It really does not seem like the best time right now to be a smartphone manufacturer. We’re just coming off a week of news about Apple missteps, from reports of too-easy-to-bend iPhones to a phone-crippling iOS 8 update. Now it’s Samsung’s turn to take some heat, and as those early sales of the Galaxy Note 4 get underway in South Korea, new owners of the phablet are reporting some manufacturing issues of their own.
So what’s wrong with the Note 4? Users are complaining about the presence of rather substantial gaps between the edge of the handset’s front panel and the phone’s frame – gaps large enough to support a business card, as you see in the shots above.
This is far from the first time we’ve talked about build quality problems like this with a smartphone, most recently hearing about a similar issue with Sony’s Xperia Z2. But in that case, we were concerned that the gap might spell problems for the phone’s waterproofing – a feature the Note 4 doesn’t have in the first place.
Does that mean that the Note 4’s around-the-screen gaps aren’t a big deal? Well, when you’re paying many hundreds of dollars for a high-end smartphone, you sure want a device that looks like it’s worth the money, and not just thrown together from ill-fitting components. So yeah, we’d say these shoppers have a right to be a little upset. But functionally, at least, this design flaw doesn’t seem to be having a major impact.