Samsung has officially launched the Galaxy note 9 (after several unofficial mistakes) and it has an immediate and obvious rival: Samsung’s own Galaxy S9 Plus. The company’s two biggest và most expensive smartphones are a lot alike, but for upgraders there are key differences you need to understand…

Displays - Bigger Meet Biggest

The Galaxy S9 Plus has one of the largest displays on any Samsung phone, but the Galaxy cảnh báo 9 is even bigger:

Galaxy note 9 - 6.4-inch, 18.5:9 aspect ratio, Super AMOLED, 1440 x 2960 pixels (516 ppi px density), 83.4% screen-to-body ratio, HDR10 compliant, Corning Gorilla Glass 5
Galaxy S9 Plus - 6.2-inch, 18.5:9 aspect ratio, Super AMOLED, 1440 x 2960 pixels (529 ppi), 84.2% screen-to-body ratio, HDR10 compliant, Corning Gorilla Glass 5

There are a couple of factors to lớn highlight here. Yes, the Galaxy chú ý 9 has an even larger display but the S9 Plus actually has the slightly higher pixel density & screen-to-body ratio (aka bezel size), so the February phone stands toe-to-toe with the brand new Note.

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Interestingly, the Galaxy lưu ý 9 also still uses Gorilla Glass 5, despite manufacturer Corning already having announced Gorilla Glass 6 which provides added drop protection. Samsung has confirmed the Galaxy lưu ý 9 display is slightly brighter & more colour accurate, but the S9 Plus still has one of the best displays available so no-one will complain.

Design & kích thước - Heavyweight Champs

The S9 Plus may be one of Samsung’s largest và heaviest premium smartphones but - just lượt thích their displays - the Galaxy lưu ý 9 tops it:

Galaxy lưu ý 9 - 161.9 x 76.4 x 8.8 mm (6.37 x 3.01 x 0.35 in), 201 g (7.09 oz) Galaxy S9 Plus - 158.1 x 73.8 x 8.5 mm (6.22 x 2.91 x 0.33-inch), 189g (6.67 oz)

Surprisingly, both models are slightly thicker and heavier than their predecessors but they pack in the features for this weight gain. The two phones are IP68 water and dust resistant, have stereo speakers (with a ridiculous Dolby Atmos certification), USB-C charging, wireless charging (more later) và retain the 3.5mm headphone jack.

As such, differences again are subtle but the Galaxy lưu ý 9 has a noticeably more angular design as well as a microSD card slot capable of supporting 512GB cards while the S9 Plus is limited khổng lồ 256GB. Both phones have wisely moved their fingerprint sensors below their dual rear cameras (more next) though they have different vertical & horizontal lens alignments.

But by far the biggest difference, however, is the Galaxy note 9’s S Pen. Now upgraded with bluetooth không dây LE, it works lượt thích a remote, programmable button, not just a (class leading) stylus. As such you can have it mở cửa the camera, take photos, control music playback and more. It also charges in just 40 seconds when inserted back into the phone, ingenious.

Not everyone needs or wants a stylus, but for those who vị this will be the Galaxy chú ý 9’s khuyến mãi maker.

Read more - Galaxy note 9 Vs Galaxy cảnh báo 8: What’s The Difference?

Cameras - Similar Hardware, Smarter Software

The Galaxy cảnh báo 9 and S9 Plus have identical camera hardware. This means dual rear 12MP cameras with dual apertures that cleverly switch between F1.7 (good light, high speed) and F2.4 (low light, longer exposures) apertures, as well as the same front facing 8MP camera with F1.7 aperture.

The difference is Samsung has significantly upgraded the image processing on the Galaxy cảnh báo 9 and added a ‘Scene Optimizer’ lớn automatically recognise và enhance subjects và landscapes). As such the company claims low light performance, in particular, will improve and there will be high hopes the truly awful front facing camera benefits as well.

I"m loathed khổng lồ make too big a khuyến mãi of this since Samsung should tăng cấp the image processing on the S9 Plus as well in future via a software update. But for now, the Galaxy chú ý 9 will produce better results, even if 2017’s Google px 2 still sets the standards.

Elsewhere both the Galaxy note 9 & S9 Plus have Samsung’s ‘Intelligent Scan’ facial recognition software which combines iris and facial recognition. It’s better than previous Galaxy phones, but still doesn’t hold a candle khổng lồ Face ID on the iPhone X. Then again, it doesn’t have to lớn because both these phones retain their fingerprint readers.

