Recently, I get to put my hands on the new big toy from Samsung, the Samsung Galaxy Note. This is a huge device with a 5.3 inch Super AMOLED HD screen which makes this device a one of a kind device closing the gap between phones and tablets. And the attempt from Samsung to bring back the stylus or in this case, it is called the S-pen, is very good and fresh. After the announcement of iPhone a few years back, the stylus is generally dead until now!
So after playing with the Galaxy Note for awhile, I would like to write a quick review on the device. And by quick, i mean real quick! =)
Screen. The Note’s screen is one of the best screen in the market today. With the size of 5.3 inches, the screen resolution is 1280×800 pixels which gives around 285ppi (pixel per inch). From what i know, the pixel density comes second only to the iPhone’s pixel density of >300ppi but the iPhone has a screen way smaller than the Note. The Note’s screen is also very sharp and bright and it is just beautiful to look at.
Samsung Galaxy Note’s Screen
Comparison of screen size with iPhone 4
Comparison of screen size with Samsung Galaxy SII
Design. This phone is a big phone. And i mean BIG! The size of the device (dimensions: 146.9 x 83 x 9.7 mm) does not fit into all pockets. The device is big but it is very slim. Overall, the device looked good and classy. It also feels expensive with nice built, Gorilla glass front and plastic back.
Front view with leather cover
Back view with the S-pen
Size comparison with iPhone 4 and Samsung Galaxy SII
Thickness comparison with iPhone 4
Thickness comparison with Samsung Galaxy SII
Thickness comparison. From left: Galaxy Note, iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, Blackberry Curve 8520, Nokia N97.
Performance and User interface. The Galaxy Note comes with Android Gingerbread with Samsung’s TouchWiz UI version 4.0. Personally i think the HTC Sense is superior to the TouchWiz but with such large screen, everything is nice! LOL. The performance of the device is quite smooth but I encounter lag sometimes which is such turn off with a Dual-core 1.4GHz ARM Cortex-A9 processor with 1GB of RAM. One of my favorite games on mobile is the Fruit Ninja, and very sad to say, the game lags in the Galaxy Note. But overall, the performance of the device is pretty good. And with the S-pen and S Memo app, it is really fun in taking notes, drawing stuffs, cropping pictures and etc. Although at times the application will crash. >.<
My masterpiece using the S Memo app. Tell me it is awesome!
Error message using S Memo app
Camera. Galaxy Note have an 8MP camera with autofocus and LED flash and a 2MP secondary camera. The primary camera also shoots 1080p videos with 30fps (frame per second). There are some sample photos taken using the Samsung Galaxy Note. I would say that the camera takes good picture. It is not the best but the quality of the photos taken are more to the good side. Take a look at these shots taken using the Galaxy Note.
Photo taken without flash
Photo taken with flash
Galaxy Note brochure focused
Others. There are other things about Galaxy Note which are worth mentioning in this quick review such as the battery life. It has a Li-Ion 2500 mAh battery which give you up to 13hours of talk time. I am quite impressed with how long the battery lasts even with a screen that big. But don’t get me wrong, the battery still does not take you anywhere more than a day. Other stuffs such as the S-pen and the S Memo app is really fun to use (if you don’t lose your S-pen). Another cool thing about the Note is that while playing a video, you can just place your palm over the screen and the video will pause. Once you lift up your palm, the video will continue the playback. This is handy when you always have friends bothering you when you are watching a video, just place your palm on the screen, shoo away your friend and continue watching the video without missing anything. I like it. 2GB memory card included on top of the 16GB internal memory. Memory expendable to 32GB.
Conclusion. The only drawbacks of this device is the size of it (which some can also consider it as a good thing) and the once in a while lag. If you can live with that, the Samsung Galaxy Note is certainly one of the most powerful and promising smartphone in the market today. Ofcourse, it comes with a really beautiful screen and the S-pen. I would say that the device is one of the best from Samsung, apart from the flagship Galaxy SII.
For more information on the device, please write on the comment section. Thanks.
There is a office app called Polaris Office which is just great to be used on the Galaxy Note. Review on the app is coming soon.