Unlike a lot of other markets where Samsung deals in factory unlocked phones, it sells most of its devices carrier locked in the USA. This means that it is not only Samsung, but also the carrier which has a say in deciding the fate… or even the existence of a particular device. Fortunately, we have some good news for the tinkerers on the Verizon network who’ve been waiting for a dev-friendly phone to play around with.
No, we aren’t talking about the all-new (sort of) Google Nexus 6, but rather the Developer Edition of the latest Galaxy Note flagship, aka the Galaxy Note 4. The phablet is now confirmed to be on its way to Verizon networks in its Developer Edition avatar. A listing on the official Samsung website confirms this. And although it also does list pricing for the smartphone, we don’t believe it’s entirely accurate as of yet. Why, you’re wondering? Well, here it is — the listing says the Developer Edition will cost US$662.53, which is in fact lower than the standard Note 4 pricing for the device. This is exactly the opposite of what we’ve seen in the past; OEMs (besides Google of course) are known to charge a premium on Developer Edition handsets.
If you aren’t aware what the fuss around Developer Edition smartphones is about, well let me tell you. Most smartphones come with a restriction in the form of a locked bootloader, which prevents developers and the likes to utilize the available hardware. Often, Developer Edition phones too come with locked a bootloader, but these are easily unlockable and OEMs often publish instructions on how that can be done. The Galaxy Note 4 or the SGN4 as it is informally known is a beast of a phone with a massive 5.7-inch 2560 x 1440 QHD display, a 2.7GHz quad-core processor, healthy 3 GB of RAM, 32 GB of on-board storage, a fast-charging capable 3220 mAh battery, a 16 MP rear camera and a 3.7 MP front camera. It comes with Android v4.4 KitKat pre-installed, but expect to see unofficial ports and hacks to other (possibly newer) Android iterations soon as developers get their hands on this Developer Edition phone.