Yesterday, Huawei Technologies unveiled the next generation smartphone in its Mate line-up: the Huawei Mate 9. Building upon a successful 2016 with over 106 million smartphones sold worldwide, Huawei is hoping to capitalize on the void left behind by the Samsung Galaxy Note 7. The Huawei Mate 9 smartphone embodies the current Huawei smartphone strategy:iterative improvements over risky innovations.
On the hardware front, Huawei has made major strides in its camera, battery, and SoC just to name a few, while for software Huawei has incorporated some necessary behind-the-hood tools to improve immediate performance as well as performance over time. As we dive into the details unveiled at Huawei’s press event in Munich, one question we will be asking ourselves is: will Huawei’s latest smartphone be able to live up to its spec sheet? We will describe our preliminary thoughts on the smartphone based on a quick hands-on in a separate article.
Display: 5.9” LCD, 1080×1920 FHD @ ~373 ppi. 1500:1 contrast ratio, 96% saturation, 16.7M colors.
Software: Android 7.0 Nougat with EMUI 5.0
RAM: 4GB LPDDR4-1800
Storage: 64GB (available space for users: 52.66GB), expandable up to 2TB via micro-SDXC. Uses the latest UFS 2.1 flash storage standard.
Camera: 20MP Monochrome + 12MP RGB sensor with f/2.2 aperture, OIS and PDAF. New camera features include Hybrid Zoom, 4-in-1 Auto-Focus features, and dual LED flash. 8MP front-facing camera with f/1.9. Recording 4K video @ 30FPS is possible (4K @ 60fps can only be decoded, but not encoded unfortunately), and processing is done using the latest HEVC algorithm for compression.
Battery: Non-removable, 4,000 mAh LiPo battery with proprietary fast-charging protocol named “SuperCharge”.
Sensors: Fingerprint sensor with gesture support and Level 4 Authentication. Infrared sensor (IR). NFC support.
Chipset: HiSilicon Kirin 960 with 4xA73 BIG cores @ 2.36GHz and 4xA53 LITTLE cores @ 1.84 GHz with integrated dual 14-bit Image Signal Processor (ISP) and an i6 sensor hub. The latest Mali-G71MP8 Bifrost GPU @ 900MHz is also included with support for OpenGL ES 3.2 (Vulkan).
Modem: UE Cat. 12/13 LTE, 4xCA, 4×4 MIMO. CDMA support.
Misc. Connectivity: WiFi 2.4/5 GHz with 802.11a/b/g/n/ac with WiFi Direct support. Bluetooth 4.2 support with BLE.
Sound: Stereo speaker grill on the top and bottom of the device. 3.5mm headphone jack. 4 microphones positioned through the body of the device allowing for directional sound recording. Noise cancellation during calls possible with microphone positioned within the loudspeaker.
Ports: 1 x USB Type-C port (USB 2.1). You may either use 1 x micro-SDXC slot + 1 nano-SIM slot, or have a dual SIM set-up by inserting two nano-SIMs into the slot.
Colors: Space Gray, Moonlight Silver, Champagne Gold, Mocha Brown, Ceramic White, Black
Dimensions: 156.9mm height; 78.9mm width; 7.9mm thick. 190g weight.Price: €699 (including taxes)
Availability: Date TBD. Will be available in China, some European markets, and some Asian countries.