Samsung Galaxy S10 Vs Galaxy S10 Edge: What’s The Difference?
Samsung’s Galaxy S10 range is turning heads, but their prices are also dropping jaws. By far the cheapest option is the new Galaxy S10 edge, but is it a smarter upgrade than the Galaxy S10 or a false economy? You might be surprised by their differences…
Samsung Galaxy S10 (left) Vs Galaxy S10 edge (right)
Yes, you get a smaller display on Galaxy S10 edge and it is also flat but curved edges divide opinion and smartphone displays have become so large some will prefer the budget option. Especially since both sport the same bezel-trimming ‘punch-hole’ displays.
Where the Galaxy S10 stands out is its higher resolution display and toughened Gorilla Glass 6 front panel. But not so fast. These phones run lower resolutions by default and the human eye struggles to see a difference above 300 ppi anyway. As for the glass, most people put their phones in a protective case.
Galaxy S10 edge has wider bezels Samsung
The Galaxy S10 does have a higher screen-to-body ratio (88.3% vs 83.3%) due to its slimmer bezels, but it’s a minimal difference I suspect most people can live with. (note: Samsung claims 91% and 93% ratios but doesn’t count the punch-hole).
As such, the real win for the Galaxy S10 is its in-display Ultrasonic fingerprint reader. It uses acoustic vibrations to create a 3D model of your fingerprint and it’s much faster and more secure than any previous reader. It’s also undeniably cool. Galaxy S10 edge owners have to settle for a reader built into its power button.
The Ultrasonic fingerprint sensor in the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10 Plus is a world-first Samsung
Design – Premium Stablemates
Galaxy S10 – 149.9 x 70.4 x 7.8 mm (5.90 x 2.77 x 0.31-inch), 157 g (5.54 oz)
Galaxy S10 edge – 142.2 x 69.9 x 7.9 mm (5.60 x 2.75 x 0.31 in), 150 g (5.29 oz)
Predictably, the Galaxy S10 edge is the smaller and lighter phone thanks to its smaller display but it is also notably more compact than the 5.8-inch Galaxy S9 (147.7 x 68.7 x 8.5 mm, 163 g) making for a very portable phone by today’s standards.
Elsewhere, both new models also retain the best bits of their predecessor: IP68 water resistance, stereo speakers (bottom grill + an amplified earpiece), USB-C, microSD and the headphone jack survives again.
Both phones also gain the ability to repurpose their microSD slot as a second sim, which makes them ideal for simultaneous home/work or personal/travel phone numbers.
Hybrid Sim is supported on all new Galaxy S10 models Samsung
Finally, you’ll find the Galaxy S10 edge and Galaxy S10 launch in: Prism White, Prism Black, Prism Green, Prism Blue, and Flamingo Pink while the S10 edge also has Canary Yellow.
Note: the Galaxy S10 Plus also offers black or white ceramic finishes for its 1TB edition.
Galaxy S10 Rear – as above, plus Tertiary – 12MP, f/2.4, 52mm (telephoto), 1/3.6″, 1.0µm, AF, OIS, 2x optical zoom So the Galaxy S10 edge misses out on the Galaxy S10’s 2x optical zoom, but I don’t think this matters greatly. While the ultra-wide lens is ideal for panoramas and shooting indoors, in most scenarios the loss of optical zoom can be mitigated by simply walking close to your subject.
Samsung Galaxy S10 triple cameras Samsung
Meanwhile, the downsides are shared by both phones: they don’t appear to have changed their hardware from the Galaxy S9. While it is true that image processing has become the dominant factor in smartphone camera quality, it is still a disappointing development and the Pixel 3 retains its point-and-shoot camera crown.
From a hardware perspective, little has changed on the front either.
Here the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10 edge have identical hardware and a slight resolution bump from the Galaxy S9. That said, they also have a slower aperture (f/1,9) than the Galaxy S9 (f/1.7) which is a strange decision.
Galaxy S10 wide-angle lens Samsung
Where Samsung has stepped up is the introduction of HDR video recording. Like its camera equivalent, this blends different exposures to retain detail in low and bright light simultaneously and the results are superb. Better still, both model models get this.
Tip: the Galaxy S10 Plus has two front-facing cameras.
Performance – Memory Games
Both models: EMEA – Exynos 9820 Octa (8 nm), CPU: Octa-core (2×2.7 GHz Mongoose M4 & 2×2.3 GHz Cortex-A75 & 4×1.9 GHz Cortex-A55), GPU: Mali-G76
While identical, it’s worth noting the improvements the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10 edge get from their new hardware. Samsung claims 29% and 37% CPU and GPU boosts respectively over the Galaxy S9 while they also run cooler thanks to their die shrink.
Where there is a difference is RAM. The Galaxy S10 has a sizeable 8GB, regardless of which option you buy (128/512GB), while storage determines what you get in the Galaxy S10 edge: 128GB gives you 6GB, 256GB bumps you to 8GB, there is no 512GB model.
Tip: the Galaxy S10 Plus goes up to 12GB RAM and 1TB storage.
Samsung’s Galaxy S10 models have cutting edge hardware Samsung
Where the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10 edge do line-up again, however, is connectivity. While Apple gives the iPhone XR inferior 4G, both Samsung’s new models have upgraded 4G for enhanced reception and performance (up to a theoretical 2Gbps) as well as the all-new WiFi 6 standard which has improved speed and range.
‘Wireless Power Share’ features on both models as well. This is a useful new feature which enables Qi-compatible devices to receive charge from your phone when placed against their back. To work you must have a minimum of 30% left in your phone.
As for software, both models have Samsung’s cleaner and more intuitive ‘One UI’. But be warned: familiar shortcomings suggest Android updates won’t arrive any faster.
Battery Life – Capacious Upgrade
Galaxy S10 – 3400 mAh
Galaxy S10 edge – 3100 mAh
While the Galaxy S10’s battery is almost 10% larger than the Galaxy S10 edge, the real world differences are minor due to its larger screen and higher resolution. Both also represent improvements from the Galaxy S9 (3000 mAh) and Samsung promises almost 24-hours of battery life from a single charge.
Wireless Power Share is a great new Galaxy S10 feature Samsung
Both models also have matching 18W wired and 15W wireless charging. This is fine, though faster wired charging has started to appear from rivals (notably OnePlus). Samsung will launch a 5G Galaxy S10 later in the year with 25W wired charging, which rubs this in for Galaxy S10 and S10e buyers.
Tip: the Galaxy S10 Plus is the range’s battery life king by far.
For my money, given its support of microSD, the 128GB Galaxy S10 edge is the best value option but – conversely – microSD also means the 128GB Galaxy S10 is worth its $50 premium over the 256GB Galaxy S10 edge.
Tip: watch out for launch deals. Samsung is bundling a free pair of wireless $130 Galaxy Buds and you should expect further savings within a few months.
These phones share a lot more in common than you might expect. If you’re on a budget, the 128GB Galaxy S10 edge is the phone to buy. 6GB RAM is more than enough, and it retains almost all the best features of the Galaxy S10 while matching performance.
Step up the range, however, and (again thanks to its microSD slot) you’re better off buying a 128GB Galaxy S10 for $50 more than a 256GB Galaxy S10 edge. You’ll bag its superb Ultrasonic fingerprint reader, those slimmer bezels and the 2x optical zoom lens.
My complaints are both phones fail to improve their cameras as much as I’d like and their punch-hole designs will be polarizing. That said, there’s no doubt they live up to their 10th-anniversary billing.
Tip: if money is no object, the Galaxy S10 Plus is the best phone in the range.