The Samsung Galaxy Note 10: Evolved again

Mala Bhargava | Updated on August 08, 2019 Published on August 08, 2019

Samsung Galaxy Note 10   -  Reuters

The signature piece of the Galaxy Note is its stylus or S Pen

Samsung made surprisingly short work presenting its two new Galaxy Note 10 smartphones at an event in New York on August 8. Or at least that’s what it felt like. Just when one was expecting to deep dive into more new features, Samsung’s executives abruptly moved on to present the Galaxy Watch Active 2 followed by a cellular connected notebook called the Galaxy Book S. The event, live-streamed to a global audience, rounded off with a surprise guest — Microsoft’s Satya Nadella who spoke of a partnership with Samsung seeming to refer to the seamless manner in which the new products connect to Microsoft’s applications and services.

But what of the super-phone, awaited each year by power users for the innovations it brings? This time Samsung doesn’t yet have the Galaxy Fold as its rabbit in the hat, but it did launch two editions of the Note 10, one big and the other bigger. The Galaxy Note, which has long been popular in India, gives a little and takes a little, adding up to smartphone that is a little greater than it already was. But this time around, the competition isn’t that far behind and has even come up with some of the features on the Note 10 phones already.

The S Pen

The signature piece of the Galaxy Note is its stylus or S Pen. This slim of a gadget tucks away into a slot on the phone not for a moment looking like it could pack in as much power as it does. The S Pen is actually the most advanced digital pen in the world and Samsung just gave it more capabilities. Two of the most exciting ones are that one can convert handwritten content straight to text easily, even being able to save in popular formats such as Word and PDF.

Samsung Galaxy Note 10   -  Special Arrangement

Another is that one can use the S Pen as a remote, controlling various aspects of video shooting — it was already a click-to-shoot remote for capturing photographs. Video editing on the go and working with a suite of editing tools can also make use of the stylus for better precision. The S Pen can also be used for navigation in apps that choose to support it, including YouTube, a feature that Samsung has already used to some extent on earlier versions with the photo gallery and some other apps but now the Pen has a gyroscope for gesture detection. It even has more battery power now though all it needs to recharge is a few moments back in its slot. One could quite confidently say that the S Pen is the most innovative thing about the Note 10.

Read: Samsung unveils all new Galaxy Note 10

Of motion tracks and background blurs

The Note10’s cameras also have some interesting improvements being able to motion track and add background blur and other effects to video. A Zoom-In microphone amplifies the audio in frame and pushes background noise aside to help focus on the sounds that the user wants. On the photo front, night vision comes to the front camera. The camera setup however doesn’t seem to be dramatically different from what you would get on the Galaxy S10. Features like a time-of-flight sensor, 3D scanning and playing with AR drawings are actually available on other phones that compete with Samsung.

Samsung Galaxy Note 10   -  Special Arrangement

An aspect of the Note 10 and other Samsung flagships that was highlighted is the DeX. This is a simple cable-connect to a PC or Mac that enables a desktop like experience even allowing for the use of a mouse and keyboard with the phone.

The Note 10 phones look beautifully designed with screens that go right to the edges and beautiful colours on the glass back, though all variants will not be available everywhere. Overall, the Note 10 and Note 10 Plus see a smattering of very interesting new features while taking away a few that the tech community is mourning — the 3.5mm headphone jack and a slot for the microSD card — though probably not for long. The new phones are not a step-change but certainly come with features that have evolved.

Published on August 08, 2019
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