When Samsung unveils the Galaxy Note 9 later this week, it's likely to tout the increased processing power, expansive screen and enhanced S Pen as reasons to pony up for a new smartphone. But it could turn to headphones, bundled games and special offers to help seal the deal.
As many details about the Note 9 itself have already leaked in advance of the phone's Aug. 9 unveiling, attention is shifting to some of the extras Samsung could include with its new device. That makes sense for a couple reasons — for starters, the Note 9 isn't expected to be that big a departure from last year's Note 8, at least in terms of design.
Secondly, with sales of the Galaxy S9 released earlier this year slower than Samsung would have liked, the pressure is on the phone maker to convince smartphone shoppers that the Note 9 is a good value, even with a price tag expected to top $900.
Here are the various extras and deals Samsung may announce this week as incentives to buy the Galaxy Note 9.
In an earlier leak that revealed a lot of details about the Note 9, a Reddit user named Wan997 posted that Note 9 preorders would give customers a choice between wireless noise-canceling headphones from AKG or a Fortnite gaming bundle. (More on Samsung's Fortnite plans in a moment.) The headphones wouldn't be a departure from Samsung's past playbook — the phone maker included a pair of AKG Bluetooth headphones with the Note 8 when you ordered from Samsung.
There's now photographic evidence of an AKG bundle for the Note 9, as spotted by Dutch blog Techtastic. The photos appeared on Chinese microblogging site Weibo and show off a value pack that includes AKG Y50 BT headphones, along with a Note 9, a charger, a USB cable and a case. The package has a 128GB label on it, which happens to be one of the rumored configurations for the Note 9.
Multiple sites have already reported that Fortnite will make its Android debut as a Galaxy Note 9 exclusive. But now more details have emerged on just how exclusive that arrangement will be.
Initial reports suggested that Fortnite would be exclusive to the Note 9 for 30 days before appearing on other Android devices. But after digging around the Fortnite Mobile on Android installer APK, XDA Developers says the game could launch for the newly announced Galaxy Tab S4 as well. A source now tells Android Headlines that after the 30-day exclusivity period for the Note 9 ends, Samsung will enjoy another exclusive window where the multiplayer shooter will be limited to select Samsung devices. That exclusive period could run another 60 to 90 days.
Regardless of which Android devices Fortnite will work with and for how long, it looks like Galaxy Note 9 owners will have the chance to kit themselves out in the game. A Fortnite bundle will give Note 9 owners 15,000 V-Bucks — a $150 or so value.
Rumored BOGO offer
Samsung's carrier partners are eager to have you buy a Note 9 as well — so eager in fact that one may have tipped its hand about an upcoming buy-one-get-one-free offer.
Droid Life reports that one of its readers spotted a prematurely leaked BOGO promotion for the Note 9 while perusing the My Verizon app, suggesting that Big Red will announce such a deal once Samsung officially unveils its new phone.
The Droid Life report provides few details about Verizon's reported offer, though past BOGO deals have required you to buy both phones on installment plans, with the carrier giving you bill credits on the second device over the next 24 months.
We expect to hear a lot about deals from Verizon and other carriers offering the Note 9 immediately after Samsung announces the phone. Based on Samsung's preorder reservation page, we already know that AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and US Cellular will join Verizon in offering the phone. We also know that Samsung will offer trade-in rebates of up to $400 for Note 9 buyers.