It is no secret that the launch of the Galaxy Note 8 has had a shadow hanging over it, due to the previous Note device, the Galaxy Note 7. However, it seems Samsung decided to take an approach which meant the Note 7 fiasco was something that was used to further fuel the company's mobile ambitions, rather than slow them down. This comes from an interview with Samsung's D.J. Koh and the Wall Street Journal, following today's launch of the Galaxy Note 8.
Its seems Koh, and by association Samsung, never considered retiring the Note line after the recall of the Note 7, with Koh reportedly making it clear to employees that "I will not give up on the Note series." Instead, according to the interview, Koh repeatedly employed a 'don't hold back' message when speaking with engineers. Suggesting that Koh wanted those working on the device to ensure the Galaxy Note 8 was not a step back, or even a more cautions product in the wake of the Note 7. With Koh reportedly quoted as telling engineers "if we are afraid of technology innovation, we will die." With the suggestion being that Koh wanted engineers, and the design team to continue to press for innovative features with a view to ensuring the Galaxy Note 8 was all that it could be – not an apology for the Galaxy Note 7. An approach which seems to have worked based on early impressions as the Galaxy Note 8 is a device that is packed to the brim with features and a number of design traits which are new to the Galaxy Note line, as well as new to Samsung flagship devices in general. The Infinity Display an example of the former, and the dual rear camera configuration an example of the latter. According to Koh, "when we designed the Note 8, we knew we had to get it right."
At the employee level, it also seems as though the Galaxy Note 7 did not result in the fractions that may have resulted in other companies under the sort of pressure that Samsung found itself under. As Samsung's North American head, Tim Baxter, was also noted explaining that the Note 7 recall resulted in more of a tight-knit working environment for those associated with the Galaxy Note 8 development. With Baxter noting that the situation Samsung found itself in "forced the company to work more closely together" as well as changing the way in which employees worked in general.