“The Galaxy S10e has nearly all of the bells and whistles, at a a lot better worth.”

Good 5.Eight-inch measurement

Nice show

Clean efficiency

Enjoyable digicam

Clear, easy-to-use software program

Battery life could possibly be higher

Digicam high quality will be muddy at night time

You don’t have to spend $1,000 for a very good smartphone. The iPhone XR already proved that for iOS, and Android has lengthy had robust telephones like these from OnePlus that provided loads of energy with an affordable worth. Samsung’s Galaxy S10e is a bit more costly than final 12 months’s Galaxy S9, however it’s the most cost effective of the brand new Galaxy S10 vary, bringing the identical sensible show, stellar construct high quality, succesful cameras, and speedy efficiency to a worth that’s simpler to abdomen.

In case you’re envious of all of the bells and whistles within the Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus however aren’t positive concerning the excessive price ticket, then take into account the S10e, as a result of it affords excess of you’d count on.

Need a larger display? Take a look at our Galaxy S10 evaluation or Galaxy S10 Plus evaluation for our in-depth impressions.

An iPhone lookalike

The Galaxy S10e is the right measurement. My palm fully wraps across the 5.Eight-inch display, and all of the buttons are simple to entry — it feels so refreshing in an period of enormous telephones.

Higher but, it’s the one considered one of Samsung’s new telephones that doesn’t have a curved edge display (so the perimeters are flat), which suggests I haven’t run into the difficulty of unintentionally touching elements of the display with my palm whereas utilizing the telephone — in contrast to on the S10 Plus. In case you’ve criticized Samsung’s telephones up to now for the “Edge show,” that is the telephone for you.

samsung galaxy s10e review dsc 0370Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

The entrance of the S10e appears engaging (and really very like the iPhone 11), with uniform and slim bezels surrounding the 5.Eight-inch display. There’s a hole-punch digicam on the prime proper, which is the identify for the floating selfie digicam that appears like a gap punched in a chunk of paper. It’s what helps Samsung obtain these slimmer bezels, which in flip permits for extra display actual property. If the hole-punch digicam bothers you, there’s a method to cover it, or you should use a artistic wallpaper that masks it on your house and lock display.

It’s the again of the S10e that’s slightly disappointing. The rounded corners look good, however I want Samsung coloured within the digicam module black prefer it did with the S10 and S10 Plus. The telephone appears dated, like an outdated Galaxy S6. The remainder of the again is clear, and I really like the eye-catching Prism Blue shade. You may get the S10e in Flamingo Pink, Prism Black, or Prism White within the U.S. as nicely.

The Galaxy S10e is the right measurement.

The aluminum body is thick due to the flat edges, providing a very good grip when holding the telephone — vital as each the back and front are fully glass (Gorilla Glass 5 on either side, particularly). It’s a good suggestion to nab a case.

On the aspect of the telephone you’ll discover the capacitive fingerprint sensor. It’s barely indented, and it’s a speedy method to unlock the telephone. That is one other characteristic that’s totally different from the S10 and S10 Plus, which have an ultrasonic in-display fingerprint sensor. That’s the newer, cooler tech, however each can be utilized to entry delicate apps and authenticate funds with Samsung Pay, and I’ve discovered the S10e’s capacitive sensor extra dependable total.

samsung galaxy s10e

samsung galaxy s10e

There’s additionally face recognition in order for you a extra handy method to unlock the S10e, however it’s not as safe, so you’ll be able to solely use it to unlock the telephone. If you wish to pay, you’ll have to make use of your fingerprint.

I’m pleased to see Samsung embody headphone jack for these holding on to their three.5mm earbuds and headphones. You may even cost the telephone through the USB-C port and hearken to music on the identical time!

Implausible show

The S10e has a 5.Eight-inch display and makes use of Samsung’s new “Dynamic AMOLED” show know-how. You get the identical implausible display because the Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus. The one distinction? It doesn’t have WQHD+ display decision. As a substitute, you’ll need to accept Full HD+ (2,280 x 1,080). Is that this trigger for concern? By no means. The display nonetheless appears sharp, and it’s HDR10+ licensed, so that you’ll see unimaginable shade accuracy. It’s an attractive window into the digital world.

samsung galaxy s10eJulian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

It will get extremely brilliant, so that you gained’t have issues trying on the display in daylight. Colours on it don’t appear oversaturated, and blacks are impressively deep, which helps masks the hole-punch digicam with only a wallpaper.

