Samsung Galaxy Note – Opinions & Thoughts
Samsung recently launched Galaxy Note Smartphone (or Tablet) in India. It is a Phone Tablet basically, it has large 5.3-inch display screen which is too small for a Tablet and too large for a Smartphone. People are talking a lot about Galaxy Note in the blogosphere, some think it is a worthless gadget (in most cases these people are Apple fans) and some feel it is a mind blowing gadget as it serves the best of both worlds.
So, basically Samsung Galaxy Note is a gadget that appeals different to different people depending upon their needs from a Smartphone.
People who need a Smartphone to make calls, check a couple of mails, edit documents and browser web might find several alternatives in market to Galaxy Note for the price Samsung is offering it. But, Galaxy Note’s large Super AMOLED display would have a great appeal to people who use Android apps a lot, like playing games, love watching multimedia video files in HD and, of course, don’t mind spending Rs. 35,000 ($708.92).Enough Talk! Let’s discuss what makes Samsung Galaxy Note such a “revolutionary” and expensive Smartphone.
Design, Construction & Build
Samsung Galaxy Note has a large edge-to-edge 5.3-inch capacitive touchscreen. The front has only one physical key – the home button, back and menu buttons are both capacitive. Its display screen is made of Gorilla Glass which makes it scratch-resistant.
The back panel appears to be made of plastic similar to Samsung Galaxy S2 which would be serving as a high quality finger-print magnet. On the sides, Galaxy Note has music rocker keys for adjusting volume. I don’t think Samsung has put in a physical camera shutter button (at first I thought that Samsung has missed adding a physical shutter button but maybe they are preparing their device for Android v4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich which offers zero lag time in clicking pictures) in Galaxy Note.
It is a quite large Smartphone and might not be too comfortable to use. Samsung has been known for producing large Smartphones but this time, it seems, they have gone way too far.
Galaxy Note has an ultra-powerful 1.4GHz dual core ARM Cortex-A9 processor with Mali-400MP GPU and Exynos chipset which would be utilized for loading high-definition games, apps, multi-tasking and running several apps simultaneously.
Although, Samsung Galaxy Note comes with Android v2.3 Gingerbread but it would be upgraded to Ice Cream Sandwich as soon as ICS is released with Google’s flagship phone – Samsung Galaxy Nexus.
Galaxy Note has TouchWiz 4.0 UI embedded over Stock Android interface. On one of the 7 homescreens, you would find a note taking app using which you can jump back to the conventional note taking method, the only difference here is that in traditional note taking you used pen or pencil, and here you’d have to use the S Pen.
In Samsung Galaxy Note as well, there is a cute little icon on the homescreen titled as “Android Market,” which would take you to Android’s app store filled with more than 2.5 lac applications. Like Apple Store, Android Market has almost all the apps you might need in your daily work.
There are hundreds of High-Def games which would love to run with extra-ordinary hardware embedded in your Galaxy Note.
Display Quality & Multimedia
Samsung Galaxy Note sports a Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen that offers a display resolution of 800 x 1280 pixels and 285 ppi pixel density which makes Galaxy Note’s display very much similar to Apple’s Retina Display.
Undoubtedly, Samsung Galaxy Note can play and steam videos in HD 720p resolution which would require you to switch to fast speed internet connection.
[image credit Geeky Gadgets]
Galaxy Note would run web smoothly, it won’t display web pages in mobile format but in regular desktop format. It is capable of playing flash and run HTML5 coded websites.
Memory & Storage
Like other top-tier Smartphones, Galaxy Note comes with 16GB/32GB internal storage options with a microSD card slot for expanding phone’s storage up to 32GB + 32GB = 64GB. As I mentioned above, Galaxy Note can play HD videos, thus you can store as many as you like on your phone.
It offers 1GB of RAM for multi-tasking and supporting HD video games which are custom made to run on Smartphones like the Galaxy Note.
Galaxy Note offers wide range of connectivity options including GPRS, EDGE, 3G, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth v3.0”+HS.” Along with Wi-Fi, and it can be used as a Wi-Fi hotspot which is a feature now offered by all the Android phones.
Let’s talk something about the quoted +HS feature offered by Galaxy Note. Bluetooth v3.0+HS make Galaxy Note capable of receiving data at a high speed close to 24Mbit/sec but Bluetooth is not completely responsible for such high speed transfers.
Bluetooth chip inside Galaxy Note forms a link between the two devices and the data is sent via the Wi-Fi route. It is a relatively new technology but sounds quite interesting.
Camera & Video Options
Both Samsung Galaxy Note and Galaxy S2 have the same hardware for capturing pictures and recording videos. Galaxy Note has a 8MP autofocus camera with LED flash and image stabilization on its back. The camera is capable of recording Full HD 1080p videos at (30 or 60 fps). It also has a 2MP secondary camera in front for video conferencing and Skype.
Samsung Galaxy Note also offers NFC support and Adobe Flash 10.1 support.
The Closing Paragraph
Samsung is claiming Galaxy Note to be a revolutionary device but it might not be so. Galaxy Note is technically a combination of Smartphone and Tablet PC but in reality it is nothing more than an over sized Phone and under nourished Tablet.
Who wants a device for note taking? There are several apps already available on all the platforms for adding to-dos, tasks, notes, Evernote is one such app for Android.
There is a major flaw in Samsung’s Plan. Galaxy Note can’t be used by school students for taking notes, it is only developed for the rich class (who do you think would pay Rs. 35,000 for taking notes). So, it is a fact that it is developed for the business class! But Business classes don’t need something like this.
Most business people use BlackBerry which gives them a dedicated environment for increasing their productivity.
In short, Samsung Galaxy Note is an over-priced, conceptually poor Gadget, not worth the money.
Update (22/12/2012): Opinions change over time. Now that I have experience this device first hand, I think it’s a great tool for media consumption and almost everything. Text looks sharp, videos clear and camera is just awesome. The only problem is carrying this phablet, which is not a problem for business class, because most of the professionals wear suits to work. Cheers, I own a Samsung Galaxy Note 2!