The new $299.99 Galaxy Note 3 is a tour de force in juggernaut handset design. Not solely is it massive, bold, and blazingly fast, the imposing device has an extremely sharp 5.7-inch display screen, and battery life to go the distance. More importantly, the Note 3 contains a sleeker design than its predecessor, the Samsung Galaxy, a streamlined S Pen interface, plus the identical excellent camera you will find on the .
The third era of the Note, nevertheless, is probably the most significant improve yet and the first Note device, because of a extra thoughtful S Pen interface, that mainstream customers will truly wish to purchase. Frankly it has the power to school any flagship device available on the market, and the only device since the outdated Palm Treos to get me seriously thinking about utilizing a phone with a stylus.
What’s new in the Note 3
The Note 3 represents a large improve over its previous Note counterparts. In a nutshell, the Note 3 has an even bigger 5.7-inch full HD display screen; revamped S Pen options and S Note app; a thinner, lighter chassis; large processor speed bump; and a built-in news app powered by Flipboard technology.
Samsung’s overarching theme of refinement is clear within the Note 3’s physical look. In my opinion, it is way more elegant and sophisticated than each Notes that came earlier than it. Measuring 6 inches long by 3.1 inches broad and a mere 0.33 inch thick, the Note 3 is just a hair taller and wider than its predecessor. Even so, this new Samsung Note is thinner despite boasting a larger display screen (5.7 inches compared with 5.5 inches).
Along with shaving off a few fractions of an inch, Samsung has additionally lightened the device by five-tenths of an ounce, which puts the Note 3 at 5.9 ounces. However even as the sleekest Note yet, it nonetheless dwarfs flagship phones just like the HTC One, all of which had been big boys in their own right. However, the with its gargantuan 6.3-inch display screen makes even the Note 3 appear a reasonable measurement.
Designwise the Note 3 additionally takes enormous departures from the smooth, plastic, and oval body of the Galaxy S4 and Galaxy Notes earlier than it. The Note 3 has an oblong chassis ringed with flashy faux-chrome edges which can be ridged, and the handset’s patterned backing is designed to imitate the texture of leather. This leatherette back together with the Note 3’s silver highlights evoke images of Samsonite briefcases from the 1960s. Additional channeling this retro fashion accessory vibe are fake stitches that run along the back edge of the handset.
These design modifications are not only for show, either. The Note’s textured rear floor handily resists fingerprints and provides a certain grip. Now I am sure many individuals on the market will find this new search for the Note 3 a tad excessive, even chintzy — the phone’s back is plastic, in spite of everything, and only patterned to imitate leather-based. Still, all this gives the Note 3 a really handsome and distinctive look, particularly compared with the slippery and actually cheap-feeling plastic chassis of the Note 2 and original Note.
Belief me when I say that the Samsung Galaxy Note 3’s display screen is simply gorgeous. Measuring an enormous 5.7 inches across, the AMOLED display screen has an ultracrisp full HD resolution (1,920×1,080 pixels) which interprets into an amazingly sharp 385ppi. That is a level of element that puts the smaller screens of the iPhone 5S (4-inch, 326ppi) and Samsung’s own Galaxy S4 (5-inch, 441ppi) to shame.
It actually outdoes the Note 2’s (5.5-inch, 267ppi, 1,280×720 pixels) viewing expertise. The Note 2 produces text that is noticeably much less crisp than on the Note 3. Additionally, while the HTC One (4.7-inch, 468ppi) technically has a sharper display screen, its display viewing area is minuscule when saddled up in opposition to the Samsung Note 3.
The most recent Note’s high-contrast display produces well-saturated colours as effectively, with deep blacks and very large viewing angles. As with the Note 2, you’ve 5 screen modes to select from (Adapt Display, Dynamic, Standard, Professional Photo, and Movie), which provide specifically tweaked colour settings. I prefer the Movie mode, since its colours are probably the most lifelike. Samsung apparently honed this mode additional because its colours look much more natural than the same selection on the Note 2.
And because its screen is brighter and sharper than its predecessor, watching all sorts of visible content on the Note 3 is extremely charming. Characters in movie trailers practically leap off of the display screen and into your lap, and detail in images and video is extremely crisp. Viewing desktop versions of Websites, an activity I do not recommend on gadgets with cramped displays, was also pleasurably not eye-straining.
I doubt even the most avid Galaxy Note adherents use their S Pens usually, at least those that do not primarily communicate in complicated character-based or pictographic languages. Samsung hopes this 3rd iteration of the Note franchise, although, will convert more users into being S Pen devoted. To this finish, the corporate says it has revamped the S Pen experience on the Note 3 (and new) to supply a refinement of present features, not overwhelm them with a confusing laundry list of capabilities and tools.
Software program, interface, and Samsung extras
It is probably not , but the Galaxy Note 3 runs the trendy Android 4.3 Jelly Bean OS, which is the most recent available. Android KitKat is due out quickly, and I am hoping the Note 3 will obtain this update in a timely fashion.
Layered on top of that’s Samsung’s customized interface, once often called TouchWiz. Aside from all of the S Pen enhancements, it is essentially the identical skin you see within the Galaxy S4.