The Dynamic AMOLED display does look slightly heat, one thing I solely observed when evaluating it to a couple different telephones, just like the iPhone XS Max. I swapped from the Pure shade profile to Vivid, and oddly it appeared slightly extra pure.

galaxy s10e screenGalaxy S10e above, iPhone XS Max beneath. Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

The display additionally natively reduces blue-light publicity by 42 p.c, a characteristic licensed by TÜV Rheinland, an unbiased product testing firm. Blue gentle will be dangerous to your well being as it might probably have an effect on sleep, so it’s good to see this baked in.

The notification bar is larger now, due to the hole-punch digicam, however most apps look good on the thin-bezel display in portrait orientation. Swap to panorama, and the display appears slightly funky. Third-party apps don’t wrap across the hole-punch digicam however use a black bar that ruins the symmetry of the bezels. You find yourself with a thicker bezel on the aspect with the selfie digicam than the opposite. It’s not a deal breaker, and it gained’t occur typically for those who don’t put your telephone in panorama mode an excessive amount of, however it’s one thing you’ll discover.

It’d be good if full-screen apps adapt to utilize the display area.

It’d be good if full-screen apps adapt to utilize the display area. YouTube, for instance, helps you to watch a full-screen video that goes edge-to-edge on the S10 Plus — which appears extra immersive — however Netflix has but so as to add this assist. This additionally relies on the side ratio the video was filmed in, as there are some YouTube movies that look awkward with the hole-punch digicam as nicely.

Speedy efficiency, One UI software program

Simply because the Galaxy S10e is cheaper doesn’t imply you’re compromising on efficiency. It has the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, the flagship chipset that powers most high-end Android telephones this 12 months. The place the S10e differs is it comes with 6GB of RAM within the base mannequin as an alternative of 8GB RAM present in its larger brothers. You get the identical 128GB of inner storage, and a MicroSD card slot is current for those who want extra space.

Does having much less RAM trigger an issue? Nope. I haven’t seen a single efficiency dip in my time utilizing the telephone as my day by day driver. It runs video games like Breakneck and Alto’s Odyssey and not using a hitch, and multitasking in cut up display mode hasn’t precipitated any points in any respect. In case you’re anxious, you’ll be able to all the time spend more cash to purchase the 8GB RAM possibility at $850, however at that time you could as nicely go for the 6.1-inch S10.

AnTuTu 3DBench: 350,964
Geekbench four CPU: three,455 single-core; 10,355 multi-core
3DMark Sling Shot Excessive: four,770 (Vulkan)

The benchmark scores all beat out the Galaxy S10 Plus, which is sensible for the reason that S10e is powering a smaller, lower-resolution display and has much less tech inside. In reality, the AnTuTu rating now places the Galaxy S10e as second finest in our benchmark rankings, second to the Xiaomi Mi 9, which additionally makes use of the identical Snapdragon 855 processor.

Complimenting this stellar efficiency is Samsung’s new One UI interface layered over Android 9 Pie, the most recent model of Android. It appears good and is extra intuitive because it locations essential interface components towards the underside of the display for simple entry — although that doesn’t really feel as obligatory on the small-screen Galaxy S10e. I’m a fan of the darker themes to assist defend my eyes when utilizing the telephone at night time.

galaxy s10eJulian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

There are some neat touches, like how a light-weight circles the hole-punch digicam if you swap to selfie mode, or when the digicam is looking for your face to unlock the telephone. The software program is deeply customizable — you’ll be able to fully do away with the normal Android navigation bar in order for you. The software program is an enormous enchancment; barring the Google Pixel three and the OnePlus 6T, it’s my favourite interface on a telephone.

Whereas it’s good to see the most recent model of Android right here, updates are among the many largest points with Samsung smartphones. The unlocked model of the Galaxy S9 acquired Android 9 Pie six months after Google launched it, which is disappointing. You gained’t see this delay on Google’s Pixel telephones or the iPhone. Hopefully Samsung will decide up the tempo this 12 months when Android Q rolls out.

One factor to bear in mind is the S10e, just like the S10 and S10 Plus, can’t hook up with 5G networks because it doesn’t have the required Qualcomm X50 modem inside. It’s an opt-in characteristic, and Samsung has determined to make a special-edition Galaxy S10 5G as an alternative. U.S. carriers are nonetheless deploying 5G, so don’t count on to see nationwide service quickly.


