How to use the Samsung Galaxy S10 reverse wireless charging feature

Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus Wireless Power Share (13 of 13)

If you purchase any of the new Samsung Galaxy S10 smartphones, you will be able to use a very cool feature that the company calls Wireless PowerShare. Basically, those phones can also charge up almost any other smartphone or other devices that support the Qi wireless charging standard.

Editor’s Pick

Here’s how to use the Samsung Galaxy S10 reverse wireless charging feature.

How to use the Galaxy S10 Wireless Powershare feature

As you will see, it’s pretty simple to launch this reverse charging feature on the Galaxy S10 phones:

  1. First, go to the main display on the phone and pull down the Settings menu from the top of the screen, above the notification panel.
  2. Then scroll down until you see the Wireless PowerShare icon in the Settings menu. If for some reason you don’t see that icon, tap on the Menu icon that’s on the top right corner of the screen, and then tap on the Button Order to add the Wireless PowerShare icon
  3. Tap on the Wireless PowerShare icon so that it is colored blue.
  4. Finally, just turn over the Samsung Galaxy S10 so that the back is facing up, and place your Qi-based smartphone, your Galaxy Watch, your Galaxy Buds or any other compatible device on that back to begin reverse charging that product.
  5. Once you have completed reverse charging the device on top of the Galaxy S10, just take it off the phone. Then flip the Galaxy S10 over to the front display, and tap “Cancel” at the bottom to turn Wireless PowerShare off.

What to do if reverse charging doesn’t work

If for some reason your Qi-based device is not receiving a charge when placed on the back of the Samsung Galaxy S10, there are a few troubleshooting tasks you can do that might fix it.

  1. Make sure the Galaxy S10’s own battery has enough of a charge. The Wireless PowerShare feature will only work if the phone has been charged up to at least 30 percent of its battery capacity.
  2. If the smartphone that’s being reverse charged by the Galaxy S10 isn’t getting charged up, and it is inside a cover or case, you might try removing that cover or case to see if that works.
  3. Finally, keep in mind that while in theory all Qi-based devices should be supported by this Wireless PowerShare feature, Samsung’s own support pages do admit that it “may not work with some accessories, covers, or other manufacturer’s devices.”

Have you use the Wireless PowerShare reverse charging feature on the Samsung Galaxy S10 phones and, if so, what are your impressions? Let us know in the comments!

Affiliate disclosure: We may receive compensation in connection with your purchase of products via links on this page. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. See our disclosure policy for more details.

Hidey Hole grabs wallpapers from Reddit for you that hide the Galaxy S10’s camera

Samsung Galaxy S10e Toy Story Wallpaper

Since the launch of the Galaxy S10 series, users (including Samsung) have been creating wallpapers that hide the phone’s hole punch cameras. Now, Chainfire, a well-known Android developer, has released an app called Hidey Hole that aggregates these wallpapers for you (via Android Police). 

As the developer states in the app’s Play Store listing, you could get all of these wallpapers yourself by just visiting Reddit. What’s special about Hidey Hole, is that the app makes finding specific images more convenient to locate while throwing in a couple of extra features.

Inside the app, you can first sort the wallpapers based on which Galaxy S10 they were made for. From there, you can have the photos listed by the date that they were uploaded to Reddit or by popularity. And thirdly, you can also search for wallpapers by category. Unfortunately, it looks like this feature is still a bit buggy.

Lastly, Chainfire added the ability to edit a wallpaper’s brightness, contrast, and colors. These controls allow users to finetune each image to look best on their displays.

Editor’s Pick

Don’t bother downloading this app though if you aren’t using a Galaxy S10 device. The developer states that it will crash on opening and they won’t fix it. You will have to find creative wallpapers somewhere else. 

You can download Hidey Hole directly from the Play Store for free using the button below. 

Snapdragon 855 phones — what are your best options?

Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 case

If performance is what you’re after, getting your hands on the best Snapdragon 855 phone you can find is the way to go. Quite a few of them were announced this year by Samsung, LGSony, and more, with even more expected to debut in the near future.

