1. Size matters
Yes, this 5.5 inch smartphone is big. It's the biggest smartphone on the market. However it still feels comfortable to hold in the hand. For me, I can hold the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 with one hand.
The design of the SGN2 is classy. I especially like the Titanium Grey version of the SGN2, makes it look much more premium, classy and sexy compared to other phones on the market.
When you heard that the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 was 5.5 inches, you probably thought "too big". But let's see how it compares with the 5.3 inch Galaxy Note 1:
The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 looks about the same size, actually slimmer but slightly taller. There's also more screen in relation to the bezel, hence the SGN2 fits more screen with about the same amount of bezel as the SGN1.
However the comparison doesn't end there.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 actually feels a lot more comfortable in the hand and more compact because it features the curved edges. Trust me, when I held the SGN1 and the SGN2, I thought the SGN2 was much more comfortable and compact in the hand.
Samsung really succeeded in the ergonomics of the SGN2's design.
3. Superb Super AMOLED screen
Super AMOLED technology is a novel technology which has been driven forward by Samsung. Most smartphones utilizing Super AMOLED panel technology are made by Samsung. This distinguishes Samsung from other smartphone manufacturers. However this isn't my main point.
My main point is that Super AMOLED screens are designed to have the best contrast ratios. When I compare a Samsung smartphone to a smartphone based on IPS or LCD display technology, the contrast ratio difference just blows me away.
The Super AMOLED panel always has the richest colors (can be a bad thing for some people, but I like it) and the deepest black levels. Reading black text on a white background is pleasurable on a Super AMOLED screen. Blacks look black and whites look white (you can argue that there is a slight blue tint on Super AMOLED screens but unnoticeable if you don't have anything to compare it with).
Actually the blue tint issue is not present on the SGN2.
Here's a display comparison between the SGN2 and the SGS3.
LCD or IPS displays are quite different in this regard. You can tell if "black" is not black even if you don't have a Super AMOLED screen to compare it with. The color black on LCD or IPS displays look greyish.
The SGN2's Super AMOLED screen also has an RGB pixel matrix in contrast to the SGS3's PenTile based pixel matrix. This makes the Samsung Galaxy Note 2's screen superior to the SGS3's screen, although I don't really see the difference in real life.
4. Smooth UI, reliability and powerful processor
The one bad thing with the original Samsung Galaxy Note 1 was the obvious hiccups it had when opening more processor demanding applications to simple programs.
However the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 completely solves this issue. The 1.6GHz quad core Exynos 4 brings enough firepower to run ever so smoothly and the 2GB RAM helps as well. Loading processor demanding programs and several webpages is a routine task for the Samsung Galaxy Note 2. Super fast, efficient and no lag whatsoever.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 2's UI is very classy, smooth and elegant. The menus are simple yet sophisticated in many ways. It is so much more customizable than the iPhone yet has the simplistic nature of the iPhone's iOS interface that an Apple user can adjust fairly easily into. The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 being an Android device and having a strong developer support also appeals to the Android tech-savvy user who wants to customize it to its fullest extents.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 is also the most reliable Android device I've ever used. After several days of playing around with my sister's Samsung Galaxy Note 2 there have been no bugs, no glitches, no sudden restarts or application shut downs. Completely stable and bug-free like the iPhone.
5. Extreme battery life
If you're the type who goes on long business trips, travels in the wilderness or just forgets to charge his phone, you will love the Samsung Galaxy Note 2.
Even though the SGN2 features a huge-ass screen and a huge-ass overclocked processor, that doesn't stop the 3,100mAh from delivering the best battery life I've seen on an Android device so far (except the Droid RAZR Maxx but that's in a class of it's own):
The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 has the biggest screen on the market. It's classy, big but also ergonomically well designed. It's a huge improvement over the Galaxy Note 1 because of the quad core Exynos 4.
A lot of people ask me if they should wait for the Samsung Galaxy S4 which is going to be a 5 inch smartphone with quad core Cortex-A15 processors, most likely the Exynos 5250 quad core Adonis processor and 2GB or 4GB RAM. My answer is, if your contract is about to end, get the SGN2. However if you can last until April or May, then wait until you can compare with the Samsung Galaxy S4.
How about the iPhone 6? I'm not sure what Apple's strategy is, but I believe they're going to release at least a 4.5 inch smartphone going by the recent trends in the smartphone market. Apple's tiny iPhone screens are the main shortcomings of their product lineup. However Apple makes the highest quality in terms of build materials so the iPhone 6 could be a promising phone. However I don't have enough information to answer that question yet, although Apple did say they were planning to release their new flagship phone earlier this year (possibly Q2 2013).
Edited by Koehler - 1/9/13 at 2:27am