The Galaxy Note line has established a reputation for being the bleeding-edge phone in Samsung’s lineup. It was the first to offer a big screen — before phablets became in vogue. It was the first with multiwindow software for running two apps side by side. And it was the first to do a curved edge screen.
*Cheat Sheet: What’s new with the Note 9?*
▪S Pen is a remote control: The stylus now has Bluetooth connectivity, so you can use it for taking selfies, giving presentations, skipping music tracks and more.
▪Huge battery: The 4,000 mAh battery is the biggest ever in a Samsung handset, which is a big step up from the Note 8 and its 3,300 mAh power pack. However, our testing has produced only marginal improvements so far.
▪AI camera: The dual camera on the Note 9 can automatically recognize more than 20 different types of scenes (food, plants, etc.) and adjust the settings to get the best shot.
▪DeX without the dock. You only need an adapter and an HDMI cable to turn the Note 9 into a mini PC rather than a $69 accessory. The phone doubles as a touchpad.
▪Water cooled. The Note 9 uses a water carbon fiber cooling system to prevent overheating and deliver sustained high performance, though our testing didn’t yield impressive results.