Huawei Mate 9 and Mate 9 Porsche Design make their joint official debut

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Is this what the Pixel XL could have been? Probably, but instead of taking a backseat to “made by Google” marketing, Huawei boldly chose to do its own thing, and basically kill two birds with one stone, following both the self-branded Mate 8 and Big G-endorsed Nexus 6P… in a way.

Granted, the highly anticipated, just-unveiled Mate 9 shares a family resemblance with its actual predecessor first and foremost, also borrowing and improving the Leica-powered dual rear camera arrangement of the P9 and P9 Plus.

This time, you get a 12MP color and impressive-sounding 20MP monochrome sensor on the back of a 5.9-inch Android giant, focused on enhancing hybrid zoom, depth perception and wide aperture bokeh mode.

But as recently teased in a number of official promo videos, the Huawei Mate 9 is so much more than a proficient cameraphone. It’s a general powerhouse too, 4GB RAM and homebrewed octa-core Kirin 960 processor included, with a high-end gaming-centric Mali G71 GPU in tow.

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Then you have a massive 4,000 mAh battery, somehow purportedly capable of fully charging in less than 90 minutes. Quad microphones with directional recording and stereo speakers join hands for a premium audio experience, while the familiar-looking rear-positioned fingerprint scanner now supports gestures.

We’ll admit, the Full HD screen resolution doesn’t feel up to late 2016 flagship phablet standards, and the Huawei Mate 9 could have also used a 6GB RAM configuration.

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But that’s where the Mate 9 Porsche Design comes in, curved 5.5-inch Quad HD display, 6GB RAM, 256GB internal storage (up from 64 on the regular version) and all. It’s what we expected to be called Mate 9 Pro, just with a more luxurious look, the fingerprint reader moved to the front, and identical Mate 9 specs besides the aforementioned.

“Combining Porsche Design’s signature brand aesthetic with Huawei’s mobile engineering expertise”, this is but a “limited edition” smartphone inspired by fancy race cars, and will retail in Europe for an outlandish €1395 starting late December.

For what it’s worth, both Mate 9 editions are to run a very lightly skinned version of Android 7.0 Nougat out the box, with the less extravagant config priced at €699 for the old continent.

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About The Author
Adrian Diaconescu

Adrian has had an insatiable passion for writing since he was in school and found himself writing philosophical essays about the meaning of life and the differences between light and dark beer. Later, he realized this was pretty much his only marketable skill, so he first created a personal blog (in Romanian) and then discovered his true calling, which is writing about all things tech (in English).