Samsung S9 Plus review design and build quality



Samsung EVO Plus 128 GB MicroSDXC Card


It was a bit of a disappointment to see storage remain at 64GB on the GalaxyS9 and S9 Plus. While many smartphones are offering 128GB or 256GB options,Samsung is stubbornly sticking with a single 64GB option. However, if you’rewilling to give up your secondary SIM slot, you can easily add up to 400GB ofexternal storage with a MicroSD card. Try Samsung’s Evo Plus MicroSD card ifyou want to add 128GB of storage to your new Galaxy S9 within seconds. Whileyou can surely find cheaper MicroSD cards, Samsung’s Evo Plus line offers highperformance for 4K video recording and is extremely reliable.

Samsung wireless charger Duo


The next Galaxy S9 accessory on our list is a wireless charger. This deviceallows for Qi charging of two devices at once, and it can charge your Galaxysmartwatch too. The Fast Charge 2.0 charging pad allows for up to 7.5W ofwireless charging for compatible devices like the Galaxy S9. This is the idealwireless charger for the office or home to give your phone and smartwatch aquick boost of power.Check pricing* * *

Samsung portable wireless charger and power bank


This wireless charger from Samsung is also a power bank so that you can chargewirelessly on the go. It offers a capacity of 10,000mAh and allows you to keeptrack of its charge via the LED indicators. With wireless charging, you canmake use of up to 7.5W of power. If you prefer a wired charging method, thereare options for both USB-A and USB-C on this device. With both slots, you canuse it to charge two devices simultaneously, making it ideal for trips withfriends.Check pricing* * *

Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro


The last Galaxy S9 accessory on this list is a pair of Samsung Galaxy BudsPro. These are the latest version of Samsung’s Galaxy Buds, and they’re thebest yet. They are designed to fit perfectly in your ear, eliminating otherdistracting noises. You can also take full advantage of Active NoiseCancelling, thanks to a secure seal. This will allow you to tune out thesounds of daily life as you commute or work from home. You can get up to 5hours of music playing time and then another 15 via the wireless chargingcase.How To Clear Cache On Galaxy S9 And Galaxy S9 PlusIf you’re having software issues on your Samsung Galaxy S9 or S9 plus devicethe quickest fix (for most problems) is going to be clearing your cache. Thesame issues can be found on most Android-based devices. The top method to fixany bugs or software glitches on your Galaxy S9 or Galaxy S9 Plus is to eithercomplete a factory reset or perform a cache wipe.By clearing the cache on a Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus, you can fixissues such as lag, glitches, or freezing by following the guide below. Itdoesn’t delete as much data as a factory reset, and the data it does delete istemporary and largely unimportant, so you don’t need to worry about any ofyour files. Considering that, it’s usually best to try this method first whenyou’re troubleshooting an issue.

Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus specs


OS: Android 8.0 (Oreo)Processor: Octa-core processor (2.8 GHz Quad + 1.7 GHz Quad)Display: 6.2-inch Quad HD + Curved Super AMOLED, 18.5:9 (529ppi)RAM: 6GBRear camera: Super Speed Dual Pixel 12MP AF sensor with OIS (F1.5/F2.4)Front camera: 8MP AF (F1.7)Dimensions: 158.1mm x 73.8mm x 8.5 mmWeight: 189gStorage (internal): 128GBStorage (external): MicroSD up to 400GBBattery: 3,500mAhSimply put, the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus is a bigger version of the SamsungGalaxy S9. (Check out our Samsung S9 review to find out more about the S9Plus’s smaller sibling.) And this comes without the S9 Plus being that muchdifferent to last year’s Samsung Galaxy S8, either.Yes, it is an iterative update, but when you consider how most other Androidmakers are still in the process of catching up with Samsung’s technicaljuggernaut, that is no bad thing, especially when you consider what Samsunghas spent its time adding this time around.The Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus looks identical at first glance to the S8 Plus.There are differences, though.As with the Samsung Galaxy S9, the standout new hardware on the Samsung GalaxyS9 Plus this year is the phone’s rear 12MP dual-aperture camera system, whichnot only offers enhanced low-light and bright-light image and video takingcapabilities, but also sits at the heart of this year’s other innovations,such as Super Slow-mo recording, AR Emoji, and an upgraded version ofSamsung’s Bixby assistant AI, which now delivers real-time object detectionand recognition, so again its focus makes sense.And the new camera system, as well as AR Emoji and Bixby Vision are not theonly things the S9 Plus shares with the S9, too. In terms of hardware, thereis very little difference between the two handsets (the S9 Plus has a littlemore RAM and internal storage), so it’s only natural to wonder what makes themore expensive S9 Plus worthy our attention.For the answer and all-important detail then read on.

