Android Central

With the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 hitting select UK stores imminently, it's time for us to go hands-on with the finished product. We first tested out the Galaxy Note 2 at IFA in Berlin in late August, and it's taken just over a month to finalize the device. The original Samsung Galaxy Note has proved a surprising success over the past year. With the second-gen Note being bigger and more powerful than ever, Samsung will be hoping its efforts are reflected in even stronger sales this time around.

Check out our first hands-on video with the final, retail Galaxy Note 2 after the break, along with a quick overview of the device.

Powered by a quad-core 1.6 GHz Exynos 4 processor, the Galaxy Note 2 has some substantial horsepower behind it, along with a plentiful 2GB of on-board RAM. Combined with a whopping 3100mAh battery, we're expecting some serious longevity from this device. The Note 2 runs Jelly Bean out of the box, making Samsung's phone/tablet hybrid the first to ship with Android 4.1. And it now sports a 5.55-inch (non-PenTile) HD SuperAMOLED 1280x720 display, protected by Gorilla Glass 2. The extra size of the phone does add few of grams to its weight -- at 180 grams it isn't light, but it's not terribly heavy considering its monstrous size.

The rear camera remains at 8MP, and seems to be much the same as the Galaxy S3's main camera -- stay tuned for an in-depth look at the rear camera in our full review. The front-facer is a 1.9MP sensor, which is actually a small downgrade from the 2MP camera of the original Note, but we're sure the difference won't be noticeable. Full 1080p HD video is pretty much standard on high-end smartphones these days, and the Note 2 checks this box too.

Externally, the Galaxy Note 2 is a dead ringer for the Galaxy S3, with a similar finish, button design and curvaceous chassis. It'll be available in three models --16, 32 and 64 GB -- and you have the ability to add external storage space via microSD card. The "S Pen" Wacom stylus remains one of the device's killer features. The S Pen on the Note 2 has been redesigned to make it easier to grip, and its textured button is easier to find during use.

There are also numerous software enhancements, including the ability to command an on-screen cursor by hovering the stylus over the screen. This can be used to peek into gallery folders, calendar events expandable areas. And the usual selection of Samsung drawing and note-taking apps is included too, as are all of the software features of the Galaxy S3.

We will have a full review online in the next few days, but in the meantime if you are planning on picking up a Note 2, we hope this video will keep you pumped about the device -- it's quite a beauty.

Thanks to Clove Technology for providing the Galaxy Note 2 for review.

 

Reader comments

Samsung Galaxy Note 2 video hands-on and initial review

141 Comments

If by ridiculous, you mean completely awesome, then I'd agree. Otherwise, I'd say there are only two kinds of people in this world: those who think this phone is ridiculous, and those who think it's completely awesome!

Why no reviewer is ever checking the most awesome feature of Note 2? Multi-screen feature of Note 2 is never mentioned by anyone (including AC preview). To understand what I am referring to, check this video (korean):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RjPZIndKzU

or watch this commercial from Samsung itself (starts at 2:03):

http://youtu.be/hOX3HYDwTCY?t=2m3s

Thread on XDA:

http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1908092

You need to hold the "Back" button for few sec to invoke multi-window feature.

I don't think the reviewer really knew much about the Note iI as a number of its unique features were not mentioned at all. He obviously had no idea about the dual split-screen modes or using the S-Pen to do partial screen-caps.

The S-Pen demo only scratched the surface but to be fair the reviewer did say he didn't know much about it. He seemed to think that the equation mode just put his scrawling in a nice font!

Thanks for that info! I have watched a lot of Note 2 videos and this is the first I have seen of this amazing feature.

It's worth noting that the Multi Window feature is not available on the international version of the phone, and whether it'll be available on the US versions is an unknown. I'm not sure why they wouldn't include it, but I have my fingers crossed.

Wow. Some of you sound just as bad as Apple Fanboys. It's not too surprising. People don't like change, they rather keep the same old, same old. Look at Apple!?

For me, I DO need the larger sized Note 2. SmartPhones are so much more than just a phone. Their a multimedia entertainment system. From browsing the web, to looking at maps, to watching movies or playing games. BIGGER is better.

