The Galaxy Note II is my Courier and more.
I've been using a smart phone of some type since the mid 2000's. I started with Windows Mobile phones, then Blackberries, back to Windows Mobile, then iOS and Android. Since my first T-Mobile MDA the experience has been more evolutionary than revolutionary. The email experience has gotten better, faster. Instant messaging services has gotten better. Games have more depth and better graphics. Web browsing is 1000x's better. Devices have gotten faster, smoother, the experience has been a dramatic increase of ease of use and quality. But at the end they have basically performed much of the same duty for me. Getting emails. Phone calls. Web browsing. Light gaming to kill some time while sitting at the airport. But after using the Galaxy Note II for a couple of weeks I have to say it's been almost a revolution for my smartphone usage more than just an evolution.
I know the Note II is not for everyone. It's a huge device. The specs are undeniably excellent. The beast of a phone is fast, smooth, everything performs almost instantaneously. But for me the (r)evolution isn't about specs but about the Wacom digitizer. It has taken the role of the plain ole note pad and turned the role on it's head with it's ability to capture data and instantly connect and share that data.
I am engineer by profession. A design engineer in fact designing product that help deliver data and voice services to your home. I have two offices and at each of my desks sits a note pad I will use to jot sketches and notes for designs. I've found I have completely abandon my old sketch pads over the last two weeks and I've fully taken to using my Note II in it's stead. The experience hasn't been forced. Sketches and notes on the SG Note II feels like a natural use of the phablet. For me this has become the Courier experience that we all drooled over so long ago from those leaked Microsoft videos. Now, if I want to share the notes from my note pad, I no longer have to pull up MS paint to makes a sketch or Pro/Engineer to make a 3D model to get a digitized idealization of my concepts. I can share my notes and sketches as quickly as tapping a couple of buttons. Last week I was reviewing some prototype units at a remote location. Instead of taking a picture and just trying to describe the issues in text with an email, or downloading the picture and putting the information in a powerpoint, I was able to capture the image and make notes right on the image highlighting areas that needed attention.
The ability to capture, create, and share data is what makes the Note stand out for me. But the Galaxy Note II isn't just my phone any more. It has completely replaced my need for a 7" tablet too. It is more than large enough with enough resolution that it is very comfortable to read on. The new Pixel arrangement is noticeably sharper than the SGSIII. Watching media on it is great. The SD card is great for expanding the storage to hold lots of media without having to rely on the cloud.. It is insanely fast, not a hint of lag anywhere. The battery life is beyond great, a full day of extreme heavy usage that would have had me charge an iPhone 4 twice now leaves me with 20-30% left at the end of the day. For me, there is not a better device on the market. A single device that now replaces my legal pad, my tablet, and my phone. It has been an extreme case of convergence of devices that has exceeded my expectations.