The Galaxy S10 Plus is Samsung’s latest flagship smartphone targeting money is not buyers of objects. It targets people on oodles of storage following a no-compromise, top-end smartphone with oodles. Together with the folding Galaxy Fold, 5G-ready Galaxy S10 5 G, vanilla Galaxy S10, and cheaper Galaxy S10e, the handset was unveiled just before MWC 2019. It shares most of the features seen on the regular Galaxy S10, but with the added benefit of larger 1 TB storage and options for 12 GB RAM.
Right now, with the phone shipping on March 8, you can pre-order the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus. You can pick up a pair of Galaxy Buds free of charge if you pre-order now. That seems to us to be a good deal.
Prices in the UK start at £ 899 for the model of 128 GB and £ 1099 for the model of 512 GB. If you want the Performance Edition, the 12 GB RAM and 512 GB storage version, you’re going to have to part with £ 1399. That’s a lot of money for a phone. Not as much as the Samsung Galaxy Fold of £ 1800/$1950, though. In the US, the 128 GB model will cost $999 and the 512 GB version will cost $1249. This edition of 1 TB costs $1499.
The Galaxy S10 Plus Review: Screen
The S10 Plus show star is its absolutely beautiful 6.4-inch screen. Samsung’s screens remain the company’s best. Like the company’s previous flagships, the panel here uses OLED tech (Super AMOLED, as Samsung, calls it) to ensure perfect blacks, pop colors, and HDR video support. It also gently slopes on the sides, giving the impression that the panel melts into the sides of the metal.
Samsung claims the display can reach 1200 nits of brightness, a marked improvement on the 1000 nits claimed for the S9. Not only does having a brighter screen provide you with a better-looking HDR video, but it also ensures that the handset remains usable in sunlight and general outdoor situations. Samsung’s reps couldn’t confirm if you’re going to be able to manually raise the brightness to its peak, as you can with the LG G7, or if it’s going to jack up automatically in some situations.
We’ve already watched a video on the phone for a few hours and the screen is always amazing. It also works very well in bright conditions, but I still have to test that claim 1200 nits properly. Side-by-side with the S9, though, it seems to my eyes a tad brighter. Samsung has removed most of the top bezel of the phone to try to get the highest possible screen-to-body (here it’s 93.1 percent). Instead, it now sits the front camera in the corner of the screen in a pill-shaped cutout, not too different from how it works on the Honor V20
I’m still torn by this kind of notch. There’s a glorious screen here, but the cutout gets in the way. Apps that rely too heavily on white color schemes make it stand out a lot and I found it so far hard to forget. Apps like Netflix and Amazon Prime take the cutout as a notch, which means that when streaming, you get somewhat lopsided video. You can expand the video with YouTube all the way around, which looks much better.
The ultrasonic fingerprint sensor is the final display trick. This replaces the rear-mounted sensor on the previous device generation, and Huawei and OnePlus follow in the display of the tech. Implementation by Samsung is a huge improvement: read digits very quickly after the relatively slow setup process, and while I wouldn’t say it’s faster than traditional physical sensors, so far it’s been good. Also, since the screen is ultrasonic rather than optical (such as the OnePlus 6 T
and Mate 20 Pro
), the screen does not need to be turned on to work.
The Galaxy S10 Plus Review: Performance
The Plus model packs all the features of the smaller phone in typical Samsung fashion and adds a few extras to the mix. You can also increase the RAM to* gulps* 12 GB in addition to the aforementioned 1 TB storage option. I have 8 GB RAM, 128 GB storage and 8 nm Exynos 9820 chipset version for review packs and it feels smooth and fast. But I’d expect it for a new phone, and I haven’t already benchmarked it. Seeing how the scores compare to an iPhone XS will be interesting.
Additionally, on the front of the device, there is a huge 4100mAh battery inside and an extra depth-sensing camera. This is a smartphone that has been seriously stacked and even makes room for a headphone jack.
The Galaxy S10 Plus Review: Camera
On the back of the S10 Plus, there are three cameras, with another two on the front. The rear camera is made using a 12-megapixel optically stabilized the main sensor with an aperture that can shift between f/1.5 for night shots and f/2.4 for day shots, along with with an ultra-wide 16-megapixel f/2.2 sensor and, finally, a 12-megapixel stabilized television sensor.
Of the three, the new addition is the ultra-wide sensor, and the implementation here seems similar to that used in the Mate 20 Pro by Huawei. You can zoom out to enter a wide view in the app, and the results are somewhat affected by a fisheye effect. It’s a nice camera to have, allowing creativity to be much greater. The pictures I’ve shot so far, which you can see below, all look good and have distinct features of Samsung: seriously bright colors, lots of detail and nice contrast. However, aside from a wide camera, I wouldn’t say there’s too much difference between this and the S9. Perhaps after a few more days of use, that opinion will change though.
A notable lack of a dedicated night mode is also present here–a feature that has become increasingly popular with other Android phones. For example, Google’s Night Sight improves and brightens low-light shots by snapping and combining multiple shots in different exposures. I’d put a similar amount of money on Samsung. A main 10-megapixel selfie camera is located on the front of the S10 Plus, coupled with an 8-megapixel unit to add depth data to portrait shots.
The Galaxy S10 Plus Review: Software
All new entries ship with the Android 9 Pie and One UI in the Galaxy S series. This is Samsung’s reinvention of its software and is already available on some versions of the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy Note 9. The focus is on being able to use one-handed apps, pushing down frequently used items to the bottom of the screen. The camera UI now has a very iOS-feel and AI-based elements are also available. The entire system is designed to learn your behavior, enabling you to quickly open the frequently used apps. It remains to be seen whether this work actually remains.
Everywhere there are also new icons, a system-wide dark mode that looks great on the OLED display, and a new look for the home screen from Bixby. Overall, for Samsung’s software, it’s a big step forward, even though it still feels very removed from Google’s Android vision.
The Galaxy S10 Plus Review: Final Words
With the Galaxy S10 5 G edition not out until the summer, it’s the S10 Plus that’s at the top of the line right now–and it’s definitely worth its lofty spot. This is a powerhouse with the ridiculous 1 TB storage options and 12 GB RAM options. And don’t forget either the glorious screen or the slick design.