As we all aware, Samsung has delivered some of the world most incredibly Android devices these day, pushing its Galaxy brand into one of the world most prestigious smart phones player in the tech industry. So in that case how would the devices made by the giant compare to each other? Today let us dig into the deep detail comparison between the Samsung newly launched’s Samsung Galaxy Note and the Samsung Galaxy S II which has helped Samsung to secure its position as one of the world best smartphone maker. (beating Apple from its own games). Can the new Galaxy Note excel far better than its predecessor Galaxy S2? You are about to find out after this line.
If you miss out any of our previous comparison pack, you may check it out here:
A Bit of History on Samsung Galaxy Note & Galaxy S II
Samsung Galaxy Note was officially announced during the IFA event that was held in Germany back in September 2, 2011 and its start to roll out in the market in November 2011.
Samsung Galaxy S2 or commonly known as SG2 on the other hand was announced by Samsung during the Mobile World Congress held in Spain back in February, 2011. It began to penetrate the worldwide market since May, 2011.
Without further delay, let dive deep into the detail…
1. Design & Dimension
Galaxy Note: 146.9 x 83.0 x 9.7mm, 178 g (6.28 oz)
Galaxy S2: 125.3 x 66.1 x 8.5mm, 116 g (4.09 oz)
With a larger screen of 5.3 inch for Samsung Galaxy Note, it is expected that the Galaxy Note will come with a bigger form factor compare to SG2. Ideally it is the first device from Samsung that served as a multipurpose gadget – smartphone, tablet, notepad, planner and game. It has been publicly known that, Galaxy Note is part of Samsung’s strategy that aim to bridge the niche market between their smaller form factor smartphone e.g Samsung Galaxy S II (4.3 inch) and the bigger size Galaxy Tab (7 inch).
The Samsung Galaxy Note is measured at 146.9mm height, 83.0 width and 9.7mm thickness. Whereas Galaxy S II is measured at 125.3 mm height, 66.1mm width and 8.5mm thickness. In term of weight, Galaxy Note weighted at 178 grams, 62 grams more than Galaxy S II which weighted at 116 grams only.
In general, Galaxy S II is relatively smaller, thinner and even lighter when compare to Galaxy Note.
Galaxy Note: Dual-core 1.4GHz ARM Cortex A9 CPU Samsung Exynos 4210, quad-core Mali-400MP GPU
Galaxy S2: Dual-core 1.2GHz ARM Cortex A9 CPU Samsung Exynos 4210, quad-core Mali-400MP GPU
Both the Samsung Galaxy Note and Galaxy S2 are running on the same processor dual core ARM Cortex A9 with Samsung Exynos 4210. But somehow Samsung clocked Samsung Galaxy Note at a higher clock speed of 1.4 GHz while Galaxy S2 at a lower 1.2GHz (200MHz less). While on the GPU side, both the devices are using the Mali 400 MP GPU.
In the ideal cases, if you manage to overclock your Galaxy S2 to the max speed of 1.4GHz you will get the same speed performance as Galaxy Note.
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Point to Take Note on Samsung Galaxy Note
It has been spotted that the Galaxy Note does come with few edition. Please be aware that, N7003 is an inferior version of Galaxy Note (N7000).
- GT-N7000 – The original version, with a dual-core 1.4GHz Cortex A9 processor & ARM Mali-400 MP GPU
- GT-N7003 – A lower-powered and cheaper version, with a single-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 8255T processor and Adreno 205 GPU
- LTE version - Come with higher-speed communications ability, initially available only in South Korea
Galaxy Note: 5.3-inch, 1280 x 800px, 285ppi, Super AMOLED HD, Gorilla Glass
Galaxy S2: 4.27-inch, 800 x 480px, 218ppi, Super AMOLED Plus, Gorilla Glass
For the display, both the Galaxy Note and Galaxy S2 are come with Samsung’s leading Super AMOLED technology. The display technology behind 5.3 inches Galaxy Note is actully Super AMOLED HD, while for the Galaxy S2 is Super AMOLED PLus. In term of screen resolution, Samsung has managed to push the Galaxy Note’s Super AMOLED HD to the maximum of 1280 x 800 pixels (~285 ppi) compared to Galaxy S2′s Super AMOLED Plus at 800 x 480 pixels and ~217 ppi pixel density.
Both the phones also come with CorningWare’s super resistance proof glass – Gorilla glass display and various sensor technologies like accelerometer for auto rotate, proximity sensor and gyroscope.
We have compiled the info of Samsung’s AMOLED technology as below:
Understanding Super AMOLED
What is Super AMOLED?
Super Active-Matrix Organic Light-Emitting Diode or Super AMOLED is a display technology (variant from AMOLED) mainly for use in mobile devices such as mobile phones. One of the main differences from other display technologies is that the layer that detects touch is integrated into the screen rather than being overlaid on top.
- Super AMOLED is the original display which added an integrated touch-layer to the classic AMOLED display. This results in a thinner display that behaves much better under sunlight. Super AMOLED uses PenTile technology
- Super AMOLED Plus, first introduced with the Samsung Galaxy S II and Samsung Droid Charge smartphones, is a further development where the PenTile RGBG pixel matrix (2 subpixels) is replaced with Samsung’s “Real Stripe” (3 subpixels) RGB RGB subpixel arrangement. Which goes from eight to twelve subpixels per group, resulting in finer details. The screen technology is also brighter, thinner and 18% more energy efficient.
