VZW Note 2.

What more is there to say about one of the hottest phones on the market today? Samsung's Galaxy Note 2 is poised to be one of the biggest (literally) smartphones this holiday season, and the country's largest carrier just launched its iteration. You won't find any differences under the hood-- same Exynos quad-core processor, same 2 gigs of RAM, and same super-slick Jelly Bean OS. What you WILL find, however, is a heck of a lot of branding. Some would say too much, and others would say way too much-- don't panic though, there are ways around it. So sit back, hit the break and enjoy the unboxing, and be sure to stay tuned for how the Note 2 competes with the rest of Verizon's holiday portfolio, including HTC's Goliath DNA. 

 

Reader comments

First look at the Verizon Galaxy Note 2

64 Comments

For all the belly aching about the branding on the phone it's in exactly the same place as that on 99.999% of every other phone on Verizon. Give idiots something to complain about online and they go on and on forever. I picked up the phone on launch morning and barely even notice it. I don't spend a lot of time staring at the back of my phone so I only see 1 logo; exactly the same # see when I look at http://www.verizonwireless.com/b2c/store/controller?&item=phoneFirst&action=viewPhoneOverviewByDevice&deviceCategoryId=1

And that's a good thing why? What other carrier takes branding to the level Verizon does? Whether it's forcing phones to put their logo on buttons, locking bootloaders etc.

I'm getting sick of guys like you sticking up for these types of corporations. No other large carrier in the world does what Verizon does.

O no, there is a "sticker" on my phone saying what carrier I have even though they discount it hundreds of dollars for me using them for 2 years.

I am too lazy or resourceful to find a way to rid my phone of these logos....

boooooooooo hissssssssssssssss

to me the dumbest thing to complain about, is what is on the outside of a phone that affects the functionality in ZERO way. Hell I had to buy a white note 2 because they didnt get any greys in stock, I guess I should be blubbering online somewhere...

So they're giving you a discount on your service once you're done paying your phone off?

Why should you have to use resourcefulness in order to remove branding that doesn't have to be there in the first place? Why make excuses for them?

That's ridiculous.

Say whatever you want, but Android OEMs need to get Verizon to calm the hell down. I'm okay with the branding where it makes sense. But when it dominates the actual manufacturers branding, that's when its a problem.

How can any OEM gain mind share when they can't even showcase their own brand?

Smh...

Thanks for the video Anndrew. If you would, please keep 'value' in consideration when you compare the Note 2 and DNA; Im in this same situation. That 150% price increase of the Note 2 ($299) over the DNA ($199) is a very BIG deterrent (especially when upgrading multiple phones on a family plan...). Thanks!

Thank you for not spending 5 minutes complaining about the logo on the button. And for those that do complain, have you seen the size of the Verizon logo on the DNA? And I don't understand how a logo on a phone is any different then say, a huge Nike swoosh on my sneakers. This is the world we live in, get used to it.

I like one logo of the OEM on the back and that's it. I don't want Verizon's logo at all on my phone. The iPhone doesn't have it. I don't want my phone to have it either.

GET OVER IT. Let your entitlement issues subside and buy it if you want then fix it if you don't like it, buy it and live with it, or don't buy it and move on. Those are the options either way you go it's not that critical. Blows my mind some of you can get stuck on something so trivial.

I have the Note 2 on Verizon and it is awesome. The branding on the home button doesn't bother me at all. I think it's brilliant marketing actually.

The GS3 (and the Rezound) will do simultaneous voice and 3G data. I don't recall any review on AC addressing that. But, I have read elsewhere that the Note 2 does not. Seems worthy of a mention, since it's a dealbreaker for me and, I know, some other people.

Truthfully the branding is something totally stupid and unnecessary but that's Verizon. What pisses me off most is the internal changes that were unnecessary. The changing to the infinite scrolling in the application tray. The permeate wifi notification that cannot be removed unless rooted in theppull down menu. Samsung should be pretty pissed off with this being done to a perfect device for no logical reason. Verizon has gotten to big for their britches and the time has come for manufacturers to tell Verizon where they can kiss. Just like Google has done with it's Lg Nexus 4 Samsung must do in the future with it's Galaxy S4 and Galaxy Note 3. Keep it off Verizon.

