Note 2 to S4?

It’s been a great six months with the Note 2. This device has put a tablet in my pocket and (thanks to the S-Pen) then some. It’s a second computer at work, where desktop use is monitored and various sites (some of them useful) are blocked. It’s a great casual gaming, you-tubing and browsing (in desktop view) device. It’s a great Keep-ing, calendaring and emailing device. I did most of my Christmas shopping on it, which I could never have done even on a large regular phone. It’s great for mapping while driving. And that’s on top of the other things that all flagship Android phones are great at already. It’s just a great device and I have no concerns about it still being up to spec until Sept. 2015 when I’m eligible for a new device.

The thing is, it’s big. And summer is here, which means I mostly don’t have a jacket pocket to stow it, and I am more active. I have no qualms about how it looks – with its military-style UAG case it’s a big, serious-looking brick that suggests more Navy SEAL (which I’m not) than Midwestern attorney (which I am). In fact, I enjoy plunking it down on the table wherever I go just to broadcast the fact that I am fully plugged into the matrix. My problem is in anything besides cargo pants, it strains the fabric and squeezes against my leg. It’s a sacrifice to carry it, and that will only increase as we get into the hot sweaty, active summer months.

On a related note, have you seen the S4? There’s no denying it: that thing is svelte. It just has something on the S3, the way the iPhone 5 packed more into less over the 4S (and no it’s not a direct 1:1 comparison). You hold it and wonder: how did they get all this in here? And now that my hand has learned the dextrous art of one-handed Note 2 use, the S4 feels great. I’ve always valued a gentle plastic shape over squared-off aluminum – the plastic-pebble Palm Pre was my favorite-feeling phone ever, and I often held it just to hold it.

So, to the point: I want to trade down to the S4, and I’m wondering if any Note 2 owners have done the same. I’d be trading away some functionality and some screen space. My kids, for whom my Note is their sole window into Gravity Guy, Cut the Rope and YouTube, might be a little miffed. But I think it might be the sweet spot. So, does the hover function mitigate the loss of S-Pen? Does the primo display make up for the loss of space? And is that light, slender form sweet relief to your jeans pocket? Is it reasonable to try and find a new S4 owner who would trade for a gently-used Note 2 with accessories, straight up or for minimal cash? Please tell.

And please…don’t tell me to get a Nexus 4. :-)