Samsung Galaxy Note Review
Granted, it looks around the same size as the original GameBoy, yet our time with the Note left us convinced that smart phone/tablet devices are the future.
“Tablet? Pfft, smablet” is something you might expect to hear from a dismissive tech sceptic yet in the case of the Samsung Galaxy Note, it’s a compliment.
With an enormous 5.3” HD Super AMOLED screen, our first impressions were one of bemusement. Is it smart phone or a tablet? In fact, it’s both, a ‘smablet’.
With its giant screen and stylus (something we’re sure the late Steve Jobs wouldn’t have appreciated) the Note is Samsung’s fastest handset to date and offers an experience that sits between that of a tablet (a feeling of space and control) and a smartphone, even if it’s probably not recommended for the skinny jeans crowd.
No doubt, the Note is a polarising release, with many critics pointed to the phone’s size and mocking its bulky appearance. Yet those detractors fail to see that the Note is opening up a new market and signifying a maturation in consumer tastes. As it turns out, our smart phones might start getting a lot bigger this decade, which is something not many of us might have expected.
Another dubious design choice – the stylus – turns out to be a masterstroke. Tablet owners will tell you that some of the most used apps in their purchase are somewhat clumsy for gesture control, a problem a stylus fixes.
In this reviewer’s case, the lack of any tactile functionality for making notes on my iPad can be cumbersome, while my Draw Something efforts would certainly be less horrific with the inclusion of a stylus. For games, notes and any sort of doodling, the stylus quickly becomes second nature for the Note and could be the phone’s USP to ex-Apple device owners.
Speed and usability
With a 1.4GHz dual core processor, the Note is also lightning fast, which removes any apprehension over loading multiple apps. Another facet worthy of mention is the Note’s incredibly vivid screen, which has to seen to be believed. The colours absolutely pop with a 1280 x 800 resolution and armed with a stylus, it’s a must for those seeking gaming apps.
Battery life is another of the Note’s finest achievements, with full charges leading to around 15-20 hours battery life; another reason why the device is arguably just as much of a tablet as it is a smartphone.
Thus Samsung have released an ambitious but visionary phone which is perfect for anyone who finds themselves switching between their smart phone and tablet or can afford one but not the other.
While the Note’s means it can look a little silly when held up to your ear on a phone call, the brilliant screen should ease any social embarrassment just seconds later. This is Samsung’s best phone yet and its success isn’t down to sheer horsepower, but rather ingenuity.