Meet the 6.8-inch Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus, which is here to prove us wrong whenever we collectively think “Wow, phone screens can’t get any bigger, can they?” Oh, they can.
With this screen size, the Note 10 Plus is a massive Samsung phone with an equally sizable price. But it’s easy to fall in love with the screen and Aura Glow glass back if you’re into over-the-top smartphone opulence. It’s both class-leading and classy looking.
Of course, today’s best phones all have big screens, including several from Samsung. So the new Note 10 Plus goes beyond what the S10 Plus provided six months earlier, touting the handy, Note-exclusive S Pen with new wand-like gesture control tricks.
Screens at these sizes are begging for a stylus, and when we called the S10 Plus the “almost-everything-included Samsung phone” this is what we meant. But there has to be more than that, and the Note 10 Plus mostly delivers.
Its five cameras offer a ‘Live Focus’ portrait mode with fun-to-use filters. Although the Pixel 3 beats Samsung’s main cameras in low light, the selective black-and-white Color Point and Big Circles filters took our selfie game to the next level. The Note 10 Plus has the best selfie camera we’ve ever tested.
Samsung goes a step further with ideas we didn’t need, though. Live Focus Video makes sense on paper, but test it just once and you’ll realize you don’t actually want distracting background blurring effects in your videos. The same goes for AR Doodle – neat to use once but highly unnecessary. It’s this year’s AR Emoji/Animoji.
You’ll find these features and a stylus on the “normal” 6.4-inch Note 10, which has a more one-hand-friendly screen and cheaper price. But exclusive to Note 10 Plus are faster specs, a microSD card slot, bigger battery, and ultra-fast charging speeds.
Both 2019 Note phones are missing one thing: a traditional 3.5mm headphone jack. Samsung finally caved to the critically unpopular trend in an effort to make its phones thinner and pack in a bigger battery.
Now, we’ll level with you on this luxury handset. What you’re getting for your money is a great camera in your pocket – but it’s actually not the best camera phone. And it’s fast – although, technically, it’s not the fastest phone you can buy, either.
Forget all of that – the rankings, they, don’t matter: the Note 10 is Samsung’s best phone and, most importantly, the most fun we’ve had using a smartphone in 2019. This may be Samsung’s last great phone before the Galaxy Fold revolution.