In a nutshell, the Galaxy Note 5 4G+ adopts the same metal and glass build from the Galaxy S6, powered by the highest spec in a phone to date, with a further refinement of the S Pen capabilities, and added useful software such as Microsoft Office 365 and Samsung SideSync 4.0. In a surprise move, the Galaxy Note 5 will be available tomorrow in Singapore.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 5 is a noteworthy addition to the Galaxy Note line, the fifth instalment of the phablet with a stylus. The Galaxy Note is still the top choice for those that need a stylus, as no other manufacturer comes close in replicating the accuracy and features of the S Pen. The Galaxy Note 5 adopts the clean metal and glass look from the Galaxy S6, and also introduces a curved back for a better ergonomic fit. However, there will be Samsung fans upset with the choice to drop a removable battery and the micro SD expansion slot. Samsung attempts to address the storage problem with free 100 GB of OneDrive as well the SideSync to transfer files with a PC / tablet easily.
By the way, the Galaxy Note 5 also loses the IR Blaster, which allows you to use your phone as a remote control. It is one of those features that’s not commonly used, but will be missed.
The S-Pen remains the stand out feature on the Galaxy Note 5, with even more features such as a click to eject, quick access to your custom favourite apps, and Samsung doesn’t disappoint with a whole bunch of gimmicky, but at times, still useful features.
The Enhanced Air Command launches immediately upon removal of the S Pen so you can quickly access Action Memo, Smart Select, Screen Write in addition to three favourite app shortcuts. If the phone is off, after the S Pen is ejected, you can annotate directly on the black screen for quick note captures.
The new screen write feature is a scroll capture, which helps to capture snapshots of long chat history or websites. As Samsung says, “Now sharing long online news articles is a breeze.” There’s also the updated Smart Select, which automatically saves the URL and a cropped photo from your website into Samsung’s scrapbook app.
Other interesting features are a direct to Youtube Live Broadcast app, which is similar to Periscope. It would be good if this feature is not limited to Samsung only.
Samsung is one of the few manufacturers involved in the wireless charging race, and they have made it more suitable for mainstream adoption with faster wireless charging speed. The Note 5 is expected to charge to full wirelessly in approximately 90 minutes, which is 2x faster than the Galaxy S6.
Price and Availability
Samsung would be celebrating the Note 5 launch with Note 5 Delights, at Civic Plaza, Ngee Ann City, from 29 to 30 August, 11am to 9pm. At the event, consumers can head to the Product Experience Zones to try out the new devices and stand to win attractive prizes.
But why wait till then? The Note 5 will be available from 15 August 2015 in Black Sapphire and Gold Platinum, with 32GB and 64GB storage options, at a recommended retail price of $1,088 and $1,188 respectively. As part of a launch special, customers who purchase a Galaxy Note 5 4G+ from 15 August 2015 at local telecommunication operators, authorised retailers and Samsung Experience Stores will be able to enjoy a complimentary Fast Wireless Charging Pad (White only) worth $98 and Clear Cover (Silver only) worth $48 on a while-stocks-last basis.
Singtel, Starhub, M1 has updated their price plans for the Galaxy Note 5.
Overall, expect to pay around $608.00 to $628 for a 32GB Galaxy Note 5 on recontract with a $40 plan. That’s a discount of $480. However, mobile shops are selling the phone for cheap, and you can buy the Galaxy Note 5 32GB from Qoo10 at $928, which is the cheapest seen so far. On top of this price, you might still be able to use a cart coupon and credit card discount – Frank OCBC will get you 6%. However, ou would likely not get the fast wireless charging pad and clear cover bundle.
Compatible accessories for the Note 5 and the concurrent launch Edge+ are also available at the following recommended retail price:
- Clear View Cover: $88 in Blue Black, Gold and Silver
- S View Cover: $68 in Blue Black, White, Gold and Silver
- Level On Wireless Pro: $418 in Gold and Black
- Fast Wireless Charging Pad: $98 in White and Black
Samsung will also be selling a keyboard cover. It’s for those who reminisce the physical key typing experience. It reminds me of my Nokia E61, in terms of the look and feel. Tried it, wasn’t impressed by the hard key feel, but definitely helps improve typing accuracy as your thumbs can make out the indent and placing of the individual keys. Initially, I thought it was Bluetooth, but it’s just an overlay with capacitive connectors to interface with the on-screen keyboard. It will probably appeal to those who type out a lot of lengthy emails with your thumbs. At S$108, it’s too expensive for me.