Samsung S9 Plus review: price, colours, and release date


Both the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus and S9 share the same fantastic Super AMOLEDscreen tech.The Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus will be available in the UK (and worldwide) fromMarch 16th, with pre-orders open on February 25th from 18:00 GMT.The Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus will be available in three colours: Lilac Purple,Midnight Black (the model we reviewed) and Coral Blue.The Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus will cost £869. The phone will be purchasabledirectly from Samsung as well as select retailers.

Samsung S9 Plus review: design and build quality


Wired headphone users will be pleased to hear the S9 Plus retains a headphonejack.As viewable in the image a little further up this page, the Samsung Galaxy S9Plus is identical to the Samsung Galaxy S9, just bigger. It also looks, atfirst glance, just like the Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus from last year, but inactual fact they are not identical.The same luxurious and premium melding of metal frame and glass is still inevidence, however, and as with the S9 if you look closely you will see thatthe Galaxy S9 Plus’s bezels are now slightly reduced, shaving a little off thephone’s total height.The other major difference to the Galaxy S8 Plus in terms of design, as wementioned above, is that the phone’s fingerprint scanner is now locatedcentre-back of the handset under the dual-aperture camera system. We feel thisnot only looks better but, in practice, makes it far easier to unlock thephone while also avoiding smudging the rear camera’s lens in the process (acommon complaint last year).Other than that, much has stayed the same. The S9 Plus still has a 3.5mmheadphone jack, microSD card slot (which can take up to 400GB), and Bixbybutton on the left side of the device near the volume buttons.

Samsung S9 Plus review: screen and hardware


The S9 Plus is very tall but doesn’t feel overly wide thanks to its curvedscreen edges and 18.5:9 aspect ratio.The S9 Plus’ screen is the same delicious 6.2-inch display that featured onthe Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus and, yes, it is still drop-dead gorgeous. It lookssuperb on the S9 and, with extra space available here, the Super AMOLED 18.5:9panel only looks even better. The Quad HD+ resolution at 529ppi looks pinsharp and delivers fantastically vibrant colours and a high contrast thatmakes images, games and media really jump out of the screen.The screen also fills 90 per cent of the phone’s front space and, with zerosensors, buttons or visible cameras, has an incredibly elegant and futuristiclook.Playing modern smartphone games like Tekken is a real pleasure on the fast andvivid S9 Plus.While the screen itself isn’t new, Samsung has tweaked the screen’s landscapemode, meaning that the whole user interface now rotates to fit the widescreenformat, meaning that you can easily respond to messages and post to socialmedia while still enjoying your video content.In terms of internal hardware spec, the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus comes equippedwith 6GB of RAM (the S9 has 4GB), 128GB of internal storage space and its newExynos 9810 processor (well, everywhere except the US market, who are gettingQualcomm’s Snapdragon 845 CPU).This combination of internal hardware, in partnership with the S9’s SuperAMOLED screen, simply delivers a fantastically fast, vivid and powerful userexperience. Games load quickly and run smoothly, 4K, HDR films and TV showslook stunning, and using and switching between apps is seamless and delay-free.

