Rendered for the press just a few days ago, and expected out next week, at a no doubt glitzy Unpacked event, Samsung's “next big thing” has been allegedly captured in the flesh for the first time. While it predictably looks awesome, the Note 5 doesn’t appear willing to repair Galaxy S6’s most critical imperfections.

No, ladies and gents, we’re afraid external storage expansion isn’t making a comeback on Samsung’s premium iPhone contenders. Nor will you be able to easily pop the trunk of Note 4’s successor, access and replace its glued battery.

Droid Life’s hands-on flaunts the Galaxy Note 5 from all angles, and the sealed back cover almost needs no clarification. But the publication’s sources insist the otherwise sizable 3,000 mAh cell is bolted in place, with a screwdriver, a lot of patience and recklessness as the only way in.

Meanwhile, we really can’t see where a microSD card slot might be accommodated, as the super-slim sides don’t shelter any digital hoarding-friendly goodies. Both “compromises” are made for noble purposes, though, specifically a robust, unibody type of construction and speedier than ever internal storage.

We all know how undependable microSD cards can get, and mixing a sluggish storage option with advanced UFS 2.0 would only lead to system instability. Ergo, it’s probably wiser to offer up to 128GB on-board data depository, plus unlimited cloud space.

Back to Note 5’s external appearance, its resemblance to the smaller, non-S Pen-capable GS6 is uncanny, save for a curvier, more ergonomic rear. And a spring-operated stylus opening, obviously, with razor-thin screen bezels also in tow, but unfortunately no USB Type-C connectivity.

Overall, this appears will be the Android phablet to beat during the holiday season, Quad HD 5.7-inch display, 4 GB RAM and all.

Image credit: Droid Life