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Samsung Galaxy Note 2: What you need to know

When Samsung decided that it was going to release the fabled Samsung Galaxy S3, we saw Apple levels of hype around the unreleased device. The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 followed sharply in its footsteps, with a whole raft of rumours.

We’ve now seen some of these rumours come to fruition, and some disappear by the side of the road. Here we are though, Samsung Galaxy Note 2 in hand, so what does it have to offer?

A bigger, better screen

After the launch of the original Samsung Galaxy Note just over a year ago, we wouldn’t have thought that Samsung would ever create a phone with a bigger screen.

However, Samsung has taken the Super AMOLED HD screen that graced the superb Galaxy S3 and supersized it to 5.5 inches. And in true media phone style it comes with a 16:9 ratio, so you can watch all your movies on it. It could make this the best portable media device we’ve seen in a while.

A bigger, better battery

Continuing the theme of making everything bigger, the battery has grown by almost 25 per cent, to 3,100mAh. We can envisage the monster screen taking up a large percentage of this, but we said that on the first Samsung Galaxy Note, and that had similar life to the Samsung Galaxy S2.

Samsung also debuted some nifty power saving features on the Galaxy S3, which should also make the upgraded battery all the more impressive.

A smaller frame

Bucking the aforementioned trend is the chassis. Despite the upgrade in battery size and screen size, the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 comes in thinner and narrower, at only 9.4mm thick. Coming in Marble White or Titanium Grey colour schemes, the smallish frame also packs Samsung’s own stylus, the S-Pen.

It has a stylus

We’ve seen it in the original Samsung Galaxy Note, we saw it in the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1, and again we have the S-Pen in the Samsung Galaxy Note 2. For those still unacquainted, the S-Pen is more than just a stylus.

The Samsung Note 10.1 tablet first debuted the 1024 levels of sensitivity, which Samsung hopes will enable you to “unleash [your] creativity”. Arty types can vary the thickness of brush strokes with varying levels of pressure, and the S-Pen works well with apps such as Photoshop Touch.

The S-Pen even enables easy photo clipping. Samsung has somehow made the S-Pen intuitive to a point that it recognises content, that can then be edited with colour adjustments, shading, or copy and pasting.

But there’s more to the S-Pen than that

That search for that pen when you’re in a phone call is now over. Withdrawing the S-Pen while in a phone call instantly opens the S Memo App – a feature we’re glad to have, since someone has a habit of hiding the office stationery…

The S-Pen also brings what Samsung has termed Air View. At the moment it seems a little gimmicky, but it brings some fun features. Hovering the S-Pen over different apps, such as S Note, S Planner, Messages, Gallery or Video brings up a preview, and enables you to open what you want without opening the app itself.

Popup makes an appearance

As shown on the Samsung Galaxy S3, Samsung’s multitasking is taken to a new level, enabling you to watch videos while running other apps on the phone. It can also be dragged around the screen, meaning it never gets in the way.

Making its debut, however, is Popup Note, a feature that enables you to take notes while browsing through other apps.

The Note 2 is FAST

Maybe we should have put this at the beginning, but running a TouchWiz skinned version of Google’s buttery delight that is Android 4.1 Jelly Bean on top of a beefed up 1.6GHz quad-core Exynos processor and 2GB of RAM means that the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 is, believe it or not, noticeably faster than the Samsung Galaxy S3.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 2: What you need to know

 

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