Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus: A pocket-size super computer

By Roger Davis
Observer writer
davisr@jamaicaobserver.com

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

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After ten years of mobile innovation, Samsung has released what some say is their best mobile device yet, the Galaxy S10.

We've managed to get our hands on a Galaxy S10 Plus, which is now available in Jamaica, and here's our take on it.

Design

Just by holding the device in hand, one can tell that the Galaxy S10 Plus is of premium quality. It is of solid built and its sleek lines and curves, along with materials used in its make-up gives the impression that Samsung put great effort into creating this device.

It has a solid metal frame, giving it a strong look, and it is the tallest and heaviest of the Samsung S10 models. We found the 74.1mm x 157.6mm x 7.8 mm device, which weighs 175 grams, great to hold and carry around.

Surprisingly, the Samsung S10 Plus does not come with a notch on the front screen. Instead, it sports a brand new look where its front cameras are accommodated by a dual hole punch section on its display. Initially, we thought this would be a bit distracting, however, after using the device for a while, the hole punch blended in so well with the display, it almost seemed like it wasn't there at all. This is probably a similar effect to when we watch television and we get used to the channel's logo in the corner of the screen to the point that it doesn't distract us. So kudos to Samsung on this.

The rear of the S10 Plus is made of glass, and the colour of the model under review is what the Korean technology firm calls “prism white”. It's quite beautiful to look at and a bit reflective, but not fully so. The device's rear camera module is placed horizontally, and blends in well with the device's overall design.

Display

The Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus display is truly brilliant. It is pleasing to watch videos, play games, take photos, and just play around with the user interface. According to Samsung, the display is made with their best screen yet, the world's first Dynamic AMOLED display. The device is a HDR10+ certified smartphone, the display delivers vivid digital content, and with dynamic tone mapping it provides a wider range of colour for realistic, brilliant pictures.

The S10 Plus features a 6.4-inch curved Dynamic AMOLED display with Quad HD+ resolution, and 19:9 (438ppi) aspect ratio, making it the biggest S phone screen to date and matching the size of the GalaxyNote 9screen. With it you can enjoy accurate colours, even during harsh sunlight, and the device utilises technology that reduces blue light without compromising picture quality.

To maintain the sleek, seamless design of the screen, Samsung included in its Dynamic AMOLED display its first-ever in-display ultrasonic fingerprint scanner, which reads the 3D contours of your physical thumbprint, instead of a 2D image of it.

Camera

The Samsung Galaxy S10 plus camera was quite interesting and fun to use. The device has a robust triple-lens rear camera array, comprising a 12MP regular lens, a 12MP optically zoomed telephoto lens, and new 16MP ultra-wide lens, with 0.5X/2X optical zoom, and up to 10X digital zoom. The front of the device has a dual -camera with a setup for selfie: 10MP and 8MP, with the function of latter being to enhance depth.

The S10 plus camera consists of innovations of dual pixel and dual aperture, that make it easy to take great photos and videos, and with its advanced artificial intelligence functions, you can get professional grade photos that are worth sharing without having to manually select any advanced camera settings.

For the Instagram lovers, one interesting feature of the camera is that it includes a new built in Instagram Mode that allows you to take a photo or video and immediately upload it to your Instagram feed.

As if those camera features weren't already impressive enough, the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus also offers super steady and high-quality video recording with its digital stabilisation technology. So whether you're on a bumpy ride or trying to record while dancing in the middle of an amazing concert, Samsung's “super steady” technology has got you covered.

Both front and rear cameras of the S10 Plus can shoot in up to Ultra HD quality, and the rear camera gives you the flexibility to record in HDR10+, which Samsung says is an industry first.

Software

The user interface of the S10 Plus software is both pleasing to look at and easy to use. It is powered by Android 9.0 Pie and is paired with Samsung's own One UI interface, which makes it easy to reach menus, providing a smooth overall user experience.

The One UI user interface is a lot cleaner and decluttered than the user interfaces of previous Samsung Galaxy S models. This certainly helps with the easy use of the device. Combine this with the use of Bixby, Samsung's virtual assistant, and you'll have a fun, usable device that you won't want to leave home without.

Performance

The Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus model we reviewed was powered by a 64-bit, 2.8 GHz octa-core processor with an 8GB RAM and 128 GB base storage, but the model is available with up to 12GB of RAM and a terabyte of storage.

With all this processing power and storage capability, there was no challenge we threw at the device that it couldn't handle. The only time the S10 Plus seemed to get a bit too warm was when we tried to restore it to factory settings — but how often are you going to do that anyway?

And with its 4,100mAh capacity, the phone's battery hit a new high for Samsung's S series. Although the tech giant claims “all-day battery life and a bit more”, we found that with moderate use we ended the day with about 15 per cent battery remaining.

Other interesting features

There are several other features of the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus that we found interesting. These include intelligent Wi-Fi, and Wireless PowerShare, which allows you to wirelessly charge a second Qi-certified device using your Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus, once the device is connected to a regular charger.

If you're looking for a phone that can virtually do everything, then the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus is perfect for you. It is of premium quality design and build, and offers powerful performance to support its many features for today's smartphone users. Based on the features packed into this device, we can agree that the S10 Plus is truly remarkable. As Samsung says, it's like having a supercomputer in your pocket.


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