Samsung S9 Plus review: camera


The S9 Plus, like the regular S9, comes packing Samsung’s new dual-aperturecamera system.Both the S9 Plus and S9 share Samsung’s new 12MP rear camera with dual-aperture technology, a system that has been designed to deliver enhanced low-light and bright-light image and video taking.The camera works by ditching the fixed aperture system that is common insmartphones today for one that can expand and contract like the iris of ahuman eye. This means that the S9 Plus’s camera automatically lets in morelight to its sensor when the surrounding environment is too dark, and thenless light when it is too light, leading to less images that are blown out ortoo dark for detail to pop.The camera system is also now capable of recording Super Slow-mo video at960fps at 720p, and 240fps at 1080p, with both modes also packing MotionDetection technology. This means that when the user selects a slow motion modeall they have to do is hold the phone up to the thing they want to record andwait for the action to begin – the camera will automatically start recordingwhen it sees any movement.As you can watch above, we’ve been playing with the super slow-mo camera modequite a bit in the T3 office and we have been very impressed with the qualityof slow-motion footage captured – which can then be easily turned into avideo, gif or even live wallpaper for the phone – as well as the accuracy andspeed of the automatic motion detection.Both this 12MP rear camera and the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus’ front 8MP cameraare also central to delivering this year’s other key innovations for Samsung -AR Emoji and Bixby Vision.

Samsung S9 Plus review: AR Emoji and Bixby AI assistant


No doubt influenced by Apple’s Animoji on iPhone X, Samsung has gone aboutbringing its own version to the Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus – AR Emoji.AR Emoji is a feature built into the system’s camera application that allowsuser to take a selfie of their face and then have it turned into a virtualavatar of them. Once this is achieved a selection of clothes, hats andaccessories can be used to style up the avatar. These aren’t extensive,however, there is a solid selection and more will no doubt be added.The AR Emoji are created by the camera analyzing the taken 2D image with adata-based learning algorithm, which then maps out over 100 facial features togenerate a 3D model. The avatar can then display a variety of expressions andemotions.One of our AR Emoji avatar’s stock gifs.You can pose the AR Emoji, too, by holding the camera up to you (as if youwere taking a selfie) and the AR Emoji will then mirror your expression andpose (see below image for an example).At this point you can then take a picture of your AR Emoji, or record a videowith sound of you speaking, with your avatar mimicking your actions. Thesevideos are then saved as gifs for ease of sharing on your social or messagingapplication of choice.Here comes the smolder…You can also select from 18 different stock expressions as well if you justwant to fire back a stock response to a message. Neatly, these are embeddedinto the Samsung keyboard, meaning you can bring them up and add them just aseasily as regular emoji.Setting up Bixby is straightforward – grant it some permissions, train it torecognise your voice, and you’re away.Samsung has also retained and beefed up its AI assistant Bixby on the S9 andS9 Plus. Bixby now has a live translation mode that allows you to simply pointthe phone’s camera at a piece of foreign text (see below image as an example)to have it automatically translated live in front of your eyes.We’ve used Bixby Vision a number of times during our S9 Plus testing periodhere at the T3 office, and we’ve done so with a wide selection of languages,too, including Spanish, Italian and Japanese. And on the whole we’ve beenimpressed with the speed and quality of translation.Bixby Vision also seems to deal well with changes in font and font size, too.Importantly though, this feature isn’t hardware based, so you do need a dataconnection to make it work. So while our experience with Bixby was very fast,we had an excellent 4G connection at all times, so don’t expect the sameservice if you have a poor signal or dodgy Wi-Fi connection.An example of Bixby Vision’s live translation of Spanish text into Englishtext.Bixby Vision is location aware and also allows some AR information to bebrought up about foods, monuments, locations and more by simply pointing thephone at the thing in question. As such, if you want to know how many caloriesare contained in a plate of chips, or the age or history of a specific publicstatue or building, then you can now do so through Bixby.

