Is the Galaxy Note 8 too big of a smartphone?

Samsung's Galaxy Note line stands out from the crowd for a lot of reasons, but one of its most iconic features has always been its large size. The original Galaxy Note from 2011 shocked the industry with its "massive" 5.3-inch display, and now with the Note 8, we're up to a 6.3-inch panel with a narrow 18:9 aspect ratio.

The large footprint of the Note 8 makes it great for watching movies, playing games, and browsing the web, but how does its size affect folks with an active lifestyle?

One of our forum users recently said they had to return the Note 8 because it was too big for them while hiking, running, and biking, and the responses from the community are a bit surprising.

I've gone hiking and through snow and to the beach a bunch of times and never had I had an issue with the Note 8 feeling too big or being in the way while hiking and the phone in my pocket. When it comes the the beach, yeah, just rinse it with clean water if you got seawater on it and you definitely want a screen protector/case unless you want the sand to leave scratches everywhere, but I...

SpookDroid

I run, maybe avg 30 miles a week. I'm 5'-3" and have an arm band when it's hot and in my jacket pocket when it's cold. Never felt like it was too big.

pinkvikchick

Where do I start? Use Mine for hiking for indoor workouts for cycling workouts for walking dogs all over the place I have no problems at all with it

amyf27

I've gone hiking, biking, to the beach, and camping with mine and I didn't feel it was two big. I had an S8+ and an iPhone 6 Plus previously though, so I was already used to the size.

anon(7901790)

With all that said, we'd now like to hear from you – Have you ever found the Galaxy Note 8 to be too big of a phone?

Join the conversation in the forums!

Joe Maring was a Senior Editor for Android Central between 2017 and 2021. You can reach him on Twitter at @JoeMaring1.

