Galaxy Note 20 Ultra vs. Note 10 Plus: Which Samsung is the better buy?

    With its premium specs, attractive excessive refresh-rate display screen and top-of-the-line multicamera setup, the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra is a beast and has all of the options you could possibly need in a telephone. But it is dear, initially beginning at $1,300 (£1,179 and AU$1,999) despite the fact that Samsung has now discounted it to $1,100 a month after launch. Meanwhile, the Galaxy Note 10 Plus from final yr, which is at the moment accessible from round $670, continues to be a superb telephone in its personal proper. I wished to seek out out if the Note 10 Plus might maintain its personal towards the Note 20 Ultra, particularly in case your finances for a high-end telephone would not fairly stretch that far.To work out in the event you ought to pay extra for the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, or much less for the Galaxy Note 10 Plus, I used them each side-by-side for a number of weeks to match every thing from battery life and efficiency, to the cameras and the S Pen. 

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    In the tip, I discovered that the Note 20 Ultra is a improbable telephone that provides all of the bells, whistles and future-proofing you could possibly need. If you may afford it, you will not be disenchanted. But for me, the Note 10 Plus affords essentially the most rounded expertise between all-day battery, S Pen efficiency and a sleeker design that is simpler to make use of one-handed. Even although it is the older telephone, it is the one I’d decide regardless if I had been on a tighter finances.Read extra: Note 10 Plus vs. Note 9: How to decide on between the older Note telephones

    Though it launched in 2019, the Note 10 Plus isn’t any slouch in comparison with the most recent Note. You get very related efficiency, a fantastic display screen that is only a contact smaller and a design that is simpler to make use of for these with smaller arms. Sure, it would not have the most recent and biggest digicam expertise or 5G on the bottom mannequin, however you may get a fantastic telephone nonetheless and a battery that lasts and lasts.

    Read our Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus overview.

    The Note 20 Ultra is large and daring, whereas the Note 10 Plus is slim and glossyBoth these telephones have a curved dynamic AMOLED display screen, a hole-punch selfie digicam within the show and a stylus. But the Note 10 Plus is slimmer and lighter general, due to its barely smaller 6.8-inch show. I discover the Note 10 Plus simpler to make use of one-handed too, and to slide into my pocket.The digicam module on the Note 20 Ultra can also be considerably bigger than that on the Note 10 Plus. If you wish to mitigate the digicam bump and maintain it flush, you could wish to put a case on the Note 20 Ultra, which may even assist it slide extra simply right into a pocket.Another motive to make use of a case is sturdiness. Both the telephones have Gorilla Glass to guard them from drops and scratches, however the Note 20 Ultra has the most recent Victus glass (in comparison with Gorilla Glass 6 on the older Note), which may stand up to drops from better heights. In our assessments, the Note 20 Ultra is extra sturdy when dropped onto concrete, though not invulnerable.Note that Samsung flipped the orientation of the facility and quantity buttons. On the Note 10 Plus they’re on the left edge, and on the Note 20 Ultra they’re on the precise. The place of the stylus can also be swapped, so it is on the left on the newer Note and on the precise on the older telephone.
    Lexy Savvides/CNET
    Both shows are brilliant and straightforward to learn in direct daylight, although I discovered the Note 20 Ultra a tiny bit brighter open air. But the apparent advantage of the Note 20 Ultra’s display screen is its variable display screen refresh fee of as much as 120Hz, which makes scrolling and gaming extremely nice. In addition to scrolling by means of information feeds and net pages, you may watch movies shot at 120 frames per second in all their easy glory. That mentioned, in the event you do use the telephone at 120Hz you are restricted to full HD+ decision (i.e. 1080p) relatively than the best 3,088×1,440-pixel decision, aka WQHD. The Note 10 Plus then again, has a set refresh fee display screen at 60Hz, and the identical 1440p decision (although it defaults to 1080p to save lots of battery).Both telephones characteristic an in-screen fingerprint reader. They do not work completely 100% of the time, however I discovered that the reader on the Note 20 Ultra gave far fewer errors when making an attempt to unlock the telephone with my thumb.Speaking of fingerprints, the Note 10 Plus is an actual fingerprint magnet due to its shiny end. While the Note 20 Ultra is a lot better on this regard attributable to its matte glass, the occasional smudge nonetheless does present up.

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    Galaxy Note 20 Ultra or Note 10 Plus: Which telephone is…