Samsung S9 Plus review: audio, battery, security and software


The S9 Plus features the same 3,500mAh battery as in the S8 Plus.The Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus comes with the same 3,500mAh battery as wasincluded in the S8 Plus. As we mention in our S9 review, we were definitelyhoping for an improvement here in terms of capacity but from our time with thephone we are fine with its performance.The S9 Plus’ battery got us through each day during our intensive usagetesting period with 25-50 per cent of the battery remaining, so even takinginto account some degradation over time we feel, as we saw with the S8 Plus,we feel the phone has an acceptable amount of juice storage. Would we prefereven more, so we could legitimately only charge the phone every other day? 100per cent yes!Audio on the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus is dealt with by a set of new stereospeakers tuned by audio company AKG, which also support Dolby Atmos 360-degreepositional audio. We’ve played about with the S9 Plus’ speakers playing atDolby Atmos compatible video and, yes, we can confirm that sounds do appear tocome from various directions, although this simulated surround sound isn’t apatch on a proper wired Atmos setup.Dolby Atmos audio isn’t just restricted to compatible A/V encodings though,with the S9 Plus allowing users to select the mode to enhance any standardaudio or video file they want. We can confirm that when the mode is selecteddefinition and volume are improved, as well as a degree of depth, too, howeverit makes little to no affect in terms of the position of various musicalelements.The S9 Plus’ Intelligent Scan feature combines facial and iris scanning so auser can unlock their phone simply by looking at it.Security on the S9 Plus is dealt with, if you so desire, by Samsung’sIntelligent Scan system. This combines facial recognition and iris scanning toallow the S9 Plus to be unlocked by you simply looking at the device.There is also the aforementioned fingerprint sensor, which we can confirm isjust as fast as that on the S8 Plus, but now located in its better, centrallocation.To use these more exotic security systems though requires a back up pin codeor pattern to be set, which can also be mandated on device power on.Finally, in terms of OS, the Galaxy S9 Plus comes loaded with Android 8.0Oreo, with Samsung’s own lightly-skinned TouchWiz UI on top. These run at anabsolutely lightning speed on the S9 Plus and lead to an incredibly slick andrapid user experience, with super smooth navigation and app loading.

Samsung S9 Plus review: verdict


We thought the 5.8-inch Super AMOLED screen on the regular sized SamsungGalaxy S9 was superb, but here, with a huge 6.2-inches of real estate, it justlooks stunning. The brightness, contrast, and definition of the panel justblew us away, and the vibrancy of colour too was remarkable. It really is thebest smartphone screen in the world right now.The extra 2GB of RAM over the standard Galaxy S9 (6GB) is also a good fit, andthe 3,500mAh battery, while not noteworthy, will deliver similar levels ofperformance we’re guessing to the S8 Plus, which itself was comfortably in aday’s usage range with moderate use. Naturally, until we can test the batteryfully in our full fat review, we will withhold any definite judgement.The shifted fingerprint sensor, arguably, makes even more of an impact on theS9 Plus than it does on the S9, too. Now located at the centre-back of thephone under the centrally position dual-aperture camera system, it isincredibly natural now to unlock the phone, even taking into account its largeprofile.And, obviously, all the extra features Samsung has brought to the S9 range areas good if not better to enjoy on a larger and fractionally more powerfulphone. Creating AR Emoji on the phone is fast and fun, and taking and viewingphotos and videos – notably the new 960fps Super Slow-mo videos – on thelarger screen a pleasurable experience.Of course, there are a few caveats to purchase, and we certainly don’t thinkthe S9 Plus is for everyone, or an S9-disregarding essential.Firstly, it is a big phone and, well, you’re going to need big hands reallyfor it not to look and feel unwieldy. Secondly, it is a not inconsiderable£130 more than the regular S9, ringing in at rather dear £869 – again, if youdon’t need that extra screen size then this phone probably isn’t for you. Andlastly, with both the S9 and S9 Plus allowing you to bolt in large quantitiesof external storage by MicroSD (up to 400GB, in fact) you’ll really want toconsider whether you need that 128GB of internal storage that comes with theS9 Plus. The regular S9 comes with 64GB after all, and you can cheaply andeasily by a MicroSD card to expand that.Overall, though, if you want the best big phone on the market right now (and,Note 9 aside, maybe the year) then the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus is the obviouschoice. It is superbly well equipped and, from our time with the phone, it hasalready gone a long, long way to winning our approval.How To Record Screen On Samsung Galaxy S9 And S9+Almost everything that a smartphone user needs is available on the SamsungGalaxy S9 and the S9+, but one thing that some users still aren’t contentedwith and are still looking for is the screen capture option. Unlike Apple,Android still hasn’t offered their users the chance to record what’s happeningon the Galaxy S9 or S9+ screen. Some users have claimed that they don’t onlyneed a screenshot, but also the ability to record the screen, too. Don’tworry, you can still do that, it’s just not the most intuitive process andrequires an extra app.”

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