Way back in November 2017 we gave two of our very own Brains Trust, @Kalak and @DrQ the new Samsung Galaxy Note8 to review. You can go straight to their full reviews or read on for a brief summary.
Out of the box, the phone had 55% charge. On the fast charger, 55 minutes later it was at 100%.
As soon as you turn it on, you see how the default settings on the Samsung screens really 'pop'. Colours are bright and vivid, in an almost surreal way.
All up from the time I put it on the charger, to all my apps (many pages) downloading from the Google Play store, to being ready to actually use was about 6 hours. So not something you want to start late at night or try and unbox before you run out the door.
Straight out of the box I loved the feel of the phone, it sat good in the hand and was reasonably weighted. The screen is clear and bright, the device was responsive. The initial setup and update process was a little slow but still didn’t take that long to get up and running smoothly.
I find the phone always showing the time, date, battery and notifications very useful and as such I think it's a good trade-off of battery cost vs usefulness. There are a number of different options for how you want AOD to be formatted, and what you'd like shown on the screen - including things like your calendar. You can also set the times of day you'd like it to show and when to turn off.
It started off running amazing but has the traditional issue Samsung has with bloating and has started to struggle substantially.
What I do actually like however, the amazing network capability... the cat16 LTE capability is really noticeable. At home it on average pulls off around 15-20Mbps faster speeds when compared to my iPhone 8 Plus.
The screen on the Note 8 is fantastic. The blacks are deep, the colours really pop.
By far the greatest use for it within my family is with the included Samsung 'PENUP' app. It's essentially a digital drawing app, and colouring book. My kids are loving it, and it's become a bit of an issue over who is using my phone to do colouring in. An example of a finished colouring book page is to the right.
I also love the screen, it is so clear, I know I am repeating myself but it shows video, photo and even just general app/browsing so clearly it is great to use in that way. The sound quality is quite good too, the speakers being used seems to be a good quality. The battery life is also better than I expected, I had expected only up to a day but even now I am averaging 2 days to a charge.
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