Signing a contractual agreement to stick with a carrier for two years so you can get a decent phone without breaking the bank is a downright sham. Thus, many users are bypassing that system altogether by choosing carrier-unlocked phones like the Nexus 4. Of course, the N4 is on hiatus at the moment, so that's kind of out of the question. Don't fret, though – your dreams of a contract-free life aren't lost.
Note II owners on Big Red, an OTA update is coming your way. Don't get too excited, though – it's just a small security patch that fixes the dreaded Exynos bug. Thus, if it's anything like the Exynos patch for the Galaxy S III, you can also expect a new bootloader. That usually means bad news for the root community (especially when it's a Verizon phone we're talking about), and it's likely no different in this case.
The holidays aren't over yet, and Samsung is playing Santa today if you have a US Galaxy S III or Note II. Just register the device with Samsung and you will get a free flip case worth $40 and 6 NFC TecTiles worth another $15. Not bad for doing almost no work.
All you have to do is install the Samsung Mobile Facebook app on your PC (yes, you have to use Facebook).
Did you think that just because it was winter and all the major phone announcements had died down that Samsung was done releasing things? NOPE. Today, the Korean manufacturer released info on the brand new Galaxy Grand. Where "brand new" means "looks so much like the Note II that Samsung is probably suing itself for trade dress infringement." The phone will carry a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, a 5" 800x480 display, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of on board storage (expandable with a microSD card slot), a 2,100 mAh battery, and it ships with Jelly Bean (4.1.2)
Full specs in list form, for those who prefer it that way:
1.2GHz dual-core processor
5" 800x480 TFT LCD display
8GB storage (expandable to 64GB via microSD
2,100 mAh battery
Android 4.1.2 (Jelly Bean
Single- or dual-SIM models
On the spec sheet, it looks like a mid-range phone at best.
There's no doubt that the breakout feature of Samsung's Note II is multi-window, which allows users to run two apps side-by-side on the device's massive 5.5" display. The thing is, this isn't yet available on all versions of the Note II, though Samsung has been doing a pretty good job of getting updates ready and rolling out to all the different variants.
Beginning on Wednesday, December 19th, T-Mo's Note II is next in line to receive multi-window in an OTA update.
Apparently it's the Day of the Deal, because the savings just keep rolling in. We've already highlighted a couple of good deals on GSIIIs today, but if that's just not your cup of tea, Amazon Wireless just knocked quite a bit off the price of Sprint's Note II and Optimus G for new customers.
I have to say, Samsung is on a roll with the updates lately. First, they started pushing 4.1.2 to the international variant of the GSIII in Poland, and now 4.1.2 is on its way to the unlocked international Note II (GT-7100) and Note II LTE (GT-7105). According to SamMobile, this update brings quite a few new features to the Note II, including:
- New notification toggles
- Customizable notification toggles
- Brightness slider can now be disabled
- The ability to disable Multi-View
- Browser improvements
- Status bar is now black
- Continuous input keyboard
- New ink effect on lockscreen
- New Group Cast app
Like the SIII's update, this one is starting in Poland for the GT-7100, and it looks like users in Sweden will be the first to get it on the GT-7105.
When the original Galaxy Note was unveiled back in August of 2011, I’ll admit: I was one of the naysayers. Nay, I was more than a naysayer – I was a hater. The idea of the “phablet,” I thought, was absurd. Who would possibly need – or want – such a ridiculous piece of form-factor experimentation? Like much of the tech media world, I looked on and fully expected Samsung’s newest Galaxy product to be a total failure.
Roughly 20 hours ago, Verizon and Samsung finally announced that the Big Red variant of the Note II would be available today. And, well, now it's available.
You can get this monstrous not-quite-a-tablet-but-more-than-a-phone for $300 with a two-year agreement, but it seems to me that Verizon should've knocked at least $50 more off that price for the obtrusiveness of the branding which they so graciously slapped on the home button.
Over the past couple weeks, we've watched Amazon Wireless continuously drop the price of the Galaxy Note II across various carriers, and AT&T's version of the behemoth is the latest to face the price-cutting ax. Effective today, customers who sign a new agreement with Big Blue can grab this powerhouse phablet for $175 - the lowest price we've seen yet on the device. If you're an existing customer looking to upgrade to the Note II, don't sweat too hard - it's only $200 for you.