Galaxy Note 2 - poor ergonomics

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by hyteckit, Nov 28, 2012.

  1. hyteckit Guest

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2007
    #1
    Been playing with the Note 2 for over 1 week now. However, there are a few annoying things about the Note 2 design/ergonomics.

    Here are some ergonomics issues:

    1. one hard use is bad. Impossible to use with one-hand in most instances.
    2. placement of power button is awful. I hit the power button by accident multiple times a day. I put the Note 2 in my car cup holder, the the power button gets accidently pressed.
    3. The volume buttons are too big and too easily push. Again, pushed it by accident many times. It's one inch long!
    4. The touch buttons on the left and right of the physical home button is not a good idea. Often touch those buttons accidentaly especially in landscape mode when viewing webpages or playing a game. My old android phone has 3 physical buttons.
    5. Having to take out the back cover and remove the battery in order to take out my SIM so I can swap it into my iPhone 4S.
    6. No hold switch.


    I'm glad it has a physical home button. I also like the notification light similar to the blackberry. Just wish the light was on top so I can see it even when I have a case on.
     
  2. theluggage macrumors 68030

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    Jul 29, 2011
    #2
    I think that's a case of 'you pays your money and you takes your choice' - big screen or 1-handed operation. There is a 'one handed' operation option in the settings that make the keypads smaller and to one side of the screen but I'm not sure how practical that is.

    Agreed - there'd be room to put these on the top edge, then if you were listening to music with the phone in your pocket you could get at them.

    I've sort of solved this - I got a cheap flip case which (although not obvious from the picture) has a plastic 'cradle' that grips the phone with cutouts for the vol/power buttons. With the buttons 'recessed' slightly they're harder to press.
    Agree - either go for physical buttons or use the nexus-style on-screen button bar - the latter has its pros and cons, but I really don't see any 'pros' for the touch buttons.

    That would be a problem if you were regularly swapping the SIM. They could have least made it so you didn't have to take the battery out (unless that's deliberate - can you damage anything by yanking the SIM with the power on?)

    OTOH, doesn't the iPhone require a tool to remove the SIM?
     
  3. kdarling macrumors demi-god

    kdarling

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    #3
    Well, it obviously wasn't primarily designed to be used with one hand :)

    It was meant to give as large a screen as possible, that would also fit easily into most pockets.

    People who want one, want it specifically for the larger screen (and pen), and see that as more important than having every section under their thumb.

    It's like complaining that a SUV has more cargo space. That's one of its purposes, after all.
     
  4. daveathall, Nov 29, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2012

    daveathall macrumors 68000

    daveathall

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    #4
    You obviously don't like it so go back to iPhone or perhaps an iPad mini might prove a wiser choice..
     
  5. Smileyboy macrumors 65816

    Smileyboy

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    #5
    Sounds like he is complaining about the design of the phablet, not android
     
  6. daveathall macrumors 68000

    daveathall

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    #6
    I stand corrected, my post has been amended.:)
     
  7. dalbir4444 macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    Which Android phone was this?
     
  8. theluggage macrumors 68030

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    Jul 29, 2011
    #8
    Many earlier Android phones had multiple physical buttons.

    E.g. the HTC Hero and the even earlier Google G1/HTC Desire had multiple buttons and a trackball.

    Thinning down to 3 is a good idea - going touch sensitive not so much, and the idea that the button is invisible and only lights up after you press it is just funny.
     
  9. smellysox8 macrumors regular

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    Oct 5, 2012
    #9
    I would actually prefer if the Note 2 had all soft touch capacitive buttons on the bottom like on the HTC One X.
     
  10. dalbir4444 macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 30, 2012
    #10
    To each his own. I actually like that implementation better. It's less of a distraction and looks cleaner. Besides, the dimming time can be changed from the settings.
     
  11. onthecouchagain macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

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    Mar 29, 2011
    #11
    It's invisible?

    Do you mean when the buttons fade away and become subtle dots? They're not that hard to find again. It's not like you can't tap them anymore. You can still press them.

    And it's actually one of the things I love. In general, soft keys that adapt is a neat feature.

    I also love when the device is off, the face of the screen is just sleek black all throughout.
     
  12. Zwhaler macrumors 603

    Zwhaler

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    Jun 10, 2006
    #12
    This isn't a fault of the phone, you went out and bought the biggest smartphone out there second to the LG Intuition. That's like buying an iPad mini and faulting it for poor one handed operation when it isn't really designed for it.
    I agree with this, but I don't feel it's "awful" just a little weird. When activating the screen with one hand I can't actually think of a better place for it, that's why it doesn't bother me.
    I think the volume buttons are a little long, but that doesn't translate to bad for me, would you prefer if they were 25% smaller? Wouldn't be a whole lot different I think.
    This problem I come across when using it in landscape mode. I solved the problem by either putting my thumb over the home button or just placing it along the outer edge of the bezel so it's placed out side of the button.
    This is frankly a ridiculous claim, most users will never even have to do this process once. If they do, they made it really easy (taking off the back cover, removing battery isn't a long or complicated process)
    I personally haven't felt the need for one, but some others may want one.
    All in all I'm a big fan of this device as you can tell :p and maybe its just because the positives so completely outweigh these perceived negatives that they don't even bother me at all.
     
