Both of us – me and Shaun – we have a love and hate relationship with our Note8 which we use as our daily driver. After the announcement of the new Note9, we really wanted to take a look at it. So, the kind folks at Samsung Malaysia sent us the unit for us to review as well. As I have been using it the Note9 ever since I got my unit from them, I figured that it’d nice to do a comparison. So many of you out there have been constantly texting me what exactly is the difference and what really changed – so, I am going to break it down in this article and compare the Note9 with the Note8.

What Really Changed?

Most Obvious: The Battery Life

I am not going to lie. If I am being honest, the battery in the Note8 was underwhelming. In fact, if there’s one thing that really didn’t allow the Note8 to show it’s true color – it would be the Battery. The Samsung Galaxy Note8 has a 3300 mAh battery whereas the S8+ which came out the same year, had a 3500 mAh. Comparing the phone with the Note9, you see it has a whopping 4000 mAh battery.

The moment I switched from my Note8 and over to the Note9, I noticed that the battery life is indeed better. That 4000 mAh may be an incremental change on paper for some but I have to say – I appreciate that the phone has better battery life now. With the Note9, I can gladly go out the whole day without even worrying about connecting it to a battery pack. I only charge the phone once every night and that’s the end of it.

If you are worried whether the battery is something you’re scared about – it’s about damn time you let that joke go. Samsung has taken serious measures ever since that incident and now it under goes a 8 Point battery test to see the battery passes all their Lab tests. So, yes – you’re safe.

Second: The S Pen

The S Pen now has a Bluetooth built in. Which means, you can configure the way you want. It now also has a tiny little battery in it that charges within 40 seconds to give you a usage time of 30 minutes. It was indeed useful. Now I didn’t use it for presentation or anything but just to take simple pictures and product shots remotely. That was fun.

Other than that, the pen is pretty much the same. Unless you get your hands on the Blue Note9 which comes in this striking banana Yellow color.

Third: Samsung DeX

When Samsung announced the DeX back when S8 was launched, I was a huge fan of it and so did the Note8 did. The only problem I had was – I had to get a dedicated dock to make it work. I was super bummed out and the fact that I need to fork out few hundreds of ringgit, didn’t really justify the price. So, fast forwarding to the Note9 – all you need is a USB-C to HDMI dongle. Amazing and it works like a charm. Only thing that was a bit annoying was the trackpad. So, I paired my Logitech MX Master and used it.

Fourth: Camera

Unlike the Primary camera on the Note8, the camera on the Note9 now has a Dual Variable aperture. It now changes from an F/1.5 to f/2.4 just like that. With that said, it was nice to have. But personally, it didn’t bother me as much as I thought it would. I might do a camera comparison, so keep your eyes peeled yea. 😊

These are some of the main changes that really caught my attention during my time using the Note9. If there’s one thing that would make me want to change from my Note8 – it would definitely be the battery. I personally think that these incremental updates were much needed because I feel like the Note9 is something that I would recommend. But I am going to keep my final verdict for last because the Review is happening sooner than you think – so stay tuned.

By the way, we know there’ so many things changed with the Note9 – but we will save it for the review heh. So, stay tuned.