Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is that Android phone that starts at a thousand bucks this year which is making headlines again it’s a very expensive phone. I’ve had about five pillars of a great smart phone those five and the one that the note 8 didn’t have was great battery but literally everything else about it was great and it’s still one phone of the year. This year the note 9 upgrades literally everything about that phone and makes the biggest improvement to the battery. So it’s getting a lot of flack for being just an incremental upgrade to the Note 8.
But actually think that’s one of the best compliments that you could give the Galaxy Note 9 right now so what are those pillars again you might be asking. They are great display, great build quality, great performance, great camera and great battery life I always say if you check every single box you got yourself a great quality smartphone. If we look at galaxy note 9 now it checks every single box and then some.
The display is incredible some including me we even say it’s literally the best display in any phone. Last year’s note was already the best display in any phone this year it’s point one inches bigger and it’s magnificently bright you can read it outdoors in direct sunlight it’s super vibrant and contrasting color accurate. This is an A+ display great for gaming, for watching videos and also no not in case you forgot about that the only downside to a display like this is how big it makes the phone feel I just came from the OnePlus 6 as you know with a smaller display and the pixel before that and using an iPhone 10 a lot.
So moving up to this note, it’s one of the few phones that really makes me work hard to use it with one hand and I prefer often to use it with two hands and I don’t say that about a lot of phones. So there’s a lot of reaching to get up to the top of the display and then back down to the bottom and you’re gonna notice it but then again if you’re getting a note, you already know what you’re getting yourself into and sometimes that’s just something you gotta calibrate for but all in all great display no question that gets a thumbs up.
The second part which is great build quality with the infinity to display the kind of bleeding of the edge of the screen over Samsung still does that it’s recognizable versus other phones that don’t do this and I like it they don’t have to reinvent the wheel here they found something that makes it feel really immersive and they just keep doing that.
Well, but really I think we just keep forgetting like the build quality the industrial design or just generally the hardware of this phone is one of the most underrated things about it. It’s really great you have the premium build materials right. So you got metal all the way around, a lot tight corners like really boxy as a phone much more squared off than most but I like that they still have the rounded corners of the display but not by a whole lot.
And then overall it just has this dense look and feel and it checks a lot of boxes it’s IP 68 water-resistant. It has a headphone jack, it has excellent clicky buttons and I’ll talk more about those in a bit. And one of the more underrated upgrades to the hardware is the speakers. They’re in the same place as they were but they’re now much louder and fuller sounding and just straight up better than before I definitely appreciate that.
Slight downside to the hardware is the glossy back that will 100% collect tons of fingerprints as you can see as good as Samsung’s glass looks when it’s clean it can get pretty clouded up.
This thing is built like a tank build quality is not a problem on the note 9. I’d even say it technically counts as a little bit of an upgrade because they move the fingerprint reader down just a little bit to be more reachable. It’s a minor detail but makes a difference when you’re using it every day but build quality is great.
Galaxy note 9 has been a great performer as well. It’s a fast high-end flagship so you’d expect that Snapdragon 845(Exynos 9810) and 6/8 GB of RAM etc. I’m always worried about Samsung’s skin though because it’s not light. It’s kind of a lot you worry about software updates with it but from my use so far it’s been smooth and snappy. It’s what I’ve come to expect and it’s gotten one software update so far now.
There can only be one phone that’s offering this half a terabyte of storage right now I mean maybe 2 or 3 but that’s what note is all about giving you these power user features plus an extra 2 gigs of RAM doesn’t hurt but I think pretty much anyone including me will be fine with the 128 GB and then there is also a new cooling system. It a water carbon cooling system all I can tell you is just from using it this phone definitely still gets a little bit warm on the back especially when gaming for a while or navigating in a warm window of your dashboard or something like that but definitely never overheated it is for sure a great gaming phone though it has the specs and more.
Then there is the camera or cameras in this Galaxy Note 9 and this is a this is the firmly third place camera as far as smartphones go right now which is pretty awesome I mean you got pixel to you at the top which is amazing then you got this an iPhone 10 right around second and third.
Believe me but this is essentially the exact same camera setup as the galaxy S9 plus from a couple months ago which makes it an upgrade from the last note. So just like the s 9 plus you give it a lot of light and it is an excellent camera you can get real shallow depth of field if you get close enough to your subject.
As you’re already aware. pretty classic Samsung vibrant colors and slight over-processing as far as sharpening and noise reduction you’ve already heard this all for me before the one new addition is the AI in the settings which they call a scene optimizer that will automatically adjust certain colors when it recognizes a subject so with flowers that might boost the warmer colors or in the land escapes it might boost the blue of the sky. But I found this more inconsistent and annoying to me than useful so I turned it off after a while.
But what I do think was useful is what they called flaw detection where basically if someone blinks there the photos blurry or it finds a red eye or something’s messed up in someway it’ll let you know right away so you can take another one that part’s cool. But overall yeah so Galaxy Note 8 had a great camera then galaxy s 9 and s 9 plus had great camera now we got Galaxy Note 9 still great camera.
So that brings us to what you were all probably wondering about from beginning which is the battery the Galaxy Note 9 bumps up to a four thousand mAh battery which is a pretty big jump from last year.
I know a lot of things we’ve said about this phone have been iterative that’s not that is a massive jump but that’s just on paper. So as far as actual life of the phone goes it’s not the best battery life of any phone that that’ll still go to phones with smaller screens. But note 9 is now comfortably lasting all day with a little extra room to spare which it didn’t do that before. So I’m getting around 5 hours of screen on time with most of my days occasionally a little more never really less which with my heavy usage is pretty damn good.
I think 4000 mAh is actually the appropriate battery size for the Galaxy Note and I don’t think anyone getting it will be disappointed this is great battery life so looks like they did it they like I said literally upgraded everything on paper about this phone from last year which was already good.
So I mean you got a better bigger brighter display, it’s great he got a great performance, it’s got a great build quality & it’s got a great battery life and a great camera now all in one phone. And like the note always does also has a ton of extras just because Samsung has tons of features to throw in for people who are into that kind of stuff those are people who are buying the note like all the different screen modes and advanced tinkering Samsung throws in the settings for people who want to dial the exact color balance and look at their displays things like that it’s not it’s clearly not flawless such a perfectly placed bixby button that can’t be remapped. I can’t ignore that it’s a damn shame I just want to remap the bixby button to launch Google or Twitter or something else.
The s-pen remote feature it works and it’s great I I just don’t see myself using it all that much. I don’t do powerpoints from my phone or any presentations or stuff like that so I still just use the s-pen for just taking it out jotting down a note and putting it away you know the extra features are welcome and there will be people who love them and use them a lot.
I would have no problem using this phone every single day it checks so many boxes you can’t really find another phone that does an incredible high resolution OLED display, IP 68 water resistance, a headphone jack and then up to half a terabyte of flash storage, Snapdragon 845 8 gigs of ram, expandable storage on top of that dual cameras both offers OIS and a 4000 mAh battery.
A thousand bucks is a lot to spend on a phone but if you’re gonna spend a thousand bucks on one this is for sure the one to get you’re getting your money’s worth and people who are looking into buying a note already know what they’re getting themselves into and they’re gonna love this. But if you’re in the other side of that camp thinking that thousand bucks is way too much to spend on a phone, I would never do that then a phone like the Galaxy S9 or S9 Plus which are several hundred dollars less that’s gonna be there out for you to go.
So Samsung is kind of offering the whole wealth of different budget options and you can choose and I think you’ll find something you like & Finally Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is a good phone! Good Job Samsung!