Possibly on August 9th, Samsung will unveil its latest smartphone at its Galaxy Unpacked event. We’re expecting that smartphone to be the Galaxy Note 9, and if the past is any indication it should be one of the most popular Android smartphones of the year. Here’s what you need to know about the Note 9 - including its features, design, price, availability and more.
Note 9 Features
The Note 9 usually sports at least a moderate camera upgrade, and we’re expecting that to be a focus with the Note 9 as well. Samsung recently announced ISOCELL Plus camera sensors, which might be included in the Note 9 to allow for better colour accuracy and sharpness. A variable aperture lens, as we saw on the Galaxy S9, is also a safe bet.
We also tend to see a small upgrade to the S Pen stylus each year, and this year’s upgrade may be more meaningful than most. We’re expecting a Bluetooth-enabled model that allows you to take photos, control your music and perform other functions without touching your phone. That sounds pretty cool, and given Samsung’s focus on the stylus in their initial invite, we wouldn’t be surprised if there’s even more to it than that.
Note 9 Design
The Galaxy Note 9 should have a slightly larger 6.4-inch screen with an elongated 18.5:9 aspect ratio, complete with smaller bezels than last year’s Note 8. The screen will include HDR10 support and Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection, while the rest of the phone should sport a (hopefully remappable) Bixby button, a headphone jack and USB-C fast charging.
New colours are rumoured for the iPhone this year, and Samsung should beat Apple to the punch with new shades for its autumn flagship. We’re expecting a butter-yellow option that matches the original Note 9 press invite, with rumours suggesting that this S Pen will be sold with the blue Note 9. Other alluring tones are also possible, including the black and brown shades shown here produced by Android Headlines and potentially purple as well.
Note 9 Hardware
Samsung’s first Galaxy Note 9 video teaser was dedicated to battery life, suggesting that the phone will take a significant leap over its predecessor. Rumours suggest we’ll see a 4,000mAh battery, which would be significantly larger than the 3,300mAh unit we saw on the Note 8. Samsung got burned before (in some cases, literally) with the enlarged battery of the Note 7, so it’ll be interesting to see how Samsung announce this new feature.
Elsewhere, the Note 9 should resemble the Galaxy S9 in terms of hardware. We’re expecting the same Exynos 9810 processor, backed with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. More expensive models with 8GB of RAM and 512GB of storage have also been mooted, but it’s not clear whether these units will be wildly available – and how much of a premium Samsung will charge for them.
Note 9 Software
There’s not too much to say here - the Note 9 will include Android 8.1 Oreo plus a hearty helping of Samsung’s own features like the Bixby personal assistant and Samsung Pay contactless / magnetic stripe payment system.
Note 9 accessories
It’s been rumoured that Samsung will unveil a Bixby powered smart speaker at the event, fulfilling the same role as the Apple HomePod, Amazon Echo or Google Home. We should also see Samsung’s usual lineup of official cases and accessories. Furthermore, Samsung will reportedly be offering a range of bundles to customers in some European countries - you’ll be able to choose from a Samsung DeX dock (to turn your smartphone into a desktop-like PC), a Samsung Gear S3 Frontier smartwatch or Gear Icon X earbuds.
Note 9 UK release date
The Note 9’s release date has not yet been confirmed, but we’re expecting to see it in early to mid August. That release timeline may have been influenced by relatively low sales of the Galaxy S9 and S9+, compared to the strong success Samsung have found with the S7 and S8 smartphones.
Note 9 UK price
There’s no UK price announced just yet, but I would expect a similar price to last year’s Note 8. The Note 8 launched an eye-watering £869 last year so we would expect Samsung to set the UK price between £869 and £909 as smartphones continue to creep towards that £1000 mark. Winfuture.de are reporting that the 512GB model will cost a whopping £1150.
Are you interested in the Note 9? Let me know in the comments below!
Also - will you be taking part in our Samsung Unpacked coverage? We’ll be watching the whole Unpacked event live in the giffgaff community, so I hope you can join us!