We’ve rounded up the best Snapdragon 855 phones on the market. Some are already on sale and others will hit the stores soon. Let’s dive in.

Editor’s note: We will update this list of the best Snapdragon 855 phones regularly as new devices launch.

Samsung Galaxy S10 series

Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus - best Snapdragon 855 phones

The Galaxy S10 phones are aimed at demanding users, packing the Snapdragon 855 chipset under the hood (Exynos 9820 Octa in some regions), with up to 12GB of RAM. The Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus offer almost identical specs, with a few differences. The Plus model has a larger display, a bigger battery, and two cameras on the front (instead of one).

Both sport a triple-camera setup at the back, with an IP68 ratingexpandable storage, and wireless charging. There’s even a headphone jack on board. They also feature an in-display fingerprint scanner and a punch-hole display with curved edges.

The Galaxy S10e offers the least of the trio, sporting the smallest display at 5.8-inches with Full HD+ resolution instead of the QHD+ you get with its bigger brothers. The phone has two cameras at the back and sports a side-mounted fingerprint scanner. It’s the cheapest Galaxy S10 phone you can get, although it’s still pricey — check out the prices via the button below.

In addition to these three phones, Samsung also announced the Galaxy S10 5G, which isn’t available yet. You can learn more about it here.


Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus

  • 6.4-inch Dynamic AMOLED display with 3,040 x 1,440 resolution, 522ppi
  • Snapdragon 855 (Exynos 9820 Octa in some regions)
  • 8/12GB of RAM
  • 128GB/512GB/1TB of storage, expandable up to 512GB
  • 12, 12, and 16MP rear cameras, 10 and 8MP front cameras
  • Non-removable 4,100mAh battery
  • Android 9.0 Pie
  • 157.6 x 74.1 x 7.8mm, 175g

Samsung Galaxy S10

  • 6.1-inch Dynamic AMOLED display with 3,040 x 1,440 resolution, 550ppi
  • Snapdragon 855 (Exynos 9820 Octa in some regions)
  • 8GB of RAM
  • 128/512GB of storage, expandable up to 512GB
  • 12, 12, and 16MP rear cameras, 10MP front camera
  • Non-removable 3,400mAh battery
  • Android 9.0 Pie
  • 149.9 x 70.4 x 7.8mm, 157g

Samsung Galaxy S10e

  • 5.8-inch Dynamic AMOLED display with 2,280 x 1,080 resolution, 438ppi
  • Snapdragon 855 (Exynos 9820 Octa in some regions)
  • 6/8GB of RAM
  • 128/256GB of storage, expandable up to 512GB
  • 12 and 16MP rear cameras, 10MP front camera
  • Non-removable 3,100mAh battery
  • Android 9.0 Pie
  • 142.2 x 69.9 x 7.9 mm, 150g

Sony Xperia 1

Sony Xperia 1 Sony Xperia 10 10 Plus

Sony announced Xperia 1 at MWC 2019. It sports a 6.5-inch 21:9 display, which makes it quite tall. According to the company, this aspect ratio offers improved multitasking. For example, you can run two apps on the display in split-screen mode and see more of each one.

Editor’s Pick

The handset sports the latest Qualcomm chipset under the hood along with 6GB of RAM, which means it can handle anything you throw at it. It comes with a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, three rear cameras, and a modern design with thin bezels and a glass back. The phone doesn’t have a headphone jack and packs a 3,300mAh battery, which is far from impressive.

The Sony Xperia 1 isn’t on sale yet, but it is up for pre-order at Clove in the U.K. It retails for 850 pounds, which translates to around $1,100. However, the phone will be cheaper once it launches in the U.S. — you’ll be able to get it unlocked from various retailers including Best Buy and Amazon.


  • 6.5-inch OLED display with 3,840 x 1,644 resolution, 643ppi
  • Snapdragon 855 chipset
  • 6GB of RAM
  • 128GB of storage, expandable up to 512GB
  • Three 12MP rear cameras, 8MP front camera
  • Non-removable 3,330mAh battery
  • Android 9.0 Pie
  • 167 x 72 x 8.2mm, 180g

Xiaomi Mi 9

Xiaomi Mi 9 - Device on Table

The Xiaomi Mi 9‘s combination of high-end specs, modern design, and an affordable price make it one of the best Snapdragon 855 phones. The global version comes with 6GB of RAM under the hood paired with 64 or 128GB of storage, while users in China also get variants with 8 and 12GB of RAM and as much as 256GB of storage.

