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Galaxy S9 Plus vs. Pixel 2 XL: Is one camera really better than two?

by Danny Zepeda | February 25, 2018February 25, 2018 12:00 pm PST

Ever since Google unveiled the Pixel 2 XL last October, it was immediately deemed one of the best Android devices around. Some would say the best, even better than Samsung’s best. Samsung is ready to take the crown back with the Galaxy S9 Plus.

As per usual, the S9 Plus received all of the latest specs: 6.2-inch Infinity Display, Snapdragon 845 processor, 6GB of RAM and 12MP dual camera. This time around, Samsung dedicated extra time in refining the design. Gone is the lazily placed fingerprint scanner beside the camera, and it is now in a more comfortable location below the camera. There’s no question about it: the S9 Plus is Samsung’s best smartphone to date.

While not as sleek as the S9 Plus, the Pixel 2 XL and its brawn still stand up admirably. It doesn’t look as good, but it is definitely smarter. That’s none more evident than in the camera. The S9’s dual camera system may be one of the best Android cameras, but the Pixel 2 XL does all that with just one camera. Samsung even threw in a variable aperture mode to control the amount of light that enters the sensor, but Google is on another level with camera refinements.

It’s too early to make a definite call as to which one is better. And even if we did, our decision wouldn’t be all encompassing; people like different things. What is clear at the moment is that the Galaxy S9 Plus and Pixel 2 XL are two of the best Android phones you can buy.

Check out the side by side spec comparison of the S9 Plus and Pixel 2 XL below and decide for yourself which phone is better.

Samsung - Galaxy S9 Plus Google - Pixel 2 XL
Display Size 6.2-inch, 1440 x 2960 pixel display (531 ppi) 6-inch, 1440 x 2880 pixel display (537 ppi)
Resolution X 1440 1440
Resolution Y 2960 2880
Display Type Quad HD + Curved Super AMOLED QHD+ pOLED
Operating System Android 8 (Oreo) at launch Android 8.0 (at launch)
Processor 10nm, 64-bit, Octa-core processor (2.8 GHz Quad + 1.7 GHz Quad) Qualcomm Snapdragon 835
RAM 6GB 4GB
Storage
  • 64GB
  • 64GB
  • 128GB
External Storage Yes No
External Storage Specs
  • microSD up to 400GB
Main Camera (Back) Dual 12MP 12.2MP
Secondary Camera (Front) 8MP 8MP
Bluetooth Bluetooth 5.0 (LE up to 2mbps) Bluetooth 5.0 LE
Battery 3500mAh 3520mAh
NFC Yes Yes
Connectivity
  • MST
  • USB type-C
  • USB-C
Sensors
  • Accelerometer
  • Ambient light
  • Barometer
  • Fingerprint
  • Geomagnetic
  • Gyro
  • Hall
  • HR
  • Iris
  • Pressure
  • Proximity
  • Accelerometer
  • Ambient light
  • Barometer
  • Hall
  • Magnetometer
  • Proximity
GPS
  • BeiDou
  • Galileo
  • Glonass
  • GPS
  • GLONASS
  • GPS
Height 158.1 mm (6.22 inches) 6.2 inches (15.75 cm)
Width 73.8 mm (2.91 inches) 3 inches (76.2 mm)
Depth 8.5 mm (0.33 inches) 0.3 inches (7.6 mm)
Weight 189 g (6.67 oz) 6.2 oz (176 g)
Colors Midnight Black, Coral Blue, Lilac Purple Black, Blue, White
Supported Audio Formats MP3, M4A, 3GA, AAC, OGG, OGA, WAV, WMA, AMR, AWB, FLAC, MID, MIDI, XMF, MXMF, IMY, RTTTL, RTX, OTA, APE, DSF, DFF N/A
Supported Video Formats MP4, M4V, 3GP, 3G2, WMV, ASF, AVI, FLV, MKV, WEBM N/A

Danny Zepeda

Born and raised in Southern California, Danny grew up on a steady diet Pixar, Star Wars and Steven Spielberg movies. Unbeknownst to him, this was...

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