Unfortunately, I had to suck-it-up and go for the iPhone 5 for three reasons, and just these three reasons overshadowed every possible benefit the Note 2 could bring to the table:

1. Apple Support. It's fantastic. When there are issues, you'll be taken care of. Granted, whenever you speak to those Geniuses, it's like they never heard of the problem you're experiencing. However, they will still go and replace your phone without [too] much headache or frustration, unlike with Samsung who goe leaps and bounds out of their way to try to weasle out of their comittment to provide you service and support (unless you pay per diem)

2. Lack of Updates and Fragmentation. Enough is enough. A smartphone is a computer. There will be bugs. There will be new software features. Android has done an atrocious job in bringing updates to all or most devices in a similar time frame. Some devices are completely abandoned and you have to root or install a modified OS to get a fix or new and better features. Along side of fragmentation is the bloatware that Samsung installs on their smartphones affecting performance for all but those who install very few apps. In contrast, Apple has regular updates and everyone gets them at the same time.

3. Availability of accessories and jailbreaking. Apple is winner again. 3rd party manufacturing makes a lot of choices for people who have an iPhone, from cases, to keyboards, whatever. There is LOTs to choose from. With Samsung, it's minimal. I couldn't find anyone to root or install a customized ROM for my Galaxy 1. The insructions online were too messy, too convulated, too many variables, and didn't work.

That is why I HAD to go with the iPhone, despite it being a girly device(in my opinion) and it having a screen size suitable for a child, not an adult. Hopefully, in a few years, things will improve so much with Android and other manufacturers starting to have external memory and removable batteries that Samsung will not have a niche with the Note 2. More options=more choice.

1. Apple support actually is awesome.

2. Updates are done by the device manufacturer, not by Google. Don't blame Google if they update Android and your manufacturer decides not to roll out the update to your device in a timely fashion, or not at all. I hear people talk about fragmentation like it's a bad thing. It's not. Most of the fragmentation talk comes from Apple-speak people. With Android, fragmentation means choice. With Apple, you have very little choice. Oh, you don't like the look of the current iPhone? Too bad, it's the only game in town if you want an up to date Apple phone. With fragmentation, you can choose HTC, Samsung, or 100 other manufacturers out there. Oh, with the iPad, 3.5" iOS devices, and now 4" devices, welcome to fragmentation. When and if they release an iPad Mini, there's another level of fragmentation. Again, it also means choice. For those slow on the uptake... Choice=good

3. I've never been short on accessories for my non-Apple phones, but admittedly, I can't remember a time when I needed to hook up a blood pressure cuff to my phone. So, with the choice=good mindset, yep, the iPhone wins. Truthfully, though, how many accessories do you really need for a phone? Do you really need that cardiac monitor, or the ultrasound accessory for your iPhone? It gets to a point where it's ridiculous.

3.5 Jailbreaking... Did you jailbreak your iPhone? I've rooted most every Android device I've owned. I've yet to have a huge issue performing the root on any device. Now days, most of the root methods are one click root methods. Make sure you have your drivers installed, then click... done. If you couldn't root your Galaxy 1 phone, you probably are better off with the iPhone. You should probably stay away from Android devices. They're much too complicated.

@spaztic
Good for you that you found a phone that does what YOU want, with the customer support you need. IPhones are good phones for many people. But not for me.
However, sorry but we're here to discuss the Note.
If you had some specific experience of Samsung's support and service then I ' be interested.

Oh, and good luck getting affordable accessories for the i5 at the moment.

Granted, a lot of people on these forums are waiting impatiently for this "phone" but way to big for my taste too. This current trend of merging phone and tablet into a phablet is not where I like to see things headed. Let's keep our phones a reasonable size like under 5" and have the tablets be 7" and up. Probably not gonna happen that way but if I had my wishes for future devices.

"Let's keep our phones a reasonable size like under 5" and have the tablets be 7" and up."

And let's keep all TV screens under 32 inches. And all shoe sizes under size 10.5...

There are plenty of us that don't have little pudgy hands and that can grab hold of the Note just fine.

First, your analogies are horrible. There are many more factors influencing TV sizes, and as far as the ridiculous shoe size one, there is a difference between sizing for preference (phone) and necessity (shoe).

And trying to suggest that only "little pudgy hands" would want a phone under 5". My little pudgy hands can grab hold of a basketball just fine, but that doesn't mean I want my cellphone to be 10" across, and spherical...wait that actually sounds fine.

