Samsung has announced the new Galaxy Note 10 smartphone. The launch took place at the Barclays Center in New York, and for the first time the phone offers a choice of screen sizes.
The handset comes a year after the launch of the Note 9, and will go up against fellow big-screen handsets like the iPhone XS Max, and Samsung's own Galaxy S10+.
For the first time in its 10-generation history, the Note is being offered with two different screen sizes, of 6.3in and 6.8in. Also a first for the phone is 5G connectivity, which offers hugely superior download and upload speeds compared to 4G LTE, and despite patchy coverage in most cities for now, is quickly becoming a star feature for the flagship smartphones of 2019.
Despite this - and other manufacturers like OnePlus, LG and Huawei all offering 5G handsets of their own - Apple is not expected to offer a 5G iPhone until the fall of 2020.
The Note 10 and 10 Plus go on sale on August 23Samsung
That said, the regular Note 10 and Note 10 Plus use 4G LTE, with a 5G version offered exclusively through Verizon and open for pre-order from August 23.
As for the Galaxy Note 10, the phone continues the Note bloodline as you would expect, by blending top-tier performance with large screens and the S Pen stylus. For the first time, the Note does not have a 3.5mm headphone jack, meaning buyers will have to go wireless with Bluetooth or use headphones which run off a USB-C connection. Samsung included USB-C earphones in the box, but is charging $9.99 for an adapter if you want to keep using your older earphones.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10 vs Note 10 Plus: What's the difference?
There are two versions of the Galaxy Note 10. The first has 6.3-inch display with a resolution of 2280 x 1080, 8GB of RAM, 256GB of storage and a 3,500 mAh battery. There is no microSD card slot to increase storage.
Then there is the largest Galaxy Note 10 Plus, which has a huge 6.8-inch display and a resolution of 3040 x 1440. The OLED displays on both phones are HDR10+ certified.
RAM for the Note 10 Plus is turned up to 12GB, and there are two storage size options - 256GB and 512GB. Both models of Note 10 Plus have a microSD card slot for increasing this further still. The battery of the larger Note 10 Plus is 4,300mAh.
The Note 10 Plus rear camera includes a depth sensorSamsung
So those are the differences between the two handsets - here is what is exactly the same on both:
Both phones are powered by a Snapdragon 855 processor and both include the Samsung S-Pen stylus which communicates with the phone via touch and Bluetooth Low Energy (just as it did with the Note 9 in 2018). New for this model of S Pen is a gyroscope and accelerometer, so you can wave the stylus around like a wand, instead of it only working when touching the screen.
Both versions of Note 10 have an in-display, ultrasonic fingerprint reader, as seen first on the Galaxy S10, launched earlier this year.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10: Camera
A striking piece of the Note 10's design is how the front-facing camera uses the same hole-punch design as the Galaxy S10, but fits it centrally instead of tucking it up in the left-hand corner.
Both models of Note 10 get almost exactly the same camera system. This means three sensors on the back and one on the front. The rear system is made up of a 16-megapixel, f/2.2 wide-angle lens, a 12-megapixel, f/2.1, 45-degree telephoto lens, and a 12-megapixel, f/1.5 and f/2.4 dual aperture main lens with optical image stabilization.
The front-facing selfie camera on both models of Note 10 has a 10-megapixel sensor with f/2.2 lens.
The only difference is that the Note 10 Plus gets a depth-of-field camera, for improved depth perception in photos, and taking 3D scans of real-world objects, then importing them and sending them as digital files.
The S-Pen stylus now has a gyroscope and accelerometerSamsung
Samsung Galaxy Note 10: S Pen
New for the Note 10's S Pen stylus is the inclusion of a gyroscope and accelerometer. This is so you can interact with the phone by waving the stylus from a distance, instead of it only working when in contact with the display (or when you press its one and only button).
Samsung suggests how you can compose a selfie by waving the S Pen stylus around, telling the phone to zoom in or out, and another wave of the stylus has the Note 10 switch from the front to rear-facing camera.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10: Bixby
Samsung has ditched the Bixby button for the Note 10, with the voice assistant now summoned with a long press of the power button. This cannot be modified to activate Google Assistant (or any other voice assistant) instead.
The removal of the Bixby button could be seen as a small defeat for Samsung, which had earned criticism over how the button could not be used to do anything else, and how Bixby lagged behind the intelligence and functionality of alternatives like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10: Price and release date
The Note 10 is priced at $949 and goes on sale on August 23. The larger Note 10 Plus starts at $1,099 for the model with 256GB of storage, while the 512GB model is priced at $100 more.
A 5G model of Note 10 will be offered through Verizon (exclusively at first), costs $1,299, and opens for pre-order from August 23.