Specs summary

Screen
5.9"

The Huawei Mate 9's screen is 5.9 inches with 1080 x 1920 pixels resolution.

Processor
2.4GHz

There is a HiSilicon Kirin 960 Octa core 2.4 GHz processor (CPU).

OS

The phone runs on the Android 7.0 Nougat operating system (OS).

Camera
20+ MP
You can take photos or capture video with the phone's onboard 20+ megapixel camera. There is also a secondary front facing camera with 8+ megapixels resolution.
Storage
64 GB

Internal memory is 64 GB. An external, MicroSD, MicroSDHC, microSDXC (up to 256 GB) expansion slot is available for increased storage capacity.

Battery
4000mAh

The phone is powered by a Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion), 4000 mAh battery. Huawei's performance ratings are 1800 minutes (3G), 857 minutes Wi-Fi surfing.



The Huawei Mate 9 comes with powerful technologies in combination with good stamina. If you like big phablets, you cannot go wrong with the Mate 9.

- Daniel Schmidt , Notebookcheck 

It’s fast and has a fantastic screen, but poor battery life means the Mate 9 just doesn’t measure up as the next Note 7 replacement.

- Katherine Byrne , Expert Reviews 

Reviews summary

8.2/10AVG.
RATING
Based on 38 reviews

What's good  

  • All-day battery
  • Plenty of internal storage
  • Great rear camera
  • Blazing performance
  • Quality design and materials
  • Dual SIM support
  • MicroSD support

What's bad  

  • Too big for one-handed operation
  • Emotion UI
  • Proprietary fast charging
  • Price
  • Screen resolution not suited for VR

The Mate series has been known for its massive screen sizes and quality components. With their latest model, Huawei is taking aim at the top of the phablet market in both pricing and specs. But does this big phone justify its big price tag?

Reviews are rolling out and we’ve scoured the best of them to bring you this phone summary.

Let’s dig in!

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With their previous releases, Huawei has proven that buying Chinese phone doesn’t mean sacrificing quality. Reviewers were pleased with the metal and glass design of the Mate 9. While reviews were quick to note that the phone felt great in the hand, they also pointed out the sheer size of the phone. PhoneScoop said, “The curved rear panel and smoothed-over side edges help hand-feel somewhat, but the Mate 9 is a huge phone that constantly requires two hands to use effectively.”

The phone includes a fingerprint scanner on the rear panel which you can program to perform a variety of common actions. Reviewers loved the responsiveness and pointed out that the slight indentation made it easy to find with your finger.

Flipping around front, you’ll find a 5.9-inch 1080p display. Although the resolution is lower than competing flagships, reviewers found little to complain about with the screen. SlashGear stated, “The Huawei Mate 9’s screen can be best described as being decent and tolerable. Just OK, but nothing exceptional.” Reviews indicate that unless you’re looking to use it with a VR headset, the resolution is ample for daily use, gaming and media consumption.

To push those pixels, Huawei went with their own 2.4Ghz 8-core Kirin processor and 4GB of RAM. Benchmarks from reviewers indicate it keeps up with and even outperforms the Snapdragon chips common with other 2016 flagships for basic daily use. The Guardian noted, “It actually felt faster than any other Android smartphone I have used to date, which is an achievement.”

With an internal storage capacity of 64GB, you should have no problem fitting your favorite apps or media on the phone. There’s a tray on the side for microSD cards up to 256GB should you need more space. However, this is the same slot used for a second SIM card. So you must choose between extra storage or an extra line.

As with previous Huawei devices, there's much debate about the phone's interface. While it runs Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box, Huawei’s Emotion UI changes the look of the software significantly. Though many reviews were quick to point out that this latest version is an improvement over past Emotion UI releases, ArsTechnica UK noted, “It still feels like a jumbled mess of too many iOS-like features on an Android system.”

Battery life is equally debatable. With the 4,000mAh battery was enough to get most reviewers through the day, Huawei’s use of their own SuperCharge quick charging technology means you won’t find many options for third-party charging accessories. However, when paired with the Huawei charger, it offers a full charge in under 2 hours. SlashGear summed up experiences well, saying, “The battery won’t last you days under high screen usage time but the 4,000 mAh battery will last you until very late night before you have to recharge it – very impressive battery life.”

If you’re looking for a phone with a powerful camera, reviews show the Mate 9 can keep up with the best phones available. Huawei claims the 20+ megapixel dual-lens rear camera offers improved color accuracy, finer details and great low light performance. Reviews agreed. PhoneScoop said, “The Mate 9 may not replace a dSLR, but it's certainly enough camera for most occasions.” Reviews were equally positive for the front-facing 8MP lens.

