Samsung Galaxy Note 9 Review
A big, brilliant but slightly baffling phone
The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is the Korean brand’s smartphone big-hitter. It’s not a mainstream flagship option – that would be the S10 – but it’s the phone Samsung is using to really flex its muscles. And boy, is the Note 9 impressive. It has heaps of power, an amazing screen, and that unique stylus. It’s not for everyone, but then again, not everyone needs this much phone.
- Incredible display
- Fantastic cameras
- Unique S Pen stylus
- Remarkable battery life
- Notch-free design
- Daunting size makes it tricky to use one-handed
- Very expensive
- Samsung bloatware can be an irritant
Samsung markets the Note 9 at the consumers that need their phone to do everything. It combines an enormous 6.4-inch screen, a powerful processor, a stylus, and the capability to connect it to a myriad of peripherals.
While it has competition from other big phones, such as the Google Pixel 3 XL, iPhone XS Max and Huawei Mate 20 Pro, none of these phones offer the same level of versatility as the Note 9. The Note 9 is perfectly capable of working as a business phone for on-the-go workers, as a gaming phone, or as a dedicated camera phone.
This versatility makes the Note 9 a great phone on paper, but in the real world, it can be tricky to know exactly what the Note 9 is supposed to be. We’ll explain why in the rest of this review:
|Click for full overview|
|Overall Verdict||If you’re after a powerful, extra large phone that can knock out almost any task with ease, the Samsung Note 9 is an outstanding choice. With the new Samsung Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus on the scene (and a Note 10 coming soon), you can expect the Note 9 price to drop, too.|
|Design and Screen||The Note 9 isn’t, arguably, the most beautifully designed phone around – it’s a little boxy and plain. But, the SuperAMOLED screen is a thing of beauty, making colours pop and showing off brilliant detail.|
|Performance||This is powerhouse of a smartphone, and you’ll be able to run pretty most any app without breaking a sweat. It’s fast and snappy when switching on, loading apps, or changing between functions.The phone also benefits from a phenomenal battery that will easily power you through the day.|
|Cameras||The Note 9 packs in some exceptional cameras, which are among the best we’ve tested on a smartphone. Low light shots are very good, though bettered by those from the Google Pixel 3 XL.|
|Ease of Use||We have some reservations, here. The shape of the Note 9 makes it a touch uncomfortable in the hand, and the tiny bezels actually make it easy to touch the screen unintentionally. Plus, the Bixby assistant is still no match for Google Assistant or Siri.|
|Value for money||The Note 9 certainly isn’t a cheap Samsung phone, and it’s aimed at power users, rather than those after a low cost handset. With the new Samsung S10 and S10 Plus on the scene, the Note 9 already has newer rivals from the same stable. If the price falls (especially when the newer Note 10 arrives) it could prove more of a bargain.|
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