Samsung Galaxy Note II on AT&T Plans


  • 4G LTE Capable
  • Android
  • 8 megapixels
  • Touchscreen
  • Wi-Fi
  • GPS
  • Talk time: Up to 16h
  • Standby: Up to 37d 2h
  • View full specs

Average Score:


"The S-Pen is thin, easy to hold and easier to use. Its side-situated button for super-quick screen capture will probably..."
Read our full review

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Samsung Galaxy Note II Specs

TypeSuper AMOLED
Screen Resolution720 x 1280 pixels
Screen Size5.6 inch (14.2 cm)
Resolution8 megapixels
Front Facing-
3D Resolution-
Flash TypeLED
Video Camera1080p
Music & Video
Music PlayerYes
Video PlayerYes
Video CallsYes
FM RadioNo
Audio FormatsMP3, OGG, WMA, AAC, ACC+, eAAC+, AMR(NB,WB), MIDI, WAV, AC-3, Flac
Video FormatsMPEG4, H.263, H.264, VC-1, DivX, WMV7, WMV8, WMV9, VP8
ExpandableUp to 64GB
Form FactorSlate
Width80.5 mm
Height151.1 mm
Thickness9.4 mm
Weight183 grams
Main Connectivity4G LTE
Maximum Data Speed100Mbps
Wi-Fi802.11 b/g/n
NetworksGSM 850, 900, 1800, 1900
Data NetworksLTE 700, 2100, HSDPA 850, 900, 1900, 2100
Push EmailYes
Text Messages (SMS)Yes
Picture Messages (MMS)Yes
Battery (2G Talk)Up to 16 hours
Battery (Standby)Up to 37 days 2 hours
App StoreGoogle Play
Processor TypeQuad-core 1.6GHz
Operating SystemAndroid
Release DateSeptember 2012

Samsung Galaxy Note II Reviews

Average Score
(14 reviews)



"It has a larger 5.5in screen, a faster, quad-core processor and runs the newest version of Google's Android platform, 4.1 Jelly Bean. The Galaxy Note II also happens to be one of the best Android phones we've ever used." 4.8/5 Stars
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"It's running the brand spanking new, up to the minute 4.1 Jelly Bean version of Android -- one of the first devices to do so out of the box. That means you get to play with Google Now, the intuitive new feature that offers suggestions to the questions you haven't asked yet. So you get potential directions, travel data and events based on your location and your past choices. It's still developing, but the more you use it, the better it gets." 9/10
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"As for getting used to such a large phone...our iPhone 4S felt like a toy and far too small after just a few days with the Note 2. It's amazing how quickly you get used to it, and nothing smaller will do." 9/10
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"The Samsung Galaxy Note had a frankly amazing screen as it was, so would have taken some beating. But Samsung clearly likes a challenge. The size has gone up slightly from 5.3 inches to 5.5. And although pixel density is reduced, we didn't notice it. This is the bright, vivid Samsung Super AMOLED panel that we all know and love - and what a beauty it is, replicating colours amazingly and immaculately." 4.5/5 Stars
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"Things get very cool when you look at what Samsung has added, both in terms of motion detection and gestures. Like many phones, you can turn the Note over to silence it when it's ringing. Also, rather brilliantly, if you have a contact on-screen, then simply lifting the phone to your ear will call that contact. There's a little buzz of vibration to confirm this is happening. Our favourite feature though, has to be the gesture to pick up the phone. When you do this, by reaching toward the handset, the screen illuminates telling you if you have missed calls, new text messages and the level of your battery. " 4.5/5 Stars
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"With an even bigger screen than the gigantic Galaxy Note and a superbly powerful quad-core processor, the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 is the ideal smart phone for anyone who values a spacious screen above all else." 4.5/5 Stars
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"With Android 4.1 Jelly Bean working at the heart of the Samsung Galaxy Note 2, this giant smartphone is impressively up-to-date. It's also very quick. " 4.5/5 Stars
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"The Galaxy Note 2 is a premium smartphone tablet hybrid like the original Galaxy Note but the screen is bigger - 5.5 inch - although the physical size of the smartphone isn’t, meaning a better edge to edge screen. It’s surprisingly light like the Galaxy S3 and the new and improved S Pen stylus (it’s got a rubber end for easier browsing) fits securely in the bottom of what is, essentially, the biggest phone in the world."
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"We enjoyed a very good call quality on the Samsung Galaxy Note II. The earpiece emits strong volume, to the extent that we had to tone it down halfway, so it didn’t blast our eardrum, and the voices sounded clean as a whistle. On the other end they could hear us very well, too, with the sound having more than enough volume, and the dual microphone noise-cancelling setup relayed our voices loud and clear, with no audible distortions." 4.5/5 Stars
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Alex AngoveWhistleOut Review


"The S-Pen is thin, easy to hold and easier to use. Its side-situated button for super-quick screen capture will probably turn out to be one of the line’s most enduring qualities and its ability to translate hand-writing in to fonted text borders on the downright impressive, assuming that your handwriting lies within the realm of legibility."

