It takes something special to stand out in the crowded smartphone market but we have to say that the new Huawei Mate 9 has been turning our heads for all the right reasons. Here’s a quick rundown.

The Huawei Mate 9 in champagne gold

What Impressed Us: The immensely fast Kirin 960 chipset, which a few outlets have dubbed the world’s best performing smartphone processor. It might be a tad hyperbolic but the title is not without substance. The chipset is the first in the world to feature both an ARM Cortex-A73/A53 Octa-core CPU and Mali G71 Octa-core GPU, which delivers better performance while reducing power consumption.

What this means is that your battery life will last a lot longer. Couple this with the 4000 mAh high-density battery and you get a smartphone that can last for two days with normal usage before requiring a charge. So if you’re regularly on the road with no long-term access to a power outlet, the Huawei Mate 9 will still keep you connected without any problems.

And even if you can only plug in for 10 – 15 minutes at a time (such is the life of a business warrior), the Mate 9 supports fast charging. Ten minutes of charge provides enough power to watch two full films. Now that’s something special.

What Made Us Happy: The dual-lens camera was quite the treat. After their first collaboration in the Huawei P9, the Chinese company and Leica teamed up again for the Mate 9, and the result is rather impressive. There are two sensors – the RGB one captured true-to-life colours, while the monochrome sensor is responsible for immortalising the intricate details and depth resulting in the iconic Leica Image Style.

What Intrigued Us: The Huawei Mate 9 is the first in the world with Huawei’s Machine Learning Algorithm. Essentially, the smartphone learns your usage patterns and behaviour over time, and allocates more system resources to the applications that you use the most. In their own words, “this guarantees a long-lasting, smooth experience as over time, EMUI 5.0 slows down the performance erosion that all smartphone devices experience”. While we haven’t personally experienced the algorithm in action, as we suspect it takes a few months of regular usage, we are quite excited to finally some new innovations in an industry that hasn’t had any interesting developments for the past few years.

Other Specs: 5.9-inch Full HD display, Android 7.0 OS, 64GB space

Price: $898 without plan and carried by SingTel, StarHub and M1, and open channel stores including Best Denki, Harvey Norman, Challenger, etc. Available in two colours in Singapore – Space Grey and Champagne Gold.

Additional Services: The Mate 9 comes with HiCare Prestige, a bespoke care service that includes two years’ warranty, door-to-door delivery for phone repairs, a free screen replacement within the first year of purchase, and a three-day repair promise.

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