The Samsung Galaxy Note 4 is Samsung’s current flagship device. It’s based around one of a choice of three high end chipsets, either from Qualcomm or Exynos, including 3 GB of RAM, a 5.7-inch QHD screen (of 2,560 by 1,440 pixel resolution), a 3,220 mAh battery and the usual selection of radios, including high speed 4G LTE and WiFi. It runs Samsung’s TouchWiz interface over Android 4.4 Kit Kat, but we expect it to be updated to Android 5.0 Lollipop ahead of most if not all of Samsung’s devices. The Note 4 also comes with the Samsung S Pen.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 4 has an optically stabilized, 16 MP rear camera on the back, which already takes great photographs. At the front, there’s a 3.7 MP camera. The Note 4 has several modes built-in to the device, but there are more available from the Samsung App Store including Animated Photo, Sports Shot, Sound & Shot and Sequence Shot. Some users won’t necessarily use these applications, whereas other users will love them and so can download at will.
And then there’s the point of this article, which is an improvement to the standard Samsung camera application. You need to have your device rooted and then you can either flash a downloaded file through recovery and restart the device, or there’s a more complicated way to overwrite the existing camera application. The improvements remove the JPEG compression from 96% to 100%, which depending on the subject can make a difference but I suspect for most of the time the difference will be insignificant. However, the improvements to video recordings are more substantial. The bitrate mode is increased from between 20 to 28 mbit (depending on the recording mode) up to 40 to 65 mbit. There’s also an increase in video recording times; at dual DHD or UHD, recording time goes from 5 minutes to 10 minutes. Ten minute recording limits are up to thirty minutes. The modification also removes Samsung’s disabling of the camera application in a call. Oh and finally, you can use the camera and the flash when the battery is running low.
If you’re the type of user who routinely roots their device and is always tweaking to get the most from it, check out the source for the download. If you are (somehow) disappointed with the Note 4’s camera, here’s a way to improve the camera too. For the rest of us, it’s more interesting to see how the developer scene finds way to improve on devices – and perhaps Samsung will take note of these improvements.