Xem thêm: Điện Thoại Samsung Galaxy C9 Pro Chính Hãng, Samsung Galaxy C9 Pro

Performance - Noted Memory Muscle

When it comes to chipsets, once again, the Galaxy note 9 & S9 Plus are identical in both their US & international variants:

United States - Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 octa-core chipset (4x 2.7 GHz Kryo 385 Gold và 4x1.7 GHz Kryo 385 Silver CPUs), Adreno 630 GPU Europe and Asia - Exynos 9810 (4x 2.8 GHz Mongoose M3 và 4x1.7 GHz Cortex-A55 CPUs), Mali-G72 MP18 GPU

These chipsets are approximately 20% faster và 30% more efficient than their predecessors, so it’s a recognisable step up. But where the Galaxy note 9 differentiates itself is the option of 8GB of RAM with the đứng đầu storage model (more next) while the S9 Plus is limited to a (still perfectly reasonable) 6GB.

The Galaxy chú ý 9 should run cooler as well thanks khổng lồ a new ‘Water Carbon Cooling system’ which Samsung says will reduce performance throttling under periods of extended load.

Elsewhere, connectivity is identical with LTE Cat.18 capable of 1.2 gigabits per second (1,200Mbits/sec) 4G speeds you’ll never attain in the real world, 802.11ac WiFi và Bluetooth 5.0 (2x speed, 4x range of công nghệ bluetooth không dây 4.2).

An interesting separation, however, is Dex - Samsung’s system for transforming Galaxy phones into minimalist desktop computing environments. The S9 Plus requires a dedicated Dex unit (circa $130) but the cảnh báo 9 can plug directly into a monitor with just a cable và use its display as a touchpad & keyboard. Again, this functionality should come khổng lồ the S9 Plus but, for now, it’s an exclusive.

Battery Life - Notable Victory

Stylus aside, perhaps the biggest win for the Galaxy cảnh báo 9 over the S9 Plus comes from its battery life:

Galaxy lưu ý 9 - 4000 mAh Galaxy S9 Plus - 3500 mAh

This is a great upgrade from Samsung. While the S9 Plus hasn’t improved on the last two generations, the Galaxy chú ý 9 is 700mAh larger than the (admittedly disappointing) Galaxy cảnh báo 8 battery. Samsung claims this will deliver multi-day use from a single charge.

Beyond this, the two are once more identical with quick wired & wireless charging & excellent battery longevity thanks khổng lồ Samsung’s ‘8 Point quality Check’ which promises just 5% capacity degradation in two years. For comparison, táo bị cắn expects 20% loss over the same period.

Samsung"s Galaxy note 9 has a 512GB-compatible microSD slot, so did it need to be so expensive?


Price và Storage - The khuyễn mãi giảm giá Breaker

If you’ve been starting to think the Galaxy lưu ý 9 is the phone for you, here’s where you might suddenly rethink that:

Galaxy note 9 - 128GB - $999 / £899 Galaxy chú ý 9 - 512GB - $1,250 / £1,099

Yes, you get a lot more base storage (the S9 Plus is only available in 64GB in the US and Europe) but the $840 launch price of the S9 Plus has since fallen rapidly và can be found in deals as low as $650 on contract. For my money, given its expandable storage, the Galaxy note 9 needed a 64GB $899 option khổng lồ hook more mainstream users.

Early Verdict

The Galaxy cảnh báo 9 does a lot right & - kích thước and weight aside - it matches or beats the S9 Plus in every category. If you love a phone with massive battery life and storage và you’ll use the stylus then the Galaxy note 9 really is worth the extra money.

That said, for most users, the S9 Plus offers almost identical functionality for a much lower cost. In terms of style, there are also smaller handset makers like Oppo & Vivo delivering more eye-catching, true bezel-less, notch-less designs for less money.

The Galaxy note 9 is undoubtedly a worthy update khổng lồ the chú ý range’s famous do-it-all heritage. But with Samsung now focusing on more mainstream devices like the redesigned 10th anniversary Galaxy S10, the Galaxy cảnh báo 9 is widely expected khổng lồ be the last chú ý ever made. So if you’ve ever been curious to lớn try these phones you should vị so now. It might be your last chance…


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I am an experienced freelance giải pháp công nghệ journalist. I have written for Wired, The Next Web, TrustedReviews, The Guardian and the đài truyền hình bbc in addition to I began in b2b print journalism covering tech companies at the height of the dot com boom and switched lớn covering consumer technology as the iPod began to take off. A career highlight for me was being a founding member of TrustedReviews. It started in 2003 and we were repeatedly told websites could not compete with print! Within four years we were purchased by IPC truyền thông media (Time Warner"s publishing division) lớn become its flagship tech title. What fascinates me are the machinations of technology"s biggest companies. Got a pitch, tip or leak? liên hệ me on my professional Facebook page. I don"t bite.

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