I'm an American living in Beijing. I had a Galaxy Note 1 for a bit, and loved it. I recently bought an unlocked Galaxy Note 3 N9006, which is a Chinese variant of the Note 3. Unfortunately, because of China's ongoing feud with Google, it doesn't have a Play Store, Gmail, or any of the other Google apps that made me love Android in the first place. The system is ostensibly in English, but there are lots of China-specific things about it: every app on the Samsung store is in Chinese, warnings and so forth also tend to be, and my only two options for searching are Baidu and Bing (both of which I hate).
What I want is for the phone to run like one that I would buy in America. I'm open to rooting it, or installing a different type of firmware, but I'm unfamiliar with what that stuff really means, or how to do it.
Is this possible? Or will I be stuck with a Chinese phone forever?