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Samsung Galaxy S10 vs Galaxy S9: What's changed in a year?

22 February 2019 5

This year South Korean giant Samsung unveiled four variants of Galaxy S10 series. This year S-lineup is quite special because the S10 marks the 10th anniversary of Samsung most famous flagship smartphones. The Galaxy S9 lineup wasn't as successful as its predecessor due to lack of new innovative features and design. With the S10 series, Samsung completely overhauled the design and sets a new path for the next decade of S-lineup phones. The iPhone X was the first phone in the market with a notch design, the Galaxy S10 is the first flagship series with the punch-hole design.

So far we have seen this design on the LCD displays, the S10 is the first phone with punch hole design on an OLED display. To cater to different niche customers Samsung introduces four models of S10 lineup including S10e, S10, S10 Plus, and S10 5G. The Galaxy S10e will attract budget-conscious flagships buyers, the S10 Plus brings better hardware and larger display whereas the 5G variant brings 5G connectivity on board. Last but not the least we have Galaxy S10 which is better than the S10e but falls slightly short than the S10 Plus.

Like always we will put all the latest phones in comparison to know in detail what kind of goodies new phones are bringing on board to attract buyers. So if you currently own last year's Galaxy S9 or you are at the end of two years contract of S8, for sure the first question in your's mind will be whether should I upgrade to the latest S10 or not? To help out our keen readers we put the latest Galaxy S10 against the Galaxy S9 to know in detail what's changed in a year.

Are the new goodies and refreshing design is justifiable to grab the S10 or not. Let's find out without any further delay, Starting with the design as it is the first thing buyers consider before making any purchase.

70.4 x 149.9 x 8.6 mm
6.1 inches - 3040x1440 px
68.7 x 147.7 x 8.5 mm
5.8 inches - 2960x1440 px
Go to comparison page
Design

As mentioned above the Galaxy S10 brings a complete overhaul from what Samsung introduced a couple of years ago with the S8 series. The Galaxy S8 was Samsung's first flagship phone without a physical home button and minimal bezels around the display. Both the Galaxy S9 and S10 comes with glass and metal sandwich design. The S10's rear is protected with the Corning Gorilla Glass 6 whereas the S9 comes with Corning Gorilla Glass 5.

Up front, the Galaxy S10 comes with the new punch-hole design. The S10's camera hole is on the top right corner and the only prominent bezel is at the bottom. The Galaxy S9 comes with thin bezels at the top and bottom of the display. The volume controllers and Bixby button on both the phones are on the left edge whereas the right edge has a power button. On the rear side, the first prominent change is lack of fingerprint scanner on the S10, it comes with under-glass Ultrasonic fingerprint scanner whereas the S9 has fingerprint scanner below the camera setup.

The Galaxy S10 comes with triple rear cameras aligned horizontally in the center with LED flashlight whereas the S9 has single rear snapper aligned vertically. Fortunately, the Galaxy S10 also has 3.5mm headphone jack like the predecessor. Both have USB-C port for connectivity and charging.

Both the devices are IP68 certified which means both can resist under 5 feet deep water for 30 minutes without any damage. The Galaxy S10 dimensions are 149.9 × 70.4 × 7.8 mm and weigh 184g whereas the Galaxy S9 measures at 147.6 x 68.7 x 8.4 mm and slightly lighter at 163g. In terms of colors options, the S10 can be purchased in Prism Black, Blue, White, and Flamingo Pink. The S9 was announced in Lilac Purple, Midnight Black and Coral Blue colors.

Display

With a slightly taller body, Samsung managed to put a 6.1-inches display panel on the S10. The Galaxy S9 features a 5.8-inches display. The Super AMOLED display on the S9 is replaced with Dynamic AMOLED panel with better colors accuracy. The Galaxy S10 Quad HD+ screen resolution is 14400 x 3040 pixels. The display aspect ratio is 19:9 and the pixels density is 550 pixels-per-inch. The Galaxy S9 also has Quad HD+ screen resolution of 1440 x 2960 pixels and the pixels density is 570 pixels-per-inch.

The Galaxy S10 display panel is Super bright with 1200 nits brightness and also support HDR10+. The best thing is Infinity O display camera hole doesn't distract while using the phone. Although the Galaxy S9's display is amongst the best in the market the S10 looks more futuristic and brighter.

Hardware

Under the hood, the Galaxy S10 is powered up by the Qualcomm's latest best Snapdragon 855 SoC. The latest chipset is built on the 7nm process with max clocking at 2.84Ghz. Only the US model will have this chipset whereas the global variant comes with Exynos 9820 built on the 8nm process. The Galaxy S9 is running on the Snapdragon 845 SoC/Exynos 8895 SoC.

