Samsung unveiled the Samsung Galaxy Note II smartphone Wednesday at its event at the IFA trade show in Berlin.
The new Note is narrower and taller than the old version, with a 5.5-inch HD Super AMOLED screen — slightly larger than the previous Note‘s 5.3-incher. Samsung managed to narrow the form factor by changing the aspect ratio to a 16:9 widescreen display.
The new Note is powered by Android 4.1 “Jelly Bean.” It packs a 1.6GHz quad-core processor with 2GB of RAM.
Of course, it also has the S Pen stylus, boasting some new abilities that weren’t in the old Note. First is Air View, which lets you preview content by hovering the stylus over icons. For example, you could hold the S Pen over a day on a calendar, and a preview window of that day’s appointments will appear.
There’s also Quick Command: Just sweep the S Pen up and a blank square pops up where you can write customized commands that will instantly do things such as send an email to a specific person.
Popup Note is a kind of multitasking ability, letting you call up a note from the S Note app as a pop-up window on the screen. This could come in handy when you get a phone call and need to write something down quickly.
Finally there’s Easy Clip, a way to quickly outline and crop certain kinds of content on the screen. With the S Pen’s button, it intelligently figures out what you want to clip, then you can paste it into other content.
The Galaxy Note II will be available in 16, 32 and 64GB configurations, all enhanceable via a microSD card. It has an 8-megapixel camera with all the new camera functions that we saw in the Galaxy S III. There’s also a bonus camera function called Best Faces, letting users designate the “most preferred” face in a group.
The new Note will be available in white or gray, and it’ll debut October in Europe, Asia and the Middle East. No word yet on a U.S. launch.