    The Note 20 Ultra clearly has the higher digicamBoth telephones have three rear cameras with an ultrawide, commonplace and telephoto lens, however that is the place the similarities finish. It’s no secret that the Note 20 Ultra has an virtually overwhelming variety of options for photographers, together with 8K video recording, a 108-megapixel sensor, 50x zoom with 5x optical lens and professional video and photograph modes. That 108-megapixel sensor means the Note 20 Ultra will get essentially the most element out of its 12-megapixel photographs due to a method referred to as pixel binning. As a end result, the dynamic vary (shadow and spotlight element) is clearly higher on the telephone in comparison with the identical photographs taken on the Note 10 Plus. The Note 20 Ultra retains element higher within the shadow and spotlight areas (just like the sky) in comparison with the older telephone.
    Lexy Savvides/CNET
    The zoom can also be superior at 5x optical on the Note 20 Ultra versus 2x on the Note 10 Plus. You may push the Note 20 Ultra to a most of 50x, though I might suggest sticking to the 10x hybrid digital/optical zoom for greatest outcomes.You can see extra photograph samples and digicam evaluation within the video on this web page, plus our in-depth digicam comparisons right here and right here.Yes, the Note 20 has extra S Pen methods, however they don’t seem to be that particularOne of the principle causes to purchase a Galaxy Note telephone over some other Android is the stylus, or S Pen. The S Pen is bodily equivalent on the Note 20 Ultra and the Note 10 Plus. You can use air gestures to do a variety of issues like change tracks in a music app, or change forwards and backwards between the entrance and rear cameras. The Note 20 Ultra provides a number of further gestures referred to as Anywhere Actions that allow you to navigate forwards and backwards between net pages or apps, for instance, however I did not discover them notably responsive or helpful. 
    Angela Lang/CNET
    The Note 20 Ultra’s S Pen has a lowered latency (9 milliseconds in comparison with 45 ms on the Note 10 Plus) and it feels very nice and responsive to make use of on the telephone’s 120Hz display screen. I believe the newer telephone could be most helpful to artists, or those that need essentially the most realism when writing or drawing with the stylus. That mentioned, for normal scribbles and note-taking, I actually could not inform the distinction between the 2 S Pens when switching forwards and backwards between the telephones. Note 10 Plus nonetheless has glorious battery life and efficiencyThese telephones don’t skimp on efficiency and if you wish to see their full benchmark outcomes, take a look at their particular person opinions on CNET. In real-world conditions I did not encounter any discernible distinction between the 2 once I was filming 4K movies, taking part in video games or having a large number of apps working within the background. They each have 12GB of RAM, so that you’re undoubtedly not lacking out on efficiency in the event you select the older telephone.When it involves battery life although, your mileage will fluctuate relying on how you employ your telephone. Although the Note 20 Ultra has the higher-capacity battery (4,500 versus 4,300 mAh), its display screen’s increased refresh fee will impression the battery life in comparison with utilizing the telephone on the 60Hz setting. 
    Lexy Savvides/CNET
    For my utilization, which typically included watching movies, making calls, checking e-mail, recording video and enhancing pictures, I received by means of a complete day with wherever between 15% to 25% battery remaining on the Note 10 Plus. In our lab assessments for steady video playback on Airplane mode, the telephone averaged 21 hours. The Note 20 Ultra on 120Hz drained quicker and left me with about 10% by the tip of the day. I nonetheless managed to get by means of the day, however heavy customers might have to provide their telephone a top-up sooner or later. We’re nonetheless testing the Note 20 Ultra’s battery and I’ll replace this piece once I get these occasions in.Both juice up from an empty battery to 100% in about an hour with the 25-watt charger that is offered within the field. The Note 10 Plus additionally affords compatibility and quicker charging with a 45-watt charger (which prices additional), whereas the Note 20 Ultra is capped at 25-watt charging.Finally, the Note 20 Ultra has 5G as commonplace, whereas the Note 10 Plus has the choice of a 5G model that prices additional. Funnily sufficient, the bottom storage is definitely increased on the older telephone (256GB) in comparison with 128GB on the Note 20 Ultra. Both have expandable storage as much as 1TB.Spec chart

    Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra

    Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus

    Display measurement, decision

    6.9-inch AMOLED; 3,088×1,440 pixels

    6.8-inch AMOLED; 3,040×1,440 pixels

    Dimensions (Inches)

    6.48×3.03×0.31 inches

    6.39×3.04×0.31 inches

    Dimensions (Millimeters)

    164.8×77.2×8.1 mm

    162.3×77.2×7.9 mm

    Weight (Ounces, Grams)

    7.33 oz, 208g

    6.91 oz, 196g

    Mobile software program

    Android 10

    Android 10


    12-megapixel (ultrawide), 108-megapixel (extensive), 12-megapixel (telephoto)

    12-megapixel (extensive), 16-megapixel (ultrawide), 12-megapixel (telephoto), 3D depth (HQVGA)

    Front-facing digicam



    Video seize




    Snapdragon 865 Plus

    Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, or Samsung Exynos 9825


    128GB, 512GB

    256GB, 512GB




    Expandable storage

    Up to 1TB

    Up to 1TB




    Fingerprint sensor






    Headphone jack



    Special options

    S Pen stylus, water-proof (IP68), stereo audio system, 5G enabled, PowerShare, 5x optical zoom, UWB Sharing

    Wireless PowerShare; water-proof (IP68); S Pen stylus with Bluetooth connectivity and Air actions

    Price off-contract at launch (USD)

    $1,300 (128GB), $1,450 (512GB)


    Price at launch (GBP)



    Price at launch (AUD)



    Galaxy Note 20 UltraThe greatest Android with a stylus

    Galaxy Note 10 PlusHigher worth and sleeker design

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