The best disses from reviews of the original Galaxy Note

Daniel Bean, Yahoo News
Yahoo News

"You look like you’re talking into a piece of toast"  Walt Mossberg of AllThingsD wrote.

When Samsung first debuted its giant-sized smartphone, the Galaxy Note, in 2011, many reviewers were laughing. Given the Note's international success -- Strategy Analytics has it as the fifth best-selling smartphone in the world -- it's safe to say that it is Samsung who's laughing now.

As initial reviews of the third Galaxy Note roll in this morning (you can read a good one here, and another good one here), let's take a look back at the best disses, and most dismissive sneers, of the original Galaxy Note.

As mentioned, Walt Mossberg of AllThingsD wasn't quite taken with the device. "The Samsung Galaxy Note isn’t for everyone, and I can’t recommend it as the main mobile phone for most people," he wrote. Mossberg saw the Note as a "tweener" device that wasn't quite good enough at being either of the two things it was attempting to hybrid, remarking that, "It isn’t a very practical phone and, as a tablet, it can’t match the experience of the iPad, which is more spacious and has over 150,000 apps designed for it," and, "When you hold it up to your ear, it pretty much covers the entire side of your face"

But Mossberg wasn't the only one to poke fun at the potentially embarrassing look of holding a 6" slab of phone to the side of your face.

The review from CNET UK also said the phone "looks pretty silly when you're making a call," and, "While it's thin and surprisingly lightweight, the sheer size of the Galaxy Note means you'll need to be sporting clown-style pantaloons if you want to comfortably slip it in your trouser pocket."

BGR was a bit more biting, with a couple reviews that characterized the phone as not being fit for "average sized human beings," and even saying, "You will look stupid talking on it, people will laugh at you, and you’ll be unhappy if you buy it. I really can’t get around this, unfortunately, because Samsung pushed things way too far this time."

Wired gave the Note a rating of "4/10," saying, "The screen is positively gigantic. Comically huge to the point of shame...Hold it up to your face to make a call and everyone around you laughs. Seriously, it never gets old.

"...The Galaxy Note’s girth makes it tough to carry in your front pocket comfortably while walking around or riding a bike. Stick it in your back pocket, and its bulkiness requires you to take it out when you sit down. Will I have to resort to a man-purse?" the Wired review complains.

The team at Tech Block really enjoyed poking fun at the "full-figured" Note, even hanging it on a living room wall as a flat screen television replacement.

View photo

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A Galaxy Note serving as a flat screen TV


"LCD or Plasma? That was my dilemma before the multi-talented Galaxy Note came into my life and spared me the expense," wrote Abdel Ibrahim and Jon Dick. "I hung the Samsung in my entertainment center and never looked back. Surely this is what James Cameron had in mind when he reimagined Fern Gully."

And though the reviews weren't all mean jokes insults, the positives were typically coated with an "it's not for everyone," or a "niche" label.

SlashGear wrote, "Niche? Certainly, but Samsung hasn’t allowed fears of that to stop it from targeting pretty much every segment of the mobile audience...For the mainstream, 5.3-inches – even with 1280 x 800 resolution – is simply too much to pocket." And TIME explained, "Some Apple snobs might laugh at you. But then, wielding the Note brings a feeling of power. Other phones — even large ones with 4.5-inch displays — suddenly seem puny.

"But it’s a niche product that I like, despite its awkwardness and its faults. Here’s hoping the big bet pays off, and the phone-tablet hybrid lives on."

It sure looks like it did, TIME! The Galaxy Note 3 goes on sale Friday at AT&T and Verizon in the U.S.

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