Samsung S9 Plus Review

With the Samsung Note 9 hitting the Philippine market, is it really worth the upgrade coming from an S9+? Just as with the smaller version, the Samsung Galaxy S9, the Galaxy S9 Plus is undoubtedly an incremental update on 2017’s S8 Plus.

Design

We have all marveled at the awesome transformation of Samsung’s S-series throughout the years. It has definitely been one to talk about since the 2017’s S8 series due to some major upgrades. Although there have been attempts to veer away from the thick bezel, a majority of people complain about the notch, which can be quite distracting. This has got to be one of those design marvels that Samsung doesn’t seem to follow because Samsung’s switch to a bigger screen in a smaller body actually worked.

One of the major changes to note here is the rear of the S9Plus where Samsung repositions the fingerprint sensor from the right of the camera back to below the secondary sensor. This is certainly a good move by them as it is now easier to reach. That being said, it still remains a pretty mediocre fingerprint sensor, which takes a noticeable instant to register and take us to the home screen.

The Galaxy S9 Plus still looks and feels great. We remain a fan of the 6.2-inch design. If you prefer something more pocketable, you could opt for the regular S9. Another noticeable killer to the design is that it is an absolute fingerprint magnet.

Performance

There are so many reasons why the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus is among one of the great Android phones in the market, although we feel as though performance isn’t one of them. The high-powered Custom CPU clocks in at 2.7GHz per core while the power-efficient processor is composed of a quad-core ARM Cortex A55 running at 1.8GHz.

Note: In other regions, Samsung uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 845.

Though the S9 Plus already features the 10nm Exynos 9810 and 6GB of RAM, the new chip powering the phone still can’t match the ones that have the Snapdragon 845 in other cheaper phones like the ZenFone 5z. There are just so many fast Android phones these days, and as such, what I’m really interested in is how it will perform after a year or two – an area where Samsung phones have disappointed recently.

Camera

A key selling point in the Samsung Galaxy S9+ is the dual-aperture rear camera. One is used for low-light shots and super-wide angle with f/1.5 aperture while the other has a f/2.4 aperture coming into play.

With the f/1.5, this is probably the brightest we have ever seen currently on a smartphone and it does great with low-light photography. One thing that the Samsung S9+ does really great is controlling the absorption of light into its sensor. See below for a sample difference between the Samsung S9+ and ZenFone 5z. You would see that the ZenFone 5z took in too much light causing our dogs to look overexposed.

 


 Software and other features

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The Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus runs the Android 8.0 Oreo and is slickly designed with the Samsung Experience 9.0 skin. This offers more attractive icons and fluid movement between your app drawer and notification panel.

The battery-saver mode on the Samsung devices still remain one of the best. Along with other app duplicators and a great Secure Folder for private files.

 

Conclusion

The Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus is a great phone with two awesome cameras that shoot fabulously. It isn’t the slowest, but it also isn’t the quickest Android phone in the market. With the release of the Samsung Galaxy Note 9, we can probably expect a few prices to drop, including the S9 and S9 Plus. Currently, they are priced at Php45,990 and Php52,990 respectively for the 6GB RAM and 64GB storage.

Will all things considered, this would probably still be one of the options for those that don’t see the point in the S-Pen. Considering the price of Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S (PHP27,990) and the ZenFone 5z (PHP 29,995) you’d have a really hard time deciding what phone to get unless you are a big fan of Samsung.

Low light photography is amazing. The battery life is fine, but Samsung can definitely still make improvements on this.

To cut things short, the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus is an awesome device and, if you do want the best it’s probably the phone you’d want to buy. It’s just that it isn’t a whole lot better that its predecessor; if push came to shove, I’d advise you to get the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 instead.

 

Post Author: Christian

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