Samsung Galaxy Note 4 Review: It's Hot Hardware

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Introduction and Specifications

Samsung deserves much of the credit for ushering in today’s trend of large-screened smartphones, often referred to as "phablets." Whether you’re a fan of big smartphones or not, there is a no denying that the original Samsung Galaxy Note set the stage for the battles currently being waged in the smartphone market. If larger-screened devices like the original Galaxy Note hadn’t taken hold, Apple most likely would not have produced the iPhone 6 Plus and devices like the Google Nexus 6, Nokia Lumia 1520, and HTC One Max (among others) would not exist.

One of the advantages of blazing a trail like Samsung did, is that it gives you ability to better refine your designs in future iterations. The experience Samsung gained manufacturing and selling the Note and its successors has allowed the company to address customer concerns and partner feedback in a way that some other smartphone makers have not have been privy to. And the culmination of the knowledge and experience Samsung has gained over the years since the original Note launch, has molded the product we’ll be showing you here today—the Samsung Galaxy Note 4—into one of the most desirable and feature rich large-screen smartphones on the market.

We’ve got a lot to show you on the pages ahead, but rest assured that if you liked what some previous-generation Galaxy Note devices had to offer, you’ll definitely want to see what makes the Note 4 tick...

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Samsung Galaxy Note 4
Specifications & Features

Dimension

  • 153.5 x 78.6 x 8.5 mm / 176 g

Display

  • 5.7” Quad HD Super AMOLED (2560 x 1440)

Processor

  • 2.7 GHz Quad Core Process
  • 1.9 GHz Octa Core (1.9 GHz Quad + 1.3 GHz Quad Core)
  • * May differ by country and carrier

Memory

  • 3 GB RAM + 32 GB Internal memory
  • Supports microSD up to 64GB

Network

  • 2.5G (GSM / GPRS / EDGE) : 850 / 900 / 1,800 / 1,900 MHz
  • 3G (HSPA + 42 Mbps): 850 / 900 / 1,900 / 2,100 MHz
  • 4G (LTE Cat.4 150 / 50 Mbps) or 4G (LTE Cat.6 300 / 50 Mbps)
  • * May differ by country and carrier

Camera

  • Front Camera 3.7 MP + F1.9 / Selfie (90º), Wide selfie mode (120º)
  • Rear Camera 16 M + Smart OIS / Fast AF, Live HDR (Rich Tone)

OS

  • Android 4.4 (Kitkat)

Connectivity

  • Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac (2 x 2 MIMO)
  • Download Booster, NFC, Bluetooth v 4.1 (BLE,ANT+), USB2.0, MHL 3.0
  • IR LED (Remote Control)

Battery

  • 3,220 mAh
  • Fast Charging

Audio

  • Codec: MP3, AAC / AAC? / eAAC?, WMA, AMR-NB / WB,
  • Vorbis, FLAC
  • Adapt Sound, Sound Alive, Wise Voice 2.0, Extra Volume 2.0
  • 3 Mics (Directional Voice Recording)

S Pen

  • 15 g, Hovering 15 mm, Pressure level 2,048

Sensors

  • Gesture, Accelerometer, Geo-magnetic, Gyroscope, RGB ambient light, Proximity, Barometer, Hall Sensor, Finger Scanner, UV, HRM

 Pricing:  $0 - $299 On Contract


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If you take a good look at the Note 4’s specifications above, you’ll observe that it is an impressive piece of hardware in light of most competing devices currently on the market. We’re going to cover many aspects of the Note 4 on the pages ahead, but we’ll quickly summarize a few of the improvements over the Galaxy Note 3 here as well. You’ll notice this new device has a 5.7” screen with a better-than HD 1440p resolution. The screen is also covered in Corning Gorilla Glass 3, and features Samsung’s HD Super AMOLED technology.

U.S. variants of the Galaxy Note 4 are powered by a fast, 2.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 quad-core SoC. The Snapdragon 805 features Qualcomm’s updated Krait 450 CPU core architecture, which improves performance and efficiency over its predecessors. The Snapdragon 805 is also outfitted with a more powerful Adreno 420 GPU (clocked at up to 600MHz in the Note 4), which supports the OpenGL ES 3.0, DirectX, OpenCL, Renderscript Compute and FlexRender APIs.

The SoC is paired to 3GB of LP-DDR3 memory, the device features 4G LTE, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi connectivity (including 802.11ac), a 16MP rear camera, and everything is powered by a beefy 3220 mAh battery. The Galaxy Note 4 also sports a wide array of sensors, which include an accelerometer, and RGB light, Geomagnetic, Proximity, Gyro, Barometric, Temperature and Humidity, and Gesture sensors, in addition to a Heart Rate monitor on the back. The gesture sensor allows users to control a number of the phone's features without ever touching the screen.

Should that smattering of speeds and feeds not impress you, let us just say this--the Galaxy Note 4 is currently one of the most powerful Android-based devices on the market.

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