Once I unboxed the all-new Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra, the first feature I tried was the S-Pen. I must confess that when the first Samsung Galaxy Note debuted in 2011, I was one of the cynics who thought the phone was too unwieldy and impractical. A year later, I flipped. It was the Samsung Galaxy Note II that became one of my daily drivers 10 years ago, and almost ever since, I’ve enjoyed the evolution of Samsung’s Galaxy Note line.

Samsung Galaxy Note Series Killed Off?

Samsung split its flagship smartphone launches into two distinct windows: the Galaxy S series unveils are reserved for the first quarter of the year, and the Note Series typically used to debut in Q3. The last Note series device to hit the scene was the Galaxy Note 20 in 2020. Last year, Samsung skipped a Note launch leaving the large cult of Note die-hards disappointed. This week, Samsung’s smartphone chief Roh Tae-moon confirmed that the “Galaxy Note will come out as Ultra,” while speaking to reporters at the Mobile World Congress 2022. It’s curtains down for the Galaxy Note series.

Note 20 ultra Samsung galaxy
The Samsung Galaxy Note 20

The Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra Is The New Note

While we may never see a Galaxy Note device ever again, fans might switch allegiance to the Ultra. Almost each time I intend to type ‘S22 Ultra’ I type ‘Note’. The design language is more influenced by the Note 20 Ultra rather than last year’s Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra. We dig the boxier design and the incredibly bright curved display. The camera housing has been rejigged too.

Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

We were impressed with our first brush with this device; it was comforting to use the S-Pen after more than a year. Stay tuned for our detailed deep-dive review of the S22 Ultra and Samsung’s Galaxy S22 smartphones.

A Noteworthy Decade

Samsung’s flagship launch calendar is now likely to be split between the S series devices and the foldables that are likely to launch during the third quarter each year. Samsung has taken the lead in this segment and it seemed to make sense to merge the Note and the S Series. It wasn’t just the S-Pen, it was Samsung’s Galaxy Note that pioneered the shift to large screen smartphones. We look back at some of the cool innovations that the Note line ushered in:

The S Pen (Galaxy Note – 2011): the defining feature of the Note, reimagined the mobile phone stylus. While many brands attempted clones with mixed results, the S Pen has continued to get better.

Multi-window multi-tasking (Galaxy Note 2 – 2012): Multi-tasking on smartphones might be the norm now with ultra-fast processors, but it was the Note 2 that started it all.

Samsung Knox (Galaxy Note 3 – 2013): Now deeply integrated into Samsung’s  smartphones, tablets and wearables at the manufacturing stage, Samsung Knox offers Galaxy device users a simple and secure environment for storing and managing sensitive data.

The curved display (Galaxy Note Edge – 2014): It’s become a distinctive design element for the Note series with a wraparound display that hugs the entire front of the device. The Note Edge with its right-side curved screen became the first device with this design element.

Dual rear cam (Galaxy Note 8 – 2017): Quad rear cams might be passé now. Back in 2017, the Note 8 became the first premium Samsung device to sport a dual rear shooter with two 12MP sensors that were both backed by OIS (Optical Image Stabilisation).

Samsung Note 8

The Note 8 marked a remarkable comeback for Samsung after the PR disaster of the Note 7 when battery issues resulted in explosions.

The final Note (Galaxy Note Ultra 20 – 2020): Our favourite Note device of them all. The Note 20 Ultra became the first smartphone to be finished with Corning’s new Gorilla Glass Victus on the front and rear of the device. The rear camera design –  three rings (for the three lenses) arranged with matching colour accents and a terrific triple cam headlined with a 108MP lens (f/1.8).