Top positive review
Good phone, but your phone - your responsibility!
8 November 2018
I purchased this during the Great Indian Festival Sale in Oct 2018 for 42k (with SBI discount and 0% EMI for 9 months).
After a great deal of comparison and analysis on many phones, I decided to buy Samsung Galaxy Note 8 purely based on the comparable features against iPhone X. Moving out of iPhone was not an easy decision. However, I wanted to break out of the dependency. Having used Note 8 for 2-3 weeks, I now have mixed feelings towards - whether I should've stayed with iPhone or moving out of iPhone was for good. Anyways, here I am, using the 42k mobile.
* Has great many features: good low-light photography (user must learn to take pictures turning off the Auto-mode to take better pictures), lot of productivity and fun tools generally as well as with the S-pen.
* Good display but some commonly used apps like HDFC Netbanking and few other apps display the images/edges in a blurred way. iPhone was way better at this. This leaves your phone displaying contents on your screen only to some extent even with the highest resolution (3 modes available).
* Lets you import all the data (contacts, pictures, compatible apps and most of your old phone whichever it is (even iPhone). This helped me set this phone so fast that I literally started using the phone immediately after I received.
* Fast charging works well (as I was an iPhone user, this is new to me and definitely reduced the time I need to stay away from my phone while charging it).
* The battery stays charged reasonably well (loses about 30% charge in 6 hours of normal usage with 4G connectivity in Power-saving mode, about 50% while in normal mode without power-saving ON).
* Doesn't get heated up while using or charging.
* Large screen display is good and when uncomfortable, it has a feature to turn on ONE HAND mode by swiping up diagonally across the screen (can be changed to 3-tap of Home button).
* Great Bluetooth connectivity and 3.5 mm jack for Aux cable (audio).
* Samsung Pay lets you add your credit/debit cards and some wallets and lets you use it even while you don't carry your physical card. This is an amazing feature that's brilliant enough to give you freedom from wallets during some walks of the day.
* Samsung Health app lets you measure Heart Rate, Stress, etc using the sensor near the rear camera. You will get some insightful readings and take care of your daily health.
* Most important precaution to be taken if you decide to buy this phone is you should be ready with a screen protection workaround as you take it out of the box. They say it is Gorilla glass but my phone took a visible scratch on the screen within 30 minutes out of the box while importing data from my iPhone, definitely without any rough usage. It won't withstand any casual handling. You MUST take care of the display very much. This was not the case with iPhone.
* Speaker is very very poor. Even the ear phone will not let me hear the audio properly even with 100% volume. This is the most disappointing thing in this phone.
* Selfie camera did not work well in low-light. So, don't expect to have the same performance that the rear camera provides in low-light.
* To add to this list is, Face recognition is pathetic and even the phone's Security settings does not recommend it.
* Fingerprint sensor at the back is really annoying, especially when the Face Recognition isn't up to the mark. If you have used iPhone models (upto 8 Plus), you will be experiencing huge discomfort having to unlock your phone lifting it and keeping your finger at the back, near the camera. Be mindful, if you keep touching the rear camera's lens, it will also eventually get scratches.
* There's a dedicated button below the volume buttons which is for Bixby - Samsung's equivalent of Siri/Alexa. I haven't used it yet but if there's an option to assign this button for launching something else, it may be useful for the people who don't need to use Bixby.
* The Android apps get updated almost on a daily basis - not sure what keeps changing. This was not the scenario in iOS.
* Note 8 has 6 GB RAM but keeps showing only 2.5-3 GB is free at any point in time during the day. And, when certain apps are open, the free RAM drops to 1.1-1.5 GB. This keeps me wondering what will happen if I start using games.
Some words to consider:
If you are an iPhone user right now and are looking for changing your phone, better stick with iPhone. Trust me - the price is definitely justifiable to a great extent even if not 100% convincing. However, Samsung Galaxy Note 8 definitely has some great productivity features and is a good purchase except when you are already in love with an iPhone, whichever model it is.
Will update if I feel like adding some points later.