The Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ offers nothing groundbreakingSamsung has improved many features with the new Galaxy Note 10+, but if you already own an S10 or a S10+, there is no need to upgrade your phone.
The Samsung Note series is best known for its first-class hardware. And because of the variety of features that the phone packs, the Note series has also been the most versatile handset on the smartphone category. But does the newly launched Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ continue this legacy?
The Note series has always been known for its boxy design. And it has remained the same this year as well. The phone comes with glass panels that are smoothly curved and meticulously blend in with the frame. So the handset feels really good in the hands.
But what really surprises is its ergonomic design. Despite being bigger than last year’s Note 9, the Note 10+ is slightly slimmer and slightly lighter in terms of weight. So the engineering definitely deserves applause.
Even in terms of looks, the Galaxy Note 10+ is absolutely amazing. During the review period, I used the Aura Glow model, which refracts light to create some amazing colours. Unlike the Galaxy S10 Prism White, which shifted colours from white to blue to red, the Aura Glow Note 10 Plus can reflect just about any colour of the rainbow.
Furthermore, with this phone, Samsung has removed its dedicated Bixby button, which has been around for a couple of generations now. It also moved the power button and the volume rockers to the left. This leaves the right edge of the phone devoid of any ports or buttons, which made it a little strange for me to use the phone because I have grown accustomed to using Android smartphones with the power button on the right. But it didn’t take much time for me to get used to it. So after a few days, I didn’t find it abnormal anymore.
Like the Note 9, the Note 10+ continues Samsung’s heritage of having one of the best displays in the market. The Note 10+ display won 13 awards from DisplayMate, a display-benchmarking platform. And after using this device for more than a week now, I think the accolades are justified.
The phone comes with a giant 6.8-inch Dynamic AMOLED display enriched with Quad-HD+ resolution. The screen also features a hole punch cutout on the top. But unlike the S10 devices, the hole is located on the top centre of the device; however, Samsung has remarkably reduced the size of the punch hole, and it doesn’t look as obtrusive and you get more screen real estate.
Talking about the display, the colour accuracy is amazing. According to DisplayMate, the colour accuracy on the Note 10+ is visually indistinguishable from perfect. There is no room for complaints, even when it comes to the viewing angle and brightness.
On the camera front, Samsung has employed the same triple camera used on the Galaxy S10+: 12MP primary, 16MP ultra-wide, and 12MP telephoto lens. For better depth-sensing, however, a ToF sensor is present, which also comes into action while performing AR (Augmented Reality) activities. Despite having the same camera setup, Samsung has greatly improved on image processing , so the phone is now the best camera smartphone yet.
The primary camera captures a good amount of details with amazing colours, even the HDR shots look natural. The wide-angle lens also does a great job maintaining a rich amount of details and notable colour accuracy. But what really differentiates Samsung’s wide-angle shots from others is that the field of view is wider than nearly any smartphone out there. The wide-angle shots, however, come with a little bit of tradeoff: they suffer slight distortion on the edges. But that can be fixed during post-production.
The phone comes with a Exynos 9825 chipset packing 12GB RAM and 256GB of storage. Exynos 9825 is slightly better than Exynos 9820 due to which the performance is smoother than the S10+. And with a whopping 12GB of RAM on the board, multitasking is a breeze. Even while playing high-end games, you will get a zippy performance. I played PUBG and Asphalt 9 on a high setting, and I didn’t notice even a tiny bit of lag or stutters.
Software-wise, the phone boots on Android Pie out of the box with OneUI 1.5 on the top. OneUI is really polished so navigating around the UI feels smooth. Although OneUI is said to ease things for single-handed use, it’s not quite possible with the Note 10+. The phone is really big, so you’ll have to use both your hands to use the device. You can find some impressive features on the software like Always-On display, Dark Mode, built-in screen recorder. Dex is also there, which now works with any computer and with any USB cable. So you don’t need a dedicated monitor to use the platform. And this feature can come in really handy as it allows you to move files between your phone and computer more naturally, and you can even run apps on the virtual desktop.
Samsung’s Note series devices are among few in a species in the smartphone arena to feature a stylus, or the S Pen. And this makes the Note devices unique of all.
This time, the S Pen comes with a gyroscope in it, which allows it to perform Air Actions. So you can now perform gestures like swiping up and down and left and right to switch camera modes. Similarly, a swirling motion zooms in to the subject. Although it can be decently useful for things like remote selfies, I find the gestures too hard to get used to. The phone also fails to register the gestures while capturing images, which can be really annoying.
Samsung’s Note has always been a do-everything phone, but this time they have gotten rid of the headphone jack. However, you will get an AKG-tuned type-c earphone inside the box, which means you may not have a problem at all while listening to the audio. And talking about the audio, the phone comes with a stereo speaker setup, which delivers loud, crisp and punchy sound.
The phone houses a massive 4300mAh battery. And it’s one of the few flagship phones to feature such a big battery. With such a big battery, you can expect long endurance. And that comes true in the case of the Note 10+. It lasts nearly a day with normal use. If you lower the resolution to full-HD and turn the power saving options, you can prolong the endurance. The phone also comes with a 25-watt fast charger inside the box, which takes 68 minutes to get the phone fully charged.
The Galaxy Note 10+ is an amazing phone and it ticks all the right boxes. The exclusion of a 3.5mm headphone jack, and the lack of a high refresh rate display, like the OnePlus 7 Pro, has made the phone somewhat displeasing. There are not many improvements made to the phone as well, when compared with the S10/S10+, which gives one little reason to switch to Note 10+ if you already have an S10/S10+. But if you want an all-rounded flagship phone with best-in-class display, camera, high-enduring battery, and an S-pen, the Note 10+ is a good pick.
What do you think?
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