The premium Huawei Mate 9 is finally official and well-worth the wait, coming as the company's most powerful smartphone to date.
In fact, the new Mate 9 may just be the best alternative to the ill-fated Galaxy Note 7, which is no longer on sale following two recalls over explosive batteries. While unfortunate for Samsung, the Galaxy Note 7 fiasco left a rare opportunity for other smartphone makers to swoop in and fill the gap. Huawei seems up to the challenge and the new Mate 9 sure packs a punch.
Huawei officially announced its premium Mate 9 smartphone on Thursday, Nov. 3, accompanied by an exclusive Porsche Design Huawei Mate 9 edition, aiming to improve on every aspect of the smartphone experience.
"We know that for today's business users, a fast and functional smartphone is just the beginning," says Richard Yu, CEO of the Huawei Consumer Business Group. "Consumers also want a gorgeous design and intuitive features, so we created two new devices at the forefront of hardware and software innovation. The result is a device that is breathtakingly new, inside and out."
Huawei Mate 9 Specs
The beastly Huawei Mate 9 rocks a massive 5.9-inch IPS LCD display, albeit only with a full HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) resolution that may prove insufficient for such screen real estate.
Under the hood, the smartphone packs Huawei's own Kirin 960 mobile processor, just as we expected. Huawei also packed an ARM Mali G71 GPU and 4 GB of RAM for a fast and fluid performance.
The camera department is another aspect in which the Huawei Mate 9 truly shines, boasting a Leica dual-lens rear camera setup with a 20-megapixel monochrome sensor and a 12-megapixel RGB (color) one. Optical image stabilization, auto-focus with face detection, 4K video capture and other cool camera features are also in the mix. On the front, the handset sports an 8-megapixel front shooter with an f/1.9 aperture.
Other specs of the Huawei Mate 9 include a 4,000 mAh battery with SuperCharge technology that can juice up the device in just 20 minutes, USB Type-C, Bluetooth 4.2, dual-SIM (nano) and 64 GB of expandable storage.
On the software side of things, the Huawei Mate 9 runs the latest Android 7.0 Nougat with Huawei's own EMUI 5.0 on top, which aims to make it more intuitive. According to the company, users will be able to access half of the phone's features in just two clicks thanks to the intuitive EMUI 5.0.
Huawei Mate 9 Porsche Design
The more premium and arguably more expensive Mate 9 Porsche Design ups the ante with more powerful specifications.
For instance, rather than the IPS LCD display with a full HD resolution of the standard edition, the Porsche Design model features a more appropriate QHD (2,560 x 1,440p) resolution on an AMOLED display. This exclusive variant also boasts 6 GB of RAM instead of 4 GB, and a massive 256 GB of native storage space expandable via microSD.
Pricing And Availability
The Huawei Mate 9 will hit 12 countries in its initial launch wave, but should make its way to more markets worldwide soon after. The United States is not included in this first launch wave, but the Wall Street Journal says the Mate 9 should arrive stateside sometime in January 2017.
The Huawei Mate 9 comes in Ceramic White, Space Gray, Champagne Gold, Moonlight Silver, Black and Mocha Brown color options, at a €699 (about $776) price point.
The Huawei Mate 9 Porsche Edition comes only in a Graphite Black color option and costs a hefty €1,395 (roughly $1,549).
If you missed Huawei's presentation, you can check it out below.