The guy was just stating his opinion.

Grab a basketball just fine? So can my 3 year old daughter. If you meant "Palm" a basketball, we'll then, kudos to you Kobe LeBron Shaq Jason Derrick Kidd. Kudos to you. May I ask what vegetables you ate as a child too?

Wait... We're talking about phones not exponential growth of monster hands on some people. Oh and if you're going to get on height next, I'm just going to say one name right now. Mugsy Bogues.

It's funny, most of these NBA players have iPhones as do football players as do wrestlers. I think it's more on the preferences side rather than "Me big man, me eat green giant vegetables. Me have several hens that lay golden eggs!"

Seriously bro.

-_-;

My analogies are just as ridiculous as his statement that phone manufacturers should keep all phone sizes under 5 inches.

Go play with your basketball, chubs.

Its comments like this that make me realize how embarrassing it is to be associated with dbags like you because I use an Android phone. Grow up.

Exactly. Kudos to you sir. This kind of mockery and closed mindedness just makes Android users look like pre-pubescent tweens. Why is it that instead of just letting people express their opinions and share our own views, some of us feel the need to attack that opinion and throw around insults. I, personally, don't think that I would ever need a phone the size of a Galaxy Note 2. I do think that manufacturers need to really start thinking about where they are going to draw the line between phone and tablet, cause there's not much difference between that 5.55 inch screen and a 7 inch tablet (before anyone starts attacking, think about how little time it took us to go from 3 inch screens being the norm to jump up to 4.5 inch screens). That being said, I do love the fact that Android is all about choice, and this adds more variety to that mix.

Do manuf. really care? As long as stuff sells. If a 12" phone sells well they will continue to make them. The Note sold well; now they've incresed the size with the Note 2. If it sells well then that means they did something right. If not, then they know the pushed the size limits too far. They don't draw the line, consumers do.

Take Apple for example, they spent years telling everyone to use a 3.5" screen because they think it's perfect. Now they offer a 4" model. Now this is me guessing, but if Apple had released a 3.5" model and a 4.3" model at the same time with very similar specs, I'm sure the 4.3" would have sold better. That's letting consumers decide. The thing is though, Apple doesn't really let the consumer decide. Samsung on the other end, along with most Android manfs, alow us to chose and constantly allow us, the consumer, to decide where the market goes.

I think I like that approach more than someone saying 5.2" is the largest you want. That's not their place.

So you've got pudgy little hands that you use to hold on to miniature basket balls. I guess we all know the kinds of balls you've been holding on to. That's just disgusting!

"This current trend of merging phone and tablet into a phablet is not where I like to see things headed." What beef do you have with people liking bigger devices? Why can't a "phablet" be a "reasonable size?" I'm grateful that you're not in charge of influencing the mobile market. We would all be still be using iPhone size devices...

Of course I don't care if people like and use the giant devices and I love all the options Android offers. I just hope they keep putting the top spec'd hardware in the modestly sized phones as well. I feel like having a 5.5" device takes away the functionality of using it one-handed.

Wasn't aware I was offending so many people...

This is what's so GREAT about Android!! You have these options... it's not like they're going to stop making phones under 5". With Android you're always going to be able to find a phone that fits what you prefer. If you don't like a company that give you choices like this than you can always go to to Apple where you're stuck with one device that fits all. But then again that's a choice too... gotta love competition!

I understand your concern due to your preference. But there is no wrong direction with size? There is a market for Phablets or phones around the 5" size. You complained later saying you were explaining your opinion, but this comment kind of goes against this idea.

Why should the phones be kept under 5"? Why is anything above 5" not a reasonable size? 5"+ phones will not be the end of the smaller devices.

While a group of people may think 4" > 5" is the reasonable size, someone might think 5" > 6" is the reasonable. Hey there are people out there who still think 3.5" is the biggest a smartphone should get :)

In all honesty, it IS a valid concern that manufacturers will focus so much on these "phablets" that they'll forget to make 4" - 5" devices that are high end. I mean, think about how many devices are out there that are 3.5" to 4" screens and are really GREAT phones. When the market started obsessing over 4.5" screens, the manufacturers decided to focus on these alone for the high end hardware. The only one I can think of that has a smaller screen but is still great hardware right now is the RAZR M (based on reviews I have read). It is great to have choice, but to say that manufacturers definitely won't phase out the 4 to 5 inch high end phone is just a guess. They very well could!

