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Samsung's pushed the boat so far out with its new Galaxy Note 3 that it's practically over the horizon. With an even bigger screen, a record-breaking 3GB of RAM and a plutocratic leather-effect back, the Note 3 is the smart phone of kings.

We went hands-on with the Galaxy Note 3 in Berlin at the IFA tech show a few weeks back, where my esteemed colleague Rich Trenholm opined, "Samsung is obviously going for the premium look of an expensive wallet, and, coupled with the classy metal rim, it actually works."

Price and release date

The Galaxy Note 3 and its sidekick Gear smart watch are both on sale in the UK as of 25 September, for free on two-year contracts from £33 per month, although that won't bag you much data.

EE's cheapest 4G contract tariff is £26 per month, with an up-front charge of £310, and a measly 500MB of data. A 3G plan from O2 with 1GB of data per month and £100 up front will still set you back £37 per month.

If you want to buy the phone outright up front and SIM-free, this Samsung page has the phone listed at a whopping £619 -- even more than the iPhone 5S.

And if you still haven't spent enough money, why not consider the £299 Galaxy Gear companion smart watch? It only works with the Note 3 at the moment, so everyone will know what you're rocking in your pocket just by looking at your wrist.

You can buy it bundled with the Note 3 from Samsung for £868, a discount of £50 when you buy both devices together, or find it on sale at Expansys for £335.

If that all seems like too much to spend at once (a highly understandable point of view), you might want to wait to see if any networks offer the Gear as a freebie when you buy the Note 3. We haven't spotted any such deals yet, but drop a comment below if you see the Gear available at a more reasonable price.


What makes the Note 3 so regal? It's the first phone to offer 3GB of RAM, which on top of a lightning-fast 2.3GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor should make it the most powerful mobile ever made.

The Snapdragon 800 is the engine behind the highest-scoring benchmarked phone we've ever tested here at CNET UK, the Sony Xperia Z1. That only has 2GB of RAM, so for the most complicated, demanding tasks the Note 3 should blast past it. We'll have to wait and run it through our benchmarks to be sure, but we're confident it'll do well.

Elsewhere, the screen is even bigger, up from 5.5 to 5.7 inches. It's still Full HD 1080p resolution. Despite this, and despite its massive 3,200mAh battery, it's thinner and lighter than previous Notes at 168g and 8mm thick.

Are you desperate for the latest Note? Or is it too expensive for you? Make a note in the comments, or on our notable Facebook page, and check out our hands-on video below.

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The Note 3 is the only phone so far that's compatible with the new Galaxy Gear smart watch.
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It's a Note, and as ever that means it comes with a stylus.
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It's incredibly thin for such a big lad.
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The Note's supreme multi-tasking skills let you use apps and widgets in part of the screen with video or a browser happily chugging away behind.
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The stylus has tonnes of useful features.
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Such as the Air Command wheel, which brings up shortcuts when you hover over the screen.
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