  13. IFRIT macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 15, 2012
    #13
    A couple of the points are laughable, anyone getting a Note 2 is not expecting to use it one handed it has a 5.5" screen the fact it is going to have poor 1-hand ergonomics is a given. Also complaining about having to take the back cover off to change SIM's... i mean come on as said above for 99% of people they put the SIM in once and take it out once for the life of the phone.
     
  14. Zwhaler macrumors 603

    Zwhaler

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    #14
    Or better, mine came with the SIM preinstalled so I'll never have to touch it!
     
  15. aerok macrumors 65816

    aerok

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    #15
    I would say it's more like buying a bus and complaining that it's harder to parralel park.
     
  16. kdarling macrumors demi-god

    kdarling

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    #16
    I actually miss the optical track sensor on the old Incredible. I could scroll like crazy without moving my thumb more than a fraction of an inch at a time.

    People go on and on about one-handed usage, and yet a touchscreen is amongst the worst possible input devices for that, especially for situations where it also makes sense to not have to look at the screen.

    It's the same with remote controls. Touch versions with LCD labels are cool, but nothing beats having easily recognizable (by feel) physical buttons for channel surfing, etc, without having to look.

    I agree. I love their look; not so happy about their ergonomics.

    Heh. True. Or buying a larger car after having a Fiat 500, and complaining that you can no longer easily reach every part of the back seat from the driver's position :)
     
  17. aerok macrumors 65816

    aerok

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    #17
    Oh yeah, I used to love having one on my Desire Z.
     
  18. hyteckit thread starter Guest

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    Jul 29, 2007
    #18
    Just pointing out it's lack of ergonomics when it comes to one-handed use. Samsung does try to rectify the issue with software settings "one-handed operation".

    It's like pointing out a mini cooper lacks cargo space in a car review. Doesn't make it an invalid point.

    So obvious anyone looking for a smartphone that can easily be used with one-handed should look for a smaller and better designed phone for one-handed use.

    ----------

    I never really have to remove the SIM before either until I have a Note 2. Way too big and heavy to go jogging with, so I prefer to take my iPhone 4S instead.

    But I don't understand why Samsung place the SIM slot right against the battery so you are required to remove battery in order to remove SIM.
     
  19. theluggage macrumors 68030

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    Jul 29, 2011
    #19
    No, I think you're thinking of the Nexus, with a 'soft' button bar occupying the lower edge of the screen. We're talking about the Note 2, which doesn't use that.

    It has a physical 'home' button flanked by two illuminated touch-senitive areas for 'Menu' and 'Back'. These are invisible when not lit. By default, they only light up briefly when you unlock the phone or after you press one.
     
  20. onthecouchagain macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

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    Mar 29, 2011
    #20
    Ah, yes, I see. My mistake.

    Hm, still, I think once you get used to what's where, not too big of a deal? I see your point, though.
     
  21. doomfront macrumors regular

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    Sep 19, 2012
    #21
    Bought mine this morning. And I'm using it with one hand with no problem.
    reach each corner too one handed.
     
  22. F123D macrumors 68040

    F123D

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    Del Mar, CA
    #22
    You don't say.. :)

    Seems like a lot of the issues you bring up would have easily been noticed if you handled a display model and watched a review or two before purchasing. At least you gave the device a try instead of just criticizing it without ever using one like others do. Are you planning on returning it?

    I do agree, if you use the phone naked, the power button could be placed a little higher and the volume button could be a little smaller. However, if you use a case, that solves the accidental button presses.

    ----------

    Is that an issue though? They still work exactly the same lit or unlit.
     
  23. 3bs macrumors 603

    3bs

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    #23
    That and it's much easier not having to use a pin to get the SIM out (this coming from a Nexus 4 owner)
     
  24. dalbir4444, Nov 29, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 29, 2012

    dalbir4444 macrumors 6502a

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    #24
    People should do the sufficient research before buying a device. It prevents buyer's remorse. That why, IMO it's silly to complain about the Note 2. It's not targeted to people who want to use it with one hand.

    IMO, it's reasonable to complain about the iPhone's size because you only get two options, 3.5" and 4". It makes sense for Apple to produce a larger phone for people that want to stay in the Apple ecosystem and aren't happy with the current offerings. But Apple probably knows better than me:)
     
  25. Zwhaler macrumors 603

    Zwhaler

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    #25
    Honestly, while most iPhone users find 3.5" or 4" to be the perfect size, the Note 2 CLEARLY isn't meant to be considered being bought as a smartphone the same way one might consider, say the Galaxy S3 over the iPhone. The Note 2 is in it's own niche, so people buying it for any other reason than to specifically own a larger device, knowing it won't get used one handed all the time, didn't do their research.
     

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