The United States Transportation Department has recently issued an emergency ban on all Samsung Galaxy Note 7 devices from aircraft. This comes after Samsung was forced to officially recall the smartphone in the U.S. and launch exchange programs in other countries.
Galaxy Note 7 Replacement Phones
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“We recognize that banning these phones from airlines will inconvenience some passengers, but the safety of all those aboard an aircraft must take priority,” said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, reports Reuters. The ban is no joke either. “Anyone violating the ban may be subject to criminal prosecution in addition to fines,” stated the Transportation Department in their official statement.
The problem affects more than 2 million units and their owners, who are now, in most cases, left without a smartphone to use for daily and business activities. Rather than wait for Samsung to provide you with a replacement device, it might be a better idea to get your money back and purchase a new smartphone to replace the now dead Galaxy Note 7.
While the Galaxy Note 7 shipped with Android Marshmallow and planned upgrade to Nougat, the LG V20 is the world’s first phone with Android Nougat right out of the box. It doesn’t have a stylus nor Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, but it makes up for it a fantastic dual-camera setup ((16 MP (29mm, f/1.8) + 8 MP (12mm, f/2.4)), image stabilization, high-fidelity audio recording, and a secondary screen located near the top edge of the smartphone, giving you an instant access to commonly used features, apps, and settings.
Under the hood is the snappy Snapdragon 820 with 4 GB RAM and Adreno 530 GPU. These components guarantee that your gaming or multitasking experience will be just as smooth as with the Note 7. A nice bonus is the ability to remove the Li-Ion 3200 mAh battery and expand the internal storage space using an up to 256 GB large microSD.
Not only is the LG V20 great replacement for the Note 7, but its wide-angle lenses, three intelligent mics for a wider dynamic frequency range make the smartphone a dream-come-true for all avid mobile photographers and videographers.
Google Pixel XL
The Google Pixel XL is the larger of the two smartphones from Google. Still, at 5.5 inches, it’s screen is 0.2 inches smaller than the one of the Note 7. On the other hand, both devices share the same resolution (1440 x 2560 pixels), which means that the Pixel XL ends up with a higher pixel density and, theoretically, a finer image quality.
But small differences in screen size probably won’t be the determining factor that will convince you to purchase the first smartphone engineered from scratch by Google. There are other reasons, three of which are most important: Google Assistant, Google Daydream, and the highest rated smartphone camera ever.
Google Assistant is an intelligent personal assistant developed by Google, often considered an extension of Google Now. Whereas Google Now is, essentially, just a fancy voice command feature, Google Assistant can engage in two-way conversations because it’s backed by futuristic artificial intelligence that makes one remember the 2013 drama Her. But seriously, having your own digital assistant can greatly simplify routine tasks, make driving safer, and the entire Android experience more enjoyable.
Google Daydream is a virtual reality (VR) platform developed by Google and built into the Android operating system starting with the release of Android 7.1 Nougat. The Pixel XL is one of the first Daydream-ready smartphones, allowing you to experience immersive virtual reality apps and games for just extra $79, which is what a Daydream headset costs.
Last but not least, the 12 MP, f/2.0 camera in the Pixel XL has received a best-ever 89 DxOMark Mobile score, largely thanks to its incredible low light performance, vivid colors, and unprecedented sharpness.
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge
If you’re a sucker for Samsung’s products, then the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge is the closest smartphone in terms of its performance and design to the recalled Galaxy Note 7. A selling point of the Note 7 was the included stylus, which made handwriting possible and helped to keep the gorgeous screen free from smudges. The Edge doesn’t have a stylus, but it has a curved edge screen, which hides useful shortcuts.
Performance-wise, the two smartphones are almost identical in every aspect, so the choice boils down to your willingness to give Samsung another chance with a smartphone aimed at slightly different customers.
Huawei Nexus 6P
The Huawei Nexus 6P is a great alternative for someone who bought the Note 7 and hasn’t found Samsung’s TouchWiz UI nor the stylus all that useful—someone longing for a purer Android experience.
The 6P can hardly be criticized for its appearance. The curved metal shell is crafted from aeronautical-grade anodized aluminum, and Huawei’s iconic hardware design accents a powerful camera.
Just like the Note 7, The Nexus 6P ships with Android Marshmallow but is upgradable to Nougat. Both smartphones have a 5.7-inch screen with 518 ppi pixel density. With 6P’s Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor and Adreno 430 GPU, you are unlikely to notice any difference in terms of the smartphone’s performance.
The most important difference is that the Huawei Nexus 6P ships with a stock Android, and only pre-installed apps are those most users tend to install anyway, such as Google Maps, Chrome, YouTube, and Gmail.
Samsung Galaxy Note 5
For many, the stylus was the main reason they went with the Note 7. If you are among them, the Galaxy Note 5 is, realistically, your best alternative, even it is a downgrade. The device has the same 5.7-inch screen, but comes with an older Exynos 7420 Octa processor and Mali-T760MP8 GPU. Also lacking is the iris scanner and fast battery charging. But given how affordable the smartphone has become since it was first released (especially when you consider the second-hand market), it could be seen as a comfortable waiting room where you can contemplate giving Samsung another change when they come up with Note 8.
The Galaxy Note 7 is now officially dead, but alternatives are plentiful. Many people consider Samsung as the only manufacturer of Android devices capable of delivering the same high-end mobile experience as Apple does with iPhone. Of course, that couldn’t be further from truth, as you are likely to discover when you purchase a replacement for your explosive Note 7.