Samsung Galaxy Note launches in Australia

news Samsung launched its Galaxy Note Android handset in Australia on Tuesday. The device, which the company claims is a product category of its own, is described as having the benefits of a tablet while maintaining the functionality of a smartphone.

It comes with a 5.3” high resolution screen and a stylus called ‘S Pen’ that allows users to sketch, take notes, and annotate on various file formats and over PDF files. “The Samsung GALAXY Note represents a new category of Samsung portable devices for Australian consumers,” said Tyler McGee, Vice President of Telecommunications, Samsung Electronics Australia. “The product combines the freedom of a paper notebook with the connectivity of Samsung’s smartphone technology and services, providing consumers with great flexibility all-round.”

Powered by a dual-core, 1.4 GHz processor, the Galaxy Note comes with 16GB of internal memory and a microSD card slot for extra memory. Apart from the main 8 megapixel camera in the rear, there is also a 2 megapixel front-facing camera for video calls. The phone runs the 2.3 Gingerbread version of the Android operating system and has a 2500 mAh battery.

According to a Samsung media release, the Galaxy Note’s display provides excellent clarity and the large screen would allow users to view multiple pages with minimum scrolling. It claims that at 9.65mm thickness, the handset offers good portability. The device features a new category menu under Samsung Apps with applications specially designed for its stylus.

The Samsung release asserts that the device makes for easy creativity. “The incorporated digital S Pen can be used for sketching and artwork, while sophisticated handwriting recognition helps users to freely capture ideas and share them with other compatible devices with minimal need to perform any additional digitisation; handwritten text is converted into digital characters.”

“S Memo is a multimedia application designed to record various forms of user-created content. Pictures, voice recordings, typed text, handwritten notes or drawings can be captured via a single application and converted to a ‘memo’, to be edited, annotated and shared as desired. A one-step screen-capture function also allows users to instantly capture a screen. Captured images can also be freely annotated using the S Pen before being filed or shared.”

“The S Pen functionality has been deeply integrated into the GALAXY Note’s native applications to provide a rich interactive experience. Users will experience control when editing or personalising captured videos or photographs. Furthermore, users will be able to draw and send handwritten images and notes via text message, email and Samsung’s Chat ON communication service.”

“Broadening the opportunity to create different user experiences, the GALAXY Note S Pen Software Development Kit allows app developers to create new applications and services incorporating the pen functionality.”

The Galaxy Note will be available in stores for $899 outright and will also be sold through all three telcos. While Optus and Vodafone are expected to begin selling the device this week, Telstra’s launch is slated for sometime next month. Optus will sell the phone for $0 upfront on its $79 cap plan over 24 months with two months free access and $5 upfront for its $59 cap plan. Its timeless plans come at $0 upfront on its $129 cap plan and $99 cap plan, both with two months free access fee. Visit the Optus website for more details on plans and prices.

In Delimiter’s review of the Galaxy Note, reviewer Jenneth Orantia concluded:

“The Galaxy Note isn’t a device for everyone. Its large proportions will turn most people off from using it as a phone, and those that specifically want the larger screen size of a tablet aren’t likely to be satisfied with the Note’s “smaller” display. But we do think that there’s a magical in-between type of user that just wants the one device that can do both, and the Galaxy Note fits that niche splendidly.

It’s a good-looking device with a gorgeous screen, good performance, and battery life that’s just as good as any other high-end smartphone. The stylus input we could live without (although there are some people that will find this feature appealing) – ultimately, it’s the larger screen size with tablet-like display resolution that makes the Note such a compelling device.”

Image credit: Samsung


  1. Had mine since November, I still love it to bits, and I’m in a job where I get to use a different smart phone every few months.
    This is easily the best phone I’ve ever had.

  2. An outright price of $899… really? The exact same phone is available from $500 on many common auction and tech retailing sites. It amazes me how Australian consumers continue to willingly allow telcos to gouge them.