The Mi 9’s battery goes from zero to 100 percent in around 65 minutes.

Xiaomi’s flagship sports an in-display fingerprint scanner and packs a 3,300mAh battery that supports 27W wired charging. This charger is sold separately — you get an 18W charger in the box — and gets the battery from zero to 100 percent in around 65 minutes.

The Mi 9 also supports wireless charging, features three rear cameras covered by sapphire glass, and comes in a couple of gorgeous colors. It’s already up for pre-order in a few European countries with a starting price of 450 euros (~$510).


  • 6.39-inch Super AMOLED display with 2,340 x 1,080 resolution, 403ppi
  • Snapdragon 855 chipset
  • 6/8/12GB of RAM
  • 64/128/256GB of storage, non-expandable
  • 48, 16, and 12MP rear cameras, 20MP front camera
  • Non-removable 3,300mAh battery
  • Android 9.0 Pie
  • 157.5 x 74.7 x 7.6mm, 173g

LG V50 ThinQ

best Snapdragon 855 phones

The V50 ThinQ is a minor upgrade over its predecessor. It’s 5G-ready, powered by Qualcomm’s latest and greatest SoC, and sports a large 4,000mAh battery. The phone is a great choice for music lovers, as it features a headphone jack and a Quad DAC for a better audio experience with the right headphones.

Read next: LG’s V-series will now be exclusively 5G, G-series will be 4G only

LG’s flagship has five cameras on board — three at the back and two up front. It’s IP68 rated for protection against water and dust, supports expandable storage, and comes with a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner. All these specs and features combined make it one of the best Snapdragon 855 phones out there.

However, you’ll have to wait a bit to get your hands on it. The phone will launch on Sprint’s 5G network this year, which is supposed to roll out before the end of the first half of 2019. No word on pricing yet.


  • 6.4-inch P-OLED display with 3,120 x 1,440 resolution, 537ppi
  • Snapdragon 855 chipset
  • 6GB of RAM
  • 128GB of storage, expandable up to 512GB
  • 12, 12, and 16MP rear cameras, 8 and 5MP front cameras
  • Non-removable 4,000mAh battery
  • Android 9.0 Pie
  • 159.2 x 76.1 x 8.3mm, 183g

Samsung Galaxy Fold

This is Samsung’s first foldable phone. It can switch between phone and tablet form factors thanks to its bendable display. When closed, you interact with the device via an outer 4.6-inch display. It opens up like a book, revealing a 7.3-inch display.

Editor’s Pick

The Galaxy Fold is a beast of a phone. In addition to Qualcomm’s latest chipset, it also comes with 12GB of RAM, 512GB of storage, and a total of six cameras — three on the back, one on the front, and two on the inside. Unlike the rest of Samsung’s lineup, this device doesn’t have a headphone jack. It also sports two batteries totaling 4,380mAh, a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, and 5G support.

The Samsung Galaxy Fold is the most unique device on our list of the best Snapdragon 855 phones. It will go on sale in the U.S. on April 26 with a starting price tag of $1,980.


  • 7.3-inch Dynamic AMOLED main display with 2,152 x 1,536 resolution, 414ppi
  • 4.6-inch Super AMOLED cover display with HD+ resolution
  • Snapdragon 855 chipset
  • 12GB of RAM
  • 512GB of storage, non-expandable
  • 12, 12, and 16MP rear cameras, 10 and 8MP front cameras, 10MP cover camera
  • Non-removable 4,380mAh battery
  • Android 9.0 Pie

These are the best Snapdragon 855 phones in our opinion, but plenty of other great options are available, like the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 5G, ZTE Axon 10 Pro, LG G8 ThinQ, and Lenovo Z5 Pro GT. Which one would you choose? Let us know in the comments! 

