The Huawei Mate 9 packs a massive battery, Leica camera, and a sleeker UI

We’ve gone hands on with the latest phablet from Huawei, and we like it

Huawei has just announced the all-new Mate 9 on stage in Munich, Germany. It's a large 5.9-inch smartphone with a massive 4,000mAh battery, with plenty of professional features to keep those ex-Samsung Note 7 owners happy.

Let's start with that large 5.9-inch screen. It features 2.5D glass, and Full HD, 1920 x 1080 resolution giving a pixel density of 373 ppi. It looks great, although not quite as sharp as the leading displays from Samsung.

The screen can identify 'miss-touches', and doesn't respond - the makes accidently touches on the large screen less of an issue, although whether it works remains to be seen.

Behind the screen, we have a large 4,000 mAh battery, which should easily see a day's usage, maybe a day and a half or two days (we'll let you know). There's 'supercharging' on board to gain 58-percent in 30 minutes, and a full-day from 90 minutes. This only works with the supplied charger.

Powering everything is a Kirin 960 octa-core processor and 4GB RAM. The Kirin 960 has been designed to be more efficient. This is combined with Huawei's software to eliminate performance erosion (where your Android phone slows down after a year).

Running on top of Android 7.0 Nougat is a new version of Huawei's EMUI. This has been designed to be flatter and more intuitive, generally cleaner. They've done a good job, although some of the standard app icons still look a little cheap.

There's 64GB onboard storage, which is expandable with a MicroSD card.

The Mate 9 features a second generation Leica Dual Camera, with an improved 20-megapixel monochrome sensor (still 12-megapixel colour), hybrid-zoom, and optical image stabilisation.

The Mate 9 has an impressive number of business features pre-installed. Firstly, it can hold two accounts for apps like Facebook, which should make switching between work and family life a bit easier.

It also has four directional microphones - this is great for the audio recording app, as they each record to a different channel, allowing you to mute background noise or a specific voice. It also improves call quality.

Porsche Design - this is the Mate 9 you want

So that was the standard Mate 9, but Huawei is also showing off another phone today - the Porsche Design model.

This has an 'edge' display similar to the Samsung S7 Edge, a 2K AMOLED screen, 6GB RAM and 256GB storage.

It's a limited edition as well so comes with a significant price increase.

Pricing and availability

The Huawei Mate 9 (4GB + 64 GB) will retail for £620 (€699) and will be available in Black, Space Grey, Moonlight Silver, Champagne Gold, Mocha Brown and Ceramic White colour schemes.

The limited edition Porsche Design Huawei Mate 9 (6GB + 256GB) will retail for £1237 (€1395) and is available in Graphite Black.

First-wave launch markets include: China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Malaysia, Poland, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Thailand and United Arab Emirates.

Stay tuned to T3 for a full review of the Huawei Mate 9.

More images:

Liked this?