Hands-on and first impressions of the Galaxy Note 4, Edge and Gear VR
Today, Samsung was expected to reveal the Galaxy Note 4, which it did; however, it was not done there. No, the company shocked the tech community with two other products, the Galaxy Note Edge and Galaxy Gear VR. The Edge is similar to the Note 4, but offers a screen that wraps around the edge of the device (hence, the name) to offer a unique second-screen-like experience.
While the Galaxy Edge (and Adam Levine) is what made the journalists in attendance gasp, the Galaxy VR was accepted mildly. This is not entirely surprising, as it is arguably nothing more than Google Cardboard, but in a more high-end chassis. You see, the VR simply holds the Galaxy Note 4 in front of your face and positions lenses in front of your eyes. Cardboard knock-off or not, it was an intriguing product that had me smiling like a child on Christmas morning.
The line to try the Galaxy Gear VR was very long and I was forced to sign a waiver, in case I was injured or killed. Excessive, sure, but I signed my rights away anyway. Truth be told, I scribbled some illegible nonsense, and the guy did not seem to mind.
Once it was my turn, I ran to the seat to get started. The Samsung guy put the VR on my face and headphones on my ears. On the screen was a Coldplay concert -- the band surrounded by an audience. As I turned my head and looked up and down, the device made it seem like I was really there. After 30 seconds or so, my brain was convinced that it was seeing Coldplay live. Samsung has a real winner on its hands with the VR.
The real star of the show was the Galaxy Edge. As you can see in the video below, it is a beautiful device, with a world-class display. The big selling point, however, is the screen that goes around the edge. While I am sure pundits will proclaim it to be a gimmick, I think this has the potential to be very useful. Of course, its success is dependent on developers embracing it.
The Note 4 is sort of the "odd man out". Don't get me wrong, it is a great device -- the best Galaxy Note ever, but it is not clear why it needs to exist with the Edge. Couldn't the wrap-around edge just be a feature of the Note 4? In other words, the Galaxy Edge should be the Galaxy Note 4. Samsung seems to have taken the excitement out of the Note, and ultimately, it may confuse consumers. Take a look at the below video and see how similar both phones are.
Overall, all three new devices are amazing. Both new Galaxy phones are well-made and feel great in the hand. Best of all though, the screens are gorgeous. Samsung has one-upped LG for the time being, and the firm has once again established itself as the company with the best Android handset.
What do you think of the new Samsung devices? Tell me in the comments.