Top 5 Galaxy Note 4 Defects

Samsung-Galaxy-Note-4-defectsGalaxy Note 4 is one of the best smartphones in 2014. There are still no no real rivals for the unique and promising S Pen (stylus) in the smartphone market.  iPhone 6 Plus can only compete in size and bulkiness.

However, after using Galaxy Note 4 a few days, I realized several obvious Galaxy Note 4 defects.  Most of them actually should have not been presented  in such a successful product of its 4th generation.

These defects  reflect the confusion and lack of confidence in the positioning of Galaxy Note devices.

Galaxy Note 4 Defect  #1:  downgrading the support from USB 3.0 to USB 2.0

Samsung showed its leading position in Android market by introducing USB 3.o support in Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S5.

USB 3.0 is not a new technology. You can find the blue USB ports in most PC and laptops today.  Most of external drives are also using USB 3.0.

USB 3.0 provides not only faster file transfer speed (theoretically 5 Gbit/s compared to 480Mbit/s for USB 2.0), but also the stability.   Although most devices cannot reach the theoretical transfer rate, the file transfer is always faster with USB 3.0 than that with USB 2.0.

Another issue many smartphone users may experience is the “not responding” message when you try to  transfer a large quantity of photos from your phone to the PC through a USB cable. With USB 3.0, this should seldom happen.

Galaxy Note 3 probably is the first Android phone with USB 3.0 support.  File transfer with PC is really fast if you choose USB 3.0 option.

Galaxy S5 also supports USB 3.0. But interestingly, in the package, Samsung gives a USB 2.0 cable. As USB 3.0 is backward compatible with USB 2.0, you can use the USB 2.0 cable (utilizing the larger half of the USB 3.0 port) on Galaxy S5 to enjoy USB 2.0. Of course, if you want to get the benefits of USB 3.o, you have to get a USB 3.0 cable.

This puzzled a lot of people. However, the reason is very simple: to save cost. USB 3.0 …

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Galaxy Note 4 vs Galaxy Note 3, What’s new in Galaxy Note 4?

galaxy_note_4_vs_galaxy_note_3Galaxy Note 4 was finally announced on September 3, 2014.  Samsung will very likely start to ship Galaxy Note 4 as early as the 4th week this September in selected regions, although in the event, October was confirmed for global release of Note 4. In most other regions, you will be able to get Galaxy Note 4 in October.

So, before deciding whether you should get the Galaxy Note 4, let’s compare Galaxy Note 3 vs Galaxy Note 4 to find out what the new features/improvements are.

Update: Galaxy Note 4 User Guide is available here.

1.  Galaxy Note 4 vs Galaxy Note 3:  Quad HD  display

Rumors always are trustworthy in tech world. As stated in the  Galaxy note 4 specification rumors post, Galaxy Note 4 comes with QHD (Quad HD,  2560*1240). This is a major upgrade from Galaxy Note 3’s full HD (1920*1080) display.

The size of the screen is almost identical to Galaxy Note 3: about 5.7″.   So, the resolution of 2560* 1440 display gives you  a whopping 515 ppi.

Of course, the screen is super AMOLED, the standard display in Samsung flagship phones. This is same as Galaxy Note 3.  But Samsung got one year time to further improve and polish the technology, especially in color accuracy.

2.  Galaxy Note 4 vs Galaxy Note 3:  New S Pen has 2048 pressure levels

If you don’t use S Pen, you are wasting half of your Galaxy  Note devices. Plain and simple.

The new S Pen in Galaxy Note 4 now has 2048 pressure levels, which are sufficient t for 99% artistic jobs. As a comparison, Galaxy Note 3 got a 1024 pressure-level S Pen, which is decent for most designer jobs.

3. Galaxy Note 4 vs Galaxy Note 3:  Smart Select with S Pen

Samsung introduced so many “smart” features in the past and most of them are useless or half-baked. In recent release of Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S5, Samsung learned the lessons  and tried to  polish the features when releasing them.

One of the two smart features in Galaxy Note …

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Galaxy Note 4 specifications (and rumors) and release date

samsung-galaxy-note-4-specificationsThere is no doubt  Samsung will announce the Galaxy Note 4  on September 3, 2 days before IFA 2014.

This is the tradition of announcing Galaxy Note phones. Galaxy Note was announced in IFA 2011, Galaxy Note 2 in IFA 2012, Galaxy Note 3 in IFA 2013.

But what are the specifications of Galaxy Note 4 and when will you get it?

Galaxy Note 4 Release date

Smartphone usually is announced or launched (it is usually demoed as well in the event) before the release date. So, on September 3, you may have the chance to “see” Galaxy Note 4, but you surely cannot buy it.

Because many of us  may be eager to know when we can get the device (so does the competitors),  Galaxy Note 4 release date is another top secret of Samsung.

Based on Samsung’s track record, most Galaxy S and Galaxy Note smartphones are released about one month after they are announced.

Because Apple will announce its iPhone 6 on September 9, the release date for iPhone 6 will be very likely within 3  weeks from September 9. Samsung may try to release the Galaxy Note 4 in the similar period to gain the momentum.