    • I walked into the Telstra Shop a couple of days ago to check out tablets prior from buying one elsewhere at a reasonable price. I was looking at the Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9, which I had seen online for under $500.

      A sales-nag came up to see if she could help me (unlikely, since she clearly had no idea what she was selling or what it did). I asked her what the outright price was on the Samsung 8.9, and she said “It’s at the bottom of the tag, but I’m afraid I can’t read it”. Warning number one: if the small print is so small your sales-nags can’t read it then I think the ACCC may be interested in whether they provide adequate information to consumers.

      Fortunately I was able to read the tag, which said $840! I chuckled at the sales-nag a little, and then left.

      • Stephen,

        I have met many people like you. If you go online and pay the cheaper prices you have that choice. But why go into store and ask if you know what the answer is. I Bet you were never going to buy one in store if your life depended on it. Why waste the poor girls time. If she had more experience she would of seen through you and served a CUSTOMER not a TIME WASTER Also you seem like one of those annoying customers anyway. I bet if you buy something online , you will be at the store the very hour once something goes wrong. If you came into my store I would tell you to solve your own problem as I have real customers to attend to WHO PAY FOR A BETTER SERVICE.

        By the way, once the online stores take over small retailers and jack up prices when we can’t compete, we will all be wishing the little guys were still around.


        • Said “poor girl” was middle-aged, and chose to come to me – I didn’t waste her time. Yes I’ve bought in stores, when they have had good prices – such as during the Samsung Galaxy Tab clearance last year. But I don’t reward a company for overcharging. And $840 for an item that’s worth no more than $500 is gouging. I also don’t reward service people who don’t know their products – I do my research, and expect them to know their job.

          Yes I’ve bought plenty of things online. Where do I go when I have problems? Online. You should try it George – there’s lots of help out there, whether from online retailers who sell and then support products or from the wider community.

          And just to clarify, you’re saying Telstra is a “small retailer”?

  3. I think I agree with George. Nonetheless everyone knows that getting products online would be the most cost effective means of purchasing things not unless you are looking at getting a “lay by” option where you can go on to a plan and pay it bit by bit. If you can fork out that money, then there is no point going to your local retailers. I wouldn’t even waste my time.

    • I have a Optus store and even though Optus is a large company we are only a one store franchise so yes i would think that store is a small buainess I have no issue with people going online if your prepared for the rish but chuckleing at a person trying to do her job is pretty tough . Walking in to a Telstra store and expecting something cheep is not the smartest move. They are expensive but there services warrant the prices . If put on plan they won’t be so expensive compared to pre paying for a data service anyway.

      • Which store you own George , id love to come ask the price of a product , purely from a scientific basis > I’m doing a study on narcisitic personalities and the business owner

  4. I buy online and also in store, I have also received fake items online and battle for my money back and yes I did get money back, I bought my Acer windows 3g tab from Harvey’s Norman and then I bought my galaxy note white from Hongkong through ebay for $650 it was legitimate sale and I received my package via fedex. I love the device and see no difference between Aussie model and this one.
    why 200

    • As I said I deal with real customers not time wasters sorry Pedro. Im afraid ill kick you out as soon at I see you walk in using your galaxy note as a note pad.

  5. I know exactly Why there is a $200 difference between online and in store, online person pays no over heads when store pays huge rent and pays his staff also, so instead bagging the crap out of store people just take risk and buy online.

  6. Samsung Note is selling this week at retailers in Thailand for 21,900 Baht (about $670AUD ). Gerry Harvey sells for $798. Kogan wants $519 for a grey import today. We should support Aussie retailers (the ones who give our family/friends jobs) but at what cost. What are we prepared to pay for a local phone or a slighty different grey import? I reckon the Aussie retailers should look at another $120 off and match the Asian prices. They all come out of the same factory but lets pay a bit more for a local retailer. Remember, where there are only Woolies and Coles petrol outlets left, fuel will be equivalent of $2.00 (or more) based on todays prices .

Comments are closed.