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Galaxy S10e vs Galaxy S10 vs Galaxy S10 Plus: Which one is right for you?

by Nicole on March 11, 2019

If you don’t want to read through to find out what’s going on with each phone, the short answer is:

Get the Galaxy S10e if you want a compact phone that’s easy to use with one hand but you don’t want to sacrifice performance or pay a high price. The regular Galaxy S10 is the phone to get if you want a fairly big screen, a fingerprint reader in the display and a third rear camera for ultra-wide shots. The Galaxy S10 Plus if you like the larger size and have the money to spend, the battery life and extra cameras are a luxury splurge.

For those who are really thinking of buying one of the phones from the Galaxy S10 line, keep reading.

Design & Display

The Galaxy S10e, S10, and S10 Plus all sport Samsung’s new design language, which includes an Infinity O display. Instead of the notch, we’ve got a hole punch on the top right side. This Reddit thread confirmed that the internet loves the punch and hates the notch. The S10 Plus has two lenses on the front and a fantastic animation. This futuristic design aesthetic seems to be the reason more reviewers I talk to like the S10 Plus over the S10, even if they don’t take any selfies. For the wow factor and having a standout feature that sets your phone apart the wallpapers on the S10 Plus a just a little cooler than the S10.

The Galaxy S10e has a 5.8-inch, full-HD display, which is the same size screen as the iPhone XS. The Galaxy S10 steps up to a 6.1-inch, quad-HD panel, and the Galaxy S10 Plus packs a 6.4-inch, quad-HD panel. At 6.17 ounces, the Galaxy S10 Plus is on the hefty side but still a full ounce lighter than the iPhone XS Max (7.34 ounces), which has a slightly bigger 6.5-inch screen.

The screens on all three models benefit from Samsung’s new Dynamic AMOLED technology, which includes dynamic tone mapping for a wider range of a color and a reduction in blue light aimed at making it easier on your eyes. The displays on the S10 and S10 Plus are curved, the panel on the S10e is flat.

Galaxy S10 vs. Galaxy S10 Plus: Specs Compared

    

Galaxy S10e

Galaxy S10

Galaxy S10 Plus

Price

$749

$899

$999

Display (Resolution)

5.8 inches (full HD+)

6.1 inches (wide quad HD+)

6.4 inches (wide quad HD+)

Rear Camera(s)

16-MP ultrawide (f/2.2), 12-MP dual-pixel wide (f/1.5, f/2.4)

16-MP ultrawide (f/2.2), 12-MP dual-pixel wide (f/1.5, f/2.4), 12-MP telephoto (f/2.4)

16-MP ultrawide (f/2.2), 12-MP dual-pixel wide (f/1.5, f/2.4), 12-MP telephoto (f/2.4)

Front Camera(s)

10-MP dual-pixel (f/1.9)

10-MP dual-pixel (f/1.9)

10-MP dual-pixel (f/1.9), 8-MP depth-sensing (f/2.2)

CPU

Qualcomm Snapdragon 855

Qualcomm Snapdragon 855

Qualcomm Snapdragon 855

RAM

6GB, 8GB

8GB

8GB, 12GB

Storage

128GB, 256GB

128GB, 512GB

128GB, 512GB, 1TB

microSD

Yes, up to 512GB

Yes, up to 512GB

Yes, up to 512GB

Battery

3,100 mAh

3,400mAh

4,100mAh

Colors

Prism Black, Prism White, Prism Blue, Prism Green (except U.S.), Canary Yellow (except U.S.), Flamingo Pink (except U.K.)

Prism Black, Prism White, Prism Blue, Prism Green (except U.S.), Flamingo Pink (except U.K.)

Prism Black, Prism White, Prism Blue, Ceramic White, Ceramic Black, Prism Green (except U.S.), Flamingo Pink (except U.K.)

Size

5.6 x 2.75 x 0.3 inches

5.9 x 2.77 x 0.3 inches

6.2 x 2.91 x 0.3 inches

Weight

5.29 ounces

5.5 ounces

6.17 ounces

Camera

There’s a clear progression with regards to the camera on the Galaxy S10 devices: with each better phone, you get an extra lens.

The Galaxy S10e comes with a 16MP ultra-wide lens and 12MP optically stabilized variable aperture lens on the rear of the device, and a dual-pixel 10MP camera on the front. Given this is the ‘budget’ handset of the range, a dual-lens rear setup, and powerful front camera is a pretty great deal.

