Life on the edge: Samsung’s Galaxy Note Edge reviewed

And hey, Samsung’s included pen also makes an appearance because, as we’ve said, this is basically the Galaxy Note 4 with a slightly different wrap around screen.

As such, you’ll find you can sketch ideas, jot notes, and crop things happening on screen, with a piece of technology that can technically replace the pen and pad you’ve been harbouring in your bag.

Performance also extends to the 4G capabilities of the handset, and with Category 6 LTE technology support here, you can expect very, very fast mobile broadband speeds.

Our GadgetGuy tests revealed speeds ranging between 30Mbps and 130Mbps, a result that practically blows the eyebrows off this reviewer, just like the 127Mbps speed did on the the Note 4.

It’s impressive, and provided you’re using a telco with support for the high-speed technology, you’ll be happy, as it’s possible we’ll see speeds as high as 300Mbps later on, the maximum supported speed of Category 6 4G.

Most will see speeds closer to the 20-60Mbps regularly, which we did when tested on Telstra’s 4GX network, and rarely did we struggle with mobile broadband speeds using the Note Edge in Australia.

The other part of the phone where performance has to be noted is the battery, and Samsung’s effort on battery has found mostly a day for the power users out there, a mediocre effort, though one we can likely attribute to the high-end screen which itself is a higher resolution than the one found on Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4, but only because the screen is larger and wraps around the side.

If you do use your phone a lot, you’ll find one day of life from pushing email throughout the day, listening to music, playing the odd game, social networking, web surfing, and even making a few calls throughout the hours you’re awake.

Use your phone a little more sparingly and you might see a day and a half, and Samsung has even left its ultra-power saving mode in tact, so if you need to get more like out of the phone, there’s a mode supporting that.

But overall, the battery isn’t exactly the strongest part of the phone, and you may find you want more.

Thankfully, Samsung has left support for its fast charging in the box, and one of those little over-amped charge plugs is included in the pack, as well.

The camera is also pretty good, too, with the 16 megapixel shooter working well in daylight and acceptable at night, layering images to produce slightly soft scenes when there’s little light around.

Close-up, we found decent macros could be found, especially when there was an abundance of light, and you’ll even find some image modes can be downloaded from the web, as well as the camera sound silenced, the latter of which makes us very happy.

Sample image from the Samsung Galaxy Note Edge camera

Samsung’s choice of front-facing camera is also better than what you’ll see on many a competitor, too, with a 3.7 megapixel shooter that does a great job of face-tracking and can fire the shot with the heart-rate sensor used as the trigger mechanism.

To do this, simply hold your finger over the heart-rate sensor under the camera and pull it away, with the action firing the front camera for you.

Other features we’re pleased to see include the support for high-resolution audio, the aforementioned heart-rate sensor which can — as you’d expect — measure your heart-rate, the fingerprint sensor built into the home button, infrared port for a remote control, ability to load two applications on the same window with multi-window working, and Samsung’s extra left screen which is a news briefing powered by Flipboard that unfortunately can’t be removed but can be ignored (unless you like it, of course).

And then finally there’s the use of the screen with the edge, which we’re covering last because it’s just such an unusual premise.