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    Galaxy Note 9 versus Galaxy Note 20: Is it time for an upgrade?

    Phone
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    Last updated: November 9th, 2020 at 20:50 UTC+01:00

    Galaxy Note 10 owners don’t seem to have many good reasons to be thinking about upgrading to the latest Galaxy Note 20, but switching to the new flagship might make more sense for S Pen enthusiasts who have been using the Galaxy Note 9 since 2018. And what better way to find out if an upgrade is worth it than by comparing the two devices closely side-by-side.

    As mentioned before, we recently launched our online comparison tool where readers can pit various Galaxy devices against one another for the ultimate specs battle. You can hit the following link for a side-by-side view of the Galaxy Note 9 versus the Galaxy Note 20, or you can keep reading to achieve the same goal more or less.

    Galaxy Note 9 versus Galaxy Note 20: Internal hardware

    The Galaxy Note 9 and Galaxy Note 20 were created two years apart and quite a lot has changed since. The Galaxy Note 9 is powered by an Exynos 9810 or Snapdragon 845 chipset, whereas the Galaxy Note 20 employs the newer Exynos 990 SoC in some markets and the Snapdragon 865+ in others.

    The old silicon is paired with 6GB/8GB of RAM and 128GB/512GB of storage, while the new Galaxy Note 20 boasts 8GB of RAM and 256GB of built-in memory as standard. However, while the Galaxy Note 9 has expandable storage, the Galaxy Note 20 does not.

    Galaxy Note 9 versus Galaxy Note 20: Display

    The display is another major component that has changed over the past couple of years, not only in regards to the Galaxy Note series but Samsung’s entire smartphone portfolio. The Galaxy Note 9 comes with a ‘classic’ 6.4-inch Super AMOLED display with no notches or display cutouts but with thick top and bottom bezels to accommodate the selfie camera, sensors, and earpiece.

    The Galaxy Note 20, on the other hand, is more modern in this regard, having been equipped with a 6.7-inch Infinity-O Super AMOLED panel with a centered cutout for the selfie camera. As for other specs, the Galaxy Note 9 actually has a higher pixel count of 2960 by 1440, while the Galaxy Note 20’s display clocks in at 2400 by 1080 pixels.

    Both smartphone models have Gorilla Glass 5 on the front, but only the Galaxy Note 9 benefits from this material on the back panel, whereas the Galaxy Note 20 has been relegated to plastic. Likewise, the Galaxy Note 9 has an edge display that wraps around the side edges, whereas the Galaxy Note 20 has done away with this design in favor of a flat panel that might be better suited for S Pen applications.

    Galaxy Note 9 versus Galaxy Note 20: Cameras

    We’ll let the numbers do the talking in the camera department, so here they are: the Galaxy Note 9 has a 12MP main camera with an f/1.5-2.4 variable aperture coupled with a 12MP telephoto shooter with 2x optical zoom and an f/2.4 aperture. The phone has an 8MP (f/1.7) selfie camera and a 2MP dedicated iris scanner.

    The Galaxy Note 20, in contrast, has the same camera configuration as the Galaxy S20. It’s based on a 12MP (f/1.8) wide sensor, a 12MP (f/2.2) ultra-wide camera, and a 64MP (f/2.0) telephoto shooter with 3x optical and 30x hybrid zoom capabilities. The Galaxy Note 20 doesn’t have an iris scanner but it does feature a 10MP (f/2.2) selfie camera with Dual Pixel PDAF.

    Galaxy Note 9 versus Galaxy Note 20: S Pen, battery, software, other features

    The S Pen has gone through major changes over the past couple of years, and like the Galaxy Note 10 S Pen, the new one found inside the Galaxy Note 20 is equipped with a gyroscope for features such as Air Actions and the new S Pen Pointer. It also boasts a lower 26ms latency. The Galaxy Note 20 is the clear winner in the S Pen category, especially given the latest improvements to Samsung Notes.

    Both phones have a USB-C connector but only the Galaxy Note 9 has a 3.5mm audio port. Then again, only the Galaxy Note 20 supports reverse wireless charging, all the while boosting wired fast charging from 15W to 25W.

    Unsurprisingly, the Galaxy Note 20 is the only one of the two phones to support 5G connectivity, at least in some markets. All the internal components rely on a 4,300mAh battery; a unit that’s larger by 300mAh compared to the 2018 flagship.

    Lastly, the Galaxy Note 20 ships with Android 10 and One UI 2.5 and it’s guaranteed to receive two additional firmware upgrades. That’s no longer the case for the Galaxy Note 9, as it just recently received its last major push to Android 10 and One UI 2.1.

    Final thoughts

    This wraps up the most important aspects of these two devices, and it’s quite evident that the Galaxy Note 20 represents a considerable improvement over the Galaxy Note 9 in some areas, but not all.

    By switching to the Galaxy Note 20 you’ll be giving up on the edge display and the Gorilla Glass 5 back panel (assuming these features are a plus for you), as well as the 3.5mm headphone port and the iris scanner. What you'll be getting in return is upgraded hardware, better cameras, a new S Pen, 5G, faster wireless charging, reverse wireless charging, and the latest software all wrapped in a fresh design.

    Samsung
    Galaxy Note 9

    Buy Full specs

    General Information

    • Model Name

      Galaxy Note 20

      Galaxy Note 9

    • Model type

      Bar

      Bar

    • Colors

      Bronze (Mystic Bronze)Black (Mystic Black)White (Mystic White)

      Blue (Ocean Blue)Black (Midnight Black)Purple (Lavender Purple)Bronze (Metallic Copper)Silver (Cloud Silver)White (Alpine White)

    • Announced

      2020, August

      2018, August

    • Released

      2020, August

      2018, August

    Physical specifications

    • Dimensions

      Bar: 161.6 x 75.2 x 8.3 mm

      Bar: 161.9 x 76.4 x 8.8 mm

    • Weights

      192g

      201g

    • IP rating

      IP68

      IP68

    Operating system

    • Operating system

      Android 11

      Android 10

    • One UI version

      3.0

      2.5

    Networks

    • SIM

      Dual SIM model (Hybrid SIM slot)

      Dual SIM model (Hybrid SIM slot)

    • SIM card sizes

      Nano-SIM (4FF)

      Nano-SIM (4FF)Nano-SIM (4FF)

    • Networks

      2G3G4G

      2G3G4G

    • eSIM support

      Yes

      No

    Display

    • Kind

      Main Display

    • Name

      Infinity-O Display

      Infinity Display

    • Technology

      Super AMOLED Plus

      Super AMOLED Display

    • Size

      6.7 inch / 170.18 mm

      6.4 inch / 162.56 mm

    • Resolution

      FHD+ / 2400x1080 pixels

      QHD+ / 2960x1440 pixels

    • Pixel density

      393 PPI

      516 PPI

    • Screen to body ratio

      ~83.4%



    Phone Galaxy Note 20Samsung Galaxy Note 9
    Galaxy AI summarized

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