It was around this time in 2020 that we heard the first whispers that there would be no Samsung Galaxy Note 21. Ten months later, the first Samsung Galaxy Note 22 rumor we’ve heard is a bit more positive and suggests that the S Pen-toting flagship could return in 2022.
The rumor comes from the Samsung leaker Ice Universe, who cites a supply chain source as seeing “evidence of the existence of the next-generation Galaxy Note.”
someone in the supply chain has seen evidence of the existence of the next generation Galaxy Note.September 11, 2021
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That’s extremely vague, even by the cryptic standards of leakers, and “evidence” could mean pretty much anything. But given Ice Universe’s pedigree at getting these things right, it remains a pretty strong indication that Samsung may be planning the return of the Note next year.
Indeed, you wouldn’t expect overwhelming proof of the Galaxy Note 22 at this stage. The Galaxy Note 20 was released on August 21 2020, so if the line is set to return to Samsung’s line up, you would imagine that it’s still a year away. Said evidence, therefore, is pretty much guaranteed to be limited.
The comeback could be out of Samsung’s hands
The idea that the Samsung Galaxy Note line was dead rather than merely sleeping always felt a little overblown. When Samsung finally confirmed it wasn’t coming this year, it only said there wouldn’t be one “this time around”, which suggests that a return was always in the cards.
And there’s no doubt that demand is there. Plenty of people were upset at the lack of a Samsung Galaxy Note 21 this year and, at the time of writing, just under 39,000 people have signed a pretty hopeless petition aiming to make Samsung alternate between Galaxy S and Galaxy Note handsets in future.
But while this Ice Universe tweet is certainly an encouraging sign for those hoping to return to phablet life in 2022, the decision could still ultimately be out of Samsung’s hands. The Note 21 wasn’t abandoned because Samsung didn’t want to make it, but because of the global chip shortage and there’s no guarantee that things will have improved sufficiently in 2022 to support the Galaxy S22, Galaxy Z Fold 4, Galaxy Z Flip 4 and a Galaxy Note 22.
The appearance of evidence of the Note 22 is encouraging, but doesn’t guarantee its arrival. Remember that the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE was first leaked in April, but was reportedly nearly abandoned in June thanks to the lack of chips. It’s supposedly on track again now — albeit still with no firm release date — but that it apparently came so close to cancellation shows that Samsung may have to make some tough prioritization decisions if supply issues don’t resolve themselves.
And if that’s the case, you wouldn’t want to bet on a new Note being home and dry in 2022 just yet.
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Freelance contributor Alan has been writing about tech for over a decade, covering phones, drones and everything in between. Previously Deputy Editor of tech site Alphr, his words are found all over the web and in the occasional magazine too. When not weighing up the pros and cons of the latest smartwatch, you'll probably find him tackling his ever-growing games backlog. Or, more likely, playing Spelunky for the millionth time.