Galaxy Note 10, Note 10+ come with better displays, newest processors and an all-new advanced S-Pen
The Note 10 gets a triple camera while the 10+ is technically a quad camera thanks to the addition of the ToF 3D sensor.
Infinity O Display – A Smart Move
The display is the centrepiece of the new Note. A lot of effort has gone into making the bezels thinner all around and this is particularly noticeable at the top/bottom. Samsung’s earlier designs put multiple sensors at the top, necessitating a wider forehead and a thicker chin to match. By putting that front camera in the top centre of the display, Samsung chose to ignore the pop-up camera trend. That means the water resistance is not affected – it’s IP68 certified. The good part is that the camera cut-out is tiny – tinier than the typical hole-punch at a diameter of 4mm. The screen curves towards the edges, bezels are minimal and it has well over a 90% screen to body ratio.
Differences between Note 10 & Note 10+
The most obvious difference is size: 6.3-inch vs 6.8-inch. But thanks to the ultra-slim bezels, that makes the Note 10 the narrowest Note phone ever at 71.8mm. By way of comparison, the Note 9 was 76.4mm wide. Talking about width and hand feel, it’s also interesting to compare screen sizes: Note 9 was 6.4-inches and 76.4mm while the bigger Note 10+ is 6.8-inches and 77.2mm (less than a millimetre of difference).
Both phones get a dynamic amoled display but the Note 10+ has a higher resolution (3040 x 1440 pixels, 498 pixels per inch compared to FHD+ 2280 x 1080 pixels, 401 pixels per inch for Note 10). Battery on the Note 10 is 3,500mAh while the Note 10 + gets a much more sizeable 4,300mAh. Apart from the increase in screen size/resolution and battery size, Note 10+ gets four key extras: an extra depth scanning (ToF) camera, microSD slot (hybrid slot), more RAM (12GB instead of 8GB), a higher storage option (512GB) and support for much faster battery charging (45W vs 25W – though the 45W charger is an optional extra and not included in the box)
The Supercharged new S-Pen
The stylus or S-Pen has always been integral to a Note device. It has all the usual features: Bluetooth remote for the camera, charges in the slot, auto connects, hover actions, low latency, pressure sensitivity etc. But this time, they’ve engineered a much longer battery life (up to 10 hours with a new Lithium Titanate battery). There’s no need to slot the S-Pen back to charge it in the middle of a creative drawing. The other new additions are the gyro sensor and accelerometer. This means that S-Pen can track movements in free space and you can control the phone interface with a few gestures – kind of like waving a magic wand. This is particularly useful in the camera, where you can change modes with a left-right swap, zoom in/out using circular gestures before finally starting capture.
Samsung is opening up the new S-Pen SDK to developers so we will soon see gestures coming into other apps and games too. This S-pen is not compatible with any previous Note phones or any other phones. You might think that all this tech has made the S-Pen heavier but that’s not true. It weighs 3 grams – that’s the weight of three paperclips. In case you were wondering, the size of the S-Pen remains the same on both phone sizes.
New Software Features
The software experience will be familiar for anyone who’s used a premium Samsung Galaxy or Note phone. This includes all the little S-Pen tricks like quick actions, jotting, doodling, storyboarding, annotating, scrapbooking etc. For someone using a Windows 10 computer, there is tighter integration with Microsoft’s ‘Your Phone’ app. Once you pair the phone with the PC, you’ll be able to mirror the phone’s screen on the PC and basically control the phone with the PC’s keyboard. It also allows transfer of files between the Windows PC and your phone. You also get Samsung DeX as before. If you remember, DeX mode allows the phone to give you a desktop-like experience when you connect it to a external monitor. You can also pair a Bluetooth keyboard/mouse.
New Camera Features
The Note 10 gets a triple camera while the 10+ is technically a quad camera thanks to the addition of that ToF (time of flight) 3D sensor. There’s nothing groundbreaking in the camera hardware department – there’s still a wide angle camera with dual aperture, an ultrawide and a telephoto lens. The wide and telephoto lenses get OIS too. This is a very similar camera setup to the S10 series. There’s nothing to complain about though since the dual aperture is still unique to Samsung and these cameras have more than proved their mettle in the past. Instead, there are several new software features such as advanced video stabilisation (OIS + EIS), video bokeh, AR Doodles, a feature that focuses (zooms into) the sound when you zoom in and advanced video editing options. The ToF sensor on Note 10+ lets you scan objects upto 80cm in 3D. With the 3D scanner add-on, you can walk around a small object and get a 3D avatar it.
The 3.5mm audio jack is gone! Instead, you get a pair of AKG tuned USB C headphones in the box. You also won’t see the iris scanner for secure unlocking. The only secure way to unlock the Note 10 is with the ultrasonic in-display fingerprint scanner. The heart rate sensor and SpO2 sensor (it was always next to the camera in premium Galaxy phones) is gone. The idea is that these sensors can move to wearable devices. And finally, the dedicated Bixby button is gone too. If you want to call up the assistant, you need to long press the haptic feedback area (fingerprint area) or you can remap the functionality of the power button double click.
Although the global launch event showcased six different colours, Samsung India will be going with Aura Glow, Aura White and Aura Black. Other colours like Aura Blue, Aura Red and Aura Pink will be available in different markets. Our money’s on that new Aura Glow which uses a combination of reflection and refraction to show you different hues in different kinds of light.
Expected Prices and Launch
While we do know the prices for the US (Snapdragon version) of both phones, India will get phones powered by the Exynos 9825 chipset (7nm, octa core). We’re expecting India launch to be around the Aug 23 date if not exactly that. The Note 10 (8GB RAM, 256GB) should be priced between Rs 65,000 to 70,000 per our estimation while the Note 10+ (12GB RAM, 256GB storage) could be between Rs 75,000 to 80,000.