Jan 03 AT 3:54 PM Nick Gray 50 Comments

US-bound Samsung Galaxy Note gains NFC support, early CM9 build, may be headed to Sprint


The Samsung Galaxy Note is getting quite a bit of attention today. The first bit of news isn’t huge, but it does give us more proof that the Note is headed to AT&T. The first press shot of the Galaxy Note has surfaced, prominently displaying AT&T’s logo above the screen. While specs are nearly identical, the AT&T variant is also said to feature an NFC chip, something that its European counterpart lacks. [1]

The modders and hackers among us will probably be thrilled to hear that the Samsung Galaxy Note has received an early Android 4.0.3 CM9 build. Naturally, there are quite a few things not working as they should, but we suspect the Cyanogen team will have the bugs worked out long before Samsung gets around to rolling out its official Android 4.0 update for the Galaxy Note. [2]

The last bit of news seems to confirm some of our previous speculation about the Galaxy Note. According to the latest rumor, Samsung is working to bring the Galaxy Note to Sprint’s network. No specifications for Sprint’s variant of the Samsung Galaxy Note are currently available. We suspect the Sprint version of the phone will not come equipped with support for its new LTE network, but WiMax support is certainly on the table. [3]

We’ve known for a while that the Samsung Galaxy Note is coming to the US market this year. We suspect Samsung and its carrier partners will fill us in on all the details at CES. Stay tuned folks; we should know the Samsung Galaxy Note’s fate in less than a week.

ATT_samsung_galaxy_note_nfc ATT_samsung_galaxy_note

Nick is a tech enthusiast who has a soft spot for HTC and its devices. Nick joined the Android and Me family in the summer of 2010.

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  • stenzor

    I think you mean NFC in the title there

    • http://htcsource.com Nick Gray

      You are correct sir. Thanks!

  • http://www.openintro.com OpenIntro

    I think at this size, I want to hold it before I say that I definitely want it. That being said, I almost definitely want it.

    • yucareman

      The closest thing to the size of the Galaxy Note is the Galaxy Player 5.0. If you go to local Best Buy or other electronic store that sells them you can get a real feel of it. The galaxy player is 5 inches and is practically the same as the note excluding the phone.

      • WlfHart

        Thanks for the tip, I’m going to have to try that!

  • Ironzey Lewis

    T mobile are you listening?

    I really like this phone, possibly more than the Galaxy Nexus. Too bad it’s not “Just Android” but I guess you need it to get all the support for the stylus.

    • SGB101

      im sure ICS offers native stylus support.

      • johnnycsx

        Stylus support is in the hardware, its the way capacitive screens are made, need the digitizer. Thankfully the Note has it.

        • SGB101

          of course the hardware needs to be there in the first place, that much is obvious.
          however you need the software to run it, hence below Android 4 you need an app or skin that supports stylus, where as ICS natively has support.

          • http://htcsource.com Nick Gray

            We’ll have to see how it actually works though. The tablets that currently do have stylus support all do it in a different way based on what the OEM wants the experience to be.

  • spazby

    Not so sure about this one…

    • danielmkim

      I agree.

      • PaulieG

        I’ve owned mine for a month having previously owned a HTC Desire.. The Galaxy Note is the best thing since sliced bread. Nearly every review I’ve read tries to infer it has a ‘clumbsy’ form factor.. I can tell you having actually used one on a daily basis this isn’t the case at all. If anything, I will never go back to anything smaller. It’s a phone with just enough screen real estate to function like a pad (books, media) whilst still being ‘practically’ portable. Yes, it fits in every pocket I’ve tried so far without any concern. This will sell like hot cakes and set a new standard. Well done Samsung for daring to dream!

  • dclaryjr

    It will be a long time before we see LTE here, and I rarely connect to WiMax. If this phone has a decent 3G radio, I want it now!

  • http://alxrock.deviantart.com alxrock

    This makes me giddy! #Anticipation! I really hope this comes out when it’s time for my Sprint upgrade

  • kazahani


    *head explodes*

    • SGB101

      i really like this, but i want quad as my next upgrade, as il be keeping it for 2 years. so even tho my upgrade is ready, im holding out for Feb/march for the galaxy 3.

      reason fr quad is based on my htc desire, that was top end 24 months ago, but over the last 6 months i found more and more apps that are not compatible, so going quad tegra3 should minimise the chances of this again.

      shame, 5″ Quad would rock, sammy/htc/moto are you listening!!!

      • http://droidsamurai.blogspot.com DroidSamurai

        You know, I begin to think that the idea of keeping an Android phone for 2 years isn’t a great one after all. The rapid release cycle of Android pretty much ensure that by the time you reach the 2 year lifetime of your phone, it will worth almost nothing. You might actually benefit from upgrading every year by selling your old phone and purchase a new one.

      • Ed

        Right, because the pace of cell phone development has really slowed down over the last little while.

        Hahahaha… Good one. You buy a phone now, it will be more obsolete in two years than your desire is. And you say you’ll wait til Feb/March for galaxy3… I sure hope you live in Europe, or else that’s not happening. Galaxy SII came to the US in OCTOBER. Europe will probably get the galaxy SIII sometime between march-may. US will see it at the end of the year, likely.

