review: Samsung Galaxy Note 3

Coming off two years with an iPhone 4s, and I love this thing.

First, it’s big enough to really read on. Not just briefly read a tweet or listicle, but to actually READ, like, news and emails, of actual importance.

Second, SWYPE. So much better than pecking at individual keys, and it offers you ~choices~ among its predictions! Which is symbolic of the whole Apple vs Android thing.

Everyone calls these Note phone “gigantic” but they’re really not. They’re the right size for an adult’s hand and eyes. They fit in pants or jacket pockets, though I’ve taken to carrying mine in a Condor pouch [amazon] carabiner’d to a belt loop. 

The interface is speedy and smooth — I remember a couple years ago the Android phones were so jerky I eeeegh’d. No more! It’s Appley smooth.

Taking photos with this is great — the large screen makes it like you’re looking at the finished product. You can see if your subject is blinking!

Google Now kicks. siri’s. ass. In accuracy, speed, visual “yes, i’m listening” feedback… 

Getting your files s onto the device is drag-and-drop simplicity. NO iTUNES! :)

I like using the stylus at work, because you look like you’re entering important field data while all your iphone coworkers, tapping with sticky fingers, totally appear to be playing Candy Crush. 

All the apps I had on my iPhone are on my Note 3, except for Garageband, which I never used. Except, I’d like a decent offline Poker app (like Apple’s own 2008 Poker game that I bought and then they discontinued a year later so I had to install it from backups! Dicks!) and it took a while to find a really good podcast app (Pocketcasts, which I also used on my iPhone, was a bargain at $4, and the only app I had to buy outright.)

But there’s a couple imperfections.

I wish the power button wasn’t directly opposite the volume rocker, because when I squeeze the power button I inevitably squeeze the volume as well.

And in camera mode, I find I often brush my hand against the back “button” (it’s not a physical button but a touchpad sensitive thing), which closes the app when I’m trying to take a pic. But that’s happening less as I get used to that area being touch-sensitive and duly avoid it.

And I wish I could uninstall most of Samsung’s apps, but I’m not worried about space on this thing, so hiding them has been sufficient so far. 

Really glad I bought this thing. (Up front no less! $760 after tax, but on Ting, so monthly bills are ~$45/mo instead of $148/mo)

:)

Big fan of those “book”-like covers that fold over the screen.

Mwuah ha ha ha HA HA ha haaaaa

Apple | iTunes Match (2013)

So having my 24,000 songs in the cloud is a bit of a waste of time — using it would kill my 2gb/mo data plan.

And having my 160kbps mp3 rips upgraded to 256kbps aac was a clusterfuck.

It took DAYS of scanning and uploading and deleting and downloading to get shit upgraded, and even then, 1) not all songs in an album got upgraded, and 2) iTunes formatted it [artist] > [album] > [track number] [song title], with no way for me to tell it to stick THE FUCKING YEAR in there somewhere, and 3) iTunes doesn’t know SHIT about j-rock. 

Woulda been simpler to do a search for “metallica discography 320”, then using Flash Renamer and Tag & Rename to format the tracks and folders to your liking!

(Plus iTunes 11, despite its improvements, still farts along like a lazy coworker doing the bare minimum. The Zune PC app is ridiculously more capable.) 

I don’t recommend iTunes Match for ANYTHING.  

:(

This may take a while.

Amazon Cloud iTunes Match | Google Music
and JAPANESE MUSIC

I want to upgrade all the crap I ripped at 160kbps back in 1998-2003, when hard drives were small and my music collection was big. 

For Japanese music — like Dir en grey, L’Arc~en~ciel, Luna Sea, Sex Machineguns, Pierrot, Kagrra, Despairs Ray, Puffy, Nanase Aikawa, etc… will any of these services be able to match these artists’ discographies, or even just ~some~ albums or singles?

iTunes has a japanese store, Amazon does too…

Post in the comments, I’ll write up my experience next week…

 

Used MP3 Stores

NYTimes:

On Thursday, the United States Patent and Trademark Office published Apple’s application for its own patent for a digital marketplace. Apple’s application outlines a system for allowing users to sell or give e-books, music, movies and software to each other by transferring files rather than reproducing them.

Meanwhile, a New York court is poised to rule on whether a start-up that created a way for people to buy and sell iTunes songs is breaking copyright law. A victory for the company would mean that consumers would not need either Apple’s or Amazon’s exchange to resell their digital items. Electronic bazaars would spring up instantly.

Would I start buying more than a couple albums or CDs each year if these used shops come about? Probably not.

“The technology to allow the resale of digital goods is now in place, and it will cause a dramatic upheaval,” said Bill Rosenblatt, president of GiantSteps, a technology consulting firm. “In the short term, it’s great for consumers. Over the long term, however, it could seriously reduce creators’ incentive to create.”

I’m fucking SWIMMING in movies and music that I have zero energy or time to digest, and I still love music and film. The world could USE some reduced creatoring!