Huawei has been in the smartphone game a long time, and so has their Mate series been(nearly as long as Samsung’s Note series).
This time around they bring us the Mate 9 and also the Porsche Design Mate 9 which has the same internals (6GB RAM, 256G storage and QHD display). The Prosche Design Mate 9 is a limited edition with a price tag of $1500.
This time around, Huawei has made the Mate 9 a curved unibody with aluminum, which makes this device feel very premium.
With a 5.9-inch display, the device definitely falls under the category for “big phones”, but with little bezels and a slim profile, it indeed feels better than any other big phone out there.
The power and a volume rocker is to the right of the phone and dual-sim tray to the left side of the phone. A USB-C port can be found on the bottom of the phone and one of the dual speakers, while the headphone jack(thank God) and infrared port can be found to the top. The Mate 9 also has a nice grip to the body, making it feel really ergonomically friendly.
On the back of the phone is a dual-camera setup (vertical, rather that horizontal like their P9). There is a bit of a bump on the cameras but this can be hidden with the phone case supplied in the box. Below the cameras is the fingerprint scanner, which remains one of the world’s fastest fingerprint scanners on the market.
The Mate 9 might be really good phone to look at, Huawei’s bragging rights do come out with the Porsche Design Mate 9. Almost all design elements have been changed, sporting a dual-curved screen (like that of Samsung’s Galaxy S7 Edge).
With the Porsche Design Mate 9, the screen is a bit smaller, with the fingerprint scanner brought to the front of the phone.
The Mate 9 sports a 5.9-inch 2.5D Full HD IPS display with a density of ~373ppi, but the Porsche Design brings Quad HD resolution in a smaller 5.5-inch AMOLED display with ~534ppi density.
Both devices has a blue-light filter, branded as “Eye Comfort” mode and works by changing the display tone to a much warmer color.
Great performance comes together with Huawei’s latest internals; Kirin 960 chipset. The Kirin 960 comes equipped with four Cortex-A73 ‘performance’ cores clocked at 2.4GHz, paired with four Cortex-A53 lower power cores clocked at 1.8GHz. The Mate 9 is also the first handset to run the new 8-core Mali-G71 MP8 GPU.
The regular Mate 9 comes equipped with 4GB Ram with 64G storage, while the Porsche Design Mate 9 sports 6GB RAM and 256GB storage. On the other hand, the regular Mate 9 comes with external storage capabilities while the Porsche Design is limited to 256GB.
The Mate 9 fingerprint sensor has some features to be heard of, gesture control. Tap once to go back, press and hold to return to the home screen and swipe down to access your notifications and shortcuts.
The Mate 9 comes with a dual stereo speakers, with a single speaker found on the bottom and a secondary speaker built into the earpiece above the display.
Good for many people, the Mate 9 keeps the regular 3.5mm headphone jack, which can be found up top.
The Mate 9 offers many different connectivity options; NFC, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and an infrared port.
The Mate 9 comes with a 4,000mah battery, which is one of the best in the market. With a Full HD display, you’ll definitely keep a long battery life. With the Porsche Design Mate 9, you will get lower battery life, because of the higher resolution display. It is to be noted, the Mate 9 does charge quicker than normal when plugged into a QuickCharge 3.0 charger.
Huawei has partnered again with Leica this time around to bring us another great camera setup, like the Huawei P9. Rocking a 12MP RGB sensor with a 20MP monochrome sensor. Also, rocking f/2.2 aperture and the RGB sensor also sports Optical Image Stabilization for additional stability in photos and videos.
This time around, Huawei has revamped its EMUI interface, with EMUI 5 bringing the latest Android 7.0 Nougat OS and several fixes all the previous EMUI versions had. The biggest change (at least for me) is them bringing in an app drawer (at last).
The Mate 9 and The Porsche Design Mate 9 both are amazing phones that are capable of doing great things (in context of smartphones). There are lots to say about the phone but it all comes down to the price: the regular Mate 9 is around $700 and the Porsche Design Mate 9 around €1,395 (yes, 1395 euros).
So, whether you really see this phone as a great choice, buy the regular Mate 9, but if you don’t care about money, go ahead and buy the Porsche Design Mate 9.