The Galaxy S9 and the Galaxy S9 Plus are here, and it’s finally time for the hands on experience you’ve all been waiting for. Samsung has basically kept the same build style as last year…and the year before…and the year before that. And they have never really failed a durability test yet so it’s working for them. But it’s time to see what happens with this new Galaxy S9. Let’s get started. [Intro] The Galaxy S9 is still rocking the Gorilla Glass 5 on the screen this year, but this time the glass is a bit thicker which is supposedly going to help with drop protection. I’ll have the drop test in a future video, but as of now we’re still scoring the same on the scratch test as other flagships.
It’ll scratch at a level 6 and a deeper groove at a level 7. HTC is still holding that top spot with their scratch resistant sapphire crystal display, scratching at a level 8. Tempered glass is pretty normal for smartphones these days. At least razor blades, coins and keys won’t do any damage. The bottom of the phone has digital buttons underneath that glass so nothing new to check down here. The earpiece is sitting flush and tight inside it’s little slot. It is metal with little holes protecting it from dirt and metal shavings attracted to that magnet underneath. It’s a smart design and better than some of the cloth ones we’ve seen before on other phones. The 8 megapixel front facing camera is sitting under the front glass and protected from scratches.
The sides of the phone come with a thin plastic covering protecting that painted surface underneath. I’ll peel that off so we can get some adequate….verification of material. [Scratching sounds.] Yeah, it’s metal. One cool thing about this phone is that Samsung has upgraded the aluminum so it is more scratch and impact resistant. This has added about 8 grams of weight to the phone since the glass is a bit thicker too. But in my mind weight is associated with quality so I’m fine with these upgraded materials. The SD card slot up top is upgraded to hold an impressive 400 gigabytes of whatever you need that many gigabytes for. It’s nice to have more features than you could ever need on a phone. All the buttons are made from metal…and oh! Samsung took that dedicated Bixby button that nobody wants and upgraded it to version 2.0. So that’s cool. Down here at the bottom of the phone we have the USB-C slot, as well as the headphone jack, which makes the S9 definite daily driver material. I don’t use a jack often, but it’s incredibly nice to have on the phone when I do need it.
The camera on the back of the phone is where we start to see some pretty significant improvements over the Galaxy S8, which I’ll get to more in a second. This 12 megapixel sensor is still protected by glass, and thankfully the fingerprint scanner is now below the camera in a much more reachable location. Thumbs up for that Samsung. The fingerprint scanner can get scratched by my razor blade though, so we’ll give it a little test to see if it still works. And even with that much damage to the surface, it still functions like a champ. Pretty solid. Now let’s see what that camera can do. One thing Samsung did add this year is something called the AR emoji which makes a little resemblance of yourself and sticks it on screen.
It’s pretty similar to Animoji that we saw on the iPhone X. But if you look closely at my lips, one follows a lot closer than the other one does. Fun fact, you can change different hairstyles, and in real life, back in high school, my hair looked a lot more like this. No joke. If you scroll back far enough on my Instagram you can probably see a couple more pictures. Long story short, if you’re into animated characters, iPhone’s probably going to be the way to go – the lips actually work. So dbrand did say they were going to send me some new skins to show off in this video. I haven’t seen them yet though, so I’ll just leave a link down in the video description. You can check out their new selection so you can hide the fingerprints on the back of this glass sandwich.
Thank you dbrand for sponsoring this video, and I’ll let you know if your camo skins ever show up. The feature that impresses me the more with this Galaxy S9 is the rear camera. This is the first smartphone camera with a dual aperture sensor inside. It’s got a mechanical system that can expand and contract to let more light hit the sensor. Professional camera lenses have this and it’s incredibly cool to see it start making it’s way into the smartphone world. Better pictures for everyone to enjoy. We’ll have to take a look at this from the inside during the teardown. The larger S9 Plus also adds a telephoto lens to the phone, which is impressive. Here I’m adjusting the aperture manually in Pro mode. You can see the light difference as I jump from a to a 2.4. The will help considerably in low light situations. The back glass of the Galaxy S9 makes Art Class with Jerry impossible. The Samsung logo is still on the underside of the glass and won’t ever scratch or run off…well, unless you want a clear S9 of course.
Let me know in the comments if I should turn this phone transparent. It’s time for the burn test. Bixby is already getting in the way, so I’ll just roast him for a second. This HDR 101440p inch super AMOLED display lasted 12 seconds before the pixels started to go white. After I removed the flame, the pixels did start to recover which doesn’t always happen with LED displays. The oleophobic coating though, never survives the burn test. You can see my fingerprints still on the surface of the glass, so it’s important not to try this at home. It’s cool to see the Samsung screen recover though, even though the only person who probably ever deals with this kind of damage is me. And now the bend test. Samsung has never failed my durability test before, and with this upgraded aluminum frame, the results are consistent, surviving both flexes from the front and the back. With the Galaxy S7 a few years ago, we had some glass separation during the bend which compromised the water proofing. But with the Galaxy S9, even with the abuse, the glass is still sealed and the ip68 rating is intact.
Another solidly built phone from Samsung and a good choice for anyone looking to upgrade. I’ve personally been using the S8 Plus for the past year, and while this new phone is indeed tempting, it’s not enough for me to switch my stuff over. I’ll probably hold off and see if the next Note has anything worth switching for, or maybe I’ll jump ship entirely and use another Android phone from a different company. Let’s just see what 2018 brings. Huge thanks again to dbrand for sponsoring this video. The camouflage skins are pretty sneaky. Check the link in the description to see all their new stuff, and then come hang out with me on Instagram. Maybe I’ll post some more old school hair pictures. Thanks a ton for watching.
I’ll see you around..