Don't you worry. They're only going to sell what people will buy. The market will take care of the 'best' phone size just fine.

You only have to hope you're part of the majority of the market and can buy phones that are actually made.

Can you imagine walking around with this thing around your ears while you are answering or making calls? Do people who buy one pair it with bluetooth headsets or something?

I like the looks of it, matches the Galaxy S3 which I actually love now.

But you have to wonder where Samsung is taking the screen size thing. The Galaxy S3 already touches 4.8" now and the original Note was barely 5.3" inches Now this is 5.5"

The specs are really good though, having an updated quad-core with 2 gb RAM and LTE! The only thing I regret about the NA Galaxy S3 is that they lack quad-core. Sure the 2gb RAM is nice, but I'd have preferred if the phone was more future proof, especially since LG's own behemoth is about to be out.

It may only look ridiculous to some for a short time until millions of people start using them.
We've moved to phone miniaturization for a long time now, and now the size is swinging the other way as manufacturers can slap bigger displays in adding functionality.
Hell if the first iphone came with a 4" screen people would have probably said it was too big at that time, but many people have been gravitating to larger devices including apple.
I don't think the Note will ever be the biggest seller because it definitely is too large for some people, but for many it won't be too big.
And again after several million people own this as well as other large phones coming online it will decline in looking ridiculous to the majority of people.

I agree - over 10 million are already using the original Note. It took me around a week to get used to the size of the original Note having come from a Nexus One.

Smaller screen phones now seem like toys as far as web browsing etc. is concerned as one has to constantly pan/pinch/squeeze/zoom. A few years ago people were using phones the size and weight of bricks.

Nowadays you have a choice. Small screens for basic phone/messaging use and larger screens for web browsing etc.

There is no right or wrong size - it's a matter of what you want to use the phone for.

These larger devices will become the norm soon... I remember when the Iphone originally came out I though that phone was huge and I remember telling people I could never get a phone that big and now I have a galaxy s3 and I love it. (had s2 and Iphone 4 prior s3)...Until you use a large screen device you don't realise how hard it is to go back to a smaller screen.. Considering that 20+million s3 have been sold and 10+million notes clearly people are happy and want these larger phones... Personally I think screens will get bigger but the phone itself will stay small.. Ie the the RAZR m has a 4.3" screen in a small for factor so I expect phones with 5" screen to be in the body of a s3 size phone soon.

I remember the day when I owned a Palm Pre and REFUSED to buy an EVO cause I thought 4.3 inches was way too big. I finally gave in and purchased it 2 years ago and now I feel that 4.3 inches is too small. Of course once I buy the Note 2 I am sure I will get ridiculed for having such a large device but that ridicule will most likely only come from my iSheep friends.

I felt the same way when I was shopping for a new phone back in 2010. Settled on the OG Evo and I thought it would be too big but wasn't. I can still slip it into my jeans pocket, jog with it in a armband, and use it one handed. I doubt I could do any of those three things with something as unwieldy as the Note2. For some people, and I DO realize, that it will be a dream device for them and that's great. Just don't let me have to use second rate hardware specs because I want to use a sub-5" smartphone.

I don't use a headset, so I walked around and talked on the Note 1 all the time. I was self conscious about it for about two weeks before having the sudden realization that NOBODY was blinking an eye.

We live a day where people are walking around and taking pictures with tablets. The Note is no big deal.

I actually had a much easier time with the Note being held up to my ear than my One X and other HTC Phones (which too were considered monsters for daring to go as high as 4 inches!). It works. You stop noticing it after a short while, just like when people first started using the monsterous Evo 4G.

Lol. It may feel ridiculous in the US for a few more years. But go to an Asian country and you will see so many large devices manufactured by LG and Samsung you'll get use to it.

I also wish the US S3 variant's would be quad core also. That would make it future proof as they probably won't go over quad for a good 3-5+ years until they can get the performance/battery ratio amazing. Too bad though. If only the South Korean variant could be used in the US. I would sell my iPhone 4, T-Mo S3, Playbook, and a Archos G9 80 so I could buy an unlocked version.

this "lack of quad-core in the GS3" argument is getting old. the american GS3 has one of the most powerful mobile processors on the market (snapdragon S4), quad-core or not. you will NOT see a difference in performance in a device if it was using the S4 processor or the new samsung built processor.

