We have a possible Samsung Galaxy Note 9 release date, so tell Bixby to set your calendar for August 9.
Update: There’s growing evidence that the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 could have a 4,000mAh battery. Plus, we’ve now had our first real look at what the Galaxy Note 9 might look like, thanks to leaked renders.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 launch date is likely two months away, according to a new leak that hints at a release date weeks sooner than previous years.
The Note 9 is always big news because it’s an Android phone with a large screen and handy S Pen, although rumors of an in-screen fingerprint sensor may be premature.
Instead, we’re likely to see Bixby 2.0 and an improved dual-lens camera, maybe one with the HDR video recording left out of the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus.
Today, we’re sorting through the rumors and leaks (there are a lot of them), and to do that we’ve gotten out our trusty S Pen stylus ready to declare which are plausible, and which are just wishful thinking.
Here’s everything we know about Samsung’s extra-big Android phone.
You may be able to get your hands on the Galaxy Note 9 sooner than anticipated, as the Samsung Unpacked launch event may be in early August.
Thursday, August 9 is the rumored launch date, with the announcement expected to happen in New York City. Last year’s phone was announced on August 23.
There’s been a lot of evidence backing this up. The Note 9, said to be codenamed ‘Crown’, supposedly had a prototype ready in the first quarter of 2018, noted The Investor. It cites market watchers who pinned the phone for early to mid August.
Samsung was also said to be testing firmware for the phone ahead of schedule, two weeks earlier than where it was with the software for the Note 8. And remember, the S9 firmware was tested earlier than the S8 and that went on to launch earlier, too.
Supply chain sources are also reporting that screen panels were being built for it two months earlier than normal, going as far as calling out a late July launch date. That’s a little too ambitious. August 9 sounds like a much more likely date.
Samsung needs the Note 9 is be attention-grabbing enough to outlast the iPhone X2 and iPhone 9 phones that Apple is likely to unveil in early September.
Sure, the Note series is always announced first, but by the time Note phones actually comes out, the hype surrounding Apple’s new iPhones is already at a fever-pitch.
That’s the No. 1 reason why we expect Samsung to give us the Galaxy Note 9 earlier. It needs to get its phone in its first customers hands in August or early September at the very latest.
The Note 9 is poised to be a big deal because it’ll be a massively sized update to the Galaxy Note 8, and slightly bigger and better than the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus, which launched around the world in March.
Of course, that’s not to say it’ll be a massive update to last year’s phone with a 6.3-inch screen. No, we’re expecting iterative, but important changes, mostly to the internal specs, rather than a complete redesign on the outside.
Early leaks back that up, specifically some renders based on a factory CAD (computer-aided design), which you can see below, and which come from a fairly reliable source, namely @OnLeaks (who shared them on behalf of 91mobiles), who has been right about things plenty of times before.
The images show a design that looks very similar to the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, complete with a quite rectangular shape, a metal frame and a likely glass back. You can also see that there’s once again a dual-lens camera and a fingerprint scanner on the back – so an in-display scanner looks unlikely.
However, the scanner has been moved below the camera lens, somewhat similar to its position on the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus, but where that phone has its cameras stacked vertically, the Note 9 shown here has them side by side.
Other details include a 3.5mm headphone port, USB-C port, speaker grille, S Pen silo and microphone on the bottom edge, slim bezels (but no notch) on the front, power and volume buttons on the left edge and a Bixby button on the right. As well as the images above, you can also see all these things in the video below, which came from the same source.
The dimensions of the Galaxy Note 9 have also been supplied, with the phone apparently coming in at 161.9 x 76.3 x 8.8mm, making it slightly shorter but marginally wider and thicker than the 162.5 x 74.8 x 8.6mm Galaxy Note 8. So the size is similar overall, which is no surprise, since the screen will apparently also stay at roughly 6.3 inches.
As there haven’t been any other images yet there’s nothing to compare these to, so take them with a grain of salt, but the source is solid and they look convincing enough.
The Note 9 price is unlikely to have the same good news that we’re seeing from the early release date. Whenever it does arrive, it’s bound to be expensive.
The Galaxy Note 8 retailed for $929 / £869 / AU$1,499 at launch and we can’t see Samsung lowering the price for the Note 9, especially now Apple has pushed smartphone prices even higher with its iPhone X .
Here’s the Note 9 price wildcard: The S9 and S9 Plus saw a price increase in most countries. However, it was cheaper in the US. We may see another split decision, depending on where you buy the Note 9.
For now, you’ll have to be satisfied with the Note 9’s predecessor if you want a phone with a stylus on the cheap. Check out today’s best Galaxy Note 8 deals.
Watch the video below to see our Samsung Galaxy Note 8 review.
The biggest Samsung Galaxy Note 9 rumor relates to its fingerprint scanner, which months of rumors have indicating could be built directly into the phone screen.
We’ve seen (and tested) in-screen fingerprint sensors in phones out of China, and A Samsung is testing multiple in-screen solutions and will probably use one of them, a move which could also apparently allow room for a larger battery in the Note 9.
That tallies with a source who’s said the Note 9 will have both an in-screen scanner and a big 3,850mAh battery.
However, a slightly earlier rumor points to the in-screen fingerprint sensor skipping the Note 9, just like it did on the S9 and S9 Plus, Note 8 and S8 and S8 Plus before. There’s more reason to believe it’ll show up on the Galaxy X ( Galaxy S10 next year).
Both Samsung and Apple have been rumored to be working on this but failed to achieve it in time for their most recent handsets, pushing Samsung to move the scanner to a sub-optimal position on the back of the Samsung Galaxy S8 and Note 8, while Apple ditched it altogether from the iPhone X.
There’s hopeful news on the subject in the form of a Samsung patent, showing a handset with a scanner built into the screen. Supposedly it would digitally show where users need to place their finger, and could potentially provide vibrations as feedback.
Huawei and Vivo have demonstrated this tech in a phone this year, but Samsung is said to be using an ultrasonic-based in-screen fingerprint sensor for the Note 9, whereas the Huawei and Vivo use light-based optical under-glass fingerprint sensors.
But we’ve seen many sources in the supply chain claim Samsung has settled on placing the scanner on the back, just like its current flagship phones, so right now we’d say an in-screen scanner is looking unlikely.
As noted above one source has said the Note 9 could have a 3,850mAh battery, which would be a lot bigger than the 3,300mAh one in the Note 8, but only slightly larger than the 3,500mAh one in the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus, so it’s believable.
But a more recent rumor about the Note 9 battery is that it could climb to a 4,000mAh capacity, a new high for a Samsung flagship device. The same rumor has the screen at 6.4 inches, so we’re unsure if the source just likes big numbers or if this is true.
We’re taking this leak with a grain of salt, but that battery size has since been put forward again, with a source claiming to be « 100% sure », so there’s a fair chance that it really will have a 4,000mAh battery.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 has also seemingly been benchmarked with predictably high scores, revealing in the process that it has a Snapdragon 845 chipset, 6GB of RAM and runs Android 8.1 – the same specs in other words as the US version of the Galaxy S9 Plus. There’s also been talk that Samsung could push the top configuration up to 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage.
In more unlikely news, there’s a chance that Samsung will go even further than an in-screen scanner with the Note 9, as it’s patented a smartphone concept that has not just the fingerprint scanner but also the front-facing camera and sensors embedded in the display, for a truly bezel-free design.

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