The Google Pixel 3 and 3 XL were revealed yesterday and ZDNet's Jason Cipriani posted his five reasons to pick the Pixel. While Google's phones have some compelling features, the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is still the better phone for the enterprise.
Jason and I are both receiving Google Pixel 3 devices today for further hands-on testing, but after reading the hands-on reports from those in attendance at the Google event yesterday it is clear these are valid reasons to choose the Galaxy Note 9 over the Google Pixel 3 XL. If you are thinking of the iPhone XS Max instead, check out this comparison with the Note 9 too.
- S Pen: The S Pen is a key differntiator in the smartphone market and with the additional Bluetooth capability on the Note 9 there are many new ways to use the S Pen for improved productivity and efficiency.
- Display: The Galaxy Note 9 has a slightly larger 6.4-inch Infinity display with no side bezels and small top and bottom bezels. The Pixel 3 XL has a 6.3 inch display, but it also has a notch while Samsung does not.
- RAM and storage: The new Google Pixel 3 XL has 4GB of RAM and 64 or 128 GB of integrated storage. The Note 9 has 6GB or 8GB of RAM and 128GB or 512GB internal storage with microSD card support for nearly unlimited storage. While the Pixel 3 XL may be better optimized to run smoothly with just 4GB of RAM, there is much more storage capability on the Note 9.
- Cameras: Google's camera processing software is tough to beat and the Pixel 3 XL will likely yield some great results. Samsung's smartphones also perform well and the Note 9 provides a richer software option with full manual mode, 960 fps super slow motion, and more. The Galaxy Note 9 has a dual aperture camera and focuses on powerful hardware with capable software while Google focuses on processing its photos.
- Edge panels: For maximum efficiency, you can easily swipe in from one side and access customizable edge panels on the Note 9. Google lets you squeeze to activate Google Assistant, but there are more options and capability with the edge panels on the Note 9.
- Broad carrier availability: The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is available on all US wireless carriers and various retailers. Verizon will sell the Google Pixel 3 XL, but to use it on other carriers you need to purchase it through the Google Store online without getting the chance to hold one in your local carrier store.
- Samsung Pay: Android Pay is popular, but nothing beats Samsung Pay when it comes to the number of retail locations that are supported and the technology that allows you to replace your credit or debit card. More banks are added regularly, and Samsung offers promotions to encourage Samsung Pay use.
- Headphone jack: While Google, Apple, and others took away the headphone jack, Samsung continues to offer everything the competition does in addition to a standard headphone jack.
- Bixby: Samsung's Bixby assistant is often lamented by the tech press, but it is actually very useful, especially for those performing field work or need to have both hands free to work. Bixby takes the assistant to the next level and has some incredible functionality, but it does require some patience to fully understand its full capability. As detailed in this recent article Bixby serves as a personal assistant to help you use the hardware while Google is an incredible search assistant. You can also use Google Assistant on the Note 9 so you get the best of both worlds.
- Samsung DeX: People use their smartphones for everything, and with the improvements in Samsung DeX the possibility of your phone serving as your primary computing device is a reality. You only need a cable to connect and use DeX on the Note 9 and there is nothing like this offered by Google.
It's clear that Samsung continues to push smartphone technology forward with the Galaxy Note 9. It is the best smartphone available for the enterprise. I'll test the Google Pixel 3 to see if it can knock the Note 9 out, but the iPhone XS Max couldn't.
The Google Pixel 3 XL is priced at $899 for 64GB and $999 for 128GB while the Note 9 128GB is priced at $1099. However, Samsung has provided various promotions with free accessories, generous trade-in value offers, and more so the price usually works out less than the 128GB Pixel 3 XL.
The Google Pixel 3 XL is an excellent Android smartphone with a focus on software while the Galaxy Note 9 offers compelling hardware and software experiences. However, receiving timely Android updates is not always the best for business and as we have seen over the past several months many of Google's releases have been buggy with lots of issues that the enterprise does not need to deal with just to gain some minor feature. Samsung also pushes Android forward and has many features found on future versions of Android.
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