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Samsung Galaxy Note9 vs iPhone Xs Max: the heavyweight title

The new generation of iPhone is already making headlines. While waiting for our test copy, we can already see how the heavyweight title battle is shaping up: the Note 9 stacks up against the iPhone Xs Max to win the hearts and wallets of fans of plus-size phones. This is our take on the phablet rivals so far.

Every year, many users judge right from wrong by switching from one system to another, from one brand to another. The Galaxy Note 9 is certainly the most popular phablet around. The recently announced iPhone Xs Max is arguably the South Korean smartphone’s biggest rival.

As much as there were a lot of rumors about the names of the new iPhones, there was no doubt about the design of the devices. Regardless, this large-format version of the iPhone retains the same design as the iPhone X launched last year. The only difference is its new larger format which allows you to offer a 6.5-inch screen (compared to 5.8 for the classic iPhone X).

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The design of the Galaxy Note 9 doesn’t mean any big changes from last year, either. The elegant lines and curves of the previous generation were adopted. Samsung has simply refined the edges of the camera to offer a larger screen than last year (6.4 inches), all for the same size. In terms of display, AMOLED technology is available on both terminals. The definition, such as color grading, is different.

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In both cases, the devices combine metal and glass for a successful design. Smartphones are stylish and the only real aesthetic difference is in the display. The iPhone has a notch, the note goes unnoticed. For the rest, each brand shows its own style.

Apple claims that the iPhone Xs Max’s notch is essential to house the cameras and various sensors that make FaceID work so well. But you don’t necessarily need a step up for facial recognition, so we’ll have to wait until our test device sees how well it really works.

Personally, I like the design of the South Korean manufacturer more. The Samsung model also has the advantage of offering a fingerprint reader and a mini-jack, with Apple overlooking both features. Finally, the Note has a stylus, the S-Pen, which can be stored and loaded directly into the device and offers convenient features.

Android vs iOS

I am far from the idea of ​​entering into a sterile debate between the two systems to determine which offers the best features or which offers the best interface. iOS and Android each have their pros and cons, just focus on which one is best for its uses. I wouldn’t say iOS is any easier, but it offers an interesting approach for newbies, although Android has gotten a lot simpler in recent versions, and Samsung’s interface is easy to understand.

When it comes to updates, Apple has full control over when it comes to updating its iPhone. It ranges from 24 to 48 months or more. Based on an operating system with an open Linux kernel, the Android operating system is highly customizable and more flexible on its policy. However, it is precisely its opening that can cause delays in updates. Fortunately, Google is trying to fix the problem. The Galaxy Note 9 is guaranteed to receive Android 9 Pie, and the next generation of the OS. For the others, it is unlikely. Rest assured that Samsung will provide security updates for two years.

Two powerful smartphones

Either way, you really don’t have to worry about performance. Whether for the Galaxy Note 9 or the iPhone Xs Max, both products are said to be top-of-the-line and optimized at all times. In short, the iPhone Xs Max brings a new processor with it… touting the assistance of neural networks in its 7nm A12 bionic chip. It will be interesting to see how much this affects performance, rather than being a buzzword.

On the other side of the line, the Galaxy Note 9 hosts Qualcomm’s best Snapdragon 845 (with the exception of European models that use the Exynos 9810. Both are among the best SoCs in the high-end segment).

First class photography

Samsung and Apple have often been in tight competition for the best performing devices, and naturally, each other’s upper class is no exception. Because we’ve had the Galaxy Note 9 for a little while, we can already show you a detailed analysis of its photographic capabilities.

When it comes to the iPhone Xs Max, we still only have what Apple presented during its presentation, and it’s impressive, but … you guessed it, we are declining a verdict until we can test it under objective conditions.

Note 9 is more “affordable” than the iPhone Xs Max

It’s hard to imagine the writing, but the Galaxy Note 9 is more “affordable” than the iPhone Xs Max. The Samsung smartphone is available at the official price of $ 1,000 in its 128 GB version (and $ 1,250 in its 512 GB version). The new iPhone Xs Max will launch on September 21. Prices start at $ 1,099 for the 64 GB version, $ 1,249 for the 256 GB version and $ 1,449 for the 512 GB version. A difference of around $ 200 between the two models of equivalent storage size will make the difference for de many users.

Galaxy Note 9 offers more memory for less money. In addition, it is already possible to find it at an even lower price, which accentuates its cheap side compared to Apple’s phablet.

Note 9 vs iPhone XS Max: initial verdict

At the moment, and pending our full iPhone Xs Max review, it’s still difficult for us to separate these devices from each other and deliver a final verdict in this comparison. However, given the new technical characteristics of the iPhone, the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 has nothing to fear from the competition and is perfectly equipped to meet them. Plus, it offers more memory for less money.