        • http://htcsource.com Nick Gray

          If he purchased the Desire, he’s probably in Europe. Waiting for a quad core phone is probably a very safe bet. Why buy a phone with last year’s specs when you can get something twice as good in just a few months.

          I’m playing the waiting game too. I really want to upgrade to the HTC Amaze from my G2 but I know I’ll be disappointed with my decision once Mobile World Congress rolls around.

  • URABUS0924

    Give me a white one on Sprint please. Maybe a dormant LTE chipset that will be activated later on? :) Since it won’t have LTE, any chance the Sprint version will keep the Exynos chipset?

  • Gordon

    Sprint should make it “LTE-Ready”. turn the chip on when ready!!!!!!!!!!!


    This would have been the phone I may have gotten instead of the Gnex. A distant second to the nexus. I just can’t see my self ever getting a skinned layered phone again. If I had for some reason opted to get it , I would have gotten the international gsm model months ago. To avoid th BS carrier delayed ICS update.

  • kazahani

    Doesn’t the Exynos SOC have an integrated LTE radio? I thought I read that somewhere.

  • jeff.j1990

    Samsung should have shipped this with official ICS !

  • Nolan Meilinger

    ICS won’t look different with Touchwiz

    • stenzor

      From the preview videos so far it looks like it will look different. Of course there is always CM9

  • http://muddypa.ws/blog nportelli

    How big is it? 5″? I like the digitizer. I hope ICS support for them brings some cool apps.

    • http://htcsource.com Nick Gray

      It has a 5.3-inch display and measures 5.78 x 3.27 x 0.38 (147 x 83 x 9.65 mm).

  • khaki863

    does anyone know if the unlocked version from over seas will work on any 4g network besides at&t. i know it won’t work for tmobile 4g but what about sprint.

    • Ed

      The unlocked GSM version doesn’t even work on AT&T’s real 4G –LTE. And how could it work on Sprint’s 4G when Sprint is CDMA? It won’t even work on Sprint’s network at all, let alone their 4G network.

    • http://htcsource.com Nick Gray

      The GSM bands should be compatible with AT&T’s HSPA+ network. It’s not true 4G, but you should get some decent speeds with it.

  • spazby

    I wouldn’t touch any sprint phones or tablets running on wimax.

  • http://www.jimtravis.com jimtravis

    Purchased the German version of the Note via Amazon, and it is already my favorite phone. Have the Galaxy Nexus as well. Although I am impressed with the LTE speed of the Nexus, I prefer the Note even though it is still running Gingerbread. The SIM (with adapter) from the iPhone 4 works fine for both 3G, and HSPA+ in the Note although the HSPA+ speed is nowhere need the Nexus LTE speed.

    If you are considering big screen phones, check out the Note before purchasing a competing big screen phone.

  • jizzy6879

    man i hope this comes to t mobile

  • Hall Lo

    This phone is getting so much love <3 and i m one of them who love it xD

  • Richard Yarrell

    I wish my friends well on sprint this device is a must have and opens the doors for us on verizon too. I would love to couple this Galaxy Note with the best smartphone on the market my Galaxy Nexus. This would be a great team of devices on the best LTE network in business Verizon….Trust me it will happen before any LTE Galaxy Note appears on Sprint..

    • squiddy20

      “Trust me it will happen before any LTE Galaxy Note appears on Sprint..” Considering the rumor makes absolutely no mention of Verizon at all, you are, as usual, wrong. Try making “predictions” that actually make sense next time.

  • huotg01

    Wimax ? I would personally be very surprised to see Wimax on it! Where did you get this information from ?

    • http://htcsource.com Nick Gray

      It’s pure speculation based on what we’ve seen from Sprint over the past year. There has not been a high-end Android phone launch on Sprint’s network that does not have WiMax support.

      • huotg01

        Wimax is not well suited to any moving devices, that’s why I’m surprised.

        That said, Sprint has Androïd phones with Wimax support ? I’m curious about that.

  • vid500

    I saw it a few days ago in a store, the performance was fantastic and the feel of ti also. it’s really a note more than a phone. But for my needs it’s to big to use it as a phone and carry it around. I reather have a tablet and an 4” phone. But when the size works for someone it’s a fantastic piece of technology.

  • pmex83

    Wonder if this is coming to Tmobile

  • DROID Sam

    I’d buy this if it has stock Android in it. I’m getting sick of all these custom UI’s mucking up Android.

  • madtnotn

    Did it get CM9 early because @cyanogen works for Samsung?

    • AnyPhone

      Doubt it. The Cyanogen team is working on getting their ROm up an running on as many phones as possible and what’s more impressive than showing it off on a 5.3-inch display.

  • kats

    I wonder why samsung does this. You have a device with a lesser screen quality, worse battery life, so the only plus is the big screen and stylus?

    • PaulieG

      Eh? The screen quality is second to none? Did you look at the resolution and ppi specs? Trust me, this screen is the best ive seen on a mobile device to date. Also, it ships with a 2500mAh battery? Have you actually seen and used a Note to justify your statements or are you just making stuff up. I own one and i can assure you your absolutely wrong.

    • http://htcsource.com Nick Gray

      Trust me, you need to actually hold this Note in your hand in order to truly appreciate it.

  • Erik N

    Does anyone really care about NFC? Yeah, you can pay your bills with it and such, but does it serve any other purpose?