Offered in nontraditional handset colors Carbon Blue and Ceramic White, and delivering a certainly nontraditional 5.3 inch display, the Samsung Galaxy Note crashed the 4G smartphone party back in early February this year. The handset which analysts early on claimed was too large for normal use quickly became a hit in the United States and overseas, and has sold between 7 million and 10 million units globally. One unique offering the Galaxy Note has made to the lexicon of smartphone technology is by adding an entirely new device category. Because of the handwriting recognition, integrated S Pen smart stylus and many tablet-like functions the Samsung Galaxy Note can perform, the word “Phablet” was used to describe it early on, and it stuck.
Obviously a hybrid of the words phone and tablet, a phablet finally has a hard definition. Online data analysis firm ABI Research defines a phablet device as a smartphone with a fast processor which delivers between a 4.6 and 5.5 inch touchscreen display. They also predict sales of 208 million such phablets annually by 2015. Obviously, with that definition in mind, the Samsung Galaxy Note would not be the first smartphone to deserve the phablet branding. But with a display at the high end of the defining characteristics of the term, while still being delivered in a chassis which is small enough to hold in one hand and manipulate with the other, the Samsung Galaxy Note 4G has become the poster child of the new phablet device category.
You may recall that years ago the smaller a handset could be, the more stylish and popular it was. But that was back before pixel densities and display resolutions absolutely exploded, offering the sharpest and most realistic displays ever seen on smartphones. Then along came super-fast dual core processors that allowed multitasking and streaming downloads, and huge improvements in graphics processors and audio chips, and the need for a larger screen became very evident.
And the Samsung Galaxy Note surely delivers on all the above counts. A Qualcomm MSM8660 Snapdragon microchip package is on board that includes a dual core 1.5 GHz Scorpion central processor, and a separate Adreno 220 chip handles all the graphics processing. A 5.3 inch Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen provides visuals in over 16 million different colors and at 285 pixels per inch. That gives the display an overall resolution of 800 x 1,280 pixels, ranking it at the upper end of the 4G smartphone marketplace. Corning’s Gorilla Glass offers scratch resistance.
A rear facing 8.0 megapixel camcorder records video in stereo sound and at 1,080P HD resolution, and Near Field Communications (NFC) support allows for wireless data transfer with other NFC devices, as well as wireless retail payment options at NFC enabled retail outlets. A 2.0 megapixel chat cam is around front, and provides portrait snapshot options, as well as video call functionality. You can buy the Samsung Galaxy Note starting at $199 at select online retailers.