Affiliate disclosure: We may receive compensation in connection with your purchase of products via links on this page. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. See our disclosure policy for more details.

Galaxy S10 teardown reveals Samsung shameful USB-C port soldering


Popular DIY YouTuber Jerry Rig Everything just posted the Samsung Galaxy S10 teardown video. While it’s a little painful to watch such an expensive device run through JRE’s torture, the teardown does reveal some interesting aspects of the latest Samsung superphone.

If you’re just interested in watching the video, you can check it out below.

However, if you’re just interested in the highlights, keep reading!

Right from the get-go, opening the Samsung Galaxy S10 is a real pain. Much like other all-glass phones, you need to use a heat gun to loosen up all the adhesive before you separate the “glass sandwich.” However, this practice is becoming very common, so it isn’t that surprising.

One thing that really riles JRE up, though, is when he pulls the motherboard out. Unfortunately, Samsung decided to permanently solder the USB-C port to the motherboard itself. Normally, replacing a faulty USB-C port would cost you all of $15, but since it’s permanently stuck to the motherboard here, that repair becomes basically impossible. You’d have to buy a whole replacement motherboard to fix a faulty USB-C port now.

Editor’s Pick

Going deeper, JRE finds another repairability nightmare, which is the ultrasonic in-display fingerprint sensor. The sensor itself is inaccessible without removing the screen, a procedure which will almost always result in breakage. Sure enough, after he accesses the sensor to have a look at it, the display no longer works. This means that if your fingerprint sensor goes awry in your Galaxy S10, you’ll need a whole new screen, not just a new sensor.

While right-to-repair activists are gaining a lot of ground, there are clearly a lot of decisions still being made by OEMs specifically to counter repairability. The USB-C port here is a perfect example of how something could have been designed modular like every other Samsung Galaxy phone but wasn’t. It’s very disappointing.

What do you think? Do you care about repairability with your smartphones? Let us know in the comments.

NEXT: Samsung Galaxy S10 smashes DisplayMate records, gets highest ever A+ grade

Did you buy a Samsung Galaxy S10? (Poll of the Week)

Last week’s poll summary: Last week, we asked you to choose between the Samsung Galaxy Fold and the Huawei Mate X. Out of over 60,000 total votes, roughly 39 percent of voters said they’d buy the Mate X over the Galaxy Fold. Just 28 percent would choose the Galaxy Fold over the Mate X. What’s strange is that 30 percent of voters said they’d choose neither phone.

The Samsung Galaxy S10 lineup goes on sale this week, and we want to know if you’re buying one.

Overall, we’ve heard very little complaints from our readers with the S10 family so far. Not only do the smartphones pack in all the features you could want, Samsung is catering to a wide variety of users this year.

Don’t miss

If you’re after the biggest phone with the best specs you can get, the Galaxy S10 Plus is for you. Meanwhile, the Galaxy S10 is still a pretty big phone and has a very similar spec sheet, though you do get a few less features. The Galaxy S10e, Samsung’s answer to the iPhone XR, is a much smaller, more affordable phone.

The problem is, these phones are pricey. The cheapest Galaxy S10e starts at $749.99, the S10 proper will cost you $899.99, and the S10 Plus starts at $999.99.

Did you order any one of these phones? If so, which one? Cast your vote in the poll below, and speak up in the comments with your thoughts. Oh, and our Galaxy S10 Plus review will likely drop sometime very soon, so stay tuned for that!

Note: There is a poll embedded within this post, please visit the site to participate in this post’s poll.

Samsung Galaxy S10 international giveaway!

It’s time for the Sunday giveaway! Like every week, we’re giving away another a brand new Android phone to one lucky Android Authority reader.

A big congratulations to the winner of last week’s Samsung Galaxy S10 giveaway, Arvin K. from Australia.

This week we’re giving away a brand new Samsung Galaxy S10 courtesy of our friends at X-Doria!

It’s hard to find smartphone cases that look good and protect your phone well, but X-Doria has managed to crack the code. This California-based company offers functional, stylish smartphone accessories for the most popular devices out there, including the all-new Galaxy S10.

