As expected, today Samsung announced the Galaxy Note 8, its follow up to the catastrophic Galaxy Note 7. It looks pretty sweet! The company was noticeably mum about pricing at the launch extravaganza, and told us nothing of price in briefings leading up to the event. Why? Well, it might have to do with that price tag. This phone might be incredible, but you better check with your financial planner before you buy one.
Despite the fact that pre-orders for the 6.3-inch device open tomorrow, Samsung’s own press materials don’t state a price tag. When we asked company reps the price at the event today, we were told that the company was letting the carriers make the announcement. So what do the carriers say? It’s a rough reality: The Note 8 is going to cost you in the neighborhood of $930.
Let’s break down the cost on each of the three major carriers:
- AT&T will sell the phone for a monthly installment plan of $31.67 per month for 30 months, or $950 total.
- T-Mobile will sell the device for $930. You can also pay $210 down and $30 a month for 24 months.
- Verizon will sell the phone for $960, or $40 per month for 24 months.
Now, of course, carriers are offering all sorts of deals which might bring the cost of the phone down. For example, if you get the device from AT&T, and you trade in your existing phone, you might be eligible for as much as $200 in “credits.” Also if you want to buy a Samsung TV, buying from AT&T gets you a $500 credit. Sick! Give more of your money to Samsung. And Samsung has promised to throw in free accessories for people who buy before September 24th.
And man, does $950 feel expensive to anyone else? I’ve owned smartphones long enough to remember the days of subsidized iPhones that cost $200 with a two-year service commitment. And OK, those days are long over, and we’re all used to paying hefty sums for our devices, either up front or by monthly installments. Last year’s kaboomy Note 7 started at $850 before it was recalled and banished forever from shelves. The excellent Galaxy S8 started at $850 this year (though, you can get one much cheaper today). Rumor has it that the iPhone 8 will start over $1000.
So really, maybe the Note 8's price tag is in keeping with smartphone prices that keep creeping up. But hot damn, if $1000 phone doesn’t sting.
Update 1:09 PM
A Samsung representative has confirmed that the price for an unlocked device will be $929.99.