I would caution authors from assuming that because the megapixel count is a little lower, that it instantly means the camera is a downgrade. I would agree that the maximum resolution was downgraded, but until you look at the sensor, it's a lot more difficult to tell if it is actually a complete camera downgrade. And this phone does look a tad bit excessive to me.

You have this @ 5.5" with a quad core, 2GB ram and up to 64 installed with the option to make it 128GB, not to mention the 20 or so apps available for the S Pen.. Whats not to love? Removable battery. etc

Or you can have 4" of pure fun with an extra row of icons. Widgets? No.. Android, YES! A locked down user interface unless you jailbreak. Sure you can stuff your icons in a folder, woo hoo, so can I on my PC, have for decades, who needs folders anymore? Oh yeah, Big Fruity and small handed fanBOYS do! Big Fruity's phones are for the small minded & small handed crowd who just like status symbols!

I have exactly 1 icon on my Infuse 4g with its 4.5" better looking screen than any iphoney! My 1 icon is for my app drawer, everything else is controlled by a widget. Circle Launcher, Go Launcher EX, Beautiful & HD Widgets, Go Widgets..

So yeah the Note 2, is Fn ridiculous, but its the next big thing, until the next big thing is launched the same time next year.

See you soon Note II, we have plans for you, as a photographer and a graphic artist, you'll be in good hands.

Agreed. And the Exynos Quad and 2GB of RAM with Jelly Bean. Awesome phone and should be future proofed for the next major Android release. I look forward to this thing.

I am on your side on this one. People assume that because its not their taste then it is "ridiculous". But that is why it is a niche device, will it sell more than the s3, probably not. But those who buy it will love it and won't care what they look like when they use it, because its about functionality. I am a Graphic Artist too, I work on Wacom tablet 8 hours a day, sometimes more... and and the use of a stylus comes second nature to me. Anyone who says that a stylus is old tech, tell that to an a digital artist and they will tell you other wise. As for the huge screen I cant wait to make little sketches on the go with the s-pen and sketchbook mobile :)

+1

I love my Note and the S-Pen is awesome. I don't think I am going to be able to use another phone unless it has a similar stylus. I can't use the drawing apps on my tablet because I am used to my S-Pen. The Note ruined all other devices for me;)

Opinions, opinions! Moving on. I will be getting this worrybaby. I much rather have a product I love than worry if others don't like how I look with it next to my head. Really?

It's gonna suck if it costs that much... hopefully I can get a decent amount for my S3, but if not, I can wait.

Can someone please shed some light on this? I've read conflicting articles regarding UK 4g compatability. If it will work on the new EE 4G network, I might hold out... If not I might aswell get it with my current provider on 3g.

We've got the unlocked HSPA+ version (GT-N7100). There's also a European LTE version (GT-N7105) which supports Euro LTE bands (800,1800,2600). No word on whether EE will pick up the LTE version. If they don't, you may be able to import an unlocked GT-N7105 from Europe hand have it work on EE's LTE, when it launches.

No it is not LTE/4G. Another model is due to be released at some stage will be 4G compatible with both the old 1800MHz 2G frequencies that EE is planning to use for their 4G as well as the new 4G bands that O2 and Vodafone will be using from next year although I don't think there are any phones available anywhere at the moment that can handle the 3.5GHz band planned for the UK.

Personally, I find HSPA+ plenty fast enough for my needs from the UK Three network and would not consider a 4G phone until there is competition for EE and detailed pricing on their tariffs. I have read that EE are likely to charge a premium of around £10-£15 a month for LTE/4G useage (with a data cap) on top of their existing prices and that you will need to sign up to a new contract. After all, if Vodafone and O2 come up with cheaper 4G next year, EE won't want you to jump ship!

This is going to be my next phone. No doubt about it. I currently have the RAZR MAXX; and with everyone around with bigger screens, I'm a little jealous.
Verizon, release this thing already!

It's not a pentile? That's cool. Hopefully Samsung sticks with the non-pentile screens on their flagships from now on.