We’ve partnered with X-Doria this week to give away a brand new Samsung Galaxy S10, along with two X-Doria cases:

  • X-Doria Defense Shield Case: X-Doria’s Defense Shield Case combines rubber, polycarbonate, and anodized aluminum to ensure your Galaxy S10 will stay protected.
  • X-Doria Defense Lux Case: The Defense Lux Case is perfect for those who want a protective, MIL-STD-810G-rated case but don’t want to sacrifice on style.

Visit X-Doria’s website below for even more information:

Samsung pulled out all the stops with the Galaxy S10. No, really — there aren’t many features missing from the company’s latest flagship.

The Galaxy S10 packs the latest-and-greatest processors from Samsung and Qualcomm (depending on your region), along with 8GB of RAM to ensure smooth multitasking. A triple-camera setup can be found around back, while the 10MP camera on the front is cut out of the display — that means there’s no notch to be found. Also, Samsung continues to listen to consumers and keep the 3.5mm headphone jack. Yes!

The only downside here is that the standard S10 starts at $899. You don’t have to worry about that this week, since we’re giving one away. For free!

To learn more about the Samsung Galaxy S10, head to our related coverage below:

Enter the giveaway here

Samsung Galaxy S10 international giveaway!

Don’t miss: Razer Hammerhead USB-C ANC earbuds giveaway

Winners gallery

Terms & conditions

  • This is an international giveaway (except when we can not ship to your country).
  • If we can not ship to your country, you will be compensated with an online gift card of equal MSRP value to the prize.
  • We are not responsible for lost shipments.
  • We are not responsible if your giveaway prize malfunctions.
  • You must be age of majority in your country of residence.
  • We are not responsible for any duties or import fees that you may incur.
  • Only one entry per person; please do not enter multiple email addresses. We will verify all winners and if we detect multiple email addresses by the same person you will not be eligible to win.
  • We reserve all rights to make any changes to this giveaway.
  • This giveaway is operated by Android Authority.
  • The prize will ship when it is available to purchase.

More: Android Authority international giveaway FAQs

The Samsung Galaxy S10 might just steal this OnePlus fan’s money

The distracted boyfriend meme with the girl in the red dress being the Samsung Galaxy S10, the man being the author, and the girlfriend being OnePlus.

Opinion post by
C. Scott Brown

It’s no secret I’m a fan of OnePlus phones. I appreciate the company’s attention to design detail and how it offers flagship features at much lower prices than most of the competition. I also am absolutely in love with OxygenOS, the company’s beautifully simple Android skin.

But I gotta tell you: the Samsung Galaxy S10 is looking mighty fine.

I recently had the chance to visit one of the three brand new Samsung Experience Stores here in the U.S. While I was there, I got to play with three models in the new S10 lineup: the Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10 Plus, and Galaxy S10e. All three devices left me very impressed.

As I left the store, I found myself imagining buying one of the phones. I won’t lie: I haven’t seriously thought about buying a Samsung phone in years. It was like running into an old flame and finding myself imagining getting back together, even though my brain is saying, “Don’t do it! It’ll be a mistake!”

Let me tell you why the Samsung Galaxy S10 is enticing me away from my beloved OnePlus — and talk a bit about why I might not make the switch.

Why I might buy the Samsung Galaxy S10

Samsung Galaxy S10 vs OnePlus 6T camera

Just for a little backstory here, the last Samsung phone I owned was the Samsung Galaxy S4 which I bought in 2013. Prior to that, I owned the Samsung Galaxy S3 (one of my favorite phones ever) and before that, I owned the original Samsung Galaxy S. I am no stranger to Samsung phones.

While I loved the form factor of its devices and the myriad cool features they offer, I absolutely loathed TouchWiz, Samsung’s original Android skin. I hated it from the very beginning but kept giving it new chances with each new device.

Inevitably, with almost all my Samsung phones, I flashed CyanogenMod as soon as I could to avoid using TouchWiz. This worked, for sure, but was also a huge pain.

