Even before the release of Huawei Mate 9, there were widespread rumors that the device could fill the void left by the Galaxy Note 7 disaster. Samsung has stopped production and sales of the Galaxy Note 7, giving its Chinese rival Huawei an opportunity to position its new Mate 9 device as an ultimate replacement to the Note 7. Huawei has officially taken the wraps off the Mate 9 at a special event in Munich.

Huawei Mate 9 Galaxy Note 7 replacement
Image Credit: Huawei (screenshot)

Huawei launches Mate 9 in two versions

During the unveiling event, Huawei Consumer Business Group CEO Richard Yu took a dig at the Galaxy Note 7. He said the Mate 9 doesn’t explode when charging. Huawei Mate 9 is available in two versions. While the standard model comes with a 5.9-inch FHD display with 1080p resolution, the Porsche-branded edition has a 5.5-inch QHD (1440×2560 pixels) AMOLED display.

Huawei Mate 9 has a metal frame on the side. In terms of specs, the device features a curved 2.5D glass on the front and a matte metal finish on the rear. It comes in five different color options: Silver, Gold, Space Gray, Brown, and Ceramic White. The Mate 9 is among the first handsets to be powered by Android Nougat.

One of the biggest highlights of Huawei Mate 9 is a machine learning feature that learns your daily habits over time. The Chinese company said the machine learning takes place on the device itself rather than the cloud for the sake of the user’s privacy and security.

Just like Galaxy Note 7, Mate 9 comes with ‘supercharging’ technology

The smartphone boasts of a dual-camera system on the back. It includes a 20MP monochrome sensor and a 12MP RGB sensor with F2.2 aperture and OIS. Huawei has partnered with Leica for the camera. The front snapper is 8-megapixel.

The Mate 9 is powered by Huawei’s own Kirin 960 octa-core processor and an i6 co-processor. It features a Mali-71 MP8 GPU, 4GB RAM, and 64GB of built-in storage, expandable up with 256GB via a microSD card slot. The device packs a huge 4000mAh battery, which Huawei claims can easily last two days. The “supercharging” technology promises to deliver a day’s worth of power in just 30 minutes and a two-day charge in 90 minutes.

Mate 9 won’t slow down over time

Huawei claims to have overcome the issue of smartphones slowing down after a few months of use. The Mate 9 uses a proprietary technology that ensures that Mate 9 will be 80% faster than other devices after one year of use.

The premium Porsche version priced at EUR 1,395 will be launched in a Graphite Black color in December. The standard and Porsche models have similar specifications, but there are a few notable differences. The Porsche edition comes with a 5.5-inch QHD AMOLED display. It packs 6GB RAM and 256GB of internal storage (there’s no microSD card slot).

Is it the ultimate Galaxy Note 7 replacement?

The Huawei Mate 9 has all the high-end specs to lure the Galaxy Note 7 owners, though it lacks a stylus. But customers, at least in the West, are still uncertain about its brand. The Chinese company doesn’t yet have the same status as Samsung. That’s why Huawei is blending its brand with others, said Ben Wood of the CCS Insight consultancy. For the limited edition version, it worked with Porsche; and for the camera, it partnered with Leica.

If you owned a Galaxy Note 7 and are now looking for a new Android smartphone, consider Huawei Mate 9 if you are not too worried about brand. If you want a big brand, there are other handsets like Google Pixel available in the market.