The Bixby Button nonetheless exists, sadly. It prompts Samsung’s digital assistant, which I haven’t discovered a lot of a motive to make use of, although it has carried out nicely the occasions I’ve requested it to set reminders or requested it queries. I’ve grown used to utilizing Google Assistant — which can also be obtainable on the telephone — and it typically provides me higher outcomes.

samsung galaxy s10eJulian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

Fortunately you’ll be able to remap the Bixby button, although it’s a bit restricted. You may set the button to open one other app, for instance, however a double press will nonetheless open Bixby (and vice versa). There’s no official method to set it to open Google Assistant, however XDA Builders have discovered a technique for those who’re keen to put in a third-party app.

New for the S10e is a characteristic referred to as Bixby Routines, and it’s genuinely helpful, although Bixby’s “synthetic intelligence” doesn’t have a lot to do with it. It really works like IFTTT, which helps you to arrange totally different profiles on your telephone primarily based on sure triggers. For instance, I’ve set a routine to place my telephone on mute once I arrive at work (Bixby has my work handle), and my telephone will activate the sound once I go house. It’s a strong characteristic, and there’s loads to mess around with if you wish to dive deep into it.

Double the cameras

The Galaxy S10e is smaller than the S10 Plus or S10, which suggests a smaller display with fewer pixels. However the largest distinction is arguably the digicam. The S10 Plus and S10 reign supreme with three cameras on the again, however solely the S10 Plus has two on the entrance. The S10e solely has two cameras on the again, and one on the entrance.

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

The primary digicam is similar on all three telephones. It’s a regular 12-megapixel lens with a variable f/1.5 to f/2.four aperture (which Samsung first debuted final 12 months). Whereas the S10 and S10 Plus have an additional telephoto lens paired with an extremely wide-angle lens, the S10e solely will get the latter. It’s a 16-megapixel ultra-wide-angle lens with a f/2.2 aperture. Personally, I’m proud of the wide-angle lens as I can get extra distinctive photographs, particularly of tight areas.

samsung galaxy s10e review camera wide angle lens daylight

samsung galaxy s10e review camera wide angle lens dark

Broad Angle

In any other case, count on the identical picture high quality on all three telephones. The S10e’s photographs provide wonderful HDR, by no means under-or over-exposing a photograph. In daylight, pictures are detailed, saturated, and the digicam shutter reacts rapidly. Distinction is missing, nonetheless, so photos can look slightly washed.

Extremely wide-angle Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

Low gentle nonetheless appears to pose an issue for Samsung. Photos get muddy rapidly — particularly from the wide-angle lens — although there’s good noise discount. This telephone gained’t produce the very best photographs at night time. The Google Pixel three with Night time Sight remains to be the champion.

New within the digicam software program is an growth to scenes acknowledged by Scene Optimizer. There are actually  30 in whole (that’s 10 new scenes, starting from canine, cat, footwear, and child). Scene Optimizer makes use of synthetic intelligence to routinely detect scenes like sunsets or folks and makes an attempt to regulate your photograph to what it thinks appears finest. I left it on for many of our testing, and it did assist photos pop, however can even result in oversaturation at occasions.

My favourite characteristic is Shot Recommendations, which may recommend  higher compositions. All it’s worthwhile to do is level the digicam on the beneficial “Finest Shot” space and the telephone will routinely take the photograph. It eliminates the necessity to faucet the shutter button fully. The compositions it suggests are normally stable, although just a few poor decisions slip in.

samsung galaxy s10e review color point

samsung galaxy s10e review live focus photo 1

Shade Level
Stay Focus

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

Samsung’s Portrait Mode is known as Stay Focus, which is the place a blur impact is added behind a topic. Stay Focus photographs aren’t fairly pretty much as good as what we’ve seen from the Google Pixel three or the Nokia 9 PureView — particulars aren’t as robust in low gentle and the blur impact can look slightly messy generally. However I do like the brand new Stay Focus mode referred to as Shade Level, which retains the topic in shade whereas making the whole lot else black and white. It does a good job of sustaining shade on a topic, although it does have failures generally.

What’s extra spectacular is the digicam’s functionality to report HDR movies in 4K. Movies have a cinematic look to them they usually’re fairly colourful. There’s additionally a “Tremendous Regular” mode for if you’re shifting and wish to seize secure footage. It’s spectacular how nicely it really works, however there are stipulations on how these modes can be utilized.  You may’t shoot 4K HDR at 60 frames per second, for instance, simply at 30FPS. You may’t use Regular Shot for those who’re taking pictures in HDR, so that you’ll want to show it off, and it solely works with the primary lens. These settings ought to routinely change if you faucet on totally different taking pictures modes to make it simpler on the individual utilizing the telephone.