When OnePlus came around and announced the OnePlus One, it was like my prayers had been answered: a device with almost all the specs of a Galaxy S device pre-loaded with CyanogenMod — and it only cost a measly $300.

As soon as I got an invite for a OnePlus One I bought it and never looked back — I was officially done with Samsung.

Samsung has made huge strides in software with One UI and offers hardware features OnePlus phones don’t have.

Fast-forward to today, and we have the brand new One UI, a different kind of Android skin from Samsung. While it is still a little too cutesy for my tastes, it is light years ahead of TouchWiz and Samsung Experience (TouchWiz 2.0).

I appreciate how One UI is cleaner, simpler, and more intuitive than anything Samsung’s done in the past. I also appreciate how Samsung is looking at how we use our phones today and modifying the software to accommodate — a true “customer first” approach.

Editor’s Pick

Along with One UI, the Samsung Galaxy S10 features an ultrasonic in-display fingerprint sensor, which is perfect for me. As I discuss in my smartphone essentials article, I hate having to pick my phone up off my desk to unlock it using a rear sensor. The in-display fingerprint sensor on my current daily driver — the OnePlus 6T — is one of my favorite features. From everything I know so far, it appears Samsung’s ultrasonic sensor is even better.

The Samsung Galaxy S10 also features a remappable hardware button, something OnePlus doesn’t offer. The button opens Bixby by default, but Samsung is finally listening to users and letting them map it. A single press could launch just about any app, while a double-press could do something completely different. I would have so much fun playing around with this.

Lots of little things make the Galaxy S10 pretty enticing, such as the headphone jack, wireless charging, and a triple camera setup on the rear — all of which the OnePlus 6T doesn’t have. There’s also a wide variety of specs configurations to choose from, including a Plus model with a totally bonkers 12GB of RAM and 1TB of internal storage.

All in all, the Samsung Galaxy S10 packs a lot of punches the OnePlus 6T can’t counter.

Why I might stick with OnePlus

OnePlus 6T vs Samsung Galaxy S10e

One UI and the ultrasonic sensor are awesome, and the other new features in the Samsung Galaxy S10 are quite enticing, but a few things still make me nervous about switching.

The most glaringly obvious thing OnePlus has over any Galaxy S device is price. I got the maxed-out version of the OnePlus 6T with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage, and it cost me $630. The cheapest variant of the Samsung Galaxy S10e still costs over $100 more, at $749. If I wanted to get a Galaxy S10 model with an equivalent RAM and storage configuration to my 6T, I’d have to spend at least $850 on an S10e.

Related: Who is the Samsung Galaxy S10e for?

Of course, the S10e wouldn’t get me the ultrasonic fingerprint sensor (the S10e has a side-mounted sensor), so I would have to spend a whopping $1,150 to get the standard Galaxy S10 with 512GB of storage to avoid downgrading my current storage level.

When it comes to price, OnePlus can deliver a device very close to what Samsung offers at literally half the cost.

If I decided to do that, I would be getting a smaller device, as the OnePlus 6T is bigger than the Samsung Galaxy S10 and the Galaxy S10e. I would have to get a Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus, which would cost me an absolutely jaw-dropping $1,250 — about double what I paid for my OnePlus 6T.

Editor’s Pick

To quote The Big Lebowski: “The Dude does not abide.” I can’t imagine spending that much on a smartphone. Even if I sold my OnePlus 6T to help pay for the S10 Plus, I’d still be on the hook for $700, assuming my 6T sells for $550, which is what I’m seeing now on Swappa.

To be fair, the Galaxy S10 family does feature microSD expansion, something that OnePlus doesn’t. Obviously, microSD has it’s own limitations when it comes to speed and performance, but if I just wanted the same amount of space as my 6T I could get a base model S10 device and pick up a memory card.

Aside from price, another thing holding me back is software updates. Yes, Samsung is doing a much better job rolling out Android updates these days, but OnePlus is doing so much better. It took OnePlus all of 45 days to release a stable version of Android 9 Pie to the OnePlus 6, while Samsung took over six months to do the same for the unlocked Samsung Galaxy S9. Even if Samsung halves that for the upcoming release of Android Q, I’d still probably be waiting months longer than OnePlus users.

