- Samsung’s two latest smartphones, the Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10 Plus, are now available.
- If you want a large phone from Samsung, though, there are several compelling reasons to buy the Galaxy S10 Plus from earlier this year instead of the new Galaxy Note 10 Plus.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
The Galaxy Note 10 and Galaxy Note 10 Plus are Samsung’s most luxurious smartphones to date.
Samsung has a lot of excellent smartphones to choose from this year, like the Galaxy S10e that launched back in February. But if you’re on the market for a big Android phone from Samsung specifically, your two best options will probably be the new Galaxy Note 10 Plus and the Galaxy S10 Plus that launched earlier this year.
While the Galaxy Note 10 Plus is newer and bigger than the Galaxy S10 Plus, there are plenty of compelling reasons to go for the slightly older, slightly smaller, and way more affordable phone.
Here’s why the Galaxy S10 Plus is a better bang for your buck compared to the Galaxy Note 10 Plus.
1. The Galaxy S10 Plus has the Galaxy Note 10 Plus beat in terms of price — and that’s often the most important consideration when buying a new phone.
The Galaxy Note 10 Plus starts at $US1,100.
While the Galaxy S10 Plus had an official starting price of $US999, you can now find it much cheaper at a wide variety of retailers like B&H– for around $800. Amazon is selling it right now for just $US770.
That means you can save as little as $US100, but as much as $US300 or more, by going with the Galaxy S10 Plus instead of the Note 10 Plus. That’s a substantial savings for what’s arguably a more attractive package overall.
2. The Galaxy S10 Plus and Note 10 Plus have almost identical battery capacities — and in one test, the S10 Plus actually outlasted the Note 10 Plus.
- The Galaxy S10 Plus has a 4,100 mAh battery.
- The Galaxy Note 10 Plus has a 4,300 mAh battery.
mAh, or milliampere hour, is a unit of measurement that describes how long a battery can hold a charge before it needs recharging – but it’s not always the greatest representation of a phone’s battery life. How software utilises the hardware, and minimizes drain, has a greater influence on a device’s battery life.
So while the Galaxy Note 10 Plus has an edge with battery capacity, it also has more stuff to power – like a bigger OLED screen, and all the various S Pen features. So you might be surprised to hear that the Galaxy S10 Plus has actually beaten the Galaxy Note 10 Plus in at least one battery-life test.
Many publications that test a smartphone’s battery life don’t often test the same devices the same way every time. But that’s not the case with Tom’s Guide, which performed the same custom test with a handful of the top smartphones available today. The result? The Galaxy S10 Plus got almost a full extra hour of life compared to the Note 10 Plus.
3. The Galaxy Note 10 Plus comes with more storage by default, but the starting storage in the Galaxy S10 Plus is already way more than enough for most people.
The Galaxy Note 10 Plus comes with 256 GB of storage to start. The Galaxy S10 Plus comes with 128 GB of starting storage, which is still more than plenty. I have more than 200 apps downloaded on my phone (235 to be exact), but I’m only using about 72 GB of storage.
4. The Note 10 Plus is a bigger, heavier phone compared to the still-large S10 Plus.
The Galaxy Note 10 Plus:
- Weighs 196 grams
- Is about 6.4 inches long
The Galaxy S10 Plus:
- Weighs 175 grams
- Is about 6.2 inches long
You’re still getting a big, beautiful phone no matter what you buy, but the Galaxy S10 Plus is lighter and slightly more pocketable than the Galaxy Note 10 Plus. This matters, since you’ll be holding or carrying your phone all day long most of the time.
5. Both phones have nearly identical rear-camera systems.
The Galaxy S10 Plus and Note 10 Plus have almost the same rear-camera systems: They both have a 12-megapixel wide-angle lens, a 12-megapixel telephoto lens, and a 16-megapixel ultra-wide lens.
The only major difference is the Note 10 Plus also has a time-of-flight lens, which helps capture depth data for 3D imaging. That leads to some nifty features, like being able to draw on top of what you camera is filming and having your drawings stay persistent in the scene, but they’re not “must-have” by any means. You’ll probably try this feature once and forget about it.
6. Both phones have the same brains, and performance is roughly the same.
The Galaxy S10 Plus and Note 10 Plus are both powered by the same Snapdragon 855 chip from Qualcomm. Both phones also have an under-display fingerprint reader, wireless charging, use USB-C for power, and have stereo speakers (although YouTuber Marques Brownlee says the Galaxy S10 Plus actually has superior sound, in his opinion, compared to the Galaxy Note 10.)
When it comes to random-access memory, or RAM, which helps computers multitask more quickly, the Galaxy Note 10 Plus has 12 GB of RAM while the Galaxy S10 Plus comes standard with only 8 GB of RAM. You can upgrade to 12 GB of RAM in the Galaxy S10 Plus, but it’s really overkill.
So, in general, expect these phones to perform about the same, despite their differences.
7. The Galaxy Note 10 Plus might have the S Pen, but the Galaxy S10 Plus has a headphone jack.
While the S Pen is neat, I think I would personally get more use out of a headphone jack compared to a stylus. I don’t need to take handwritten notes on my phone, or use a pen to control my phone using gestures. I do, however, miss being able to freely use a pair of wired headphones with my smartphone, when my AirPods or wireless headphones run out of juice.
8. The Galaxy S10 Plus actually has a better selfie camera than the more expensive Note 10 Plus.
The Galaxy Note 10 Plus comes with a 10-megapixel wide-angle lens on the front, but the S10 Plus has that same 10-megapixel selfie camera plus an additional 8-megapixel selfie camera to capture more depth information, which should lead to greater selfies and portrait-mode photos.
9. The Galaxy Note 10 Plus has a larger display than the S10 Plus, but the difference is minimal and both screens look gorgeous.
Both the Note 10 Plus and S10 Plus feature Samsung’s top-of-the-line quad-HD dynamic AMOLED screens, which offer cinematic quality. Almost everyone who looks at these displays falls in love with them.
The only real difference is size: The Note 10 Plus is 6.8 inches diagonally, while the S10 Plus is 6.4 inches. Keep in mind, these are still two giant phones: Two of the three latest iPhones are smaller than the 6.4-inch S10 Plus. I would personally go for the Galaxy S10 and its slightly more manageable display size.
In general, the Galaxy S10+ is a more attractive package at a more affordable price point compared to the Galaxy Note 10.
It almost feels like a no-brainer, unless you really want the biggest phone display possible, or you really want that S Pen. If you feel strongly about using a stylus with your smartphone, then go for the Note – but I’d argue that most people don’t need it. I personally feel like the S Pen is one extra tiny accessory to misplace, and I don’t have a real need for handwritten notes when I feel like typing is already pretty fast and easy. (You can also try using a voice assistant to dictate, but I’m still not a fan of that.)
Compared to the Galaxy Note 10 Plus, the Galaxy S10 Plus is just as powerful but also lighter, easier to hold, and way more affordable. It also has a superior selfie camera, a headphone jack, and potentially even better battery life than the plus-sized Note 10. If you’re on the fence between these two Samsung phones, you should pick up the S10 Plus.