MOSSBERG: The Galaxy Note Isn't Practical As A Phone, And It's Not Great As A Tablet

samsung galaxy note

Photo: Steve Kovach, Business Insider

The Wall Street Journal’s gadget guru, Walt Mossberg, has a review of the 5-inch Galaxy Note by Samsung.The Note is supposed to be a smartphone and a tablet. But, in trying to be two things at once, it fails to be either thing particularly well, says Mossberg:

After testing the Galaxy Note, I have decidedly mixed feelings about it. It isn’t a very practical phone and, as a tablet, it can’t match the experience of the iPad, which is more spacious and has over 150,000 apps designed for it. However, I can see where some folks might consider the 5-inch screen a good trade-off for much better portability than other tablets, and Samsung has done some very interesting work in making the stylus, which is stored in a slot on the device, useful.

Mossberg seems to be really put off by the size of the phone:

As a mobile phone, the Galaxy Note is positively gargantuan. It’s almost 6 inches long and over 3 inches wide. When you hold it up to your ear, it pretty much covers the entire side of your face. You look like you’re talking into a piece of toast.

In fact, he says the phone is so big and goofy that people will actually have to use a secondary, smaller phone to make phone calls, which defeats half its purpose.

He is impressed by the stylus though:

The stylus is a big plus, at least for users who like to jot down notes, create sketches or annotate documents in a way that’s much more precise than using a fingertip. Even on the iPad, which wasn’t designed for a stylus, third-party styli have become quietly popular, but Samsung has taken the idea much further.

Overall, Mossberg says he “can’t recommend it” as your main phone. If you’re looking for a mini-tablet, it’s not too bad, though.

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