I was originally debating whether or not I should wait and get the S6 Edge or wait even longer to see what the Note 5 has to offer, but I caved last week and upgraded to the Note 4 instead. It’s been out for a little over half a year now, so it’s not a fairly new device that just came out. But it does use a slightly faster Snapdragon 805 processor since this phone came out before the 810s launched. This is just a quick review, I will write a more comprehensive review when I have had more time with the phone.
I’ve always wanted to take the plunge and go with the note series ever since the note 3 came out, but since I was still stuck on contract with Rogers with the S3 I was stuck using that phone. Luckily I got the PEP from Futureshop for the S3 and was able to “Upgrade” to the S5 without having to renew my contract through some voodoo magic. I got the Black Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and I’ve been using it for a good week now and my initial impression of this phone was it is much larger than the S5 for obvious reasons. I still haven’t used the Note 4 in all its glory. I’ve fiddled around with the S Pen a bit but nothing to special like playing with it’s pressure sensitive settings. I decided to give Touchwiz launcher another shot to see if it’s any better. I heard it’s much better and bloat free on the S6 and S6 Edge running Lollipop. Sadly, Rogers has not pushed out the Lollipop update for their Note 4 users yet and I have to wait once again like I did with the S5. I sort of miss using Lollipop right now, but I can’t justify using CM12 yet as I’d use a lot of the Note 4 functions like the Fingerprint scanner and the S Pen features. That said, the Note 4 comes with 4.4.4 KitKat out of the box.
I always get a screen protector for all my phones regardless of how tough and scratch resistant they claim Gorilla glass is. Breaking the tempered glass screen protector means I can replace it with another protector for as little as $15. However, breaking the glass on the screen means I’d have to replace the panel and digitizer (depending on the extent of the damage for a lot more) A glass protector for my glass is well worth it. :p The only issue I have come across with the tempered glass protectors as since the phone uses a 2.5D glass, the glass protectors on the market doesn’t quite fit the phone screen properly. It leaves a crowning effect, meaning the edge of the protector is not making contact with the screen. This can lead the to eventual build up of dirt and dust on the side of the screen and makes the phone look ugly. I have not had this issue yet since I’ve only had it for a week.
The Note 4 charger features adaptive fast charging function. With the Note 4 supporting the fast charger, you can charge your phone quicker in less time so when you’re in situation where your phone is running low in battery power you can plug it in and do a quick charge for a couple more hours of usage. It runs on 9v 1.67A vs the standard 5V 2A most phones support. Though it still supports the 5V 2A charging, it’ll just charge your phone at a slower rate. Like the S5, the wireless charging capability does not come out of the box. The S6 and S6 Edge do however, since the back cover is non removable. I opt to purchase this additional accessory and just started using it last night. Using the official Samsung charge cover, the wireless charging charges your device at a rate of 800mA, so, significantly slower than the wired methods. It’s using the QI based standard so you can pretty much purchase any QI based charging pads and it will charge. Rates will vary depending which one you buy.
The back is removable, unlike the S6 and S6 Edge, meaning the battery is replaceable and it supports a microSD card slot. It is however not IP67 rated like the S5. So no swimming with this phone. Not that I go swimming anyway. The phone still has that faux leather plastic look on the back but it uses metal frame which looks and feels nice. It lasts me a full day without needing to charge it half way through. Though the screeno n time is usually about an hour to 2 hours. I end up with about a 60-70% charge at the end of the day which brings it to 2-4 hours of screen on time when it’s closer to 0% charge. I can usually get about 2 days use of the phone without needing to scramble for a charger which is nice.
I also picked up the Samsung Qi charging pad, which is still en route to me, so once I get that maybe I will include that in the full Samsung review, not that I haven’t basically done a review here already. ha!