Other sites have said it is Pentile, but that it's using a different pixel layout than previous Super AMOLED HD's have that makes it better and much more accurate with colors.

It is not Pentile, there are 3 subpixels for every pixel. It is different from the standard RGB stripe layout that looks like this:
|||
The arrangement of the subpixles for the note looks like this:
||
--

The bottom two -- would just be one.
There must have been some reason why this was done, either easier manufacturing or possibly to look better because of brightness differences with the subpixels. Ultimately it should make no difference as they are all tiny and all 3 subpixels are there.

The Blue subpixel is larger, which is why the layout is the way it is. From what I read Blue tends to have less life in OLED than the others, so they made it larger to compensate.

Samsung's new pentile display is nothing like the older models. These are fantastic screens, bright and vivid.

Our understanding is it's not traditional PenTile, but not quite RGB either (it's RGB, but not in the usual stripe layout). We'll go into it in more detail in the review.

can someone tell me if the display is just as good as the original Note? The Note has 1280x800 but Note 2 is sporting 1280x720... does the display suffer because the panel is larger with less pixels?

Well apparently the subpixel layout is better, but you're gonna have to wait for reviews to determine if the new larger screen is better than the original Note.

I am planning on getting the SIII as my first Android device (iPhone 4 now and desperate to switch), but if the screen on the Note II is better than the SIII I may get it. I know its big but it would be great for navigation (use it daily), and browsing/research.

I thought about the S3 as well. However I have changed my mind and am thinking about the Note 2. Reason being that the S3 has been out since June and my contact isn't up until mid Oct. With cell phone technology moving so fast, I want to make sure I have the latest released device since I have to live with it for another 2 years.

I need to have that phone now, please take my money. That will make a very good package along side my SGS3. Most people who say that the phone is ridiculous are usually I-Phone users who come check out the great phones from Android and say I wish I could do that with my phone but can't. That is a computer in your pocket much like the SGS3 but more powerful.

+1 Former OG GNote owner here. I am perfectly content with my SGSIII but for some reason I am saving my money to get the GNote2! I think it will be the perfect phone with its upgrades over the OG GNote. Cannot wait!

When talking on ANY phone (even my landline home phone) I prefer to use the speakerphone. Since I rarely have phone convos, the Note II will be, for me, a useful work tablet on which I can do my huge amount of texting as well as have a phone connection the few times a month that I need to talk. By the end of my 2-year contract with the Note II, I hope Sammy has a 7" phablet!

The thing is some people are failing to realize that the Galaxy Note 2 pretty much fits in the hand just as the first Galaxy Note. There is more screen and less bezel on the Note 2, in addition to being a bit thinner. In other words a bigger screen does not necessary mean more bezel.

The FFC is actually Back-Side Illuminated, unlike the one in the last Note, so it's not actually a downgrade.....

The market will soon be overtaken by mobile phones as tall as the ones we were introduced to in the early 90s. Lol

But damn, if this GN2 isn't stunning as hell. Samsung, I love you more by the day.

I'm in this niche market. And this can't come soon enough for me. I hate having too many gadgets and I have been wishing that my 4.3" phone would get bigger so that I can read ebooks on it for a long period. I was thinking of getting a 7" tablet for purposes like this, but carrying two devices around does not fit with my urban lifestyle. I'm a dude who doesn't own a man-purse. :)

As for holding a brick to your ear... Let's face it... These days... 95% of our usage of a smartphone is NOT talking on the phone. And when I'm on the phone it's usually under a minute. On long conversations, I already use the headsets even for my 4.3" phone.

The only issue for me might be is would NoteII be small enough to fit in jeans' back and front pocket without it being too protruding.

Can't wait to get my hands on one of these and see.

Pity the reviewer had not spent a bit more time using some of the features before trying to demonstrate. I realise it was an "initial hands 0n" but things were off to bad start when he didn't even know what capacity the battery was. It got worse when he just played sround like a child with the Note apps admitting he did not know what he was doing really and no demo of the pop out resizeable video feature or the left/right biased keyboard options. Let's hope there is a better demo in a later review.

Yawn......
As a Galaxy Note *1* owner you see NOTHING new here.. But an Evolutionary Processor/Ram upgrade that all phones should receive as the years pass by.. The Note *1* is simply Solid Gold.. and an Impossible Act to follow.. And we have had JellyBean Roms and OC/UV Kernels running at 1,830 mhz for a while now on our Note 1's so...... Yawn...

