Samsung launches Galaxy S10 and unveils a foldable smartphone

In what turned out to be more of a rumour confirmation than a great big unveiling, Samsung last night launched the Galaxy S10 range of smartphones around the world.

The new Galaxy S10 range includes the entry-level 5.8-inch Galaxy S10e, the “regular” 6.1-inch Galaxy S10, and the large 6.4-inch Galaxy S10+ model. Samsung also announced a Galaxy S10 5G but it has not yet been allocated a South African release date, for obvious reasons.

At first glance, the most notable new feature of the new Galaxy S10 range is lack of a front notch. The new screen is called Samsung’s Infinity-O display and sees the notch replaced by a punch hole camera that sits on the top right-hand side of the screen.

The main differences between the three new models are the screen size, RAM, battery size, camera setup, and fingerprint reader.

The model that will likely be the most popular among consumers in the Galaxy S10. It strikes the perfect balance between screen size and feature set, with the new in-screen fingerprint reader and a triple camera setup. Samsung also claims its in-screen fingerprint reader works even when your hands are wet. Its rear camera cluster includes an ultra-wide 16MP f2.2 camera, a regular/wide-angle camera with 12MP with an aperture rating of f2.4/f1.5, and a telephone camera capable of 2x zoom shooting at 12MP f2.4. The latter two cameras also sport optical image stabilisation. The Galaxy S10 features a 3400mAh battery and now also includes back-to-back charging called Wireless Powershare. This is a feature first introduced on the Huawei Mate 20 Pro last year that lets you wirelessly charge other devices.

With its larger screen and 4100mAh battery, the Galaxy S10+ is for the power user who’s looking for a large screen smartphone. The S10+ shares the S10’s three camera cluster setup and an in-screen fingerprint reader.

The Galaxy S10e has 6GB of RAM with a dual 12MP camera setup and a 3100mAh battery. Unlike the rest of the Galaxy S10 range, the S10e’s fingerprint reader sits on the power button.

All three models include expandable storage by way of a MicroSD card slot, supporting up to 512GB of storage. The Galaxy S10+ will be the only model in the range available locally with larger storage options.

The new phones will be available in South Africa on 8 March 2019 and pricing starts at R15,999 for the base Galaxy S10e and R18,999 for the Galaxy S10. The Galaxy S10+ pricing ranges from R20,999 for the 128GB model, R25,999 for the 256GB model, and a whopping R35,999 for the 1TB model.

Samsung also showed of its soon-to-be-launched foldable smartphone, simply called the Samsung Fold – this one is expected to retail for just under R30,000 and should be available around April.

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