On the Galaxy S10, you get all of the above, with an extra 12MP telephoto lens on the rear, and when you step up to the Galaxy S10 Plus you get a second, 8MP, front-facing camera. That’s five lenses split between the front and rear for the S10 Plus which, as you’ll see in our review, deliver some pretty amazing photos.

If it’s the absolute best camera experience you’re after then, we’d have no hesitation in recommending the Galaxy S10 Plus as the phone to go for – although any of these devices will deliver some pretty great pictures.

If you’re worried about the Galaxy S10E not performing, we’ve got a comparison with the Galaxy S10 coming up and we found that in many situations the Galaxy S10E outperformed the Galaxy S10.

Battery life and PowerShare

No surprise here. The Galaxy S10e has the smallest battery of the bunch at 3,100 mAh but that doesn’t mean it will offer the least battery life; that’s because it also has the smallest screen at 5.8 inches. This capacity is actually slightly better than the 3,000 mAh pack in the Galaxy S9.

The Galaxy S10 features a generous 3,400 mAh battery, while the Galaxy S10 Pus boasts a huge 4,100 mAh battery. By comparison, the Galaxy S9 Plus had a 3,500 mAh battery. In my testing this basically means the S10E will get you through the day if you’re a moderate user, the S10 is you have heavy periods of use like say a 2 hours daily commute on top of moderate use and the S10 Plus is for the heavy user who might want to game during their commute.

All three Galaxy S10 phones offer Samsung’s new PowerShare feature, which allows users to charge other phones or Samsung’s new Galaxy Buds wirelessly. You just place the other handset or buds on the back of the phone.

A Closer look at the Galaxy S10E

The E on the end of the S10e is for “Essential.” The Galaxy S10E is the smallest and cheapest Galaxy S10 with the most basic specs. The core specs are the same as the rest of the line, same processor, Android build and the same core front and rear camera (with the others adding extra lenses).

The design is different, it reminds us more of a Galaxy S2 than the modern line up, for a phone with premium DNA it’s looking a little too midrange for my taste. We do LOVE the fingerprint scanner in the power button. Battery life is a little weaker than the other phones, but it’s still all day with light to moderate use. We do warn if you’re having a late night out you’ll need to top up before you hit the town.

Who should buy the Galaxy S10e?

For those looking for a smaller smartphone without compromising on performance. Anyone who was an Xperia Compact fanboy and who is in the minority wanting Sony to keep making phones in hopes they bring this one back.

Mostly, it’s for the budget conscious who want the higher specs to help future proof their smartphone.

A Closer look at the Galaxy S10

Galaxy S10 in Green beside the Galaxy S10 Plus

The Samsung Galaxy S10 is sandwiched between the S10E and S10 Plus. Size wise I prefer it much more than the S10 Plus, you can easily reach the power button on the side and it just feels easier to wield with one hand.

The main difference apart from the larger size, a bit more RAM, storage, 700mAh more battery and a second lens on the selfie cam, the S10 Plus and S10 are very similar. Apart from the battery life and selfie camera the size is the main difference between the two phones.

Personally, I like this size more than the Plus, if they’d given me the extra selfie cam lens I’d have zero FOMO about choosing the S10.

Who should buy the Galaxy S10?

The size will be the main factor behind choosing the S10 over the S10 Plus, and actually, size wise the S10e and S10 are nearly as wide, the S10 is just a little taller.

It’s a little more expensive, but you’re likely to find a solid promotion for this phone as it’s the core of the Galaxy line. You’ll get a flagship device that’s better than most and sure to last you a long time.

A Closer look at the Galaxy S10 Plus

Galaxy S10+

Galaxy S10+

The largest, priciest Galaxy S10 phone with the most cameras: three on the back and two on the front. Phenomenal battery life, and 512GB and 1TB options that come with a ceramic backing. This is an excellent, everything phone with great photography with few compromises.

Who should buy the S10 Plus?

People searching for a top-notch premium phone, and those who like a large-screen device.

If money is no issue and you like the larger screen size it’s the Galaxy S10 Plus all the way. Its bigger screen, massive battery and 5 cameras make it a luxury item that will let you indulge in all your video-watching, game-playing, photo-taking needs.