With the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus finally in hand, I was able to do an unboxing, offer details about what’s included, and tell you how the phone performs.
Update: Okay, my Samsung Galaxy Note 10 impressions are well into day two, so I’m updating this article with more Note 10 camera samples taken on Saturday, including the Color Point mode that’s new to Note phones (it was previously on the S10 series). Here are my updated thoughts.
I’m on my way to a full Note 10 Plus review, but need more time to test things like battery life and the camera. That means I’ll be doing 24-hour, 48-hour and 72-hour recaps of my findings, updating you on my feeling toward the phone in real-time.
In the last day, I got to inspect the Note 10 Plus size and build quality (it’s big, but feels thinner than other Note phones), run a few performance tests, and take a few photo samples with the front and rear cameras – including some lowlight shots.
Samsung built an impressive phone – but one at an impressively high price at a time when there are several other options out there including several Samsung phones, like the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10 Plus. Is the S Pen stylus worth the extra cash?
Here are my early findings after unboxing the Note 10 Plus.
Note 10 Plus unboxing
I got the Note 10 Plus in the reflective Aura Glow finish, meaning it takes on the colors of its surroundings, often exhibiting a cool rainbow effect. This is different from the cool Ocean Blue and Lavender Purple colors on past Note phones that has a matte finish.
Plastic-wrapped Note 10 Plus: Opening the Note 10 Plus box, the first thing that I noticed is the phone is sitting there protected in plastic on the front and back. Yes, you can peel both sides without worry, unlike the troubled Galaxy Fold, in which the plastic film over the screen was essential to its functionality. Not the case here.
S Pen: The Aura Glow version of the Note 10 Plus comes with an S Pen in a deep blue color, one that’s smaller and thinner than prior S Pens. And yet its functionality has improved with more tech inside: a gyroscope and accelerometer have been added to enable motion controls – that’s in addition to the Bluetooth LE we saw in the Note 9.USB-C charger: My favorite part of the Note 10 Plus unboxing was seeing the newish 25W USB-C charger, offering fast charging speeds out-of-the-box. You may not know this, but the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G came with the same 25W charger.
But the Note 10 Plus is going to be a significantly more popular phone, so it’ll be a first for many fans who are used to Samsung’s old USB-A charger block and slower 15W charger speeds. There’s a USB-C-to-USB-C cable included in this box, too.
Other tools: There’s a SIM card ejector tool, USB-A-to-USB-C adapter, and a claw-like tweezer tool for replacing S Pen stylus tips when they wear out.
What’s not here: Normal headphones. That’s because the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus doesn’t have a 3.5mm headphone jack, instead relying on the USB-C charging port and the included USB-C headphones for personalized audio.
Samsung is among the last phone manufacturers to axe the standard headphone port in a flagship phone. Bonus: The USB-C headphones are AKG earbuds, so they’re at least of good quality if you don’t opt for wireless earbuds.
Also not here: A 3.5mm-head-jack-to-USB-C adapter to use normal earbuds. They’re inexpensive on Amazon if you need one.