Until Samsung proves it can work on par with OnePlus in this respect, it’s difficult to see myself making the switch.

An important question becomes: how long will Galaxy S10 owners have to wait for Android Q?

The OnePlus 6T’s waterdrop notch is a lot nicer, in my opinion, than the punch hole cutouts on the Galaxy S10 line. This isn’t a deal-breaker or anything, but the Infinity-O display design is kind of “meh” to me. I certainly don’t hate it as much as I do the iPhone XS-style notch on the OnePlus 6 (or the godawful “bathtub” on the Google Pixel 3 XL), but I’m not a fan of it, either. In my opinion, the waterdrop notch makes the OnePlus 6T look more symmetrical and thus more appealing.

Despite my concerns with pricing, the big takeaway is that Samsung’s Galaxy S10 has a level of polish that is hard to ignore. If it’s been a while since your last encounter with a Samsung, it’s worth giving the Galaxy S10 a closer look. Today’s Galaxy is clearly a different beast from the one you might remember.

Can OnePlus win me over with the OnePlus 7? If it can’t, I might just have to keep my eye out for future discounts on the Galaxy S10 Plus.

Affiliate disclosure: We may receive compensation in connection with your purchase of products via links on this page. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. See our disclosure policy for more details.

Samsung Galaxy S10 phones officially support Netflix HDR10 video

Samsung Galaxy S10e, S10, S10 Plus

Even though the Samsung Galaxy S10, S10 Plus, and S10e aren’t yet available to the general public, Netflix quietly added HDR10 certification for all three phones.

This is good news for those that want to take advantage of the Galaxy S10 phones’ Dynamic OLED displays, which are the first smartphone displays to support HDR10+. Whereas HDR10 features a set metadata channel, HDR10+ features a dynamic metadata channel with a variable midpoint of the dynamic range. The metadata is then used to adjust brightness levels on a scene-by-scene or frame-by-frame basis more accurately.

Editor’s Pick

However, we don’t have a firm idea of how much Netflix content supports the HDR10+ standard. We should see such content show up more on Netflix over time, thanks to 20th Century Fox and Warner Bros. agreeing to support the HDR10+ standard.

Before you play HDR10 content on your Galaxy S10, make sure you have the latest version of Netflix installed — HDR10 content on Netflix won’t play on an older version of the app.

In related news, Netflix also added HD certification for the Galaxy S10 phones and the lower-end Galaxy M-series phones — the latter include the Galaxy M10, M20, and M30. Netflix added HD certification for the Qualcomm Snapdragon 675, 710, and 855 processors.

Any devices that feature the three aforementioned processors will support Netflix in HD resolution out of the box. That is unless your device doesn’t support Widevine L1.

Ultrasonic fingerprint scanners: how do they work?

Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus Fingerprint reader

After a few years lurking in backroom prototypes and inside a few quickly forgotten handsets, ultrasonic fingerprint sensors are ready for prime time. The technology is built into Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10 Plus, making the technology almost guaranteed to be securing millions of thumbprints by the year’s end.

In December 2018, Qualcomm announced its 3D ultrasonic in-display fingerprint sensor. This technology is enabled in devices using the company’s Snapdragon 855 platform as an option if the manufacturer wants to include the extra hardware. Ultrasonic fingerprint technology has its own pros and cons versus traditional capacitive scanners and even other in-display fingerprint designs. Here’s everything you need to know.

How ultrasonic fingerprint scanners work

Qualcomm’s 3D in-display ultrasonic fingerprint scanner is based on what used to be called Sense ID. Rather than existing photographic or capacitive-based fingerprint scanners, ultrasonic fingerprint scanners make use of very high-frequency ultrasonic sound. You can’t hear it, but these waves are used to map out the details of the user’s fingerprint. Fortunately, there’s no need to swipe, just touch the finger to the sensor like the top of the line capacitive fingerprint scanners.

