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PSA: There's an insane amount of plastic on your Galaxy Note 9 you need to remove

Most phones come out of the box with a protective coating of some sort, typically a plastic sheet that wraps around most of the phone to protect it from the moment it came off of the assembly line until you set your hands on it. Typically, you can peel it off in one smooth motion. But in the case of the Galaxy Note 9, Samsung went all out with dozens of tiny individual pieces of plastic stuck on the phone rather than one big piece that comes off easily.

I'm sure there's some reason for doing it this way, protecting the metal and glass as this $1,000 phone makes its way to you, but it sure is annoying to peel it all off. If you're not paying attention, it's very easy to miss one or more of these sticky little pieces. Here's what you need to look for when you unbox your Note 9 to make sure you get it all.

One big sheet of plastic surely would've done the job, but we get a dozen tiny pieces instead.

The big ones are easy to see and remove — Samsung gives you a tab in the top-left corner of the screen to peel that sheet off, and another tab jutting out of the side to peel off the back plastic. But under that plastic is another sticker with the IMEI information — you'll want to remove that. Then, there are the sides ... with about 10 different pieces of clear, sticky plastic to remove. Each edge has its own piece and in some cases multiple segmented pieces, covering the flat portions of the metal. Go around the phone once, then go back around and find the piece or two you inevitably left behind. I sure did.

And then there's the dang "Qualcomm 4G" sticker on the top of the phone. I can't quantify the number of times I've seen people using 6-month-old or year-old phones that still have this on the top — you don't want to be part of that group. For whatever reason Samsung keeps agreeing to put this sticker on the top edge of its phones, and it's actually underneath the other protective stickers. It also always seems to have considerably more staying power than the rest as well — which really just annoys users. I beg of you, Qualcomm, please stop doing this.

Not only does it just look goofy to keep using your phone with the out-of-box plastic on it, but it saves you extra hassle down the road. By removing the plastic from the start, you reduce the amount of dirt and grime that will inevitably build up around the edges of the stickers and be tough to remove later. I know it's tough to stop your unboxing process to pick away at little pieces of plastic, but it's something you can easily do in a few minutes while your phone is setting itself up and downloading apps after sign-in. Then, you'll be able to enjoy the Note 9 in all its beauty.

Best Galaxy Note 9 cases

Once you get the out-of-the-box plastic all removed, consider getting some real protection on the Note 9 with a case. It won't be as thin as that plastic, but it sure looks a whole lot better and will actually save the glass and metal from scuffs and scratches over time.

Andrew was an Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central between 2012 and 2020.

20 Comments
  • The struggle is real
  • Wow... Just... Wow...
  • Is your comment about the plastic or about the article? Just curious . . .
  • I'd hope so on a phone North of $1k
  • I would hope they'd just put a big sheet over it like every other phone and not make me pick at my $1000 phone for 10 minutes.
  • 1st world problems.... 
  • This is so funny that you did an article on this. As I unwrapped mine, I was thinking the same thing - that this is NUTS how many little plastic pieces are on here. It was so annoying.
  • As you unwrapped yours? I am so jealous of you. I ordered mine on the 16th and it won't ship for another 2 weeks. Ahhh I'm so jealous!
  • Eh, why so long?
    I just orderd mine today (Belgium) and I am watching my track and trace online. Delivery in next 2 hours but I am inpatient.
    If I had to wait as long as ouand would go crazy.
  • I got mine Wednesday but even I think this article was a bit much.
  • Same crap on the S9+. I found one I missed a couple of weeks ago when I had the case off to clean it.
  • Samsung should just ship the phone inside an ultra soft microfiber bag. Protects and can even be used to wipe fingerprints. The little pieces of plastic all over are too much.
  • Well I guess an expensive new phone should look like it was made in heaven once you finish unboxing and unwrapping. At least they cared.
  • Ha the whining is real in this article. 1st world problems... Poor Andrew, how will he survive? 
  • This has been a 1st world problems for quite some times; but people are just starting to think about it... Maybe you should think about it too? Just Maybe...
  • You think it’s bad with their phones, wait till you buy one of their appliances. I redid my kitchen with Samsung appliances and there was so much tape and plastic sheeting covering every corner, hinge, and joint that i filled up a 25 gal garbage bag with it. A year later and I’m still not 100% sure that I got it all out of the dishwasher. So at least they’re consistent across their product lines. I agree though, at $1000 it should come in padded sleeve rather than a dozen pieces of plastic sheeting.
  • This is the epitome of a first world problem, but... I get it. That friggin Qualcomm sticker - it annoys me so much that it really distracts from the awesomeness of setting up your new phone. Here I am 3 minutes after unboxing--repeatedly sticking scotch tape to my new $1000 phone to remove unusually strong sticker residue!? Most of the times that particular dumb sticker isn't even on straight either.
    But also, most people prob leave it on forever and it never bothers them / they never think about removing it. All the other protective plastic on the phone, I don't mind and kinda like removing.
  • Part of the fun of owning a new Samsung phone. I always miss the piece protecting the camera lens.
  • Is there a piece on the camera lens that you have to remove? I can't really tell, but I think there is. Can anyone confirm please?
  • I actually read this article's title; ''There's an insane amount of plastic on your Galaxy Note 9'' which was what I tought unpacking mine :/