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(Pocket-lint) - Samsung announced its latest Note device on 9 August at an event in New York, completing its line-up of 2018 flagship handsets.

The Galaxy Note 9 sits alongside the Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+, primarily distinguishing itself from the other two handsets with the inclusion of its S Pen, but how else does it compare?

Best Samsung Galaxy S9+ deals


Samsung Galaxy Note 9 vs Galaxy S9+: Design

  • Note 9 larger and heavier
  • Both premium, glass designs
  • IP68 on both
  • Note 9 has S Pen

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 follows a similar design to its predecessor, with the exception of a new arrangement for the fingerprint sensor on the rear. A premium and waterproof build are therefore present, along with the familiar curved glass design.

The Note 9's footprint is also very close to the Note 8's, measuring 161.9 x 76.4 x 8.8mm and weighing 201g, and it is available in four colour options: Ocean Blue, Lavender Purple, Metallic Copper and Midnight Black.

The Galaxy S9+ and Note 9 look very similar from the front with the Infinity Display continuing to dominate, but things differ slightly on the rear. The S9+ has a vertical dual camera arrangement on the back, while the Note 9 sticks with a horizontal camera setup, as we mentioned. The Note 9 does adopt the S9+'s fingerprint sensor below the camera setup though.

In terms of physical size, the Note 9 is the larger and heavier of these two handsets. The S9+ measures 158.1 x 73.8 x 8.5mm and weighs 189g. It too offers a premium, waterproof curved glass design but it doesn't have an S Pen like the Note 9.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 vs Galaxy S9+: Display

  • Note 9 has slightly larger display
  • Both Super AMOLED
  • Both Quad HD+
  • Mobile HDR on both

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 features a 6.4-inch Super AMOLED Infinity Display panel with an 18.5:9 aspect ratio.

The Note 9 has a Quad HD+ (2960 x 1440) resolution, offering a pixel density of 516ppi and Mobile HDR is also on board again, as it has been since the Note 7.

The Samsung Galaxy S9+ has a 6.2-inch display, making fractionally smaller than the Note 9. It too offers a Super AMOLED Infinity Display panel with an 18.5:9 aspect ratio so no matter which device you opt for here, you'll get a great screen experience.

As on the Note 9, the SGS9+ has a Quad HD+ resolution, which puts its pixel density at 529ppi, making it the sharper of the two devices being compared here - not that the human eye could see a difference this small.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 vs Galaxy S9+: Camera

  • Both have 12MP dual rear camera with dual aperture and dual OIS
  • Both have 8MP front camera
  • Both have iris scanning and AR Emoji

The Galaxy Note 9 continues to offer a dual camera on the rear as the Note 8 first introduced. As mentioned previously, the dual camera is in a horizontal format and consists of two 12-megapixel sensors, both of which offer optical image stabilisation. The Note 9 also adopts the dual aperture of the S9+.

The front camera of the Note 9 sits at 8-megapixels and iris scanning is on board, as it is on the S9+. Samsung has added a feature called Scene Optimiser to the Note 9, as well as Flaw Detection. The former identifies elements of a photo, classifies it into one of 20 categories and optimises saturation, white balance, brightness and contrast based on the category. Flaw Detection meanwhile, lets you know if something is wrong, such as blurry or if the subject blinked so you can retake the shot before you miss the moment.

The Samsung Galaxy S9+ has a vertically-arranged dual rear camera that is made up of two 12-megapixel sensors, one wide-angle with variable aperture and one telephoto, like the Note 9. It offers dual optical image stabilisation and optical zoom up to 2x, again like the Note 9.

There is an 8-megapixel sensor on the front of the S9+ with an aperture of f/1.7 and an 80-degree field of view. The S9+ introduced super slow-mo video support of 720p at 960fps, along with AR Emoji, both of which the Note 9 also offer.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 vs Galaxy S9+: Hardware

  • Note 9 has bigger battery
  • Same processors, but Note 9 available with 8GB RAM and 512GB storage
  • Both offer 3.5mm headphone socket
  • Note 9 has S Pen

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 comes with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor in some regions, and the latest Exynos chip in others, along with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage, or 8GB of RAM and 512GB of storage.

A battery capacity of 4000mAh is also present, along with a focus on audio, with AKG-tuned stereo speakers and support for Dolby Atmos, like the S9+. The Note 9 also comes with the S Pen, which is Bluetooth-enabled this time round allowing users to use it to take selfies or group shots, present slides or pause and play music, among other functions.

The Samsung Galaxy S9+ runs on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 platform in the US and China, and the Exynos 9810 Octa in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. There is 6GB of RAM and a 3500mAh battery.

The SGS9+ retains the 3.5mm headphone socket and comes complete with 'Tuned by AKG' headphones, something the Note 9 also does. The S9+ also has AKG-tuned speakers that are able to provide a Dolby Atmos effect to any content you choose, as we mentioned above.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 vs Galaxy S9+: Software

  • Both Android Oreo with Samsung Experience UX
  • Bixby 2.0 on Note 9
  • S Pen features on Note 9

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 arrives on Android Oreo 8.1 with Samsung's Experience UX software (previously known as TouchWiz) over the top. The latest version of Bixby launches on the Note 9 too, along with Samsung's AR Emoji as mentioned.

You'll also get all the additional features that come with the S Pen on the Note 9.

The Samsung Galaxy S9+ meanwhile runs on Oreo with Samsung's Experience UX too so you'll get the same experience across both these devices, aside from the S Pen features that are exclusive to the Note series.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 vs Galaxy S9+: Price and availability 


The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is available to pre-order from 10 August, hitting shelves on 24 August. It will start at £899/$1000 for the 128GB model and £1099/$1250 for the 512GB model.

The Samsung Galaxy S9+ is available from £869, which makes it the cheaper of these two handsets, just. You do miss out on the S Pen functionality though.

Writing by Britta O'Boyle. Originally published on 1 August 2018.