Whereas it is extremely functional and full of features and ways to tweak them, I discover Samsung’s UI more complicated than those from different phone makers. Simply wanting on the quick settings menu within the notification shade alone gives me a headache. HTC’s Sense software on the HTC One is less complicated to understand, for instance, as is the near stock Android UI on Motorola’s Moto X.
One aspect that is new to the Note 3, although, is how Samsung has pregrouped sure apps in the utility tray into custom folders. Front and center is a “Samsung” folder, which holds shortcuts for lots of the firm’s self-made software and companies. Highlights include the S Health pedometer, S Voice for voice commands, Action Memo, Group Play, which shares video and photos with different Galaxy devices, Voice Recorder and plus utilities such as My Files.
If you just like the Galaxy S4’s digital camera, then you will have no complaints concerning the Note 3’s shooter. The device is provided with the same sharp 13 MP sensor with companion LED flash.
The Note 3’s camera app comes with an enormous bucket of shooting modes, unlike Motorola phones, for example, which have pared-down menus and settings. In fact the camera choices on the Note 3 are similar to those you may find on the Galaxy S4. They vary from the very useful comparable to HDR, Burst, Panorama, to the strange, like Beauty Face, Golf (captures your swing for study), and Eraser, which removes individuals and moving objects within the background. You may also fiddle with nearly each aspect of picture capture such as photo and video size, ISO settings, white stability, and light metering.
Indoors, the Note 3 snapped breathtakingly clean still-life pictures, with vibrant colours and crystal-clear details. Footage inside were additionally properly exposed and white balance chosen appropriately in automatic mode.
Out within the field, the Note 3 additionally captured images of flowers in very vivid colours, even below overcast skies. Particulars were sharp, too, especially in its highest picture size (4,128×3096 pixels).
Also, akin to the performance of different flagship mobiles such because the HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4, the Samsung Note 3 nabs photos practically instantaneously. That makes it nimble sufficient to capture unruly subjects, similar to playing toddlers and scampering pets.
One area where the Note 3’s camera did not impress me was capturing below low-light situations. Whereas the fill-flash did a fairly good job of painting subjects in darkish places evenly, not blowing them out like less-capable phone cameras, with out the flash the sensor merely could not seize enough mild to work with.
Massive mobile power
Inside the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 has a 2.3GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor. That is backed up by 3GB of RAM, and with 32GB of internal storage.
And as I anticipated, the Note 3 handles with the maneuverability of an attack jet, zooming via menus with alarming swiftness and popping open applications with zero hesitation. The Note 3 blew a fiery gap by all the mobile benchmarks I threw at it, too. It achieving the very best rating I have ever seen (23,048). I admit I did a double-take and had to verify that I did not accidentally add an extra zero.
This outcome essentially buries what each the HTC One (12,194) and Galaxy S4 (11,381) managed. Even the vaunted LG G2 (19,050) with the same Snapdragon 800 processor could not catch the Note 3 on the Quadrant benchmark.
I examined the T-Mobile variant of the Samsung Galaxy Note 3, and the gadget was able to connect with the carrier’s 4G LTE network in New York. I noticed quick if not blisteringly fast download speeds, which averaged 8.3Mbps. Uploads were not too shabby, both, clocking in at an average of 6Mbps.
Samsung did not neglect the Note 3’s voice communication skills, either. While testing the phone on T-Mobile’s GSM network in New York, I skilled excellent call quality. Callers described upcoming voice as sounding refreshingly clear with virtually no background distortion. That stated, in the event that they listened clearly enough they might detect the telltale hollowness mobile connections usually have.
Voices came in via the earpiece with loads of volume and clarity, forcing me to dial the phone loudness down a number of notches. The same goes for words piped over the Note 3’s highly effective speakerphone. Folks I spoke to were additionally surprised at simply how good I sounded conversing hands free.
Despite its wafer-thin body, the Galaxy Note 3 has oodles of mobile stamina. Its masive capacity 3,200mAh battery propelled it to an astonishingly long 15 hours on the video battery drain benchmark. This test consists of playing an High Definition video continuously till the phone calls it quits.
By comparability, the Motorola Droid Maxx, whose most touted feature is its longevity, survived a minute shy of 16 hours throughout the same trial.
|Performance: Samsung Galaxy Note 3|
|Average LTE download speed (T-Mobile)||eight.3Mbps|
|Average LTE download upload speed||6Mbps|
|CNET app download||4.96MB in 7.9 seconds|
|CNET mobile site load||4.1 seconds|
|CNET desktop site load||8.1 seconds|
|Boot time||21.5 seconds|
|Camera boot time||1.2 seconds|
As soon as Samsung commits to making a product, it performs to win. The corporate could not get things proper the first time around, nevertheless it patiently persists until it creates a truly seductive piece of hardware. The third time is indeed a allure, as a result of the Galaxy Note 3, whereas definitely a distinct segment gadget, is the most compelling phone/tablet mashup Samsung has ever created, and the best I have ever used. That list includes a growing of phablet monsters such as the, .
I admit a few of its attributes will not appeal to some folks. Its sheer size is hard to disregard, or squeeze into tight pants pockets. The handset’s textured imitation leather backing and retro styling can be a stumbling block as well. Frankly, though, I am completely in love with the Note 3’s aesthetics, especially in its classy black hue (it additionally is available in white). To me it harkens back to the venerable Galaxy S2’sdesign as well, one of my favorite phones of all time.