When you first lay eyes on Samsung’s Galaxy Note10 Aura Glow model, it’s hard not to be struck by the mesmerizingly iridescent hues on its backside. (The Aura Black shade is more subdued.) The latest iteration of the Galaxy Note pushes beyond its compact size, with thinner bezels, a small hole-punch camera, and a bigger screen thanks to its infinite-O Display.
But it’s what’s inside that really counts, right? The 6.3” Note10 runs on an octa-core Snapdragon 855+ CPU, has 256GM of storage, 8GB of RAM and features a UFS 3.0 storage for quicker read and write speeds. There are some modest improvements on the camera side, too, keeping the wide, ultra-wide, and telephoto lenses. But where Samsung is really punching up is by offering live focus effects on video as well as a new sound feature allowing you to focus on specific sounds within the shot—handy at concerts or busy cafés.
The company has also introduced AR Doodle, an augmented-reality feature that allows you to draw on a live view of a person, or a group of people. So, say, you were so inclined to draw a halo around someone, that halo would follow your subjects as they move around the space. Gimmicky? Sure. But also fun. Another interesting feature is 3D scanning—allowing you to quickly scan any object and either send it to a 3D printer, or use the 3D file as an avatar.
Can you teach an old dog some new tricks? Well, the S Pen brings some enhancements that seem to suggest so. The new update allows you to convert handwriting to text and scribble on docs. Air Actions offers certain commands—changing camera modes, zooming in, flipping through photos—by simply swiping the stylus in the air.
But one of the most useful functions of the Note10 is the DeX for PC: with it, you can mirror your phone on another screen, or essentially run it on your PC, allowing you to use all the same features. That includes the stubborn mobile-only-features of Instagram, as well as dragging and dropping files from the device to your desktop, or responding to messages that arrive on your Note10.
What’s missing, unfortunately, is the microSD card slot on the Note10, and (following in the footsteps of Lenovo Motorola and Apple) Samsung has also dropped the headphone jack.
The Note10+, on the other hand, is a bit bigger (at 6.8”) and better, with a larger battery (4,300mAh), a microSD card slot, 12GB of RAM, an additional colour (Aura White), and a fourth camera on rear for depth-sensing.
Of course, all the greatest features mean little if your phone can’t make it past lunch. Luckily, the Note10 should last you all day with 3,500mAh, and you can come back from zero to 100 per cent within about 1.5hrs using the 25W charger that comes bundled. Impressively, it would take under 30 minutes with the 45W fast charger.
The Note10 and Note10+ will be available from Best Buy and via Samsung on August 23, with bonus offers for pre-orders.
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