The Note series has always been a bit… different. The original Galaxy Note was a behemoth — for the time — aimed squarely at enthusiasts. Compared to that year's Galaxy S II, the Note brought a bigger screen, more powerful internals, and the now-classic S Pen. Since that time, the Note series has switched between being an enthusiast's dream and being just a larger Galaxy S phone. In 2018, it looks like Samsung is priming the Note 9 to go back to being an enthusiast-first device.
But just because it's aimed at the enthusiast crowd doesn't mean other sectors won't appreciate the Note 9. Corporate users are a healthy market for Samsung to target, and — unless you're craving a physical keyboard — there are a few reasons to consider the Note 9 for your business needs!
The internal hardware
The Galaxy S9 is no slouch on the inside, but the Note 9 makes some noticeable improvements. It uses the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 inside, paired with 6GB of RAM instead of 4GB the smaller S9 comes with. The Note 9 also includes 128GB of internal storage in the base model, while both the S9 and S9+ only include 64GB. All of the phones are expandable with a microSD card, but internal storage is going to be faster and more secure. While Google Docs and PDFs don't take up a huge amount of space individually, more space for documents is only a good thing. If you need even more space for multitasking prowess, there will also be a 512GB storage/8GB RAM option.
Meanwhile, the Note 9 offers a slightly larger screen than that of the S9+. It's only a 0.2-inch difference, but more screen real estate is more screen real estate. This does make the Note 9 more unwieldy than smaller phones, but the tradeoff may be worth it for some users. Another thing the larger size allows is a larger battery: 4000mAh on the Note 9 compared to 3500mAh on the S9+.
The Note 9 will also feature the latest and greatest LTE and Wi-Fi radios. This is something most businesses overlook, but being able to connect to a network is one of the most important things mobile workers need their phone to do. If your workers struggle with connectivity when they're on the go, the Note 9 will be their best chance at staying connected.
The S Pen
The trademark feature of the Note series is the S Pen stylus. When the Note first came out, the S Pen was really only useful for swipe typing, doodling and writing quick notes. But with each new Note phone, the capabilities of the S Pen have grown. This year, Samsung is making a big leap with the inclusion of a Bluetooth radio inside the pen. You'll be able to use the pen as a presentation clicker, long-press to launch an app of your choice, and set specific actions inside each app. The pen can be used in this "smart" mode for 30 minutes, and 40 seconds inside of its silo will give it a full charge. If the pen does die, it can still be used as a regular capacity S Pen like older models.
When DeX debuted with the Galaxy S8, it was a bit… impractical. $150 for a specific dock was a huge barrier to entry, especially if your business is buying a fleet of Galaxy phones. And if you're already buying a dock, keyboard, mouse, and monitor, it's not that much more work to just buy a Chromebox for that station as well.
That last part hasn't really been changed, but DeX has grown in other ways. Apps work a lot better, and they scale to fit monitor screens much better. These are still mobile apps — so you can't have two Google Docs open at once — but if an employee can do 95% of what they need to from their phone, DeX is a great solution to tackle the other 5%. As for the cost of entry, DeX will now work with any USB-C to HDMI adapter, and Samsung will sell its own adapter. You can use the S-Pen or the phone's on-screen keyboard for text entry in DeX. Best of all, using DeX won't lock you out of using the phone's regular interface. If you've already invested in separate keyboards and mice, those will still work just fine.
Out of the box, Android phones are perfectly secure enough for consumers. But if you have sensitive business data that employees are carrying with them everywhere, you'll want a bit of extra protection. Samsung's Knox system happily offers that protection. In fact, Knox is so secure that recent Galaxy phones were approved for use by the U.S. Department of Defense to handle sensitive military data.
Being a big phone release from the biggest Android manufacturer, the Note 9 will have plenty of third-party accessories like screen protectors, rugged cases and car mounts for your employees to use to keep the phone itself safe. Cases also let your employees personalize their phones, which is a great way to tell everyone's phone apart.
Of course, not everything about Samsung phones is appealing. The biggest reservation that most businesses will have is the speed of updates. The Note 9 is launching with Android 8.0 Oreo just a few weeks after Android 9 Pie is released. More troubling is the speed of security updates, especially if you buy the phone from a carrier. It's not uncommon for Galaxy phones to lag a month or two behind Pixel phones when it comes to security updates. While that may not be the end all be all, it's an important consideration.
What say you?
Would the Note 9 be a good match for your business? Let us know down below!
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