We go hands-on with the Android 4.0.4 update for the AT&T Galaxy Note, with Samsung Premium Suite
AT&T will soon be pushing out Ice Cream Sandwich for the Samsung Galaxy Note, and we got a chance to have an early look at the update, with it's own Value Pack of features. The Note was (to everyone's surprise) a very popular device, and Samsung has followed in the footsteps of their last popular device's ICS update -- leaving the UI much the same as it was with Gingerbread. Like the Galaxy S II, Touchwiz is basically unchanged. Nobody really expected Samsung to change the basic UI on a phone in the midst of it's lifespan, and that's a decision we can understand even if we don't like it very much.
The good news is that we do like it very much. All the features you know and love about the Note are still there, as they were, with the API changes and ability to run the latest apps built-in. Updates to the Google apps and others like Chrome for Android make the Note better, and the ICS features like Android Beam and Face Unlock are along for the ride. If you just can't accept TouchWiz, having ICS allows you to install Nova Launcher to get the stock feel. ICS improves the speed and stability of all the software, and those changes do come with the update.
Along with the ability to run the latest apps and all the under-the-hood changes that come with Android 4.0.4, Samsung has tossed in what they're calling a Value Pack or Premium Suite. Consisting of a revamped S Memo app and the S Note app we've seen and heard was coming to Samsung's future tablets, it's two great pieces of software that you won't be calling bloat. S Memo's great home screen widget make it an app that's easy to use when you need to jot something down quickly, and the extra power that comes with S Note make it one of the best note taking apps we've run across. Check it out in the video and gallery after the break.