The Good The Galaxy Note 10 Plus delivers premium products – from a killer 6.8-inch screen and 24/7 battery life to great camera tools.
The Bad Note 10 Plus is expensive. There is no headphone jack that would disappoint Samsung’s longtime fans. The depth sounder is extremely limited.
The Bottom Line Samsung has closed the gap in the camera with competitors and has created the most popular phone for people who want to offer the best Android.
Samsung makes great phones that check just about every field of what you want on your device: a clear, shiny screen. Great cameras . Long battery life. But years went by when all the individual pieces came together, forcing me to sit behind and say, “Wow.” The Galaxy Note 10 Plus does this in a way that has since shied away from Samsung phones tragically the Galaxy Note 7 .
It’s not just a phone that has everything – it’s a phone I genuinely want to use. The Note 10 Plus is the overall package and the best phone Samsung has made in years.
The prismatic color of the Aura Glow I tested is extremely striking, the features are almost all the best, and Samsung has even worked to close the gap between its camera tools and camera-focused rivals like Huawei P30 Pro and Google Pixel 3 . Note 10 Plus also addresses two of my main complaints about spring Galaxy S10 Plus (which is still a great phone): the fingerprint scanner is much more accurate this time around, and Special Night Camera mode improves the quality of photos in low light .
Even the biggest disadvantages of the Note 10 Plus are quite easy to swallow. No headphone jack (Samsung was one of the last major promotions). You may need to learn how to turn off your phone and take screenshots using the power button. The depth-sounding camera doesn’t do much. And it’s expensive – starting at $ 1,100 (£ 999, $ 1699) with a 5G version that costs $ 1,300 (£ 1,099 or $ 1,999).
Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10 Plus look incredible
Note that the Note 10 Plus is not the main phone. It’s still geared toward power consumers who want a big device and will actually use the included S Pen stylus. This is prohibitive for people who want a smaller phone or a totally uninteresting stylus.
Samsung also introduced a smaller version of the Note 10 , which has a 6.3-inch screen and costs $ 150 less than Plus, coming in at $ 949. Samsung is also returning its features (like less RAM, no microSD card is stored), but it still can do 90% of what Plus can do. I’ll start reviewing it soon. Scroll through to the full specification comparison.
If you’re on the fence, remember that iPhone 11 (probably due in September), Google Pixel 4 and Huawei Mate 30 Pro (most likely coming in October) around the corner. But for the first time in a long time I can say to overbearing users: why wait? Note 10 Plus is outstanding and worth buying.
What’s in this review: Read about the best and worst Notes of the 10 Plus, then stay tuned to see how good the new camera features are, headphone-free life, gesture control, all-day battery life, and how it compares to other competing phones.
Best features of the Note 10 Plus
- Exquisite design in rectangular square with Gorilla Glass 6 on both sides.
- Prismatic Aura Glow and Aura Blue (US only).
- Symmetrical front-facing camera placement (these wallpapers put it to good use ).
- Fast, accurate screen reader.
- Fast execution with Snapdragon 855 chipset.
- Great photos with a pretty good standalone night mode (more info below).
- The camera software, like the built-in portrait and video editor, is well executed.
- The stylus for the handle is convenient and easy to use; less accidental button presses.
- Navigating gestures with the S Pen makes sense.
- Fast wired and wireless charging (25 and 15 watts respectively).
- The new screen capture app is a nice touch – you can also capture audio.
- Samsung DeX is easy to set up on Windows and Mac.
- The Windows link works as advertised to select mirror content from Note 10 to a Windows 10 PC.
The worst features of the Note 10 Plus
- No 3.5mm headphone jack.
- The AR camera only works with one underdeveloped application (3D scanner).
- Power/lock/Bixby button on the left makes powering off and taking screenshots tricky at first .
- Yes, you want things done.
- This is a smear magnet – you will need to clean your phone all the time.
Photo quality, night mode, portrait video, video editing
- 16-megapixel ultra wide-angle lens
- 12MP wide angle lens (main dual aperture camera)
- 12MP telephoto lens
- Depth sounding camera
- 10 megapixel front camera
The Note 10 Plus has the same basic cameras as the Galaxy S10 Plus (it adds that with deep-sensing lenses), but Samsung is putting a lot of effort into improving the phone’s software, and it’s a great way to make it easier to use. for taking pictures.