Editor’s Pick

To actually capture the details of a fingerprint, the hardware consists of both a transmitter and a receiver. An ultrasonic pulse is transmitted against the finger that is placed over the scanner. Some of this pulse’s pressure is absorbed and some of it is bounced back to the sensor, depending upon the ridges, pores and other details that are unique to each fingerprint.

There isn’t a microphone listening out for these returning signals. Instead, a sensor that can detect mechanical stress is used to calculate the intensity of the returning ultrasonic pulse at different points on the scanner. Scanning for longer periods of time allows for additional depth data to be captured, resulting in a highly detailed 3D reproduction of the scanned fingerprint.

Qualcomm notes that there’s about a 250-millisecond latency for unlocking, roughly equivalent to capacitive fingerprint scanners. The sensor has about a 1 percent error rate, which again is pretty comparable to other scanners.

Pros of ultrasonic fingerprint vs capacitive scanners

Ultrasonic fingerprint technology works very differently to capacitive fingerprint scanners, which are only able to reproduce 2D images. 3D details are much more difficult to forge or fool than a 2D image, making the ultrasonic system much more secure. It goes without saying that ultrasound is also much more secure than optical fingerprint scanners, which have all but fallen out of favor.

In-display scanners like those inside the OnePlus 6T and Huawei Mate 20 Pro are optical not ultrasonic.

Another added perk of this ultrasonic fingerprint scanner technology is that it allows the fingerprint scanner to still operate through thin materials, such as glass, aluminum, or plastic. The sensor is just 0.15 millimeters thick and can scan through up to 800 µm of glass and up to 650 µm of aluminum. Therefore, the scanner can be embedded under the case or under the display as we’re seeing in the Samsung Galaxy S10, allowing for a more discrete look and thinner bezels.

Because the sensor uses ultrasonic waves, the sensor can also double up as a health tracker that can record heart rate and blood flow. Additionally, there’s less chance of damaging the sensor or exposing it to external tampering, and sweat or moisture on the finger won’t interfere with the scanning process either.

Scanning is just half the process

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Of course, there’s still plenty to be done with this fingerprint data and keeping it secure is an equally important part of the system.

As will all biometric security systems, processing and security highly sensitive personal information security are key. Qualcomm’s processors are built with dedicated security tools, including Cryptographic Accelerators, Key Provisioning Security, and a Trusted Execution Environment. This ensures that the processing and storage of sensitive data are kept well away from malicious applications. Other Arm-based processors offer TrustZone hardware isolation for similar levels of protection.

Qualcomm’s setup is also designed to support the Fast Identity Online (FIDO) Alliance protocols, which can be used for online password-less authentication. FIDO does this without transferring any of the confidential fingerprint information to the cloud or through networks that could be compromised.

Ultrasonic fingerprint scanners certainly have a number of advantages of existing capacitive implementations and given the prevalence of Qualcomm processors in mobile products. 3D ultrasonic fingerprint scanners are now ready for prime time and it’s possible that we’ll see many more manufacturers adopt this technology throughout 2019.

The Galaxy S10 has an Instagram mode and Adobe Premiere Rush

Samsung Galaxy S10e front

Samsung announced at its Unpacked event that it is bringing an Instagram mode to the Galaxy S10. This partnership with the social network adds a new shooting mode to the handset’s camera app.

When the Galaxy S10’s camera is launched, users will find the new Instagram mode alongside other options such as panoramic mode and slo-mo. After snapping a photo, customers will be able to edit and customize the image with the social network’s various text and sticker options and then upload it directly to Instagram Stories.

There’s no word yet on if Samsung will bring this feature to older Galaxy handsets.

Samsung also announced that it is working with Adobe to bring an optimized version of Premiere Rush to the flagship lineup. In case you didn’t know, Premiere Rush is a mobile version of the company’s popular video editing software that’s made for mobile devices. The app is specifically aimed at creators who want a full suite of editing tools on their phones and tablets.

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For now, Adobe Premiere Rush is only available on iOS. Samsung stated that the app should be coming to the Galaxy S10 later this year. Let’s hope that it isn’t launched as a Galaxy exclusive like Fortnite was.

Learn more about the entire Samsung Galaxy S10 lineup here.