Samsung Galaxy Note II Review: The Most Noteworthy Device On The Market


Bottom Line

The Galaxy Note II is easily the most powerful product Samsung has created. While the 5.6-inch display may be a huge turnoff for some, that doesn’t stop the device from providing cutting-edge performance. If you’re in the market for a new smartphone, the Galaxy Note II should be at the very least on your list of devices you are considering. It’s a noteworthy (see what I did there?) competitor to similar devices like the Optimus G and Droid DNA (although the DNA does not have an S-Pen or anything of the like). The device is a little pricey coming in at a subsidized $299. As with any device though, I’d highly suggest purchasing the device outright and grab a Straight Talk plan, which could potentially save you $1000 in extra fees and monthly payments.

The Samsung Galaxy Note II is one of the most sleek and powerful devices I’ve ever used. It’s hardware and software performance is out of this world.

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Ease of Use

The Samsung Galaxy Note II functions like any other smartphone, but there is a bit of a learning curve with it when it comes to the S-Pen and motion actions. There are a lot of extra features packed in the Note II like Paper Artist, motion detection and various S-Pen features, which can all be confusing at first due to the amount of options that are available to you. Within a few days of use though, the Galaxy Note II should feel like any other smartphone you have used, except better.

The device’s speedy hardware mixed with Jelly Bean’s Project Butter makes this device as smooth as butter. Slow loading times are almost non-existent on the hardware and software side of things. If you experience long loading times, I can almost guarantee it’s your network and not the hardware itself. Regardless, if you’re an impatient person, you shouldn’t find yourself frustrated with the device’s loading times whatsoever.

Performance & Reliability

As I mentioned above, the Galaxy Note II’s performance is as smooth as butter. While you may notice some frame rate drops in games, the Note II almost plays them seamlessly. The device loads apps and internet pages almost instantaneously (again, depending on your network strength), which is something that you can really get used too. Going back to the Atrix 2 to test a few things before putting it away felt like a drag.

The call quality of the Galaxy Note II is crisp and clear. In fact, I’ve had a few people mention that I sound much clearer on the Galaxy Note II as opposed to the  Atrix 2.

Network speeds are blazing fast, especially when it’s hooked up to an LTE network. I’m often able to hit 40MBp/s in download speeds. I’ve only once had the network cut out on me, but that was when AT&T was doing maintenance on their cell towers where I live, so I hardly consider that the Note II’s fault.

As for reliability, I don’t think any smartphone could get you through the day like the Galaxy Note II. The device features a 3100 mAh battery, which often gets me through 1 1/2 days without a charge (that’s on the basis that I’m not using the Mobile Hotspot or playing games frequently). If you’re a smartphone power user, one charge will easily get you through the day until you can reach a charger.


The durability of the Samsung Galaxy Note II is unmatched. In fact, Android Authority did a video a few months back dropping the smartphone from shoulder length onto the cement. A few scuffs and scratches were found on the device, but everything was in working condition. In fact, Android Authority gave the Samsung Galaxy S III, the Note II’s little brother, the ‘ol drop test as well. The device did not see similar results to the Note II. In fact, it saw much worse results.

The Galaxy Note II won’t wear out easily.


The overall quality of the Galaxy Note II is unmatched (although, the S III touts a lot of similarities). At the time of this writing, its performance and reliability is some of the best you can get in the market. Despite better devices in the works for 2013, the device will no doubt still be something to consider and won’t be looked at as “old technology.”

I am very impressed with the quality that the Note II provides. This is easily one of the best devices Samsung has ever produced. I would recommend the device in a heartbeat to anyone who can get past the idea of a large screen.

One Reply to “Samsung Galaxy Note II Review: The Most Noteworthy Device On The Market”

  1. Great short and concise review Brad, Just ordered one through AT&T this morning and anxiously await its arrival. Your high rating for this device helps me realize that I made a wise decision, Phil……..

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