And Verizon had the gall to take the earbuds from the packaging. Everyone else on every other carrier got exactly what Samsung intended for them to have. Those are great earbuds and extra money should not have to spent on stupid home button change and earbuds too. Thank God I am rolling with Tmobile they would never do these things it's infantile and clearly shows that as a carrier Verizon has some kind of inferiority complex.

TMo can't afford to do anything like this. They're barely holding on to the few customers they have. They're not even in the same class as Verizon or AT&T in the way that matters, network quality.

The wifi nag can be stopped by going into setup->wifi-> uncheck notify me non-rooted. Unless you're talking about something else.

NVM - missed the part where you mentioned on the pulldown

Its not completely the same under the hood. I found one difference, the Verizon version is missing the inductive charging ports. That one bothered me that their version is physically different. I couldn't care less about the branding a sugar cube will fix the home button.

True it will not over 3g but it will over 4g so unless you live in one of the last 3 city's that don't have 4g it's not a big deal. ..and does anyone really do this that often.

VERIZONVERIZONVERIZONVERIZONVERIZONVERIZONVERIZON!

Want to know what the best form of branding is? Excellent service at fair prices. If you treat your customers well, they will brag about you.

Also, people want a device they can call their own... not some NASCAR-looking embarrassment.

NO one would be complaining if they pulled an Amazon and charged $149 or $199 for the branded VZ version (i was going to type $99 but c'mon who am i kidding??) . It's just Verizon. Their big, bad and they want everyone to know it. But they figured why bother, people are going to buy this anyway. They did put HTC first though, this GN2 launch was a nice delayed launch after the DNA. OH yes, along with the non-removable battery. Can't have people hogging up their precious LTE!!! And no, making the battery non-removable has nothing to do with making the phone thinner, it's just a marketing scheme to make us buy new phones after 1-1.5 years and keep off the LTE.

Good Lord you people complain, considering Verizon was just ranked highest among the carriers (again) by consumer reports I think a lot less people give a shit about a little branding then y'all think. I also have a suspicion that most of the people complaining probably aren't even on Verizon. Move on.

I agree. The front button logo is less obtrusive than the average front logo on a Verizon phone. Obviously, I prefer it not be there, but Verizon isn't going to stop. It would help if their logo wasn't so poorly designed and just downright bad looking.

If you spend your time worrying about what's on the back of your phone, you should probably not be using a smartphone in the first place. Perhaps you could use an Etch-A-Sketch; they don't have much on the back at all.

I really don't care about the home button advertisement. i can honestly say this is the best phone I've ever had in my life, thus far. I'm coming from the Iphone 4GS, the Palm Pre, the HTC EVO 4G, and the Galaxy S III. Not to forget the cell phones i had when i lived in Japan for ten years. This phone is pretty amazing. For those caught up on the home button, well to each their own. But Verizon stomps the crap out of Sprint.

well at least you will be able to replace the back soon with a ebay non branded version. The huge Verizon in the back bothers me way more than the front.

I think I want a Note 2, but I am confused now since you indicated the screen was inferior to that of the DNA on the video review. I know it is larger on the Note 2, but you said something like, "this one has a great screen" and pointed at the DNA when listing the contrasting points of the phones. Did you mean to imply the Note 2 has a lesser-quality display than the DNA? Is it the resolution or the colors washed out or something?

I don't want a DNA for numerous reasons, and I am only really wanting the Note 2 to get a quad-core Exynos and 2 Gigs of RAM. If it comes with a craptastic screen, however, I can wait on the next one with a fast quad-core and more RAM.

The DNA is 1080p vs the Note's 720p (more pixels = sharper image, may or may not be noticeable to most people but it is still "better" at least on paper)
The DNA has a SuperLCD screen vs the Super Amoled on the Note 2 (Super LCD has a more realistic color scheme and is actually readable in sunlight, unlike the Amoled ones).

So yes the screen is better on the DNA.

Both are excellent, but the DNA's is clearly better.

That logo is indeed enormous, but is it etched into the plastic or something? Will some Acrysol solvent or similar not wipe it right off with some rubbing? I have taken logos off of many things by doing that. Or, is there not a non-branded OEM-looking back available for it? I assume the plastic back just snaps on like that of the GS3, right?

