Samsung Notebook 9 vs Apple MacBook Air 2016: The Korean Giant Pips The New Mac But Not By Much

Samsung and Apple, the two giants of the global consumer electronics business, have locked horns again, this time over the notebooks they manufacture. Both the Apple MacBook Pro 2016 and the Samsung Notebook 9 are lightweight, handy and come loaded with features. While the new MacBook Pro has three variants, a 13-inch and 15-inch model which come equipped with a Touch Bar besides a 13-inch model without the Touch Bar, the Samsung Notebook 9 has two models in 13-inch and 15-inch. Note that the Samsung notebooks run on the Windows 10 platform while the MacBook Pro runs on MacOS Sierra version 10.12. We have compared the 13-inch versions of the two below. Let the games begin.

The Samsung Notebook 9 (L) and the Apple MacBook Pro.

Samsung Notebook 9 vs MacBook Pro 2016: Display and Resolution

Although both devices are equipped with the same 13.3-inch display screen, the MacBook Pro boasts of a 5 percent larger display compared to the Notebook 9: this is due to a more versatile aspect ratio. The Samsung NoteBook 9 comes with a 1,920 x 1,080 resolution with 166 PPI while the new MacBook Pro boasts of a higher resolution of 2,560 x 1,600 with 227 PPI. The MacBook Pro also features the well-known Retina display for an overall crisper display. None of the new notebook computers has a touchscreen option. The MacBook Pro wins this round.

Samsung Notebook 9 vs MacBook Pro 2016: Processor, RAM and Storage

The Samsung Notebook 9 is powered by the latest Kaby Lake processor offered by Intel, while most of the latest variants of Apple’s MacBook Pro are powered by Intel’s previous-generation Skylake processors. The Intel Core i5 and the i7 on the Samsung belong to the 7th generation while the Intel Core i5 on the Apple offering belong to the 6th generation. Note, however, that an Intel Core i7 is available on the MacBook Pro on the customisation section on the official site. Clearly, the Samsung Notebook 9 wins this round.

Samsung Notebook 9 vs MacBook Pro 2016: RAM and Storage options

The entry level Samsung Notebook 9 carries only 128 GB of SSD while the higher end model offers a 256GB SSD. On the other hand, the entry-level 13-inch Apple MacBook Pro starts at a respectable 256GB SSD with the high-end variant offering 512 GB of Solid State Drive storage options. The MacBook Pro has only 8GB RAM option while the Notebook 9 boasts of up to 8GB of RAM in the Core i5 variant and a whopping 16GB of RAM when the Core i7 processor is featured. The Samsung Notebook 9, however, also has a microSD slot designed to enhance its internal storage options. This is a huge advantage over the MacBook Pro. The Samsung Notebook 9 wins this round.

Samsung Notebook 9 vs MacBook Pro 2016: Connectivity

Samsung has tucked in two USB 3.0 ports, one USB Type-C port and a single HDMI port in its new Notebook 9. Apple offers four Thunderbolts/USB-C ports on its two Touch Bar variants of the MacBook Pro 2016 while the non-Touch Bar variant only offers two Thunderbolt/USB-C ports. The Samsung Notebook 9 clearly seems to have better connectivity options and hence wins this round.

Samsung Notebook 9 vs Macbook Pro 2016: Batteries

The Samsung Notebook 9 will ship with a 30W-h battery touted by the Korean giant to run for 7-hours on one full charge. The MacBook Pro has two battery variants: the Touch Bar variant 13-inch MacBook Pro arrives with a 49.2W-h battery while the non-Touch Bar variant comes with a 54.5W-h battery. The difference is clearly evident when the Touch Bar is in use. The 13-inch MacBook Pro promises to provide up to 10-hours of battery life. The Samsung model will also have a lower-resolution display, hence requiring a slightly less powerful battery. This round is a tie.

Samsung Notebook 9 vs MacBook Pro 2016: Other Features

The Samsung Notebook 9 boasts of a built-in fingerprint sensor and adds a fast-charging feature to the Notebook 9 besides a stand-alone charging port. Apple will launch the Macbook Pro with its stunning Touch Bar which is an OLED strip that changes its contents in real time based on the application being active at that time. The Notebook 9 is also lighter at 0.82 kgs while the MacBook Pro weighs in at 1.37 kgs. Conversely, the Samsung Notebook 9 will not have a backlit keypad.

Samsung Notebook 9 vs MacBook Pro 2016: Verdict

The verdict when comparing the Samsung Notebook 9 and the Apple MacBook Pro is a difficult one. In our face-off, the Notebook 9 won in three rounds. The Notebook 9 retails at $1000, much less than the MacBook’s $1399 for the non-Touch Bar version and $1799 for the Touch Bar variant. The price may be high but the Apple packs some serious punches. We advise the Notebook 9 to be considered by budget-conscious users while the MacBook Pro will be preferred by users who like to stay ahead of the curve. Samsung definitely has a winner on its hands.

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