Samsung Galaxy S10 to launch February 20: Here’s everything we know

Is this the first image of a Galaxy S10 being used in real life?

While the Samsung Galaxy S9 will go down as one of 2018’s most popular Android smartphones, the Samsung Galaxy S10 is due to ring in 2019 and kickstart Samsung’s year. What can we expect from Samsung’s next flagship? Whether it’s an even more advanced camera or jaw-dropping good looks, we’ve gathered all the rumors, leaks, and news into one place so you can find everything you need to know about the Samsung Galaxy S10.

Design and display

After taking something of a design break with the Galaxy S9, it looks as if Samsung will be making some serious changes to the Galaxy S10. So far, the leaks are pointing toward three models, all with edge-to-edge displays far surpassing the previous Galaxy S models and with punch hole cutouts for the front-facing cameras.

Leaked rumors and renders are all extremely excited, but they pale into almost nothing when an actual model of an upcoming phone is sighted. Our first look at the Galaxy S10 range in real life has happened, if a Reddit post is to be believed.

samsung galaxy s10 news and rumors 130f70x3cva21

Posted by user hissick in the r/Samsung subreddit, the image is simply titled “Galaxy s 10[sic]”, and apparently shows a member of the new Galaxy S10 range. Judging by the double selfie lens setup in the top-right pinhole display, this seems to be the Galaxy S10 Plus. The navigation keys at the bottom of the screen do match Samsung’s current style, there’s extremely little bezel around the edges of the device, matching leaks and renders. It also appears to be contained within some sort of case — possibly a flip case to help hide the unreleased phone.

Previous to this, leaks were aplenty. Twitter leaker Evan Blass tweeted a photo of what he claims is one of the Galaxy S10 models. The image itself is a little grainy, but it still gives us a pretty good look at the phone. According to Blass, this particular leak is most likely of the Galaxy S10, code-named “Beyond 1.”

Accessory maker Olixar gave us an even better look in the video below. Most notably, there are no cutouts for the camera or speaker at the top, and the edges of the screen may not have as dramatic a curve as we’ve seen on older Galaxy S phones. However, this may reflect the screen protector design, rather than Samsung’s.

It seems Samsung is introducing three models in the S10 range, rather than the usual two. Blass backed this up, tweeting out a picture that apparently shows case manufacturer expectations. The first model, then nicknamed the S10 Lite (and now assumed to be the S10 E), sports a 5.8-inch screen. The middle model, the S10, has a 6.1-inch display. The largest model, the S10 Plus, sports a 6.4-inch display. All three are said to use Samsung’s beautiful AMOLED displays.

While these measurements are based on case manufacturer estimations, they do jibe with similar leaks — though it’s important to note the latest leaks place the pinhole camera cutouts in the top-right of the screen, not central.

what to expect samsung galaxy unpacked 2019 s10 evan blass leak
Evan Blass, @evleaks

TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also claims the two higher-end models will feature an in-display fingerprint sensor. Other sources claim the smaller “Beyond 0” (Galaxy S10 E) may sport a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, like an older Sony Xperia. According to news from noted Samsung leaker IceUniverse, the S10 range will still include the headphone jack.

In September, Samsung CEO DJ Koh reported the upcoming Galaxy S10 lineup will come in an “amazing” array of color options. In addition to bright yellow and green options — with Huawei P20 Pro-style gradient finishes — Samsung may use ceramic for the rear panel on a black-and-white Galaxy S10. Ceramic is very strong, so the phone should better resist scratches and marks.

Ice Universe also published a render of the back of the phone which claimed the S10 would have dual lenses. It’s also worth noting there’s no fingerprint sensor on the back of the phone, backing up speculation at least some of the models may come with in-display fingerprint scanners.

91 Mobiles

There’s also the off-chance different versions of the Samsung Galaxy S10 will have different camera configurations. A render from 91 Mobiles shows a triple camera array on the Galaxy S10, and the Wall Street Journal reports at least one version of the upcoming flagship will ship with four camera sensors.

Release date, name, and price

It’s official: Samsung will be taking the wraps off the Galaxy S10 range on February 20, in an 11 a.m. Unpacked event in San Francisco’s Bill Graham Civic Auditorium. Digital Trends has been invited to the event, and you can be sure that we will offer you the latest breaking news from the event. The invite received shows a sideways-placed “10” — likely referencing the S10, but also celebrating the 10-year anniversary of the Galaxy series. Also interesting is the line breaking the image in two — is this a teaser of the phone’s extremely thin bezels?

The phones may then be available for pre-order immediately after the announcement, and released on March 8, says Gizmodo UK, which correctly leaked the Galaxy S10 event date, giving this extra information credibility. According to an email from accessory retailer Mobile Fun, the S10 range will consist of three models: The Galaxy S10, a smaller Galaxy S10 E, and a super-sized Galaxy S10 Plus.

As for pricing, Gizmodo UK claims it received a credible leak from a retail source, stating the Samsung Galaxy S10 E will sell for 669 British pounds (around $850). The 128GB version of the S10 will come in at 799 pounds (around $1,000), while the 512GB variant will sell for 999 pounds (around $1,250).

