Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Smartphone - Battery Life, Calling and More

Article Index
Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Smartphone
Features and Specifications
General Usage
Camera and Video Testing
Battery Life, Calling and More
Final Thoughts

Battery Life, Calling & More:

As I mentioned earlier, the battery life on the Galaxy Note 3 is very good. The original note has a 5.3" screen running at 1280x800 and was powered by a 2500 mAh battery. It was decent. The Galaxy Note 3 has a 5.7" screen at 1920x1080 and is powered by a 3200mAh battery. I was blown away at the standby time I get. Samsung says you'll get somewhere between 17.5 and 22.5 days of standby. Of course that would be with excellent service and with the screen remaining off. When I originally got the device, I charged it and then pretty much forgot about it for a week as my schedule got completely crazy on the weekend and I took most of the next week to recover. I was very surprised to see that in a week - on total standby - I has used about 30% of my battery. I still had about 70% remaining! I was impressed and believe that in the total-standby world, I could indeed get almost 3 weeks of standby.

The reality is that you never leave your phone powered on for three weeks without using it, so those numbers simply look good and offer bragging rights. What matters is battery life on the road and in use. Still, with the 3200mAh battery, the Note 3 did an amazing job. With light-to-moderate use, I was able to get 3 days out of the device easily - and with heavy use when testing camera, screen mirror, video, ingress, and more, I still easily got a day out of the phone. This is a nice feature to have and even if you're a pretty hardcore user, you should still be able to make it through the day without bringing a charger or an extra battery.

That is one thing I do regret about the Nexus 4 - is the non-removable battery. As with pretty much any other Samsung phone I've used and seen in the past year, the Note 3 back comes off easily and you have easy access to the battery, SIM card and microSD card slot that will allow you to expand your storage by an extra 64GB. With the 32GB model we had for the review, you could simply upgrade that to a 96GB device. Beauty.

The biggest benefit and subsequently the biggest downfall of the Galaxy Note 3 is its size. It isn't small, and with a screen just 0.3" smaller than my Kindle screen, it's certainly not as easily portable as a iPhone 4S with the 3.5" screen. All that being said, the thin form factor and sleek edges of the Note 3 make it quite pocketable and I was actually surprised at how well it came with me everywhere I went. The screen is beautiful for viewing images, video, watching movies, reading books and browsing the web. It's crisp and clear and has ample brightness to compete with outdoor brightness and still offers you a good view of the screen.

The stock keyboard will require you to use two hands to dial numbers - one to hold the device and the other to poke at the screen - but there are now options that allow you to customize and use the Note 3 one handed. It moves the dialer keypad to one side of the screen and helps you to quickly make calls with one hand. Still, for some things, this phone is a bit large and awkward, but in the end I'd give up some convenience for the extra size and beauty that this device offers.

As for call quality, the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 performs quite well. When in decent service areas, the call quality was crisp and as clear as you can expect from a wireless device. The handset and handsfree speaker volume is loud and works well.  I really have no complaints at all with the call quality of this device.