The new Samsung Galaxy S9. Source : Samsung.com

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Samsung Galaxy S9 – What the critics are saying

“Michael

Michael Goodier, Journalist

It’s been ten days since the release of the Galaxy S9 and S9+, and apparently, people are trading in their iPhones “in droves” to get their hands on the new device according to the Sun.

It certainly been enough time for the critics to get their hands on the device. Here is what some of the top technology correspondents had to say about Samsung’s new flagship phone.

It’s very similar to the S8

The phone looks very similar to its immediate predecessor, despite packing more of a punch. Gareth Beavis of Techradar.com said that “Samsung might as well have called this the Galaxy S8S, if that wouldn’t have been too obvious (and unwieldy as a name).”

Jessica Dolcourt of cnet.com warned that upgrading from an s8 might not be worth it. “The Galaxy S9 is a nice incremental upgrade, but its low-light camera isn’t a game changer and some new features fall far behind the iPhone X. S8 owners can skip, but it’s a good upgrade from older Androids.” She said.

Dan Seifert at The Verge said: “if you’ve seen last year’s Galaxy S8 from Samsung, you’ve seen this year’s Galaxy S9.”

But this might not be a bad thing, according to trustedreviews.com. The similar design “is hardly something to complain about when you consider that, a year on, the S8 is still one of slickest phones around.”

Wired.co.uk’s Matt Reynolds said “if you want to get to grips with all the things that make the S9 a superlative phone, you should read our S8 review from a year ago. It’s all still true.”

The screen is fantastic

The phone’s 18.5:9 aspect ratio, Quad HD+ resolution and Super AMOLED screen with a curved display has received universal critical acclaim. Wired.co.uk said that “The screen, in particular, is superb. The colours are crisp and extremely detailed, and the ample screen real estate makes it well-suited to watching videos in horizontal mode.”

Techadvisor.co.uk said that “It’s still one of the best screens on the market and compared to our Galaxy S8, looks a little brighter, too.”

It can handle colours better than the competition. According to trustedreviews.com, “you’ll notice a slight blue shift along the curved edges of the display. This is one of the downsides of OLED; you’ll see it on most phones using the tech. Samsung’s displays do deal with the issue far better than those produced by LG – and used on the Google Pixel 2 – and you’ll really only notice the blue if you go looking for it.”

The screen is 5.8″ on the standard Galazy S9, and 6.2″ on the S9+ (which also comes with a couple of other perks).

The camera is impressive

The S9+ features twin lenses on the back of the phone (a wide angle and a telephoto lens), whereas the S9 has one, but with an adjustable aperture.

The camera performs well in low light. “Both [the S9 and the S9+] yielded bright photos in situations where I could see almost nothing at all,” according to David Phelan of the Independent.

It also has video slo-mo of up to 960fps (720p), which is very exciting. According to T3.com “We’ve been very impressed with the quality of slow-motion footage captured on our Samsung S9 review unit, which can be easily turned into a video, gif or even live wallpaper for the phone. We’re also impressed with the accuracy and speed of the automatic motion detection, which takes away a lot of the pain of timing things correctly.”

The shifting of the fingerprint scanner to below the camera is also a “significant improvement”, according to The Guardian’s Samuel Gibbs, who also had warm words to say about the front facing camera: “The eight-megapixel selfie camera is still one of the best, preserving detail and doing fairly well in dim lighting.”

Bixby has improved since the S8, but has a long way to go

Bixby, Samsung’s digital assistant, has improved since their previous offering, but there is still some way to go. According to Techradar “while it’s good that Bixby has been upgraded, to at least bring some sense to having that button on the side of the phone, it’s still a novelty rather than a must-have feature.”

Wired.co.uk were also not a fan of Bixby, saying “Bixby and Samsung’s habit of filling the phone up with bloatware are also just as annoying as in previous versions.”

And Samsung has come up with an answer to Apple’s Animoji.

Though apparently AR emoji is a novelty that gets boring fast, according to TechRadar. “At the end of the day, its synthetic-looking representations bear such little resemblance to the people who are supposed to identify with them, it would have been better if Samsung just left it off the phone” said Cnet.

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