So the Galaxy Note II released back in late October to much fanfare after its predecessor turned out to be a surprise hit. Originally the consensus was that a phablet or anything probably bigger then 5-inches wouldn’t survive. Its gotten to the point now where the market has blown up where you are seeing devices from companies like LG as the Optimus G Pro, the Ascend P2 by Huawei that comes in at 6-inches and even rumor of Samsung’s Galaxy Note III will be a whopping 6.3 inches. I personally think we are going into full on tablet territory and it’s getting crazy.
I been using the Samsung Galaxy Note II for quite some time now as it made my life at CES much easier then expected and there are some features you may or may not be aware of that can help you take full advantage of the device’s full potential. Well I mean besides rooting but that’s another story for another day.
1. MultiView: By now all carriers should have the multiview function which enables you to have two screens up at once. All you have to do is pull up your menu and click the “Multi Window” icon. While it doesn’t support every app it does support a lot of the core apps on the device. Its more so whether third parties want to update to work with the feature or not. I have seen it work with just about every app if your device is rooted though. I have seen it used on the Galaxy S III, but the Note II’s screen real estate does wonders for it.
2. Screenshots: There are many ways you can go about this. You have the traditional “Hold Home and Power Button” scenario or you can take your mighty S Pen while holding the button on the stylus and do a screen cap that way. Take it further and you can also do what you can call “Easy Clip”. Cut any part of the screen out and do what you want with it. Post it in a document, email, on top of another picture. You can swipe the side of your palm left to right if you have Motion enabled also. Screenshots have always been a favorite for years whether you want to show off that newest homescreen or potentially have evidence for future unveiling.
3. Motion Control: The features that are motion controlled is a laundry list that never ends. There is Quick Glance which gives you some key info such as missed calls, texts and such. Just wave over your phone, you see the items and it goes back to sleep. I use this a lot while I’m at my desk at work. Direct Call which lets you pick up the phone of whoever contact is on the screen. Smart Alert which vibes and tells you missed calls/texts soon as you pick it up. Works good for me as I multiple task and tend to forget things so that little jot does the job.
4. Smart Stay/Smart Rotation
Remember reading something on your phone and then the screen cuts out, with Smart Stay the front sensor will realize your still reading and wont shut off. Excellent for those lovely G Style Mag articles you love to read or perhaps your reading a novel, textbook for classes, etc. Smart Rotation is for those that twist and turn their phone a lot and the landscape changes. The sensor will catch your eye and switch it to your viewing pleasure.
5. Various Text Input Options
Now everyone has their own way of typing and the Note II has them all. You can do the traditional predictive text, swipe your fingers across the keys, use voice controls and there is even a drawing option. Bring up the draw pad and use your stylus(or finger) and write out words and the N2 will decipher it and put it into text. Not the best for people with horrible handwriting though.
6. The S Pen
The almighty stylus that is the pinnacle and bread and butter of the Note II. It provides more accuracy to anything you do. Writing a document, drawing a picture is no longer a task but fun. Air View, Quick Command Gestures, and S Notes provide productivity that you cant get on any other device available.
7. Screen Size
Believe it or not this is one of the main reasons you bought the phone. The screen allows you to do more then you be able to do on others. It makes watching a movie more enjoyable and gaming possibly better then using a PS Vita or Nintendo 3DS. While the games on those systems still blow mobile gaming away they are getting better and this screen helps with the transition. I’m not a big mobile gamer but I have probably played more games on this device then any others I have possessed before.
8. Battery Life
At 3100mAh its hard to hit 0% on this bad boy anytime soon. As with former smartphones I may get 4-6 hours. The Note II I’m pulling in almost a days usage. Now battery life may vary depending how much abuse you put into it. When I first got the device I’d get maybe a day or two off it. Once I started adding widgets and notifications and watching movies and all I still get a nice 12-14 hours out of it. If your usually near a USB port or have portable chargers or extra batteries like me your looking at loads of quality time with your N2.
The Samsung Galaxy Note II is a very impressive smartphone the gorgeous screen down to the processing power with its quad core chip built in. It takes multitasking easy and looks to be one of the hands down best Android devices on the market. I suggest if you haven’t had the opportunity to play with it definitely do so, I believe your mind will be changed. If you decide to wait on the Samsung Galaxy Note III it will be long summer for you. Otherwise you can grab the incoming Galaxy S4 which will have similar features but not totally what you want.