Samsung Galaxy Note has been upgraded by AT&T to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. This must be a great news for hundreds of thousands of Galacy Note owners
The change from Gingerbread to ICS in the Note does not look very different. This is a very positive way of upgrading since the familiarity remains with the added boost that comes with an upgrade.
On going down in the home screen that looks nothing different from the Gingerbread screen on the first look, one can spy the recent tabs appear. The Galaxy Note can be pressed against another NFC phone to engage Android Beam then the Settings menu can be accessed for a new layout with usage monitoring.
There is this Premium Suite update that caters to stylus functions. It includes S Note, S Memo, and a new My Story app. The last one does not come preinstalled, but can be downloaded from Google Play.
The new S Note lets one import and annotate PDFs, S Memo files, photos, maps, and other images you cropped and saved with the S Pen.
Nother new feature is the Shape Match in which one draws a diagram with the S Pen and the app renders the lines straight, converts sloppy figures into straight sticks and closes perfect circles.
There is similar thing with mathematical inputs that converts numbers for the user and also solves them like an advanced and very intuitive calculator. In this section the Wolfram Alpha database has been used that reads handwritten inquiries by the user.
The handwriting-to-text mode turns stylus scrawlings into legible text – still, one has to at least do better than illegible prescription-rate handwritings, otherwise even Samsung cannot help one out!
However, while writing in this feature the button tends to come in the way and one has to be very careful to not press it accidentally. This can be a bother when wishing to write fast on the screen. Then there is this another problem of a large comma being read as an ‘l’. One also cannot risk writing in serif because then the feature goes bonkers reading flourishes as added characters.
Deleting a mistake and inserting space requires a tap on the screen. Editing using the feature is also not very friendly as it is rather time consuming and there is a general lack of options being prompted to make sure what the user actually wants to write.
The Galaxy Note’s one-handed operation setting handles these typings well. This setting reduces the size of the keyboard and gives one the freedom to move it to the left or right so one can type one-handed.
the S Memo is also lauded in the new update and it has got itself a very personal widget that can be stuck on the homescreen for easy access. Despite earning a new button of its own, the widget does not strangely match with the rest of the buttons present on the screen which some aesthetes might find slightly odd.