Samsung South Africa launched the Galaxy Note II in Cape Town last night as part of the Samsung World Tour.

The hybrid mobile device features a 5.5-inch HD screen with a 16:9 aspect ratio, which is slightly bigger than the Galaxy Note’s 5.3-inch screen.

The device is powered by a 1.6GHz quad-core processor; a more powerful 3100mAh battery; 8-megapixel rear camera & 1.9-megapixel front camera; and will run Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Memory options are 16GB, 32GB and 64GB with an expandable micro SD slot. The handset will come in both 3G and 4G LTE versions (branded as 4G).

The ergonomically designed S Pen is now longer and thicker. A new gesture feature called Quick Command lets users launch various apps by swiping the screen upward and choosing an option from the command pad or assigning a unique shortcut for easy access.

The Galaxy Note II also allows for “true multitasking”, meaning users can launch multiple windows on one screen, like a split screen view. If multiple windows are open, they appear stacked, which users can toggle between. Another feature called Popup Video lets users watch a video anywhere on screen, above whatever application is open. It can be repositioned or resized and dragged anywhere.

The handset is now available through Vodacom and MTN on contract and around R8000 on prepaid.

Samsung also introduced the Galaxy Camera last night, a smartphone and 16-megapixel camera combination featuring 21x optical zoom, which falls into a new device category. It runs on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean with WiFi and 3G capabilities. It will retail for R4,700 and will be available around the holiday season.

The last announcement for the evening was the Ativ S smartphone, Samsung’s first Windows Phone 8 device. More details will be available soon.