So,  Galaxy Note 4 release date will be very likely in late September/early October.

Galaxy Note 4 specifications

Specification is not everything. But specification is still the most talked topic for any smartphones.

Galaxy Note 4 has some awesome specifications if the rumor and early leak can be trusted. In tech world, yes, the rumors usually turn out to be the truth.

Let’s tear down the Galaxy Note 4 specifications based on early leaks and rumors.

Galaxy Note 4 specifications: CPU – Snapdragon 801 or Snapdragon 805?

Snapdragon 805 is currently the most powerful processor or smartphone and tablet.  This processor currently can only be found in Galaxy S5 LTE-A and LG G3 LTE-A for Korea market.  So, very likely, Galaxy Note 4 will be the first mobile device equipped with this processor outside of Korea.

So far, almost all benchmarks shown the impressive performance of Snapdragon …

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Galaxy Note 3 KitKat update: Top 5 disappointments and top 5 consolations

galaxy_note_3_kitKat_updateSamsung released the Galaxy Note 3 KitKat update (Android 4.4.2) to more and more regions. You may check the update through your Galaxy Note 3 or through Kies. Some users may have to wait for the KitKat update a bit longer

The Galaxy Note 3 KitKat update equips Galaxy Note 3  with the latest version of Android, following Nexus (Nexus 4, Nexus 5, Nexus 7 and Nexus 10), Moto X, Moto G, and some Google Play edition handsets (e.g., Google Play edition Galaxy S4 ).

However, just like other Samsung’s Android updates,  this Galaxy Note 3 KitKat update brings mixed experience: some disappointments and some consolations. If you are a Galaxy Note user, you probably still remember the battery drain issues in ICS update and slowness issue in Jelly Bean update.

In this post, I will share with you the top 5 disappointments, and 5 cool features (consolations)  in this Galaxy Note 3 KitKat update.

Disappointment #1: No ART options

One of the most important new features in KitKat (Android 4.4) for advanced users is the new runtime option: ART ( Android runtime).  Although Google baked this  new runtime as a beta feature in KitKat, most tests already reported significant speed improvement for almost all apps. In Moto X, we saw extremely good results when this runtime is enabled.

Unfortunately, Samsung totally disable this option in Galaxy Note 3 KitKat update. There is no way to try it in Galaxy Note 3 (with the official ROM).

Samsung may use the “beta” feature as an excuse of disabling ART in the Galaxy Note 3 KitKat update. It does not make sense because Samsung always bundles many alpha-level features  or apps in the handset. As one of the flagship handsets, Samsung should give customers the option.

We have to wait for next update if you want to try ART in Galaxy Note 3.

Disappointment #2: SD card support is limited

Update 1: the SD card issue in Galaxy Note 3 after KitKat update is apparently now solved. In some regions, there is another small update after

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Samsung Galaxy Note Pro: is the super-sized tablet for you?

In CES 2014, Samsung finally unveiled the largest tablet they ever made: the 12.2″ Galaxy Note Pro.

Galaxy Note ProFor Galaxy Note family, Galaxy Note Pro is a new member, of course, a super-sized member.  Although Galaxy Note series always are proud of their sizes (5.3″, 5.5″, 5.7″, 8″ and 10.1″), some may wonder whether the 12.2″ screen in Galaxy Note Pro is too big.

In this post, I will share with you our comments (not reviews yet) of Galaxy Note Pro.

The official Galaxy Note Pro specs

The official specs of Galaxy Note Pro are really impressive. But this is not surprising, because Samsung always put the best hardware (except camera) on Galaxy Note series.

Just for your information, here are the official specs of Galaxy Note Pro.

  • 12.2-inch Super Clear LCD display with 2560 x 1600 resolution (WQXGA)
  • 2.3GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor ( for LTE/WiFi version) or 1.9GHz Exynos 5 Octa processor (3G/WiFi, or WiFi only versions)
  • 3GB of RAM
  • Android 4.4 (KitKat) with TouchWiz and Samsung Knox
  • 32/64GB storage
  • MicroSD support up to 64GB
  • 8-megapixel rear camera with LED Flash
  • 2-megapixel front camera
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac with MIMO technology
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • USB 3.0
  • GPS and GLONASS
  • Infrared sensor
  • 9500mAh battery
  • Dimension: 295.6 x 204 x 7.95mm
  • Weight: 750g (Wi-Fi version), 753 (3G/LTE version)

Is Galaxy Note Pro the best tablet?

Hardware specs surely put Galaxy Note Pro in the top tier of tablets. But tablet is not just hardware: it is about user experiences.

In addition to hardware specs, Galaxy Note Pro have some distinct advantages over any tablet in the market. So, Galaxy Note Pro may be the best tablet for some users.

1. The 12.2″ screen is perfect for everything

When the 12.2″ tablet was rumored last year, the first reaction of most people was “it is nice but it is simply too big”.

This was actually the identical response of the introduction of Galaxy Note in 2011. In 2012, I wrote a short post to address this concern: Is Galaxy Note really too large? The answer is always: size always

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