The latest chipset is significantly better in the performance and it can also handle AI more efficiently. Another significant improvement is in the RAM section. The S10 comes with whopping 8GB RAM whereas the S9 has only 4GB RAM. The more RAM not only brings better performance but also provides more power to handle triple rear cameras.

In terms of native storage, the Galaxy S9 was available in three configurations with 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB storage whereas the S10 can be grabbed in either 128GB or 512GB storage. Both supports memory expansion via MicroSD.

Specs Galaxy S10 Galaxy S9
Display 6.1-inches 5.8-inches
Screen resolution 1440 x 3060 pixels 1440 x 2960 pixels
Chipset Snapdragon 855/Exnos 9820 Snapdragon 845/Exnos 8895
RAM 4GB 8GB
Storage 128GB, 512GB Expandable via MicroSD 64GB, 128GB, 512GB Expandable via MicroSD
Rear cameras 12MP+16MP+12MP 12MP
Front camera 10MP 8MP
USB Type-C Type-C
3.5mm headphone jack Yes Yes
IP68 Yes Yes
OS Android Pie Android Oreo 8.1(updated to Android Pie)
Cameras

Apart from the latest hardware straight out of the box, the biggest upgrade with the S10 is the triple cameras on the rear side. The primary rear snapper on both the S9 and S10 is a 12MP module with variable aperture. In stable lighting condition, the aperture is f/2.4 whereas in low-light conditions the aperture is f/1.5.

The Galaxy S10 has two more cameras on the rear side, the primary sensor is a 16MP module with f/2.2 aperture. The ultra wide angle field of view is 123 degrees. The third sensor on the rear side is a 12MP telephoto sensor with f/2.4 aperture and optical zoom up to 2x. Having three than single is certainly better, the S10 will allow you to capture more wide-angle shots with its ultra wide angle sensor whereas the telephoto sensor allows you to capture long-range shots with optical zoom. Samsung also brought improvement on the front-facing side as well, the S9 has 8MP module whereas the S10 comes with a 10MP sensor and it can also record 4K videos.

Software

As OS the Galaxy S10 is pre-installed with Android Pie straight out of the box with One UI skin over it. The S9 was announced with Android Oreo 8.1, recently the company rolled out the Android Pie update. In terms of UI, both have the same version so you may not find any difference. The One UI is specially optimized to use full front-facing displays single handidly. However, being the latest flagship phone the S10 will be receiving updates for a longer period and also earlier than the Galaxy S9.

Battery

Last year one of the most disappointing features of the Galaxy S9 was its battery cell similar to the predecessor S9. The S9 is packed with a 3,000mAh battery cell which last one day on a single charge and on hefty usage you even have to recharge it before the end of the day.

Fortunately, the Galaxy S10 comes with a larger battery than the predecessor, it comes with a 3,400mAh battery cell. The company claims this battery cell performs significantly better than last year due to a larger battery, better optimized OS and power efficient chipset. Both the phones support wireless charging but the S10 can also recharge other phones wirelessly.

Special goodies

Both the phones have support for Gear VR, Samsung Pay, Dex and AI assistant Bixby. The key new exclusive features of the S10 are under-glass ultrasonic fingerprint scanner and also ability to recharge other phones wirelessly. Another prominent aspect of the S10 is WiFi 6 which provides much reliable and faster connectivity than the last version. Samsung claims the S10 supports LTE speed up to 2Gbps.

Price

The Galaxy S9 was launched at $720 for the US market, £740 for the UK and AU$1,199 in Australia. Being almost a year old the S9 is now available at a relatively lower price tag. You can grab the device around $600 and even lower on special deals. The device is widely available across the globe.

On the other hand, the Galaxy S10 is significantly costlier considering it is bringing a number of extra goodies. The base model with 8GB RAM and 128GB storage costs $899 in the US. Although the S10 is bringing a number of new features now it's up to you whether you think all the new features justify the hefty pricing or not.

Conclusion:

Being the successor model the S10 brings improvements in almost all department. All the new changes are complete overhaul rather than traditional upgrades. The Infinity-O display is a new addition and 1200 nits brightness certainly makes the S10 more attractive than the predecessor. Under the hood the S10 is packed with the latest best hardware, it comes with twice more RAM than the S9 which is worth appreciating.

In the camera department, the Galaxy S9 has only single rear snapper whereas the S10 has triple rear cameras to capture great shots in almost all scenarios. Samsung brought improvements on both the front and rear side cameras setup. So if you are looking for a more stylish flagship with better cameras, larger battery and latest hardware the S10 is certainly a better option amongst the two.

Do share your thoughts regarding the Galaxy S10 vs Galaxy S9 in the comments section below. Stay tuned for more comparisons in the coming days.

(last update 22 May 2019 @ 02:13)

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