The Galaxy S10+ unboxed

Here’s a first impression of Samsung’s latest flagship and what it has to offer

11 Mar 2019 / 11:39 H.

A LITTLE more than seven days ago, the folks at Samsung Malaysia Electronics loaned us a prism white Samsung Galaxy S10+ (128GB). Since then, I have been taking it out on assignments, and fiddling with it during walks and at home.

Before my full review comes out next week, here is what I have learned about Samsung’s latest flagship phone so far.

In my testing of the S10+, I have reset the unit multiple times, and I find that the fastest way to get the phone up and running is to first install a SIM card before turning it on.

This alerts the phone to preset the basic settings such as language, time, and phone settings, correctly.

I also find that the initial processes of setting up the S10+ have been streamlined further, which means if you get one for yourself, you can have it up and running in no time.

Just be ready with your Google Account and Samsung Member login information, if you’re already a member, to expedite the process.

I am impressed at how fast it is to register and login using the in-display fingerprint reader on the S10+. It is faster than any in-display fingerprint reader on a smartphone that I have tested in the past.

That said, I rarely get to use the feature since facial recognition is so fast. Faster than it is on the S9+ for sure.

Samsung’s decision to let me pick and choose optional apps to install during the initial setup is also very appreciated.

But I am annoyed that, although the Facebook app is not installed, I have to disable the installer to make it go away.

Anyone who holds the S10+ in hand for the first time will immediately notice that it is lighter than expected.

According to the specifications, it is slightly lighter than the S9+, but even in the hands of someone who is used to holding the light S9, the S10+ still feels lighter, maybe too light.

Perhaps it’s because of the thinness and weight distribution of the device that make it feel that way.

The face of the S10+ is almost all display. Even though I am not a fan of notches, the double-wide punch hole on the top right corner of the display does not bother me much because the display is super wide, with a 19:9 aspect ratio.

Most media, especially videos, does not require that much screen real estate, so the camera goes mostly unnoticed.

Because the phone is all display, I have to get used to holding the device without activating the touch screen.

Personally, the first thing I would do with the S10+ is to slap a cover on it.

However, that’s a sad thought because the phone is so gorgeous, it would be a shame to cover it up.

The back of the prism white unit I have with me looks like a polished slate of pearl with a black bar, and it is framed by a border of shiny chrome-like metal.

In typical Samsung form, some of the features that are touted on the S10+ are turned down or off by default out of the box.

For example, the screen resolution is set to FHD+ instead of the higher resolution WQHD+.

The shot suggestions feature in the camera is turned off too. I was sceptical about this feature at first, but I find the photo composition suggestions it gives result in good-looking photos that are well centred and levelled.

It also helps that the cameras on the S10+ are impressive – all five of them: three at the back and two in front.

All three rear cameras offer different focal lengths and are able to take pictures that look objectively good and pop in social media.

However, I have yet to test the camera’s low-light performance further.

I do not have a face for selfies, and I am often embarrassed by them, but I don’t feel the same way when I use the front-facing camera on the S10+ – with filters and beautification feature off, of course.

I haven’t figured out what secret formula Samsung used, but while other phone makers have staked the claim of making the best selfie camera on a smartphone, it looks like Samsung has actually done it.

After a week, upgrading to the Samsung Galaxy 10+ is undoubtedly a compelling thought.

Even if you set aside the hype, it looks like the S10+ will be what the other phones aspire to be when they grow up.

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