Alex Angove (WhistleOut)
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"Relative to its predecessor, the Galaxy Note II is a clear and unequivocal upgrade. It’s now more powerful, lasts even longer, and ships with the best software that Samsung has yet put on an Android device. It doesn’t feel as characterful or quirky as the original Galaxy Note, and it is indeed festooned with superfluous apps and software presets, but those are small hurdles you can either disable or avoid. " 8.5/10
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"The handwriting recognition in particular is much better than the original Note’s and now features throughout much more of the interface. For example, if you activate the Google search bar with the stylus equipped it’ll let you write your search in a pop up box, likewise for text messages and so on. But mainly it’s how much better the Note 2 is at letting you write smoothly and accurately – it even recognises when you rest your palm on the screen and doesn’t allow it to interrupt you." 4/5 Stars
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"Most of the women I spoke with had no trouble fitting the Note 2 into a bag or purse, but questioned the phone's usability and their ability to reach the corners of the screen one-handed." 4/5 Stars
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"The 8-megapixel camera captures clear, vivid photos and records 1080p high-definition video -- on par with the original Note. You can focus with the touch of the screen, and illuminate dim environments with the glaringly-powerful LED flash." 4/5 Stars
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Samsung Galaxy Note II Review

The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 is the direct successor to the original and remarkably successful Galaxy Note. The Galaxy Note almost single-handedly created the niche, yet thriving “phablet” industry, with its originally questionable size that sits somewhere between what one might consider a smartphone and a tablet. Knocked by many at first, and still to this day by a few less, the Galaxy Note managed to find its place in an ever increasing, yet oftentimes evolutionarily one-directional industry.

Where the Note and Note 2 really separate themselves from the pack is with their stylus, or “S-Pen” integration. It’s true that since the original Note many other “phablets” and tablets have begun to embrace styluses (we refuse to say “styli”, but you can go crazy with it if you want to), but few or none have done it quite so well as the Note series.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 and the S-Pen

The S-Pen is thin, easy to hold and easier to use. Its side-situated button for super-quick screen capture will probably turn out to be one of the line’s most enduring qualities and its ability to translate hand-writing in to fonted text borders on the downright impressive, assuming that your handwriting lies within the realm of legibility.

The Galaxy Note 2 has taken this key feature and improved it even further. Where the original Note had a metal tip that often led to minor scratching, the Note 2 has a rubber one. This not only protects the screen, but also improves traction and therefor makes writing and drawing feel a bit more natural. It’s almost as if one were writing on a page, except in this instance the screen is the hard surface and the softness of the paper has been transferred to the tip of the writing implement.

There have also been improvements made to the sensitivity of the pen, leading to greater potential for detailed drawings and accurate touch-ups, and the length has been increased to enhance comfort and the general ease of use.

Another addition is that, should you walk off without your S-Pen, the Note II will alert you. The system whereby this happens is fairly simple and based on the accelerometer. If the Note 2 detects that the stylus is not in its slot and that it has not been used  in a while, any movement that jostles the phone in a similar way to walking will trigger the alert. It’s hardly a fool-proof system, but it’s easy on battery and should provide at least some level of reassurance for forgetful owners.

Specs and Hardware on the Note II

The Galaxy Note II is similar to the Galaxy S3 in many respects. This is hardly surprising, as we saw a the same kind of thing when the original Note came around the time of the Galaxy S II. There’s a powerful quad-core 1.6GB processor backed up by 2GB of RAM; a combination that should handle just about anything a user can throw at it.

The screen has increased in size from 5.3 to 5.5 inches, but bezel size has decreased meaning that there is little overall change to the physical size of the handset. The display itself sports a 720p HD resolution that, while certainly impressive, is well below the pixel density of a smaller device like the S3. Still, it offers a crisp and beautiful experience that should hardly leave the customer wanting.

Out-of-the-box the Note II comes running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Of course 4.2 would be nice, but 4.1 is still smooth and stable and a far better offering than Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.

4G LTE support has been added, as well. This is great news for users in 4G enabled areas. With a large device like the Galaxy Note 2, network speed is especially important. The larger screen lends itself well to internet browsing, streaming and services and the Note series attracts many of its users for this reason specifically.

The 8MP camera is reportedly quite good, but we’re yet to test it out ourselves, unfortunately. From what we’ve seen it seems to be almost identical to the one found on the GS3 in terms of quality and low-light capture and the S3’s camera, while not the best in the market, is still an impressive shooter.

The WhistleOut Opinion

The Galaxy Note II is a device that people like to call “evolutionary, not revolutionary” and, much to the dismay of cliché critics everywhere, this is very much true. There are upgrades across the board, all of which are to the level of what one would expect between two generations of the same device.

Ultimately the Note II isn’t going to be for everyone. Like we said, phablets are a very niche market and are often dismissed for their huge size that can border on the absurd when used by a person of smaller stature. Yet, despite their ungainly bulk, the Note and Note 2 have and will continue to be popular for no other reason than that they fulfil a need and fulfil it well.

If you’re after an experience with a larger screen and are considering entering the phablet market, the Galaxy Note 2, or whatever comes after it, are definitely a smart bet.

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