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Samsung Galaxy Note II Review

0. phoneArena posted on 24 Sep 2012, 08:40

The GALAXY Note carved a brand new niche for itself, and more than 10 million units have been sold so far. Now we have its successor, the Note II, which transitions the Note family feel from the I’m-with-dork to an oversized-Galaxy-S-III-with-stylus impression. It also ups the ante with a much more ergonomic S Pen stylus that learned new tricks, a larger 5.5” screen in a thinner, narrower body, die-shrunk quad-core processor, and 2GB of RAM. Are there other improvements in store? Read on our review to find out...

This is a discussion for a review. To read the whole review, click here

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 13:23 6

69. hung2900 (Posts: 965; Member since: 02 Mar 2012)

Premium materials with iDents and iChips, blazing fast processor but still behind Note2, nice screen with high ppi but still too small and an optimized OS with the lacks of a lot features, superior iLost.

posted on 03 Sep 2013, 23:47

136. transgressor01 (Posts: 12; Member since: 24 Aug 2013)

their restrictions and limitations keep them lghtyears behind thats it simple and clear

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 09:47 8

22. xfire99 (Posts: 939; Member since: 14 Mar 2012)

I should never read a review on Note 2. I love mine Note, was not going to get Note 2 and after this review.
+ Better battery life.
+ Better and louder sound.
+ Better screen.
+ Better camera.

Now I do want to upgrade mine Note to Note 2. But gonna wait until it drops in price first and Im not in hurry to upgrade. Still love mine Note.

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 09:58 3

26. infernal88 (Posts: 113; Member since: 08 Jun 2012)

+ twice as fast
+ more S pen apps " but i think it is already ported to note I "

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 09:47 4

23. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 4319; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)

I really have to give it for Samsung this time...excellent phone, looks as well as the hardware in the hood. I was skeptical at first when i heard about the Note 2...but this is just plain awesome. I like how is has became narrower, it looks like the SIII but only bigger.
The physical home key, is what i don't like in Samsung but this here, down in the Note 2, is cute...like it.
Daniel, i like this review. Fair, detailed and informative. Not really a fan of Samsung, but i'm beginning to like it...:D

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 09:50 2

24. Quezdagreat (Posts: 428; Member since: 05 Apr 2012)

And they say apple phones looks the same. Looks exactly like the s3

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 10:04 4

27. speckledapple (Posts: 892; Member since: 29 Sep 2011)

This is my new device come November. Getting the 64GB version and pair that with a 64GB microSDXC card.

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 10:13 1

29. g2a5b0e (Posts: 3814; Member since: 08 Jun 2012)

I seriously doubt the 64GB version will make it to our shores. The 64GB version of the S3 didn't make it here & it's the more popular phone. Either way, this is the one to get.

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 10:21 4

30. TheCellX (Posts: 50; Member since: 08 Nov 2011)

I will buy bigger pants to carry my Note II... my next phone.

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 10:27 2

32. Volcomguy51 (Posts: 18; Member since: 23 Jan 2011)

Might get this than the S3, so many good choices. Hope Apple doesn't sue for making a phablet then buy a house for another thief. This is why Apple is so corrupt. Go Samsung and go Android!

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 10:29

33. papss (unregistered)

Anyone heard the price of this beast with contract? Im pretty set on the L920 but this is one fine phone

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 10:39

36. -box- (Posts: 3991; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)

Lumia 920 is almost certainly going to be cheaper, probably $100-200 on contract; when the original Note hit it was $299.99 on contract

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 11:10 2

42. doejon (Posts: 406; Member since: 31 Jul 2012)

ouuu iiiii willl looooovee my note 2 4 sure!!! :D

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 11:22 4

44. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

Actually the score should be higher than 9.
The one gripe they came up with is as minor as can be.

Fantastic device, probably the best handset produced to date.
Should be really awesome drawing and creativity tool also

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 12:03

52. remixfa (Posts: 14605; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


Question: On the radios you said its 100mb/s LTE and 21HSPA. Are you sure that's not 42+HSPA? Tmo will have a hissy fit if its not 42+.. and it would be a bit odd at this point in the game anyways.

Also, any word on if all GSM versions are going to be built using the same LTE/HSPA+ chips with pentaband compatibility like the Nexus? That would just be sweet.

If I can get past the massive size of this thing, it may just be my next phone unless one of the new Nexus devices come close. Bout time we get the good hardware in America again.

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 13:18 1

68. Daniel.P (Posts: 108; Member since: 14 Jul 2011)

Samsung has the global version as 21Mbps -http://www.samsung.com/global/microsite/galaxynote/note2/spec.html?type=find - but in the New York unveiling it confirmed the US versions will be "optimized for the fastest 4G LTE and HSPA+ 42 networks..."

