If you don’t have the money to splurge on Samsung’s latest flagship phone, the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus, we recommend that you get the Samsung Galaxy S10e instead. The “e” stands for essential, and we couldn’t agree more. It’s here to prove that sometimes, smaller is better, packing almost all the power of its more expensive brethren in a more compact package, with just a few forgivable compromises. Right now, you can snag a factory unlocked unit of the Galaxy S10e with 256GB of memory for a on Amazon. Get it for $686 instead of $850. What’s more, you can score an additional $50 off instantly upon approval for the Amazon Rewards Visa Card, bringing the price down even further to $636.
The first thing we’ve noticed about the Samsung Galaxy S10e is its perfect size. It harks back to an era where you could easily text using only one hand, which is quite refreshing. Furthermore, the edges are flat instead of curved, so you won’t accidentally touch the screen, which was the problem with Samsung’s old “Edge display.” There’s a hole-punch selfie camera floating on top which you can hide with black wallpaper if it bothers you. On the side, you’ll find the slightly indented fingerprint display, which works seamlessly. It lacks the S10 and S10 Plus’ ultrasonic in-display fingerprint sensor, but that’s not really a deal-breaker (you can also choose to lock this phone via face recognition). We’re also glad that Samsung decided to keep the 3.5mm audio jack.
This phone’s 5.8-inch “Dynamic AMOLED” Full HD+ (2,280 x 1,080) display lacks the S10 and S10 Plus’ WQHD+ screen resolution, but we personally don’t care. It still looks sharp with vivid colors and deep blacks, plus it’s HDR10+ certified.
Just because the S10e is smaller and cheaper doesn’t mean Samsung compromised on its performance. This phone runs with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, the same chipset that powers its bigger brothers and most recent premium Android phones. Working alongside 6GB of RAM and 256GB of internal storage (there’s a MicroSD card slot in case you need more space), this phone handles processor-intensive apps and multitasking without any noticeable performance dip. In fact, it was able to beat the S10 Plus in all our benchmark tests, thanks to its lower-resolution screen. Furthermore, Samsung’s stellar One UI interface is so thoroughly customizable that it has become our favorite new phone interface.
Instead of three lenses at the back, you only get two on the Galaxy S10e. It doesn’t have the S10 and S10 Plus’ telephoto lens, although ithis does not result in a huge difference and we were still able to take beautiful photos using it. Images were detailed and nicely saturated, although contrast could use a little improvement as some looked a tad washed out. Finally, battery life was a bit disappointing. In our video playback test, with Wi-Fi on and at max brightness, the Galaxy S10e lasted around 9 hours and 26 minutes, a full hour less than the S10 Plus. While not exactly a bad number, we recommend you have a portable battery pack handy.
Despite a few compromises, including battery life and the loss of one rear camera lens, the Samsung Galaxy S10e is still a fantastic phone worth recommending because of its lightning-fast performance, stunning display, and easy-to-use software. Get it for $686 on Amazon today.
Digital Trends may earn commission on products purchased through our links, which supports the work we do for our readers.
- Amazon drops killer deals on Samsung Galaxy S10e, S10, and S10 Plus models
- The best Samsung Galaxy deals for February 2020
- Amazon and Best Buy drop huge deals on Samsung Galaxy S10 smartphones
- Amazon discounts flagship Samsung Galaxy smartphones for Presidents Day
- Amazon discounts the best Android phone, the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus, by $233