Daytime photography is great, but highlighted night mode this is where Samsung really activates it. This mode, found in the camera app, takes a few seconds to process a photo, really drawing colors and details from a dark scene. I would like Samsung to add a countdown clock, so you know how long to keep your phone stationary, but photos taken in this mode can change a lot of weight.
Samsung’s color processing can be overly brighter in some night-time scenarios, when automatic mode actually produces nicer images with higher contrast – so don’t plan to use it every time.
Note 10 Plus is also interesting stuff with videos.Live Focus video the mode adds depth to the video, and you can choose from four filters for both the front and rear cameras. Jaws and limbs can blur and some of my curly hair is smeared in the background, but the accents on the face are pretty good.
Another new feature is to increase the volume of the music sourcewhen you zoom in. I tested it on four different musical acts and … John Travolta made the turn. Called audio enhancement, it works as advertised, but some scenarios are more effective than others. It is difficult to rearrange the focus because you zoom in and the image quality deteriorates when you zoom in too close.
Applause to everyone aroundfixed video editor allowing you to add music, edit and add text. It’s great to be able to quickly create simple videos on your device and share them instantly.
AR Doodle it’s a feature that got a lot of press when it first came out, because it’s unique and emphasizes the power of the S Pen. You are in video mode and can record a short video of yourself, someone else, or a scene in the world (it may appear after the end). For example, I had fun hugging my punk side (watch the video if you were wondering) and drawing scenarios over the San Francisco skyline.
As AR Doodle is hilarious and stupid, it still needs work and no clear purpose. With some clues, it’s hard to write, the strokes have disappeared over time, and there’s no clear way to take a picture of a finished piece of art. Side note: The AR Doodle does not use a depth sensing camera.
Here’s exactly how to use these Note 10 Plus camera tricks .
No headphone jack and code buttons
Note 10 Plus closes the headphone jack that is about to break the pen. This was also inevitable – all phone makers only switch to USB-C port, requiring USB-C or wireless headphones. But for people who have invested in some really good headphones or other accessories, it will be a huge pain.
There is no key in the box that Samsung could easily include as a goodwill gesture. A pair of Samsung USB-C AKG headphones in a Samsung box works great. As with the 2012 rechargeable battery, we will complain about the loss of the headphone jack and then go over it and move on.
Another early headache is the placement of buttons. Lionesses will love that the Power / Lock button is now on the left under the volume rocker, but if you get used to this button on the right, it will change how to unlock and turn off your phone . Initially, it is also confusing to double-click on it to quickly launch the camera application. But, I got used to it in a couple of days.
This button also houses the Bixby voice that you launch by pressing and holding. If you keep Bixby on, it means that you take screenshots by quickly pressing the volume down button and the power key. Long press will give you a power off screen. There are other ways to turn off your phone, and you can reprogram this side key to open any application or switch off your phone the old way by just pressing the lock button. I suggest a trip to the side key settings.
The battery life really lasts all day
I was very impressed with the Note 10 Plus’s battery life of its 4300 mAh battery. It took me from 6:00 to 13:00, and the time left was a little bit, and the phone kept running from 0 to 100% in about 65 minutes. It’s on a 25-watt charger that comes in the box.
You can also buy a 45-watt Samsung charger for $ 50, which promises to get about 70% off zero in half an hour. Samsung notes that this charger is less efficient for people who like to recharge their batteries at a high rate, you will see more speed if you charge from empty.
Keep in mind that these results were on a new phone that we used for a week. Typically, the battery capacity deteriorates over time. The battery life of your phone may also vary depending on how you use it. I tend to hotspot phones twice a day when traveling, which is very resource intensive, along with streaming movies and navigating maps.
In terms of performance, the Note 10 Plus was as fast as any other phone running on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, both in real tests and in test results.
Gesture management is not just a trick
The S Pen is taking on a new job with remote control. You can push the stylus button and swipe your wrist to do things from afar. The best scenario is when the phone is in a tripod and use the S Pen to switch cameras and shooting modes. It worked really well for selfies and group shots. Press once to take a photo or start / stop a video. You can also zoom in, but you can’t refocus.
