The Galaxy Note 3 is not yet out with American carriers, but this hasn’t stopped some from unboxing it and subjecting it to rigorous testing. After all, the one thing consumers want to know when purchasing such a high-end device (apart from the price, that is) concerns its durability: how will it hold up when my Galaxy Note 3 meets the elements?
Have no fear: Android Authority’s Joshua Vergara, someone I respect as a serious techie, is here. I love Vergara’s torture tests at Android Authority and watch each torture test video when it emerges on YouTube. I also enjoy his smartphone and tablet review videos as well, as he seems to know how to judge devices fairly. You can always count on Josh to drop the latest device. Yes, in case you’re wondering, I always cringe when he drops them on concrete. I was actually hurt when he dropped the Galaxy Note 3 on concrete. After all, it is the newest Samsung device – and, like all new devices, I want to treat it with kid gloves.
Vergara dropped the Galaxy Note 3 from three angles: first, on its back; next, on its side; and last but not least, on its face. The face drops are the hardest to withstand.
Galaxy Note 3 Back Drop Test
First, the Galaxy Note 3 faired extremely well when dropped on its back. There seems to have been no damage when dropped on its back. Yes, Samsung decided to use a leather-like texture on the back plate. Although Vergara’s earliest video on the look of the Galaxy Note 3 shows that the leather feel still has the “flimsy” feel when you remove the back plate, holding the device will still feel far more premium than Samsung’s usual plastic back feel. A device can never feel too premium.
Galaxy Note 3 Side Drop Test
Next, the Galaxy Note 3 was dropped on its side. This is where the Galaxy Note 3 experienced some damage, sustaining some noticeable scuff marks on the metal bumper on the Galaxy Note 3. Another thing to notice is that the leather-feeling (or pleather, for plastic leather) back plate opened on the back of device just a bit. While you could still snap the leather back plate into place without worry, the Galaxy Note 3 scuffs are not as easy to “snap” out of place. According to Vergara, “the s pen snapped back in easily, too.”
Galaxy Note 3 Face Drop Test
The face drop test is not my favorite (I hate breaking new smartphones and tablets), but face drops tell you how vulnerable a new smartphone or tablet is. Vergara dropped the tablet on its face, noting the “series of cobwebs” on the front. He commented as he attempted to use the Galaxy Note 3 (after cracking the screen terribly) that he felt the chards go into his skin as he slid his finger from the top of the notification window downward.
As we expected, Samsung has yet to improve the durability of its screens. Vergara noted that he was 5’6”, and that the Galaxy Note 3 was likely dropped from 5 feet. This is the one area in which we hope Samsung will improve its phone production. My best advice is this: as with any phone, even an iPhone, please purchase a screen protector before you take your phone out to face a concrete or dirt surface. You do not want to crack your screen immediately after purchasing your new beauty.
Where Can You Purchase the Galaxy Note 3?
The Galaxy Note 3 is due out early next month and will first arrive with AT&T (October 1), followed by T-Mobile (Oct. 2), and Sprint (Oct. 4). Verizon is said to ship out its Galaxy Note 3 pre-orders by October 10, but we have no word on when Big Red will actually carry the new Samsung beauty in its retail stores. US Cellular has said that it will carry the Galaxy Note 3, but we do have word on when to expect the Galaxy Note 3 to appear in its inventory, either.
If you want to get a look at the device before you purchase it, I highly suggest visiting a local Best Buy. Best Buy will not only have a Samsung store within its stores to provide you with new Samsung products and accessories, but will also help you switch from your current carrier to a new one. I say this as a US Cellular customer that is soon to sign a new two-year contract with Verizon Wireless. If you’re worried about keeping your old number, they’ll let you do that too.