Galaxy S10 — 10th time is the charm
March brings us the 10th anniversary edition of the Galaxy S lineup — and boy have things changed. This time around, we get 3 variations — there is the budget “friendly” S10e that starts at $750, the standard S10 starting at $900, and the S10+ starting at $1,000. The S10e has a 5.8″ Full HD+ screen, the S10 a 6.1″ Quad HD+ screen, and the S10+ a 6.4″
Quad HD+ screen. With the full edge to edge screen technology, you get a massive and beautiful screen to use.
For the cameras, the S10e has 2 rear 12 MP cameras, while the S10 and S10+ add a third 16 MP telephoto camera on the back. All have a 10 MP camera on the front and the S10+ throws in a 2nd selfie camera on the front. The big difference in this year’s front camera is the small “punch hole” location to the right edge of the upper display vs. the “notch” we’ve seen in past phones. And Samsung even designed some of the included wallpapers to kind of hide the punch hole. In the end, as with the notch, once you are used to it, you don’t see it.
Samsung has moved away from a physical fingerprint scanner on the back of the phone like we saw in last year’s S9 and Note 9. Instead, it is embedded under the glass. It hasn’t been the easiest of features to get used to. However, it is worth mentioning that the face recognition software is so improved, it is usually unlocked by that before finding the right spot to place your finger — and it works with or without glasses, which is a nice touch.
Finally worth mentioning is the battery life. While this is a huge sticking point for most, they just keep getting better and better. Not surprisingly, the battery specs have improved on all 3 models. Most of our testing has been done on the S10+, and with a 4,100 mAh battery in the S10+ promising 12.5 hours of usage, we can say that is is getting us through every day without the need for any power saving mode. Even the Note 9, with a 4,000 mAh battery, wasn’t doing that for us.
There are other useful features worth quickly mentioning. They upped the memory, and depending on model you can get anywhere from 128 GB to 1 TB of storage space and they kept the expandable memory. It supports fast wireless charging, better WiFi standards, can share it’s charge with another device capably of wireless charging (so you can boost up your partner’s phone when it’s dying at the end of the day, and still has a headphone jack.
Is it perfect? Not quite. We really wish the fingerprint scanner was better and there are better camera’s out there (looking at you Pixel 3 XL). But, it is the best smartphone in the last year and that only makes the rest of the offerings coming in 2019 even more exciting.