Notable changes with ICS Android 4.0.3 for Galaxy Note
After waiting for what seemed like forever, I woke up this morning to find a notification for an ICS update for my Galaxy Note! After downloading and updating, I’ve noticed that there are some neat features that are now available; some may simply be because of Android 4.x, some are from the Galaxy Note Premium Suite, and others may be just new to me but I never noticed before. Of these new changes, below are a couple that I thought were notable (ha)
for those wondering, I have an international Galaxy Note (N7000) which had
- PDA: N70000XXLC1
- PHONE: N70000XXLB2
- CSC: N70000CPWLB2
- Product Code: GT-N7000ZBADBT
and it was rooted by following dr.Ketan’s guide from xda-developers. The OTA update failed (I think because I am rooted), so I instead used mobile odin pro to update using the N7000OXALPY firmware from samfirmware.com in order to have it actually work, while also preserving my root. After the update, I have:
- PDA: N7000XXLPY
- PHONE: N7000XXLPT
- CSC: N7000OXALPY
- Product Code: GT-N7000ZBADBT
Pen hovering and it’s icon:
With the latest update comes the ability to use the s-pen to utilize cursor hovering events. You can also enable the Hovering Pen Icon from Settings –> Pen settings, which “when pen tip is near the screen, the hovering pen icon is shown on the screen” (notice the tiny circle in the screen shot – that’s the hovering icon):
This is quite a nice feature, for example, because you can hover over items on websites or flash objects that utilize the hover event such as expanding menus:
(main navigation menu from www.slickdeals.net)
It also makes using the S-Pen for drawing and cropping a bit easier – since then pen is not 100% pin point accurate (not to slight it, just being honest), it helps let you know where your ‘”mark” is going to be before the pen touches the screen.
That all being said, you don’t need to enable the icon for the hover event to work – it just makes it easier to see where your “cursor” is while hovering. When enabled, the icon appears on the screen starting when the pen is about 1/4 inch away.
Better UI for Email conversation view:
Prior to this update, whenever I enabled conversation view within the (non-gmail) Email app, every message was bold when not expanded. This effectively made it impossible to tell if there were any new messages in the conversation without expanding the conversation first. After the update, however, conversations are only bold if there are any unread messages in the conversation. Finally!
Galaxy Note Premium Suite:
There’s actually a pretty good video about this that Samsung has already made. I originally thought this was going to be released as a separate update, but looks like they just ‘upgraded’ it into a full ICS update! This basically consists of quite a few “S” app upgrades (S-Note, S-Memo, Samsung Hub etc):
Unfortunately, there is one feature that no longer works which is being able to take a screen shot by holding the home button and then pressing the power button. Doing this now will only bring up the ICS recent tasks menu:
You can still take a screenshot using the s-pen (holding the s-pen button and tap+hold on the screen) or by doing a palm swipe on the screen, but I miss the simplicity of just pressing the buttons.
Have you noticed any other changes that I may have missed? Perhaps there are general ICS updates that stand out on the Note? Sound off in the comments below!