In Spotify I was able to control the volume, play / pause and skip or rewind tracks with S Pen. This works well if you use your phone to control music through some Bluetooth speakers at a party and you do not want to cross the room every time to adjust the volume or track. The S Pen Gesture controls will work with native Samsung applications and choose apps such as Spotify – hopefully more app developers will jump on board
Note 10 Plus Against Competition …
Note 9 or Galaxy S10 Plus A: There would be nothing wrong with upgrading any of these phones, but the improvements and improvements are small enough that I’m still warning a year, especially if you’re interested in 5G. Networks will be more stable, and it’s good that Note 11 will be 5G by default. In addition, the cameras in the Note 10 Plus are almost identical to the S10 Plus.
Galaxy Note 10: You can save $ 150 and get this lighter, smaller variation (6.3-inch screen instead of 6.8). There is no AR camera (not loss) and it has less battery (3500 mAh), less RAM (8 GB vs 12 GB) and no microSD card slot (it still has 256 GB memory). This can be a really compelling purchase. Watch the comparison comparison.
iPhone 11, Pixel 4, Huawei Mate 10 A: These are upcoming phones in another week, but if you see the phone approaching the Note 10 Plus, it will be one of the three. The iPhone has the advantage of unlocking the face, and Apple often introduces exciting new camera features. (Here’s how we think comparing the Note 10 and the iPhone 11.)
Google and Huawei are particularly strong in low-light photography, and for the first time, the Pixel 4 will have several rear cameras. The Huawei optical zoom is also the best in its class.
Note 10 vs iPhone XS Max vs Huawei P30 Pro
|Samsung Galaxy Note 10||Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus||iPhone XS Max||Huawei P30 Pro|
|Display size, resolution||6.3-inch AMOLED; 2,280×1,080 pixels||6.8-inch AMOLED; 3,040×1,440 pixels||6.5-inch Super Retina OLED; 2,688×1,242 pixels||6.47-inch OLED; 2,340×1,080-pixels|
|Pixel density||401 ppi||498 ppi||458 ppi||398 ppi|
|Dimensions (inches)||5.94 x 2.83 x 0.31 in.||6.39 x 3.04 x 0.31 in.||6.2×3.0x.3 in.||6.22 x 2.89 x 0.33 in.|
|Dimensions (millimeters)||151 x 71.8 x 7.9 mm||162.3 x 77.2 x 7.9 mm||157.5×77.4×7.7 mm||158 x 73.4 x 8.41 mm|
|Weight (ounces, grams)||5.93 oz.; 168g||6.91 oz.; 196g||7.3oz.; 208g||6.77 oz.; 192g|
|Mobile software||Android 9.0 Pie||Android 9.0 Pie||iOS 12||Android 9.0 with EMIU 9.1|
|Camera||12-megapixel (wide-angle), 16-megapixel (ultra-wide angle), 12-megapixel (telephoto)||12-megapixel (wide-angle), 16-megapixel (ultra wide-angle), 12-megapixel (telephoto), 3D depth (HQVGA)||12-megapixel (standard), 12-megapixel (telephoto)||40-megapixel (standard), 20-megapixel (ultra wide), 8-megapixel 5X optical periscope zoom, TOF (time of flight) sensor|
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, or Samsung Exynos 9825||Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, or Samsung Exynos 9825||Apple A12 Bionic||Kirin 980 processor|
|Storage||256GB||256GB, 512GB||64GB, 256GB, 512GB||128GB, 256GB, 512GB|
|Expandable storage||No||Up to 1TB||No||Up to 256GB with proprietary NM card|
|Battery||3,500 mAh||4,300 mAh||3,174 mAh (unconfirmed by Apple)||4,200 mAh|
|Fingerprint sensor||In-screen||In-screen||None (Face ID)||In-screen (optical)|
|Special features||S Pen stylus; Wireless PowerShare; hole punch screen notch; water-resistant (IP68)||S Pen stylus; Wireless PowerShare; hole punch screen notch; water-resistant (IP68)||Water-resistant (IP68); dual-SIM capabilities (nano-SIM and e-SIM); wireless charging; Face ID; Memoji||Camera night mode, 40w Huawei SuperCharge, 15w wireless charging, reverse charging, IP68 water-resistant|
|Price off-contract (USD)||$949||$1,099||$1,099 (64GB), $1,249 (256GB), $1,449 (512GB)||Converts to $1,135|
|Price (GBP)||£899||£999||£1,099 (64GB), £1,249 (256GB), £1,449 (512GB)||£899 (128GB)|
|Price (AUD)||AU$1,499||AU$1,699||AU$1,799 (64GB), AU$2,049 (256GB), AU$2,369 (512GB)||AU$1,599|