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 13:46 1

71. remixfa (Posts: 14605; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

sweet. I guess that means its probably not pentaband then if they have a version for the US and for everyone else. You'd think that would be more common by now.

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 12:39 1

61. jibraihimi (Posts: 770; Member since: 29 Nov 2011)

Has Samsung Galaxy Note 2 released in any country................???? According to my knowledge it hasn't been released anywhere. So Phonearena basically you're reviewing pre-release unit, so instead of calling it Review, you guys should have called it 'detailed preview', and then make changes to your detailed preview when the device finally lands for general consumption. I hope that when you will review Release build of Note 2, then you will get better benchmark score, and above all experience will be much better, which can help thi phablet get 9.5............. Any ways still, the review/preview was good.....

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 12:47

62. jibraihimi (Posts: 770; Member since: 29 Nov 2011)

"There is a choice of 3D views in the Gallery app - Timeline makes the pictures march towards you in an increasing order chronologically, and the Spiral View is suspiciously like the spiraling Gallery we saw prepped for Samsung’s Tizen OS."
While looking at the picture of gallery with 3D view, I was thinking same, that Spiral view looks very much similar to Spiral view of Tizen which leaked out few months ago. I think now that what we saw in that leak was the leak for Note 2, or maybe samsung might be unifying the UI experience in tizen to the touchwiz UI on it's android smartphones; this looks more plausible as they did same with Bada OS...........

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 13:04 1

63. remixfa (Posts: 14605; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

touchwiz and Tizen are basically the same thing as far as looks go. Samsung keeps both Tizen and its android overlay looking very similar that way in case Apple wins and android collapses, they can just pop out a dozen Tizen based smart phones that look exactly like their android ones. Most people would gravitate right to it because of familiarity to the look. It's a smart business decision.

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 13:09

64. Rayzin (Posts: 83; Member since: 27 Oct 2011)

I can't wait to hold this phone in my hands. I'll probably use up all that battery life just staring and admiring it all day at work :)

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 20:19

93. sammyfan (Posts: 21; Member since: 22 Sep 2012)

Exactly LOl!!!

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 13:51 3

74. saiki4116 (Posts: 405; Member since: 31 Mar 2011)

lol what an irony....iphone 5 and note II rated same...iphone 5 with it's easily scratchable aluminium back and apps that cannot scale properly to the increased screen and maps that get you lost and without innovative and productive features like Airview,smart stay..,etc(another irony is that apple are bragging about the newly introduced panorama mode which has been present in the some of the feature phones of Samsung)....

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 15:51 2

79. bigstrudel (Posts: 529; Member since: 20 Aug 2012)

Glossy cheap plastic is still and always will be a deal breaker for me. If it's more than 500 bucks than there is no excuse for using anything but metal and premium textured polycarbonate.

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 15:56 2

81. remixfa (Posts: 14605; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

you do realize that samsung uses polycarbonate right? if its glossy or textured, it does not change what it's made out of...lolol

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 23:53 1

99. bigstrudel (Posts: 529; Member since: 20 Aug 2012)

Yeah but it completely changes the feel and how easily it scratches. It feels like its made from plasic cups.

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 16:09 1

83. driveme (Posts: 26; Member since: 16 May 2012)

It went like this, Honey do you like my S3, good, I want you to have the best so why don't you take it and will wait for a month or so and maybe something I like will come out. Note 2 I'M all yours.

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 17:45

88. pandambaba (Posts: 28; Member since: 18 Feb 2012)

i'm curious to know when samsung will put a limit on screen sizes for their phones. pretty soon they are going to go from phablets to full blown mini tablets.

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 20:11 2

91. sammyfan (Posts: 21; Member since: 22 Sep 2012)

The Price of Galaxy s3 is now 33K and Note is 28K and s2 is 24K, so we have a broad range of best smartphones.. and apple iphone 4 34K, 4S 42K and 5 (50K

posted on 24 Sep 2012, 20:43 2

94. aoikemono27 (Posts: 177; Member since: 27 Feb 2012)

They kept the same crappy plastic body of the GS3. I have a hard enough time feeling comfortable holding the GS3 with that body. The Note II is a no go. I actually own the original Note and every time I use it, all I can think about is how cheap it feels. The flimy back is squeaking since one of the corners doesn't snap on properly, and the chrome trim has already gotten scuff marks since it scratches so easily. The GS3 build is even cheaper than the GS2/Note build, so I can only imagine how horrible the Note II will feel.

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