news The Samsung Galaxy Note will be available at Telstra stores and online from Tuesday, April 24, the telco revealed yesterday.
Consumer customers will be able purchase the Samsung Galaxy Note starting at $10 per month on the $79 Freedom Connect Plan (after using an included MRO Bonus), with $800 worth of included calls & MMS, unlimited SMS (all to standard Australian numbers) and 2GB of data for use in Australia each month. The minimum cost over 24 months was pegged at $2,136 or $89 per month. It appears this news was first broken by Ausdroid.
Business customers can purchase the device on a $90 Business Mobile Advantage Plan with a $10 per month Mobile Repayment Option for 24 months after using their MRO bonuses. This offer includes unlimited standard national SMS and MessageBank diversion and retrieval in Australia, as well as 2GB of data to share with other staff on the same plans while in Australia. Minimum cost over 24 months was $2,400.
The Samsung Galaxy Note has a 5.3″ Super AMOLED display with HD WXGA 1280×800 resolution capacitive touchscreen. It is powered by a 1.4Ghz dual-core processor, has Bluetooth technology v 3.0 + HS, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, Wi-Fi Direct, 16GB Internal memory + microSD (up to 32GB). 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 2500mAh battery.
The 9.65mm device features a new category menu under Samsung Apps with applications specially designed for its stylus, or ‘S Pen.’ However, using the stylus is a bonus rather than something that’s strictly necessary.
Reviewer Jenneth Orantia, in Delimiter’s review of the Galaxy Note, concluded that the Galaxy Note was not a device for everyone. She said: “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.” However, Orantia also felt that the larger screen size with tablet-like display resolution made the Note a compelling device.
The Samsung Galaxy Note was launched in Australia last month, and has been available in stores for an outright purchase price of $899, as well as at online retailers like MobiCity and Expansys AU. Optus and Vodafone customers were offered the Note on certain plans:While Optus offered a $5 monthly payment on the $59 monthly Optus Cap Plan for 24 months at a minimum cost of $1418, Vodafone offered a $5 per month on the $59 monthly plan for 24 months at a minimum cost of $1536.
Telstra’s pricing on the Galaxy Note seems quite excessive compared with the plans offered by Vodafone and Optus, or even the stand-alone prices which you can buy the phone from. If you want to use the Note on Telstra’s Next G network (which is the only mobile network I really recommend in Australia at the moment, despite its recent problems), then I recommend you buy the phone outright elsewhere and sign up for a plan with Telstra, rather than paying its exorbitant monthly costs. The Note is not a new smartphone — it’s been available internationally for some time — and I wouldn’t expect it to be priced so highly in Australia. Optus and Vodafone appear to have realised this; Telstra not so much.
Image credit: Samsung. Opinion/analysis by Renai LeMay