But I can see how folks coming from "Standard Phones" to our "Phablet" World are all excited to get one.. Becuse in the end.. It still is a Galaxy Note.. :-)

Someone's conceited =) too bad the OG Note didn't come to Verizon. But, I definitely will be going to the phablet world lol

Nothing new? Screen is bigger, yet phone is narrower (due to 16:9 vs. 16:10). So when you watch 16:9 videos you get the full screen and not black bar. That is enough for me to switch. Note 1, while groundbreaking, was in an experimental stage. Pen is apparently more refined now. Note 2 is the more polished version. I agree though that if you have Note 1, it's probably not time to upgrade. But to switch to a phablet, Note 2 broke the deal for me, while Note 1 not quite.

This Will be a welcome new member to my Sammy Family. WE just got the GSIII and Note 10.1 (wife's) and this will be my baby. Pudgy hands and all. Why People mention CrApple here is beyond me. This phone will not be for everyone but it will be for alot of people. Phones like this though do take away from the Tablet world. Why get a 7" tablet if this can had and do so much more. Have a 7" tab but never use it anymore. Now with the 10.1 toy, that will get use as it does already. This phone will imo sale as many as half the GS3 will Just now as fast but i can be wrong. The OG Note that eveyone thought was just a novelty sold millions and at that time was only on AT&T. This one will be on 5 US carriers to start. Metro PCS Might get on this too just like the GS3.
I hope it sells like crazy but as long as Sprint is getting this baby I'm Happy.

I understand there will always be people lining up for the newest, biggest device. But you can't help and wonder when will it be too much? Will all of those who prefer these phablet devices be lining up to get the next wave of 6.5" screen "phones"? I understand there may be a "wow" factor people like to have with their phone's screen size, but I personally love the 4.7" screen and will keep my 10" tablet nearby. To each their own...

I agree with you that at some point they will need to stop lol . To me i would say depending on how wide it is , i will go as big a s 6" or so but 7" is crazy lol maybe.

I am on my last upgrade as a premier so this baby will ans should last me 2 years.

That phone looks awesome. It's so big, and I need it now. I wonder how good of a deal I can find on a Note 1.

As someone who has just upgraded from the Note I to the Note II, I can confirm that apart from the obvious things mentioned in the review, it DOES have NFC ahd it does have a tri-colour status light. These two features combined with the 16:9 screen, 3100mAh removeable battery and enhanced S-Pen features and software were what made me upgrade.

1. Bad front button. Should be capacitive.

2. I'm not shelling out $800 to keep unlimited data. My GNex comes to the grave with me.

I think the note 2 is brilliant. But I would love this idea done as a pure nexus phone now that would be something.

This phone is just so amazing I dont know what to say. God I want this one as soon as my current plan ends

Let me just say about camera megapixels I'm not a fan of downgrades. I know that it really is about the lens (I'm a hobbyist photographer), but I'll say that my old Fascinate takes better photos than my GNex (I hate the camera on the GNex). Since I don't use a point and shoot, I use a DSLR for specific things, it's important to me that they keep good camera technology in smart phones. While a .1 downgrade may not be noticeable, I'll say that in phones, MP is often no joke.

Im going to laugh my azz off the first time I see someone holding this thing up to their ear! It's ridiculous! It'll look as if the picture on thier flat screen tv went out but their still trying to hear movie! To each its own but this is going way beyond the size I would ever want for a smartphone. I currently have an HTC Rezound which has a 4.3" screen and its perfect. I guess this is good for those of you who don't have laptops or computers or televisions or any shame! Lol.

I agree with many people here. They should just keep it around 5"....another great phone from Samsung regardless..

Love this phone as my GF has the OG Note. Waiting for it to arrive in Canada. As to size: I actually want Dell to bring back the Streak7 with updated specs. Yes I'm serious.

I never wanted any phone this bad. Can you imagine getting drunk and dragging that pen all over everything to see what it does lol or butt-videoing your boss lol

This is one phone that I look forward to getting. I am going to buy it unlocked, the only problem I have is. Do I stay with Sprint where I have no 4g coverage but or do I go to Tmobile and get the 4g unlimited no contract deal. I am leaning towards going to Tmobile because I can get back to GSM phones and sim swap with different phones (ie. hiking etc vs work).