- HD Super AMOLED is a new Super AMOLED type display from Samsung (they sometimes refer to Super AMOLED HD) . The first device to use an HD Super AMOLED is the Galaxy Note: an Android v2.3 phone with a 5.3″ 1280×800 display. The phone (and the display) was announced in September 2011. The second HD Super AMOLED device is Samsung’s Galaxy Nexus phone – with a 4.65″ display featuring 1280×720 resolution. The higher resolution and dpi were made possible due to a move from the Fine-Metal-Mask (FMM) to Laser-Induced-Thermal-Imaging (LITI) process . However, the move to LITI required a change back to Pentile RGBG subpixels.
- HD Super Amoled Plus the superior version of Super AMOLED display that Samsung claimed to be using the “Real Stripe” RGB subpixels along with the LITI technology. Source Wikipedia
Galaxy Note: 16/32GB + microSD
Galaxy S2: 16/32GB + microSD
Both the Samsung Note and Samsung Galaxy S II do come with 1 GB of RAM (depending on region, some region come with 2GB) and two version of 16 GB and 32 GB for its internal storage capacity. And there will be additional microSD card slot in the phone where you can have up to 32 GB of additional storage
5. Battery Life
Galaxy Note: 2500mAh Li-ion
Galaxy S2: 1650mAh Li-ion
In term of the battery performance, Samsung Galaxy S II is come with a Li-ion powered 1650 mAh battery which provides 610 hours of battery backup during 3G standby and a talk time of up to 9 hours in 3G mode. While the Galaxy Note does come with a larger screen (approximately 24.1% larger screen size than Galaxy S2) and powered with Li-ion 2500 mAh battery (51.2% more battery life than Samsung Galaxy S2).
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Some reviewer claimed that, with the increase in the screen size (24.1% larger than SG2) for the Galaxy Note and higher processor clock speed (200MHz or 16.7% more than Samsung Galaxy S2) the battery life for Note will last almost the same as Samsung Galaxy S2. Or in other word, the higher battery life in Galaxy Note is offset by the increase in its screen size and processing power.
But we do have a different opinion on this matter. With the current battery life of 2500mAh in Galaxy Note (51.2% more than SG2) on 24.1% larger screen of 5.3-inch and 16.7% more clocked speed than SG2. Simple math of adding both factor together 24.1%+16.7%, that would have come close to 40%, meaning we can expect to get an additional of 10% more battery life in Galaxy Note if you adding in both the factor.
*Notes: The above statement might not reflect the true working operation of the Galaxy Note as other factor might contribute to the battery loses as well.
6. Software / OS
Galaxy Note: Android 2.3.5 Gingerbread + TouchWiz 4.0
Galaxy S2: Android 2.3.5 Gingerbread + TouchWiz 4.0
Both the Galaxy Note and Galaxy S2 are still powered by Android 2.3.5 Gingerbread,. Although with the recent announcement of the availability of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS), Samsung Galaxy Note and Galaxy S2 will only get its update early next year. So guys it will not be long before the update be available to both the Samsung Galaxy model. (On Nov 1, Android Authority has claimed that Samsung already confirmed both model Galaxy Note and Galaxy s2 will be getting the ICS update)
Currently both the Galaxy models are equipped with the TouchWiz 4.0 user interface from Samsung – an improvement version of TouchWiz 3.0.
Galaxy Note: 8MP rear, 2MP front, 1080p video
Galaxy S2: 8MP rear, 2MP front, 1080p video
When it comes to camera however, both the Galaxy Note and Galaxy S II are come with the camera of same spec – 8 mega pixel rear side camera and 2 mega pixel front facing camera from Samsung. It is capable of recording HD videos at 1080p at 30 fps. While the rest of the camera specifications are identical, both have LED flash, autofocus and features geo tagging, touch focus, face and smile detection and image stabilization.
Samsung Galaxy Note vs. Samsung Galaxy S II Detail Specification Comparison
Pros of Samsung Galaxy Note Compare to Samsung Galaxy S II
- Bigger screen size of 5.3-inch meaning you will have a larger viewing area compare to 4.3-inch Samsung Galaxy S2.
- Higher clock speed processor of dual-core 1.4GHz compare to 1.2GHz in Samsung Galaxy S2.
- Come with Stalus S Pen that enable you to perform more function compare to the existing SG2.
- Packed with 50% more battery life (2500 mAh) compare to 1650mAh in Galaxy II.
- Galaxy Note manage to combine the best feature from both the smartphone and tablet, turning it into a smart devices that possess both the characteristic.
Cons of Samsung Galaxy Note Compare to Samsung Galaxy S II
- The critic claimed that with a form factor of 5.3 inch, Galaxy Note is too big to be a true mobile phone.
- Hard to use it with a single-handed especially when typing a message.
- Difficult to store it in a small pocket.
- Higher price (30% more) compare to Samsung Galaxy S2.
- More heavy compare to Samsung Galaxy S2.
- Some perceived that Galaxy Note has awkward apperance againt the face.
So Which Phone is Better? Samsung Galaxy Note or Samsung Galaxy S2?
If you could see from all the above comparison, clearly Samsung Galaxy Note introduces lot new features that Samsung Galaxy S2 lack of. One of the most notable one is the reintroduction of the post Palm era’s stylus – S Pen. Which it outshine the existing stylus and it can perform lot more things than what previous version of stylus capable of. Whereas you will for sure get more juice out of Galaxy Note as it is packed with more clocked speed processor – dual-core 1.4GHz and larger screen size of 5.3-inch. And of course that will cost you more. Ideally Galaxy Note will be great for those who is looking for a sophisticated device somewhere around the size between normal smartphone and tablet.
But if you just thinking of getting an smartphone size device and are particular with holding a larger phone when you talk then Samsung Galaxy S2 should be a good alternative. In addition, Samsung Galaxy S2 will cost you less (30% less) compare to Galaxy Note.
So guys the choice is your, it depend very much on what you need the smartphone for. Let us know if you have any feedback or input in the comment box below. Thanks…