Product Type: Samsung Smartphone
Newest Review: ... used to the size, and being thin and light for it's size, it fits comfortably in my trouser pocket. I honestly don't notice the size now... more
Samsung Galaxy Note
Member Name: SJ2011
Samsung Galaxy Note
Advantages: Abilities of a tablet in smartphone form
Disadvantages: The size takes a bit of getting used to
me waiting to see what it was like before making my decision (well it's a shame to risk ending up with
a donkey if you can try someone else's first)
The first thing that strikes you when you unpack this is the sheer size of it I was shocked to find it
dwarfs my boyfriends Sony Arc which seemed huge when we got it. The Galaxy Note measures
146.85 x 82.95 x 9.65 mm and weighs 178g compared to the Sony at 146.85 x 82.95 x 9.65 mm
andweighs 117g. Although the phone is big it is really slim and it does fit into a jeans or shirt pocket
easily enough. Like most smartphones the packaging is kept to a minimum and in the box you get a
user guide, a charger that works along with the USB cable, earphones, battery, S pen and the phone.
The Galaxy Note seems to lie somewhere between a smartphone and a tablet and probably best
suited to those who spend more time surfing the net, playing games or watching videos than
actually making calls. The huge size means it does look a bit silly when you hold it to your ear to
make a call so unless there's a sudden rise in huge phones on the market you can expect a few
strange looks when you answer a call in public although at least the sound quality on calls is
excellent so it's worth the strange looks.
The overall look of the phone is quite minimal and understated with only one physical home button
on the front of the phone which has an illuminated touchscreen button on either side of it. The left
hand side has a volume rocker switch while the right hand side has the power/lock switch. The
earphone socket is on the top of the phone and the charger/data slot is on the base of the phone
along with the S pen slot. The Galaxy Note is available in black or white but sadly our provider only
had the white version which in my opinion doesn't look as sleek as the black one and makes an
already huge phone look even bigger.
The Galaxy Note comes with a huge 5.3" Gorilla Glass Super Amoled HD capacitive touchscreen with
a resolution of 1280 x 800. The screen has to be seen to be believed it's bright,vivid and gives a
great range of depth and colour and obviously helped by the size it's fantastic for viewing videos,
pictures playing games or browsing the internet. The touchscreen is responsive, accurate and easy
to use can be used either with your fingers or with the Samsung S Pen that comes with the Note.
The Samsung S Pen is basically a stylus optimised for use on the capacitve touchscreen allowing you
to capture screen shots with a touch of the button or to write notes and draw pictures. The S pen
is pressure sensitive so the line is lighter or darker depending how hard you press and similar to
using a Wacom tablet pen it has a range of options for width, type and colour of line you want to
use. The S pen is fun to play around with and quite handy for editing photos or adding captions to
pics before embarrassing your mates in Facebook. When not in use the S pen stores in a slot on
the base of the phone although I'm currently wondering how long the S pen will last before it
The camera on the Galaxy Note is pretty good with 8MP and a LED flash for low light shots.
I've been quite impressed with the shots I've taken with the Note both indoors and outside and
while it doesn't replace a decent compact camera it's nice to have something on a phone that can
take a decent shot rather than grainy pics from the rubbish cameras added to some phones to look
good on the the specs sheet. There's a variety of scene modes and settings to help get the most
of the camera but unfortunately there's no dedicated camera shutter button on the Note so it is a
bit awkward to use til you get the hang of it.
The Galaxy note is capable of video recording in HD at up to 1080p and 30 frames per second which produces pretty good quality sound and video for a phone. There's also a 2MP front facing camera
for anyone who makes video calls. The one downside of the main camera is the glass covering the
lens is flush with the casing so I think it will get scratched too easily it would be better if there was a
lens cover or the lens was recessed slightly.
For the tech heads there's plenty to keep them happy the Galaxy Note comes with EDGE,GPRS,WIFI,
HDSPA,has a 1.4GHz dual core processor and is currently running Android 2.3 Gingerbread with an upgrade to Android Ice Cream Sandwich due soon. The Android system is overlaid with Samsungs Touchwiz interface which is easy to navigate and seems pretty fast with no obvious lag . Being
an Android phone there's thousands of apps available to add to those already installed on the
phone so you can customize the phone to suit your needs and with 7 home screens and 16GB
internal memory there's plenty of room for any apps you want to add. The Galaxy Note can also
be expanded with a memory card of up to 32GB if you do find yourself running out of space.
The music quality on the Galaxy Note as standard is pretty good and most formats are supported
and the playback interface is easy to navigate and arrange playlists etc. The sound on video
playback is pretty good through decent earphones but slightly on the tinny side through the on
board speaker The earphones that come with the note are good enough quality and the standard
3.5mm earphone jack means you can use your own if you prefer.
The Galaxy Note is easy to use for calls and texting and anyone with larger hands will find it a lot
easier to text or email on the huge touchscreen compared to most smart phones plus you can use
the S pen for these features as well. The screens are well laid out and even those new to
smartphones will have no problem finding their way around. The contacts menu allows you to
arrange contacts,integrate Facebook and Twitter along with the option to add groups for easy
mass messaging which is handy for organising nights out etc.
Internet access is fast and the huge screen makes for easy viewing of most sites although you
do still have to zoom in to most sites you do get a lot more on a page compared to most phones
I've used. There's a limit to how many pages you can open at once so you can only have 8 open
at once. We have unlimited internet as part of our package on the Note so we haven't actually
tried the Wifi connection yet. I've also seen reviews that say the Note makes a decent Ebook
reader so I'm looking forward to trying it in the hope it does away with my current desire for
The battery on the Galaxy Note is a 2500mAh which is pretty powerful and gives a decent amount
of juice although obviously with a screen this big you need all the help you can get. So far we've
been impressed with the battery life it usually lasts a full day at the moment which is good
considering how much it's been played with but we've only had it for 2 weeks so time will tell but
so far it does seem to give more play time than other smartphones we've owned.
Overall I would recommend the Galaxy Note it's a great phone with plenty to keep you amused
during quiet times at work or long journeys on the train etc and the screen is fantastic for videos
games and browsing the web. The size does take a bit of getting used to and for me although I
really like the phone and features I'm still trying to decide whether I could live with it long term to
have the benefits of the large screen or whether to go with my original choice of the slightly more
compact Galaxy S2 but my boyfriend loves it.
The Galaxy Note costs around £500 but is available free on contract from around £21 depending
on the minutes texts and internet you want included. Our deal with 3 mobile costs £38 per month
with unlimited internet, 2000 minutes and 5000 texts
Summary: Best bits of a tablet and a smartphone combined in one package
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