The Galaxy Note aims to bridge the gap between Android smartphones and tablets, and reminds us of those personal digital assistants that have long gone out of fashion.
The Note measures 147x83x10mm, and has the look and feel of an oversized Samsung Galaxy S II. It fills the palm of your hand, but is extremely light to hold and will comfortably fit into a trouser pocket.
Despite the large 5.3in screen, the Note weighs just 178g, making it 42g lighter than the smaller 5in Dell Streak. The Note isn't that much heavier than other smartphones on the market, and is only 16g more than the 4.3in HTC HD7, for example.
Samsung continues to outdo itself in terms of display quality. The Note has a Super Amoled HD screen with a resolution of 1,280x800, which is excellent in terms of brightness and colour.
Under the sleek chassis, Samsung has packed in a 1.4GHz dual-core processor, which will make the Note one of the fastest handsets on the market when it arrives.
Features that make the Android 2.3 Gingerbread device unique include the S Pen stylus, which can be used to navigate, jot down notes and even search the handset or internet. We were able to search for sites in Google using the stylus, as the Note recognised our handwriting.
Preloaded productivity apps include S Memo, which can record pictures, voice, text, notes and drawings, and S Planner, which manages items such as a to-do list and schedule, again suggesting that the Note is aimed at business users.
Another useful business feature is that pretty much all on-screen content can be captured and converted to a 'memo' to be edited, annotated and shared.
NFC connectivity is optional, and we were impressed with the 2,500mAH battery. It's not as big as the 4,000mAh battery in the original Galaxy Tab, but is almost twice the size of the 1,650mAh pack in the Galaxy S II.
Devices such as the Dell Streak have not been the most popular, but Samsung has shown that the company has a pedigree in the mobile market and, by combining the functionality of the Galaxy Tab and Galaxy S II, it could be onto a winner with the Note.
Samsung has yet to reveal official pricing for the Note. Clove has it listed as £600, although the online electronics retailer notes this is a speculative price. We'd imagine the actual SIM-free price to be more around the £450 mark.
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