Samsung Galaxy NotePRO 12.2 review
Tablet manufacturers have, to date, largely steered clear of screens larger than 10.1in. But with rumours of a larger iPad rife, the landscape could be about to change – and Samsung is staking a claim on this new sector with the Android 4.4-based Galaxy NotePRO 12.2.
Inevitably, the NotePRO's dominating feature is its superb 12.2in display. It boasts a super-sharp resolution of 2,560 x 1,600 and bags of contrast: we measured maximum brightness at 328cd/m2 and contrast at 1,171:1.
Unfortunately, a tablet this size will always feel significantly less portable than a regular 10.1in tablet, or an Apple iPad Air. Despite Samsung's efforts to keep the bulk down (the NotePRO 12.2 is a mere 8.7mm thick) it's more awkward to hold even than the hefty Nexus 10, especially one-handed – this is not a tablet you'll want to read while standing up on a train.
Indeed, its 744g weight means you'll be looking to prop it up on a surface or your lap at every opportunity. It's surprising that Samsung hasn't seen fit to build in a kickstand.
Specifications and features
Aside from that oversight, there's little that this bear-sized tablet misses out on. Running the show is Samsung's top-of-the-line eight-core CPU, the Exynos Octa 5, effectively a pair of quad-core CPUs working in tandem.
The faster 1.9GHz cores are used for demanding apps and games, while the slower but more efficient 1.3GHz ones come into play for less-demanding jobs such as video playback.
They're backed up with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of base storage, expandable via a microSD slot. The NotePRO supports all the latest wireless communications standards, including 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4 and NFC, plus Wi-Fi Direct support and AllShare Cast for mirroring to Miracast-compatible TVs and monitors.
There is a 4G version (based on a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor instead of the Exynos), but it won't be available in the UK until 17 May. At the back there's an 8-megapixel camera with an LED flash, capturing photographs with plenty of detail and rich colour, with a second 2.2-megapixel camera at the front.
As usual with the Note brand, the NotePRO 12.2 also comes with Samsung's S Pen pressure-sensitive stylus, which docks in a slot found in the top-right corner of the tablet. Pull it out and you can scribble notes, scrapbook parts of web pages and sketch out design ideas using the excellent SketchBook for Galaxy drawing app, which is free to download from the Samsung Hub store.
The NotePRO 12.2 runs on a base of Android 4.4, with Samsung's TouchWiz and "Advanced Magazine UX" optimisations on top. This adds tile-based homescreens to the Android desktop, which can be populated with news, app and social feeds.
It's no different to the interface on the Samsung Galaxy TabPRO 8.4, and you get all the same professional applications preloaded.
- Will Android Wear work with iOS?
- Amazon loses $170 million on Fire phone
- Photos: Information Age revealed at the Science Museum
- Surface makes $1bn for Microsoft in three months
- Facebook Rooms to give anonymity to iPhone users
- Google buys Oxford University AI startups
- Microsoft Kinect SDK 2 brings apps to Windows Store
- Raspberry Pi unveils DIY tablet kit
- Windows 10: two-factor authentication coming to every device
- What is Google Inbox?
- Google Glass: mugger bait, pub problem and other lessons learned from two dangerous weeks
- Twitter, please don't fiddle with my feed
- How Satya Nadella can get some pay-raise karma
- Windows 10: a step back to go forward
- Michael Dell: Cloud infrastructure is the roads, bridges and highways of the 21st century
- How to check your identity hasn’t been sold to the hackers
- Tim Cook: this is how much TV has changed since the 70s
- Westminster wins the .London battle
- 20 years of PC Pro: from deep pan pizza to virtualisation
- Five reasons why the Apple Watch leaves me cold
- iPad Air 2 vs Nexus 9: Apple and Google's latest high-end tablets compared
- Five things that are actually new in the iPad Air 2
- Bendgate, Antennagate, and why Apple doesn’t care about bad news
- iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3 release date, specs and UK price rumours
- Office Online vs Google Docs: which free online office suite is best?
- iPhone 6 Plus vs iPhone 6 design comparison
- How to speed up an Android smartphone
- Nexus 6 release date, specs, UK price and leaked images
- iPhone 6 vs iPhone 6 Plus screen comparison
- Mac OS X Yosemite release date, price and new features
- How to sell more ebooks on Amazon
- 10 ways to make your business more secure
- Top five VoIP mistakes
- How to add in-app purchasing to an iPhone, Android or Windows app
- Remote-control ransomware: TeamViewer and software hardball
- Why laptops with serial ports matter to the Internet of Things
- Make your mobile battery last longer
- Small steps into handling Big Data
- Nexus 5: does it really run stock Android?
- How to get broadband to a garden office