Samsung Galaxy Note 4 release date, news and features

Phablet fantastic

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 operating system

The Samsung Galaxy Note 4 runs the latest version of Android, Android KitKat.

It is of course overlaid with Samsung's TouchWiz interface, just like the new version which adorns the Galaxy S5.

The new UI for the Note does have some unique features though, offering up the ability to resize apps over the screen (in a similar way to Windows) so you can pack more information on the display.

Given some people are still struggling with the idea / point of having two windows open at once on a smartphone, this could be something of an overkill – but the Note is all about offering the user as much functionality as possible, and this certainly falls into that category.

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 design and features

Samsung has decided to give the Note 4 more of a premium finish, with a metal rim surrounding the handset, shielding the rest of the chassis.

Our first impressions suggested that the Note 4 felt great in the hand, although that faux leather back is going to be as divisive as it was in the Galaxy Note 3. The actual weight and dimensions are very similar to last year's model despite the more premium finish, with the Note 4 coming in at 153.5 x 78.6 x 8.5mm and 176g.

Aside from a metal frame there have been some other design tweaks, such as the inclusion of a heartrate monitor on the back of the phone and a fingerprint scanner under the home button, in the same way as the Galaxy S5.

The S Pen has received a huge upgrade again – the aforementioned Snap Note, for example, but also in the tactile feel on the screen.

We've often criticised the Note / S Pen combo for feeling too fake, plastic on glass sliding around and not replicating the feel of the pen on paper. That's been solved with the Note 4, with our hands on review finding that the new stylus offered a more sensitive and smart way of interacting with the phone, actually replicating handwriting faithfully.

Galaxy Note 4 with the Galaxy Edge
Galaxy Note 4 with the Galaxy Edge

On a more negative note the handset has been criticised for a gap between the screen and the chassis, but apparently this is a necessary design feature.

Those that like to take voice recordings of others will love the new feature that uses multi-directional microphones to zero in on one speaker and record only that person, which will be really useful in noisy environments.

There's also a UV sensor added in too, presumably to give accurate information on how much you need to cover up / apply the lotion on hotter days. It's another step toward the smartphone becoming a big reason we all stay a lot healthier – and anything that can help avoid cancer has to be a good thing.

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 battery

A smartphone is nothing more than an oversized paperweight once the battery dies, so it's a good thing that the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 has quite a lot of juice. There's a 3200 mAh battery tucked away inside it which not only promises a lot of life but can also be charged to 50% in just 30 minutes..

  • Learn more about the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 in our hands on review with the phone