I would just buy the phone and then buy an extra back with no logo or remove the logo somehow if it bothered me that much.

I don't understand the angst against branding. Its not really a fashion statement, I mean your not wearing it on your wrist or as a belt buckle or a pair of loafers. Its not a car that everyone sees you in. If its on the back most people will probably get a case to protect it and cover the branding. It's not a watermark on the screen and doesn't obstruct the view in any way. Whats the big deal?

Well put..the logo doesnt bother me at all and its not like people will see or look for it. Stop whining and get the hottest phone out right now.

I honestly could care less about the branding but do get the point some are trying to make. There was a comment about simultaneous voice and data not being able to be done - hasn't that ALWAYS been a 3G CDMA issue with Verizon? 4G eliminated that issue so unless you are in a bad area where 4G is not available and need to do both you should be fine. What has me concerned (more than the earbuds comment) is that someone mentioned the Verizon version of this phone does not have the inductive charging capability like other versions do out of the box. Can someone else please confirm this? I am on Verizon and my goal is to eventually get a Note2 when I can, but if their version messed w/the hardware, I might think twice about it and wait for the Galaxy S4 or Note3 further on down the road (and continue to use my Droid X2 until then - ugh...).

also FYI for anyone buying a note 2 mine is a slippy sunnofabitch... so I had to buy a black rubber case for the back, so the back branding should bring noone sadness... buy a case.

Look I went to the store on release date...i seen the branding and asked the rep "are you guys crazy!?!?!?!?!
Then bought the phone...
My point is it sucks but its Verizon.. obviously it didnt change my purchase. ..obviously im dealing with it...if you wanna complain do with actions and leave verizon. ..im tried of people complaining about lock boot loaders and updates. .thats not what verizon is about ....They stand for Great network, Great customer service, and making money...
You to control you phone buy it off contract and get pre paid or no contract. ..period. ...I hate the over branding to so I got some Carbon fiber ghost armor on mine and I love it ...

LOL A first look and it's primarily about the Verizon branding? How is that very useful to potential buyers? I think people would be better served by more info on the phone itself (hardware and software).

As to the Note 2 versus DNA, I'll say what I posted in the forums:

It was a no brainer for me as the DNA's non-removable battery (in particular) and no SD card are deal breakers. Otherwise, only thing the DNA has going for it is the screen, but even that is questionable to me as I don't think it's all that valuable on a phone. IMHO, Note 2 is all around a better phone, add in the S-Pen capabilities and it's no contest. :) Size wise: the Note 2 isn't a problem; comfortable in hand and for me easy to hold in landscape as well. I can't imagine going back to anything less than a 5.5" screen now.

I have to add coming from a HTC Thunderbolt, I initially had build quality concerns with Samsung, but that was completely unfounded as the Note 2 is a very well made device and while light in hand feels very solid, not cheap what-so-ever. :)

I actually don't mind showing off that I have the best service out there... I did buy a smart cover for it tho. So I don't have the branding on the back anymore. But when I first saw it it didn't ruin my day. Also, whats this talk about Google standing up to Verizon with the Nexus 4? Them not putting LTE on that device is a fail for all carriers boasting LTE. How are u going to come out with a new Nexus and only make it HSPA+. Laughable :-D. They made a beautiful phone and then filled it with last years technology. Not to thro them under the bus, but who are they? BlackBerry? I kid I kid. Lots of cool things happening with BB. Anyways... if ur gona whine and cry about Verizon branding, by all means. Jump ship to T-mob. Please. They and their HSPA+ speed need u

You know what the best evidence is that the Note 2 is spectacular? That nobody can find a thing to complain about but the Verizon branding. Not the screen, not the battery, not the memory, not the processor, not the RAM, not the camera, not the sound, not the reception, not call quality, not the design. The Note 2 recieves high marks in each of those categories. The ONLY thing people are whinning about (and people will always find an excuse to do so) is the Verizon branding. That's it. How often can you say that? Certainly not with the DNA, SGS3, iPhone 5 or any other premium phone out there.

Punchline: this is the best phone out there, and any insignifiant branding is irrelevant.

+100^^ Best comment on the page and I don't own a Gnote2 nor am I on Verizon..I agree with you. This phone is a beast.