The Galaxy S10 Plus will reportedly come in three different storage configurations. The 128GB S10 Plus will sell for 899 pounds (around $1,150), and the 512GB version will go for 1,099 pounds (around $1,400). If you need a terabyte of onboard storage, be prepared to pay a jaw-dropping 1,399 pounds (around $1,750). A subsequent leak from a source speaking to ETNews claims the Galaxy S10 range will vary in price between the local equivalent of $710 and $1,425. These top prices would make it the most expensive Galaxy phone to be released so far.

5G Galaxy S10 X

It’s possible Samsung will release a dedicated 5G version of the Galaxy S10, called the Galaxy S10 X. We’ve gathered together everything you need to know about it into a separate story here. Expect it to be larger with a 6.7-inch screen, and potentially more expensive than the 4G Galaxy S10 phones.

Camera

The Samsung Galaxy S9’s camera was a great leap ahead from the Galaxy S8, but what plans are laid for the Galaxy S10? A leak from Ice Universe says the Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus will have three rear-mounted camera lenses, while the S10 E will have two. The S10 Plus will be the only model to have two front-facing cameras, as the S10 and S10 E will make do with just one selfie lens.

Sammobile claims the 12-megapixel variable aperture lens we saw on the Samsung Galaxy S9 will return, and it’ll be joined by a 16-megapixel wide-angle lens with a 123-degree field of view, an f/1.9 aperture, but no optical image stabilization or auto-focus. The third lens seems to be the same one we saw on the S9 Plus — a 13-megapixel lens with a much smaller f/2.4 aperture, likely equipped with a 2x telephoto zoom.

New software features hinted at through a trademark include “Artistic Live Focus” which is speculated to offer increased control over the level of background blur in a photo, along with more creative uses of motion or short video.

Specifications

Being a flagship phone, you can be sure the S10 range will come with the best possible hardware for the day. The new Snapdragon 855 seems likely (or the Samsung built Exynos 9820 in other areas), but what else can we expect?

In November 2018, Samsung tipster extraordinaire Ice Universe provided details os the Galaxy S10 Plus’s specs. An AnTuTu benchmark shows at least one version of the phone (not the U.S. model, judging by the Exynos chip) will have 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. We believe this may be a lower-end model of the S10 Plus since the Samsung Note 9, released in August 2018, shipped in 128GB and 512GB variants.

Ice Universe / @UniverseIce

The new Exynos 9820 chipset also has a dedicated Neural Processing Unit (NPU) to support artificial intelligence (A.I.) tasks, and support 8K video at 30 frames per second.

Security

How will you unlock and secure the Galaxy S10? In September 2018, Korean tech site ETNews reported Samsung would use Qualcomm’s third-generation ultrasonic in-display fingerprint sensors in the Galaxy S10 handsets. Qualcomm’s technology can capture 3D fingerprint data, allowing for higher accuracy and better security. This was similar to other leaks shared earlier in the year, including a patent by Patently Mobile showed Samsung was actively working on an in-display fingerprint sensor.

These alterations may push Samsung to drop iris scanning from the Galaxy S10, but only if it can master the in-display sensor to accompany a new secure face-recognition system. According to South Korean publication The Bell, prototype samples of the S10 have not been ordered with iris scanners, a decision that may also help offset costs if the two new security systems are being included.

Earlier rumors said Samsung had teamed up with 3D-camera startup Mantis Vision to provide 3D-sensing camera tech for Samsung’s upcoming smartphones, and those rumors have seemingly been confirmed by a report that the Galaxy S10 will include a full 3D camera, potentially equaling the iPhone X experience. This could also help Samsung’s underpowered AR Emoji,  which isn’t anywhere near as accurate as Apple’s Animoji.

Software and special features

We’re currently hopeful Samsung’s 2019 flagships will ship with Android 9.0 Pie. We’re also expecting to see another major update to Bixby thanks to Samsung’s purchase of Viv, a startup created by the founders of Siri.

There’s also the possibility that the Galaxy S10 will feature improved health apps. According to a patent recently unearthed by Let’s Go Digital, Samsung is working on an app that determines your skin type and can suggest recommendations to limit sun exposure.  The app will apparently use photos of different parts of your body to determine skin type. Once your skin type is registered it can constantly provide tips and measure your UV exposure.

Last year for the Plus model?

Let’s be honest: There’s not a huge difference between Samsung Galaxy Plus handsets and their Note siblings. And in an overly saturated smartphone market, it becomes difficult to justify releasing two similar handsets each year.

According to The Bell, Samsung is planning to retire its Plus line of Galaxy handsets after the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus, and will merge the Plus model handsets with its Note line to increase profitability. The rumor comes on the heels of news that sales of the Galaxy S9 smartphones have been sluggish, with second-quarter shipments falling behind the pace for the first quarter.

Updated on January 17, 2019: Added the new image of an S10 spotted in the wild.

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