 5 should cost between £550 and £599 including VAT when it launches. It's difficult to say where the Zen device will sit as the Note 4 edge and Galaxy S6 edge were more expensive, but they offered the same flagship specs as the normal variants. If the Zen model takes a hit on the specs, but offers a curve display, it might sit at the same price as the Galaxy Note 5, if it arrives at all.