Overall, the biggest complaint about the Mate 9 from reviewers is it’s price. With a suggested retail price above even the major manufacturers' flagships, some reviewers felt the value didn’t add up. Mashable said, “While the Mate 9 is a very good phone, it will only be the best for some users: those who care deeply about battery life, fast charging and some niche features like black and white photography.”

Alphr summed up overall opinions well with their final verdict, saying, “If you want a big phone in 2016 then, with the death of the Note 7, the Mate 9 stands virtually alone. You’ll be very happy with Huawei, but you need to really want that extra inch to make the Mate 9 a must-buy.”


Reviews (8.2/10 Avg. rating)


TechSpot

Big screen phone, a flagship phablet

from TechSpot
With the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 failing spectacularly, there’s a big gap in the market for other large-screened Android handsets to shine. The Huawei Mate 9 is a great alternative for those who want high-end hardware and an excellent media consumption experience, especially when you consider its affordable $599 price tag... Full review
Gearburn

Definitely got the looks and power

from Gearburn
The Huawei Mate 9’s long endurance and great camera experience definitely makes it a worthy upgrade over the Mate 8. But, unless battery life is the undisputed top priority for you, I’d recommend you wait a month or two for the P10 Plus... Full review
VR-Zone

A consumer-centric device

from VR-Zone
The Mate 9 is an all-purpose phablet that does Huawei proud. At a retail price of S$898, the Mate 9 is not an expensive flagship. Its strong battery life, powerful rear cameras, and incredible graphics performance and speed is what makes it shine amongst the sea of smartphones in the market. The user-friendly EmotionUI further adds value to the Mate 9 and Huawei’s new line of devices. The only room beef we have with the Mate 9 is a slightly dull design and a heavier than average weight on the device... Full review
Brighthand

Dual Cameras in a Solid Smartphone

from Brighthand
The common knock on Huawei smartphones: great hardware, poor software. Huawei took big steps to correcting that with the Huawei Mate 9. It’s EMUI is still heavy enough to retain distinction from stock Android, though much closer to the real thing than previous versions. Those familiar with Android will get used to it quickly. On top of that, Huawei checks all the right marks. The Mate 9 is well-built and designed, features excellent display and speakers, and performs extremely well. The camera is also worthy of the current crop of flagships. It’s one of the best... Full review
Talk Android

Huawei’s best phone yet Review title

from Talk Android
With its premium build, gorgeous display, the powerful Kirin 960 processor driving performance, a lighter EMUI skin, and outstanding 2-day battery life, the Mate 9 is easily the best the phone Huawei has ever produced and the best big-screened smartphone you can buy in this post-Galaxy Note 7 world... Full review
Android Guys

The phablet standard

from Android Guys
I absolutely love this phone. My only drawback to using it is, as you may be able to tell in some of the pictures, I have smaller than average hands which makes it difficult to use such a large device. If this phone was maybe a 5.7″ screen, I would run out and buy one right now... Full review
SlashGear

Impressive responsiveness, processor performs very well

from SlashGear
The Huawei Mate 9 is an interesting combination of elements, one that sees the company move from strong branding to entirely solid smartphones in the international market. We’re still waiting for Huawei to enter the United States in full force – that is with a phone sold with at least one major mobile carrier. While we wait, Huawei’s already proven themselves as a sleeping giant, just waiting for that opportunity to grab hold of the USA’s smartphone-loving public... Full review
Good Gear Guide

One of the most innovative and fastest flagship phones on the market

from Good Gear Guide
It succeeds in the three key areas required of smart phones: battery, performance and camera. As such it's great value at $999. However, the camera can struggle in basic low-light conditions. We hope this will get fixed down the line... Full review
Business Insider

Worth a very long look

from Business Insider
The Mate 9 isn’t without its advantages, though. Its battery is better, its design is less wasteful, and, with Alexa on the way, it might play nicer with Echo owners, too. If you're compelled, don't let the unfamiliar name scare you away... Full review
GreenBot

A giant phone with a small frame and big ambitions

from GreenBot
Priced at about $250 less than the Note7, the Mate 9 is a heck of a phone. While it’s hard to call a $600 phone a bargain, Huawei has built a handset any manufacturer would be proud to call its own, and you’d be hard-pressed to find another 5.9-inch handset that provides a better big-phone experience. It’s a phone that could easily cost upwards of $800, and likely would if it had Samsung’s or Google’s name on it... Full review

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