One Device To Rule Them All

I am currently handwriting this entire post on my new Samsung Galaxy Note II. I’ve only had it a couple days, but I think it will be a one device solution. My last two phones were the Motorola Cliq One and Cliq Two. I liked the Motorola droid interface and the full keyboard. Had they released a third one, I probably would have bought it. They didn’t, and for the last few months I’ve been looking for a suitable replacement.
I wandered into a T-mobile store while waiting on an oil change and saw the Note II. Because I was familiar with the first Note, I was instantly excited. That is, until I saw the price. For the plan we were on it was $420, and that included a contract extension. I decided I would save money and wait for the price to come down.
Over the next couple weeks I learned that T-Mobile was the first to have the phone, and it was selling on other carriers for $300. I thought I’d check T- mobile again just in case they lowered the price now that other carriers had the phone. Not only was the phone cheaper, it was only $99 on their value plan. A delightful employee helped me crunch the numbers across all plans, and the value one over two years was $500 cheaper than anything else.
This phone is not for everyone. It is large, and it has an excess of features. It is akin to carrying the kitchen sink. That said, I am enamored with every part of this phone. Small for a tablet but big for a phone, this device is the perfect size to replace them both. The 8mp camera and Google maps app can replace two more devices. I see this Note II as a economical and convenient way to satisfy my technological needs.
Videos look amazing, songs sound great, and it is FAST. The biggest adjustment is the size, but there are one-handed modes if your fingers don’t reach and fantastic cases available to help protect it from falls and pockets. Being accustomed to carrying a 3DS and a PSVita, the size doesn’t bother me. Unlike my last phone, e-reader apps are practical and comfortable to use.

I’ve also inadvertently learned that children love it. My niece, nephew, and I comfortably played Songpop together, and my young cousin commandeered the phone when he saw the Bad Piggies app, declaring that it looked way better on the Note II than it did on his friend’s small phone. I’m sure they would have enjoyed writing on the screen too, had I let them.

The stylus is no afterthought, with a host of features and apps to support it. My favorite is the hover feature, which will drop down menus and scroll pages without actually touching the screen. The phone can notify you when you are walking away without the stylus. A small button on the side of the stylus adds even more functionality. You can switch to handwriting input almost anytime in every app I’ve tried. I scribble something fierce, but the phone is still able to decipher my writing.
The Note II is a little heavier than I would like, but the battery weighing it down has allowed me to download apps, write posts and generally mess around all day. I have no battery saving modes enabled, so I’ve done everything on a bright screen at top speed.
I have noticed that this phone comes with a required disclaimer, which the phone owner must provide whenever revealing this monstrosity to the uninitiated: “Yes, this is my phone. Yes, my phone is gigantic.” I suggest adding, “It has a built in stylus, it’s super fast, and I promise you, it is better than your phone.”

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