Samsung Galaxy S9: Samsung risks little but improves its flagship phone
It’s true, the Samsung Galaxy S9 ( $ 719.99 on Amazon) does not have a double camera or 6GB of RAM like the Galaxy S9 Plus ( $ 839.99 on Amazon ) or like the Galaxy Note 8 ( $ 927.98 on Amazon.com), nor does it revolutionary changes compared to its predecessor. But its compact size and a group of specifications and functions make it a very attractive cell phone.
The first, and probably most important for many is that Samsung corrected the positioning of the fingerprint reader so that it is now more towards the center of the back, instead of being right next to the camera.
Second, the Galaxy S9 shares the same Snapdragon 845 processor (or Exynos 9810, depending on the market) of the S9 Plus, which are superior to the Snapdragon 835 (or Exynos 8895) Note 8. In addition, it has the same version of Android Oreo ( with the custom interface), design and main functions of the Galaxy S9 Plus for a lower price (up to the US $ 150 less). Even the Galaxy S9 has the same camera as the main camera with a variable aperture of the Galaxy S9 Plus.
This means that it has the new slow-motion video recording that allows Samsung to be placed on the Sony and Apple terrain (with slow-motion recording of 960fps in HD and 240fps in Full HD), while also bringing double horn with technology of Dolby Atmos, the emojis animated AR Emojis, and Bixby with more augmented reality features. Also, the cell phone serves as the basis to launch the new app of Samsung’s SmartThings platform.
with the improvements and the small changes, it is clear that Samsung played it safe here, correcting the biggest criticism of its flagship phone and adding some news that is not necessarily for everyone.
Samsung Galaxy S9: Features and specifications
Screen: 5.8 inches
Resolution : 2,960×1,440 pixels
Processor: Snapdragon 845 eight-core (four 2.8GHz and four 1.7GHz) or Exynos 9810 eight-core (four 2.7GHz and four 1.7GHz) – depending on the market
Storage: 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB (varies by market, for example, only the 64GB version is sold in the US)
MicroSD slot: Yes (certified up to 400GB)
Battery : 3,000mAh (not removable)
Operating System: Android Oreo
Fast loading: Quick Charge 2.0
Wireless charging : Yes
Connectivity : Wi-Fi 802.11ac (2.4 and 5GHz) MU-MIMO, Bluetooth 5.0
Samsung Pay : Yes, through NFC and MST
Unlocking functions: Intelligent Scan, an iris scanner, face recognition, pattern, PIN, password
Speakers: Two stereos with Dolby Atmos technology optimized by AKG
Rear camera: 12 megapixels with optical image stabilization and a variable aperture of f / 1.5 of / 2.4
Front camera: 8 megapixels with aperture f / 1.7
Water resistant: IP68 (up to 1.5 meters deep for up to 30 minutes)
Other features : USB-C; it has preinstalled the new SmartThings app; Google Pay; the screen detects the pressure in the area of the Start button; continues to integrate Bixby with its dedicated button that can not be reconfigured in an official way; Google Assistant; heart rate sensor; and it’s compatible with the current VR Gear VR glasses and with Samsung DeX and DeX Pad
Weight: 163 grams
Price of the Samsung Galaxy S9
The Samsung Galaxy S9 will be pre-sold on March 2 at AT & T, Sprint, T-Mobile, US Cellular, Verizon Wireless and Xfinity Mobile. They will arrive at the stores of Best Buy, Amazon, Costco, Sam’s Club, Target, Walmart, Cricket Wireless and MetroPCS on March 16.
On March 2, Samsung will launch an exchange program in which it will offer up to US $ 350 for your current cell phone. The price of the Galaxy S9, like the Galaxy S9 Plus, varies according to the operator, store and country where it is purchased, but the company said it should be similar to what the Galaxy S8 cost ( $ 599.99 on Amazon.com ) the year past.
AT & T : This operator will allow you to buy the Galaxy S9 for US $ 26.34 monthly payments for 30 months, for a total cost of US $ 790.20.
T-Mobile : Those interested in this operator can buy the Samsung Galaxy S9 with financing plans of US $ 26.34 per month or with a cash payment of US $ 720.
Verizon : The Galaxy S9 can be purchased at Verizon with a price of US $ 799 or 24 monthly payments of US $ 33.33.
Sprint : You can buy the Galaxy S9 for US $ 792 or with financing plans for US $ 33 monthly payments.
Best Buy : The store is offering $ 100 off when you buy it with Verizon, AT & T or Sprint, but only on March 2. After this Best Buy says it will offer “up to $ 100” discount on the Galaxy S9, so it may vary depending on the operator.
Xfinity Mobile : The Galaxy S9 Plus can be purchased for US $ 719.99.
Samsung : The company will sell the unlocked Galaxy S9 Plus with a price of US $ 719.99.
The Galaxy S9, like the S9 Plus, will be available in purple lilac, titanium gray, coral blue and black, but the availability of colors will vary according to the market.
What the Galaxy S9 lacks compared to the S9 Plus
It does not allow you to make 2X optical zoom to take closer photos without the quality getting worse, because it does not have a double camera.
It does not allow you to take such good pictures with a blurred background, nor the possibility to change the intensity of light at any time.
You can only take photos in one style and it does not offer the versatility of having a wide-angle and telephoto lens.
You can not take two photos at once.
The capacity of the battery is lower.
It has 4GB of RAM, instead of 6GB of RAM like the S9 Plus.
It is easier to control with one hand.
Samsung corrects the position of the fingerprint reader – and point
At first glance, it will be easy to confuse a Samsung Galaxy S9 with a Galaxy S8, especially when you look at its front.
But if you have a Galaxy S8 or are very precise you will realize that the only important change you find is that the fingerprint reader is no longer next to the camera, but is at the bottom.
This was practically the positioning that we asked for in the Galaxy S8: to offer a more focused place to make it easier to access and avoid making a mistake when touching the camera lens instead of the reader.
However, although this is a change that will undoubtedly improve the experience we had with the fingerprint reader in its predecessor, it is worth bearing in mind that the lens of the camera was not that far away.
As for the rest of the design, the Galaxy S9 shows no noticeable changes. The company kept the glass and metal construction, the Bixby button that can not be reconfigured officially, the microSD card slot and a curved screen that continues with small bezels that Samsung says reduced by 1.2mm, which is a good thing .
However, apparently this also meant that Samsung’s flagship phone got a little fatter, going from 8.0mm thick to 8.5mm. In addition, its weight went from 155 grams to 163 grams. I do not consider any of these changes to be too drastic, but it is good to take them into account. Perhaps most unfortunate is that the company increased its thickness by half a millimeter but did not increase the capacity of its battery.
Another thing that we still like to have in the Galaxy S9 is the traditional hearing aid connector (3.5mm), a feature that many manufacturers are abandoning.
Samsung also integrated double horn (one on the bottom edge and one on the headset), which Samsung says are up to 1.4 times more powerful. In the brief tests I did with the Galaxy S9 it was really impressive the sound improvement compared to the Galaxy S8.
Intelligent Scan: the Face ID of the iPhone X on a Samsung phone? Do not
The rumors bet that Intelligent Scan was going to be the answer of Samsung to the Face ID that Apple introduced in the iPhone X , but it is not like that.
Intelligent Scan is simply a new mode that allows you to combine the iris scanner and facial recognition to unlock the cell more precisely in all kinds of light conditions.