Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop Update: Impressions & Performance

The Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop Update is finally here, bringing Android 5.0 to the Galaxy note 4 on Verizon Wireless and offering a plethora of new features that make the Galaxy Note 4 smarter and it delivers new looks for the software and for many Android apps.

After a decent wait the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update is rolling out to users over the air and we want to take a quick look at how the new Verizon Note 4 Android 5.0 update performs on this recently released device. This is especially important after a number of Galaxy S5 Lollipop problems that appeared after that update arrived.

We saw some Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop problems with the AT&T model, which is one of the reasons we take such a close look at updates like this when they arrive on devices — even new ones like the Samsung Galaxy Note 4.

What you need to know about the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update.

What you need to know about the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update.

The Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update is a major upgrade that changes the visual look of Android on the Note 4, adds new features like Smart Lock so you don’t need to use a lock screen code when you are at home or connected to a specific Bluetooth device like a headset or Android Wear. The Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update also adds support for Advanced Calling 1.0 that can deliver better sounding calls, new video calling options and allows for simultaneous voice and data use on the Galaxy Note 4.

This is still one step behind the Android 5.1 update that is available for some devices, but it is a major change that many Galaxy Note 4 owners have been eagerly waiting for.

After spending several days using the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update, including using it with Android Wear on the Moto 360, I can share my initial feedback with Galaxy Note 4 owners. This is my early Note 4 Lollipop review, that I will expand on after longer use.

Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop Installation

The Verizon Note 4 Lollipop installation went as smooth as any Android update I’ve performed. This is a two-part update so you’ll need to install a small update to enable Advanced Calling on the Note 4 and then the device will identify a second Android 5.0 Lollipop update to download and install.

The Verizon Galaxy note 4 Android 5.0.1 update installation was smooth.

The Verizon Galaxy note 4 Android 5.0.1 update installation was smooth.

Installing the first update took less than 10 minutes. Verizon warns that the Note 4 Lollipop update takes about 16 minutes to install, during which time you cannot use the phone. It took almost 20 minutes for the installation to complete, including the process where Android checks and updates apps to work on the Note 4 Lollipop update.

With some earlier updates on other Android devices I ran into problems where some apps disappeared from the home screen or the device hung up during the last phase, but this upgrade was smooth. Just make sure you can survive without your phone for about 30 minutes.

Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop Performance

After spending the weekend using the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update there are some clear advantages to the upgrade and so far the overall performance is good. Keep in mind that your experience may vary based on how you use the phone and the apps that you rely on every day.

Although there is a lot of power in the Galaxy Note 4, it is not a device that I use for a lot of gaming and i don’t use any special apps for work that may or may not work well on Android 5.0. You don’t need to install the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update as soon as it appears on your phone. If you aren’t sure about it, you can wait until we share a final Note 4 Lollipop review with extended use.

Galaxy Note 4 Apps

The Note 4 apps work great on Android 5.0 Lollipop and the home screen remained unchanged.

The Note 4 apps work great on Android 5.0 Lollipop and the home screen remained unchanged.

You can check out our best Galaxy Note 4 apps list to see which apps I keep on my Verizon Galaxy Note 4. I use a core set of apps including Facebook, Android Wear, Twitter, Gmail, Google Maps and others almost every day. Spotify, Netflix and HBO Go are also often used. All apps that I tested are working fine on Android 5.0 on the Galaxy Note 4. Most apps are updated to Android 5.0 already because Google released the initial version last year. Make sure you update apps, and if you do run into a specific problem it may be due to some Samsung customization, so a developer may need to make a small change.

After the update all apps on the home screen remained in place and the icons and shortcuts all worked. Occasionally the upgrade process breaks some of the home screen placements and links to apps, but that was not a problem on my Verizon Galaxy Note 4.

I will continue to monitor this and to use more Note 4 apps, as there is a chance that some hiccups will appear after extended use.

Note 4 Lollipop Battery Life

There are reports of Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop battery life problems on the AT&T Lollipop update, so there is a chance that users will see similar problems on the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Android 5.0 update. We heard similar Verizon Galaxy S5 complaints soon after that update appeared.

After using the Galaxy Note 4 over the weekend the Note 4 Lollipop battery life remains good. That doesn’t mean that no users are experiencing Verizon Galaxy Note 4 lollipop battery drain problems, or that our device is out of the woods, so I will keep a close eye on it as I use it throughout this week.

If you experience bad Note 4 battery life after installing Lollipop, use this guide to fix bad Galaxy Note 4 battery life.

WiFi, LTE & Bluetooth

After installing the Galaxy Note Lollipop update from Verizon I am still able to use the connectivity features as I had on Android 4.4 Kitkat.

Voice and data now work at the same time and there are new video call options.

Voice and data now work at the same time and there are new video call options.

Verizon LTE is still very fast and reliable. The WiFi connection works at home and at my grandparents where it automatically connected to the network so I could use the device in their basement at Easter. Bluetooth connectivity is also working well so far.

With Advanced Calling 1.0 turned on I can make a video call, use the web and talk at the same time and make a one way video call. The voice and data works with any call, but the HD voice and the video call options only work to other Advanced Calling devices.

Bugs & Issues

It is still early and often bugs or issues present after extended use, but the good news is that after a weekend of heavy mobile use I did not run into any Verizon Galaxy Note 4 lollipop bugs or problems. We could not find a long list of other bugs or issues. If you experience problems, you can post in the Verizon Wireless Galaxy Note 4 forums for help.

Speed

Speed is impressive with the Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update.

Speed is impressive with the Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update.

The speed of a device is always a question after an update like this, even on a device that isn’t very old. I am happy to report that the Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop speed is great on Verizon and I am not experiencing any lag at this time.

Everything from opening apps and switching apps to using the phone to check weather, Facebook and NCAA Final Four scores was quick and fluid.

Should You Install the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop Update?

Who should install the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update now, and who should wait.

Who should install the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update now, and who should wait.

If you cannot wait to use the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update or you need a fix for Note 4 KitKat problems that are annoying you, the Note 4 update looks like a solid option for many users.

For other users who don’t need to fix a problem or be first to get an update waiting a week might be a better option. By that time we’ll have our full Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop review complete and we’ll also hear from more users who installed the Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop update to get a wider look at potential issues and problems.