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We compared Samsung's Galaxy S10 and the Galaxy S10+ to determine which phone you should buy

Business Insider India logoBusiness Insider India 17-06-2019 Quentyn Kennemer
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The past few Samsung Galaxy phone launches have been decidedly iterative, but Samsung turned up the innovation for 2019's Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10+.

Samsung introduced some exciting new technology and design elements in both devices. The most exciting of the changes are a phone that's all screen (no notch and barely-there bezels along the edges), an ultrasonic fingerprint scanner, wireless power sharing, and a slew of cameras.

On the surface, size is the most obvious differentiating factor between the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10+, but there are other important considerations to keep in mind when deciding which one is right for you.

Whether those differences are worth a $100 price gap is something that'll ultimately be up to you to decide, but we're here to give you the details you need to figure that out.

Specs compared

Aesthetically, the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10+ are mostly cut from the same cloth. Both sport a form factor that works tirelessly to eliminate bezels and maximize screen space. It's a simple glass design that you can't mistake for anything other than an ultra-premium smartphone.

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There's no huge difference when it comes to size. The sharp 6.1-inch AMOLED screen on the standard S10 is just shy of the 6.4-inch screen on the Galaxy S10+. Both sport a 19:9 aspect ratio, so the devices are similarly comfortable to hold and use. Those with smaller hands might prefer the Galaxy S10 due to its narrowness, but the difference isn't so big that it should deter you from the larger model.

Naturally, the Galaxy S10+ (175g) is a hair heavier than the smaller version (157g). If you opt for the premium ceramic-backed model, the weight climbs a considerable amount to 198g. None of these phones will weigh you down like bricks, but those who hold the phone for reading and gaming may want to consider the lighter options.

One other peculiar design difference on the front comes through the front-facing selfie cameras. The Galaxy S10 has one sensor as opposed to the pair on the Galaxy S10+. Functional differences aside (we'll talk more about those ahead), this discrepancy means that the small black space on the screen where the camera sits is double the width on the more expensive option.

The differences are nonexistent on the rear. There's one long, horizontal plate for all the rear-facing sensors and lights to live on, and then it's just a Samsung logo atop a sea of whichever color you fancy.

A simple user experience

Samsung smartphones haven't been the easiest to use over the years, but the company has worked tirelessly to fix that. The Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10+ launched with Android 9 Pie as standard, and its fresh new One UI user experience sits on top.

One UI makes nearly every aspect of the Galaxy phone more pleasant, easy to use, and customizable. Its trademark characteristics include a flat, clean design language, simplified access to device settings and customization, and much smoother performance overall. You won't find any differences between the two smartphones in that regard except for the specific settings related to that secondary front-facing camera on the Samsung Galaxy S10+.

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Beyond that, each phone has the same overall software experience, including Samsung's annoying habit to duplicate functionality. It's entirely possible to set these devices up without using a Samsung account, however, and it's easy enough to disable all the extra apps Samsung likes to throw in.

Samsung also decided to let you choose whether the Bixby button summons Samsung's (arguably not so great) personal assistant, Bixby, or the much more popular and helpful Google Assistant.

What's different?

The Samsung Galaxy S10 and S10+ have a lot of similarities, but there are a couple of differences worth noting. The additional camera on the front of the S10+ is the biggest, with it enabling more comprehensive depth information for portrait mode selfies that have artfully blurred backgrounds.

This second camera helps the smartphone more accurately separate the foreground from the background of your shots, enabling more natural background blur and bringing improvements to a wealth of special effects. Otherwise, the two main sensors are identical. The lone shooter on the front of the base model simulates these effects well enough that we wouldn't consider the Galaxy S10+ a must-have, but you should go with it if you're serious about your selfies.

The bigger body of the Galaxy S10+ also means you get a bigger battery. It's a substantial difference at 3,400mAh on the original compared to 4,100mAh on the outstretched model. This is an amount that can account for several hours of additional battery life, so those with longer days should give it a serious look.

One last thing to note: There is a model of the Galaxy S10+ that has a ceramic build, 12GB of RAM, and 1TB of internal storage. There is no such option for the base model. We consider this particular model to be unnecessary for most typical users.

The standard 8GB of RAM and a minimum of 128GB of storage (and the option of expanding that by up to 2TB with a microSD card) gives you more than enough room for a smooth Android experience. Nonetheless, it is an option if you just have to have the biggest and best available.

The bottom line

There isn't much separating the Galaxy S10 and S10+ on paper. There's a $100 difference between each model, and you must decide for yourself if the advantages gained are worth that premium.

We'd say the Galaxy S10 is enough for most people, but if you simply prefer large-screen phones, your selfie game needs an upgrade, or you just can't do without the most premium option available to you, go with the S10+.


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