Not an iPhone ‘killer’ but a real challenge

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Samsung’s Galaxy S10, released Friday, could be the smartphone to give Apple a challenge — pushing some to jump ship.

The South Korean giant’s newest flagship delivers supercharged performance for $899 — $100 less than iPhone XS — in a sharp package, proving once again that it is the Android phone to beat. With the inclusion of a fingerprint reader, incredible display and all-important headphone jack, it’s also the best option for customers who feel that Apple has left its customers behind.

Display: Samsung — the worldwide leader in smartphone screens — has once again put out a stellar product. Even at half brightness, the 6.1-inch Infinity Display features gorgeous, vibrant colors that pop off the screen. Indeed, with its curved display, the pixels are almost spilling over the edge and into your hand.

Design: Finally, the dreaded screen notch is dead! The S10’s incredible screen stretches virtually from edge to edge, with just a razor-thin bezel separating it from the sides of the device. The front-facing camera is now housed in a small, circular cut-out area in the corner of the screen. Though the asymmetry was strange at first, I quickly came to prefer it over the large notches found on the latest iPhones.

I was surprised by how quickly I was drawn to the S10’s fingerprint sensor — a feature that has now been wiped from Apple’s newest devices.

The S10 is also a pleasure to hold, with its thin body and rounded edges allowing it to rest easily in the hand while texting or scrolling.

Camera: The S10 comes equipped with not one, not two, but three cameras. The newest addition is 16-megapixel ultra-wide-angle lens, which joins the already stellar 12-megapixel standard and telephoto lenses. It captures a field of view that just isn’t possible with the other cameras — it especially comes in handy when photographing panoramic landscapes.

A slew of new features puts the S10’s camera on par with the newest iPhones when it comes to portrait photos, and built-in software makes videos look sharper and steadier than ever.

Wild card: Headphone jacks are a rare — and welcome — sight on modern high-end smartphones. Samsung has kept the 3.5-mm jack on the bottom of the device while keeping the device water resistant. If maintaining access to your collection of headphones without buying dongles and adapters is important to you, look no further.

Verdict: If you’re on an iPhone 8 or newer, the Galaxy S10 likely won’t sway you to leave Apple’s warm embrace. The S10 excels in virtually every performance category, features a gorgeous design and excellent cameras, but it doesn’t have access to the exclusive walled garden of iMessage and iCloud.

But for customers who have clung to their iPhone 6S and watched Apple slowly strip away its home button, Touch ID and headphone jack, the S10 is the perfect upgrade to Android.

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