samsung galaxy s10e review live focus selfie

samsung galaxy s10e review s10 plus live focus selfie

Galaxy S10e
Galaxy S10 Plus

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

The S10e’s selfie digicam is solo, identical to the S10. Which means you don’t get the additional depth digicam that’s obtainable on the S10 Plus. It’s only a 10-megapixel lens with a f/1.9 aperture, which may additionally seize 4K UHD video. Selfies look good, and the distinction in Stay Focus selfies between the S10 Plus and the S10e isn’t huge, however noticeable. There’s a stronger blur impact on the S10 Plus, and colours are slightly extra pure, with higher distinction. AR Emojis look janky on the S10e, and it nonetheless will get my pores and skin shade flawed.

samsung galaxy s10e review dsc 0379Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

Battery life: The weak hyperlink

The three,100mAh battery will get you thru a day, however barely. You gained’t have to worry for those who arrive house from work round 6 or 7 p.m. as I incessantly had round 25 p.c left with medium use. But when I had plans to increase my night time out, I’d want to hold my moveable battery pack.

In our video playback take a look at, with the telephone on Wi-Fi and at max brightness, the Galaxy S10e lasted round 9 hours and 26 minutes, which is rather less than the 10 hours and 12 minutes from the Galaxy S10 Plus. That will sound shut — however do not forget that this assessments fixed use. Most individuals use a telephone in spurts all through the day, in order that additional 40 minutes may imply a number of hours of added real-world use.

You gained’t depend on Wi-fi PowerShare fully, however there are moments it might probably assist.

Wired charging shouldn’t be quick, sadly, as Samsung’s nonetheless utilizing the Qualcomm’s Fast Cost 2.zero quick charging normal, when different telephones are utilizing Fast Cost three or increased, permitting them to cost quicker. There’s Quick Wi-fi Charging 2.zero although, and meaning wi-fi charging is as quick as wired charging.

The Galaxy S10e does retain a characteristic from the S10 and S10 Plus — Wi-fi PowerShare. Toggle it on within the settings and you may wirelessly cost different Qi-enabled merchandise. It’s useful in particular moments when a pal’s telephone is dying, otherwise you wish to cost up your Galaxy Buds, or a Qi-enabled smartwatch just like the Galaxy Watch Lively.

Worth, availability, guarantee info

The Samsung Galaxy S10e prices $750 and is on the market for buy now at carriers and retailers globally. Take a look at our purchasing information for extra in-depth pricing particulars.

Samsung affords a restricted one-year guarantee that covers the telephone from producer defects, and never rather more.

The Samsung Galaxy S10e is what most individuals trying to improve their telephone can buy. It doesn’t have the strongest battery life or the very best cameras, however it affords good worth for those who’re in search of a flagship expertise with out having to shell out $900 or $1,000. You’re nonetheless getting the very best display on a smartphone, nice construct high quality, robust efficiency, good software program, and succesful cameras.

Is there a greater various?

The Galaxy S10e’s closest Android competitor is the Google Pixel three, which prices $800, although you could find it for much less now. It doesn’t beat the Galaxy S10e in efficiency, show, or construct high quality, however battery life is considerably related. The Pixel three does win out for having a stronger digicam with a greater software program interface and longer assist. In case your smartphone expertise closely hinges on having the very best digicam ever, and also you need quick Android updates, you’re higher off with the Pixel three.

Take a look at the Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus as nicely. They’ve larger and curved screens, an additional digicam on the rear (the S10 Plus has an additional entrance digicam too), in addition to beefier batteries.

In case you’re open to utilizing iOS, then the $700 iPhone 11 ought to be thought of. It has wonderful battery life, a very good digicam, and powerful efficiency. It beats the Samsung in digicam efficiency, however the display is much less spectacular.

If $750 remains to be an excessive amount of, suppose on the OnePlus 6T. You get speedy efficiency, customizable software program, and a recent design. Digicam high quality isn’t the very best, however the telephone solely prices $550, so compromises should be made. You may additionally wait just a few months if there’s no rush, because the OnePlus 7 is predicted to launch comparatively quickly.

How lengthy will it final?

The Galaxy S10e is protected by Gorilla Glass 5 on the back and front, however that doesn’t imply you shouldn’t use a case to guard it. The telephone is IP68 waterproof, so it might probably survive underwater as much as 1.5 meters for 30 minutes.

I count on it to final three to 4 years earlier than the battery begins to degrade.

Must you purchase it?

Sure. Efficiency is nice, construct high quality is great, there’s a implausible, trendy show, and you continue to get a digicam system that’s extra versatile than final 12 months’s similarly-priced Galaxy S9.

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