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Was the Galaxy Note 4 the last great Samsung phone?

Since the departure of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 in 2016 and the lackluster performance of the Galaxy Note 5, the Galaxy Note 4 has grown to be the preferred device for phablet fans. Despite the fact that the Note 4 is now well over two years old, demand for the device has continued to ensure its viability within the smartphone market. Does this mean that the Note 4 has become the undisputed King of all Samsung devices? Maybe – you never can tell. Let’s take a look at how the Note 4 might have earned this perception.

It did almost everything

When designing smartphones, there are always things which don’t make the cut, for whatever reason. A feature or part of the time, that wasn’t delivered due to budget or time restraints. This wasn’t really the case with the Note 4. What’s interesting about the Note 4 is that it kind of did everything.

It had the fastest processor at the time, a world-class QHD display, and a fantastic camera. The inclusion of the quad-core Snapdragon 805 with GHz with 3 GB of RAM ensured that the Note 4 was one of the most powerful smartphones available. It had wireless and quick-charging functionality. It had a fingerprint scanner and a heart-rate monitor.  

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The Galaxy Note 4 – the smartphone that does practically everything. / © AndroidPIT

Essentially, it included all of the features you would want from a premium Android phone. It also had the S Pen, the stylus that elevates the Galaxy Note series above typical tablet fare.

And features it did lack, were part of a trade-off. It wasn’t waterproof, but given the removable battery this was to be expected. It didn’t have front-facing speakers, but Samsung must have (correctly) identified that these were way down on customers’ lists of priorities.

What’s interesting about the Note 4 is that it kind of did everything

Crucially, the Note 4 was the last major Samsung handset to offer expandable storage and a removable battery pack. It was almost sacrilege when Samsung dropped these from its Galaxy S and Galaxy Note series, which goes some way in explaining why the Galaxy Note 4 is still so well-regarded.

It stood out from the crowd in all the right ways

Another factor in its enduring popularity is the lack of real competition at the time. Even the iPhone 6 that was released at around the same time couldn’t compare, lagging far behind what Android users had become accustomed to in the power stakes. At the time of its release the Note 4 was streets ahead of everything in terms of both performance and features. 

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The Galaxy Note 5 wasn’t as well received as the Note 4. / © AndroidPIT

Samsung put everything it could into the Galaxy Note 4 and the result was a phone that captured the hearts of Android fans and non-Android fans alike. Though its successor, the Note 5, offered several tiny changes that did make it better than the Note 4, it still doesn’t offer what the Note 4 is able to deliver.

So, what comes next?

At the moment there is a great deal of discussion, and even more speculation, on what we can expect to see released by Samsung in 2017. Many Samsung devotees are patiently waiting for the release of the rumored Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy Note 8, so there is a chance that the popularity of the Note 4 may experience a bit of a downturn. That said, for the time being its looking as though Note 4 owners will still be able to continue to use their devices. Batteries can still be purchased from Samsung, and the Note 4 is continuing to receive software updates and security updates. 

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The Galaxy Note 4 – the last great Samsung device?. / © AndroidPIT

But when can we expect to see a successor to the Note 4? Should we even be expecting a successor? These questions are currently going unanswered by Samsung. The Galaxy Note 7, spontaneous combustion issues aside, was a worthy contender in this respect, but did the issues which caused its downfall also spell the end for the entire Samsung Note series? At the moment this is a fairly open question. Samsung may surprise us at forthcoming Mobile World Congress with a new phablet – most likely the Note 8 – as serial leaker Evan Blass has indicated there may be one on the way. Whether or not this is the case, only time will tell. 

Was the Galaxy Note 4 truly the last great Samsung device? Should we be holding off on the final verdict until the mythical Samsung Galaxy S8 is released? Let us know in the comments below.

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