It’s been five days since Samsung unveiled the Galaxy Note 3 in Berlin. I haven’t had a chance to use the device yet, but I have watched far too many hands-on videos from various media outlets and have read a hilarious number of articles written by journalists who have played with the device that I’m pretty sure I can come to a few conclusions which I can share on this website.
Let’s start with the obvious point, the size. Despite featuring a screen that’s nearly 0.2 inches larger than the Note II, the Note 3 is 1.3 millimeters narrower. And despite having a battery that’s 100 mAh larger than the Note II, the Note 3 is 1.1 millimeters thinner. This type of engineering talent is something I really appreciate. That being said, photos make the Note 3 look bigger than the Note II.
Which brings me to design. The original Note was an enlarged Galaxy S II. The Note II was an enlarged Galaxy S III. The Note 3 on the other hand, to me at least, looks nothing like the Galaxy S4. In fact, I’m pretty convinced it looks like the three year old Galaxy S II, but with some refinements that make it look modern. I obviously can’t comment on the fake leather until I touch it, but I’m open to it, though deep in my heart I would’ve preferred a material that’s a bit more like an iPhone 5 or Nokia Lumia 925. Maybe next year? That’s what the rumors seem to say.
Now as for the guts, the Note 3 blows the Note II out of the water. It’s easily going to be twice as fast. It also has 3 GB of RAM, which sounds a bit funny, but makes sense when you consider that 64-bit processors (which enable 4 GB of RAM) are still at least a year off. The screen, at 1080p, is something I also want to look at in person, because my Note II disappoints me. My Note II didn’t used to bother me, but then Samsung was kind enough to lend me a Galaxy Mega 6.3 for a month. That device used LCD technology, not AMOLED, so the colors looked completely different. Now I find myself in a situation where every time I use my Note II, I feel like I’m not getting the “right” mobile experience.
So will I buy the Note 3? Considering I bought the Note II in January, I should say no, but I’m incredibly tempted to say yes due to the larger screen in a smaller body, the improved AMOLED panel that’ll hopefully have better color reproduction, the crazy fast Snapdragon 800, because there’s no such thing as “enough” speed, and because every time I pick up my Note II now, it feels like an ancient relic from the past. I know how crazy that sounds, but Samsung has managed to do something only Apple has been able to do in the past.
They’ve made a one year old product look and feel like a piece of garbage.