While Sprint is *slowly* rolling out LTE, it will have 4G LTE. T-Mobile does *not* plan to have 4G LTE. It doesn't even really have 4G. It has enhanced 3G, which it calls 4G. That is my understanding.

I was a little disappointed he didn't Know more about the features of the note. I have the note 10.1 and I LOVE all of the spen features. am sure there will be a more in depth review for the device, but him Just squiggling on the notes will not give people looking to buy this phone the right impression.

I was a little disappointed he didn't Know more about the features of the note. I have the note 10.1 and I LOVE all of the spen features. am sure there will be a more in depth review for the device, but him Just squiggling on the notes will not give people looking to buy this phone the right impression.

I carry my phone in a holster on my hip. I want the biggest screen I can get and still have it comfortable at my side and "not in the way". I thought my Droid X was huge when I first saw it. Now 5.5 may be the perfect upper size limit I can wear and love. I almost jumped for the GS3 but waiting to see this beauty. I will pay full price and keep my Verizon unlimited data plan. (I won`t buy the phone until the Seidio holster is available - Looking at you Seidio...)

I just got my GS3 on Wednesday and gave my GS2 to my wife and honestly I don't think a phone to get better than this. I love big phones and was actually thinking of waiting for the Note 2 but once I saw for only $80.00 I figured I'd scoop it up and I'm not the least disappointed. The Note 2 would be pretty awesome for being a machinist with all of the notes, pictures, and tasks I do though and I wish I could get the Note features on my phone. Oh well maybe when the Note 3 comes around I'll get it.

I wonder if the radio might be improved from the S3. I really liked the S3 but it had way too many dropped calls and static while talking.

Effffn' incredible...is that the new iphone 5.5S? Hello no,can't wait to flyby into an apple store with this bad boy and ask them how to install iOS 6 maps..

Wow you guys sound like someone is forcing you to buy one of these....It's not like is a mandate to own one of these....

I do like the variety in Android, though at times it difficult to get decent and nice accessories such as cases and such. I am very happy to see the launch of the SG3 across multiple countries and services in the same form factor. That will entice manufacturers to spend time designing for it...not to mention the over 20 million units sold since launch.

As for the Note2....where do I sign up???? I had the original one, and felt that it was not quite ready for prime-time. Once I got the SG3, I realized that an SG3 in the Note form factor would absolutely be the best phone for me. I used the original for work and personal reasons at the same time, and it was the first phone to really fit the bill. I really liked that it allowed for creativity, productivity, and functionality in a "compact" manner, and pulled it off very well. The only short comings I found was the poor video playback (washed out blacks), and lag. It was not toooo much, but compared to my htc Vision OC'd, I did not see a performance improvement, which kind of surprised me.

All in all, I would gladly trade my SG3 for a Note2!!!!

At first I thought the name "phablet" was dumb sounding, but really I have to agree with those who think of their "smartphones" as more computer than phone.

The Note 2 still fits in any pocket I ever use for a phone, and who cares that it looks bigger near my head? I don't. Apologies to those whose jobs require it, but please someone shoot me if I ever start wearing a bluetooth earphone in public...especially if it has lights. And you think a 5+" phone to your head looks silly?

I love the size choices. I think the iphone is like a work of art in form, but it doesn't fit my needs. I'm not going to go around putting it down though.

I can't wait to see if Sprint has a version of the Note 2 (supposed to with a diff name) and also hope the rumors of an HTC Nexus with 5" screen are true and that that comes to Sprint. How nice would it be to have that choice?

I call it my "phone" but think of it more like what I used to call my "Palm", back when PDAs and phones were not all-in one.

I too thought these "phablets" would be too big until I saw some at work. They are what they are, and they seem just right for my needs. Sounds like over 10 million folks agree with me.

I hope all smartphones keep getting better and better, whatever size you prefer.

A 5.8" note would be perfect. I can put my 5.3 in front pocket and still sit crosslegged. No complaints on the g note and the 2 looks even better. Think tablets will be gone in a few years with the tone being the norm but a bunch of new accessories such as a full size projected keyboard from isung to make them truly versatile