55 Comments
  • Yes
  • Saving grace on what makes it usable is the 18:9. It's big no doubt, but for majority of the time I don't have an issue holding or using it. Still the best phone I have owned, but that is only comparing it against Motos and the Note 7.
  • No. Practically perfect!
  • I didn't like the ratio and the FPS, neither were deal breakers individually but together made it an experience I personally didn't care for so I sold mine and went with the P2XL and it soots me very well. Can't go wrong anymore with any of the main phones, just find the one that checks more boxes for your personal wants. The size was a bit big for my preference but it was a solid phone.
  • I do not like the aspect ratio for the phone, especially with the curved edges making the phone look slimmer than what it actually is. Perhaps with no bezels on the top and bottom it might look better, but as of right now IMHO it looks too tall. I had the phone for about 2 months before getting the Pixel 2 XL. Slightly better form factor on the Pixel, but I loved both phones for different reasons.
  • Nope. Just right.
  • It's actually too small
  • Only for those with girly hands! It's a phone for REAL men! 😂😂
  • I dont think so. Let's not forget that when the original Note came out, many people thought it was enormous. Not the Normal S Series is about that size and no one bats an eye. The Note 8 is definitely big but I don't think it's TOO big. I'd like to get a Note again but the Note series truly didn't appeal to me this year. My LG G6 is great. I love it. One day I'll be back with the Note series because of the size and quality of that screen as well as that darn amazing S-pen.
  • I have 2 issue's with it, 1 being that it's so heavy. As a person with arthritis in my neck and both hands, I truly feel the heft. But, I love the note series so I'll deal with the weight.
    The other which has nothing to do with its size, or maybe it does, but the note series should be a flat screen. Hate when my s pen rolls off of the side of the phone.
  • That can happen with a flat screen too.
  • But nowhere near as often with this stupid curved screen. I've never had this problem with my Note4. Anyone who has had that problem with a flat screen most likely had the shakes.
  • No, it's perfect.
  • It's WAY too big for Andrew Martonik's microscopic hands, since he said it's impossible for him to reach the fingerprint sensor.
  • Good but I'd welcome bigger. I'm quite interested in the rumors for the Xiaomi Mi Max 3, which is rumor'd to have a 5500 battery and 6.99" screen w/a 18:9 ratio. Yes yes yes and all of my yes. The only downside is its a mid-tier phone w/a 630 or 660 SD CPU. I'd love a top spec'd version (fantasy I know). I've always been a fan of bigger screens as my phone is my go-to-always-on-me media consumption device.
  • Nope. Phone is dead on. Aspect ratio is fantastic....Give A you a large screen and easy to still hold. If it's to big for you...GET THE GALAXY S8. That's like buying a Corvettes and complaining it doesn't get the mileage the Volt does.
  • The FPS location is absolutely awful and I'd prefer 16:9 but it's size is one of the main reasons I bought it. You don't go shopping for a Note if you don't like large phones.
  • Thanks to the dual camera lens and the raised section around the fingerprint reader I find the Note8 is actually less awkward than the S8+ for daily use. I've had and used all 3 of the Samsung 8 devices and I find I prefer the Note8 in general. The extra screen real estate is really what pushes it over the edge for me and the fact that it is bigger than the regular 8 isn't a huge deal for me. Really, once a phone goes north of the 5.2" range it becomes too large for me to use one handed so short of the Pixel/Pixel 2 and the S8 there aren't a lot of flagship phones near that 5" mark so I might as well go big. Sometimes the Note8 is a pain when I don't have a second hand free but I can mostly make do with one hand use. So, at the end of the day, I'll trade some minor annoyances for a large panel any day.
  • I have an S8 and it is to small. I am thinking I should have went with a Note 8 or S8+
  • Man me too I will get The plus version this year for sure.
  • Yeah its too big, not enough for proper two handed use and with androids awful layout its useless one handed (search boxes and main controls always at the top of the screen, no way to reach with one hand).
    Also the weighting is really bad on it with most of the weight at the top it makes it awkward to handle. I returned mine due to battery issues (confirmed by tech that the battery has issues (30% usage an hour just having the screen on), also read between the lines about samsung dropping the inbuilt charging chip and using a custom one that cannot fast charge properly) and all the bloatware (sprint/samsung) fighting for access to my info so hard half the software was non functional, edge notifications dont actually work etc. Also within 24hrs of logging into the samsung services the email account i used for it became flooded with spam.
    Wouldnt touch this device with a bargepole. Samsung are awful at software and also abusing software (killed my 55" smart tv with an update) also caught spying on ppl via those tv's. My samsung windowsphone was great as the software on wp is locked down so they couldnt apply malware or bloatware and samsung hardware is very good generally.
    It also held its own in terms of performance, its about 7 years old (samsung ativ s) and outperforms both the note8 and lg flagship device i use now.
    They need to stick to hardware but greed will prevail with that company.
  • You know, it annoys the heck out of me when people use the term greed but really have no idea what it means. Are you saying they should not get the max return for the device? Why don't people like you let the market decide? Simply don't purchase it! Your opinion on the phone is not shared by 99% of those who buy the phone that sells like hotcakes
  • I'm guessing you've never heard of 'One Handed Mode' then? A quick and simple swipe from the bottom corner reduces the screen to bring everything into reach of your thumb.
  • It's actually quite small, its just slightly taller than my Note 4. I wish it was a bit bigger.
  • Perfect size for me and my use. But I am a Note user and have owned multiple generations. Most people with issues with it don't own one and have never owned a Note phone. To each their own I suppose...
  • It's a hair too tall for me, but I love my note nonetheless. It sticks out of my pocket a little, but I just make sure that the camera isn't sticking out to prevent scratches. I think I preferred the Note 7's body.
  • It's definitely to big for 45's small hands!
    And for his intellect!
  • Guys, you always fall bail and hook for these articles. They always come up with a stupid theory to get you going. Size of note 8? It's perfect, duh!
  • I said this before. I have giant hands, and the Note8 is just big enough for me to still use it one-handed. The only problem is that it sticks out of some of my jeans' pockets.
  • I had to get used to the 5.25" form factor of my last two phones (the last being Moto G5 Plus). I use to keep two other things in the same pocket as my phone, and when I got that new one I ruined my pockets with the keys ripping holes through them, before finally finding another pocket for my keys, so I'm not ready for any form factor with an overall phone width greater than the current 3.2". If they can increase the screen by shrinking the bezels within that form factor (and maybe make it slightly taller) I'll be fine, but no more than that.
  • Not at all, in fact, I'd like to see a little larger version
  • No. Prefect size
  • I'd actually like a dual screen Note 8
  • Funny i saw a comment up there saying the saving grace was the aspect ratio.. For me that is what makes this phone too large. I thought the previous Note phones were the perfect size but this aspect ratio makes the top of the phone too tall to comfortably reach
  • It's a good size for those who like big phones. The aspect ratio is the only thing I disliked and is a deal breaker. I went with the Mate 9 instead which has been great.
  • No. The size is perfect.
  • That's what she said!
  • No. But i couldn't handle any size bigger. I know, I know... That's what she said.
  • "Is the Galaxy Note 8 too big of a smartphone?" No. Next?
  • No, perfect!!!
  • I actually want a phone with a bigger screen.
  • Phone size is solid for me. I mean this is what big phones in general provide. If you don't like big phones, don't get one. Folks have eyes don't they? Go into a carrier and pick it up. Too big, put it down get a smaller phone. Simple.
  • Obviously it's big, too big only that users adapt to the size for the love of this sexy phablet 😍
  • I am a short, petite girl with tiny hands. Since anything larger than a flip phone requires two hands for me, I love my Note8. Nearly perfect.
  • If you're picking up a phablet, you really can't complain that its too big or hard to use with one hand. There are still solid 5-5.2" phones out there. Although if I want to pick up a small phone I really rather have a sub-5" phone and unfortunately its only Sony and Apple who puts out decent devices for that category.
  • Good for me, lighter than the iPhone x
  • This doesn't make sense to me. It's the same or close to other phones footprint but the screen is bigger.
  • And lighter
  • For me the Note 7 was the perfect size. I love the Note 8 but it is a tad too large so I switched to the X.
  • Not actually tried it but in general I prefer smaller phones, would be nice if Samsung made a small flagship phone.
  • NO. it's Perfection.
  • Yes it's tall and a bit heavy. You might enjoy it but when you switch to a shorter and lighter device that's when you'll realize how much better that is.
  • I have small hands and it's the perfect size for me. I use my phone with two hands, especially because I often use the S Pen.
  • To the people that complain, do you ever use one handed mode? It is so simple to use and makes it easy to use for people with small hands.
  • Extra steps = no