Samsung has unleashed its latest stylus-toting flagships – the Galaxy Note20 and the Galaxy Note20 Ultra. The former is the more-mass market device with a lower entry-point, while the latter is the bigger, bolder and badder machine that will cost the power-purists north of $1,300. But unlike the Galaxy Note 10 siblings, the difference between the two new Notes goes deeper, leading to a few compromises which not many buyers will appreciate. Let’s see how the vanilla Galaxy Note20 stacks up against last year’s Galaxy Note 10, and whether the extra premium you pay is worth it.
Samsung Galaxy Note20 vs Galaxy Note 10: Design and build
Surprisingly, the Galaxy Note 10 looks more like the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra than the Galaxy Note20 does with its Ultra sibling. The Galaxy Note20 has rounded edges and less sleek aesthetics, while the Galaxy Note 10 has sharper lines and a blocky form factor similar to the Galaxy Note20 Ultra. But there is more to it than meets the eye.
Samsung has carved the Galaxy Note20 out of plastic, which is bewildering for a phone that will evaporate a thousand dollars or more from your pocket. On the other hand, the Galaxy Note 10 rocks a glass and metal build, which makes the build quality downgrade even more questionable (read: perplexing) in the case of Galaxy Note20. Both the phones support wireless charging and wireless power share capability though.
Samsung Galaxy Note20 vs Galaxy Note 10: Display
Samsung Galaxy Note20 features a 6.7-inch HDR10+ certified FHD+ (2400×1080 pixels) Super AMOLED Plus display with a 60Hz refresh rate. On the other hand, the Galaxy Note 10 packs a slightly smaller 6.3-inch HDR10+ certified FHD+ (2280×1080 pixels) Dynamic AMOLED display. The screen on the Galaxy Note 10 is slightly curved alongside the edges akin to the Galaxy Note20 Ultra, while the Galaxy Note 10 has a flat panel. Both the phones feature an in-display fingerprint sensor for authentication.
However, it is disappointing to see that Samsung has not upped the screen refresh rate on the Galaxy Note20 by sticking with 60Hz output, despite the phone being a generational upgrade and the competition even crossing the 144Hz refresh rate mark for a much smaller price tag.
Samsung Galaxy Note20 vs Galaxy Note 10: Internal Hardware
The Galaxy Note20 pairs the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865+ chip inside it with 8GB of RAM and up to 256GB of onboard storage that is expandable up to 1TB via a microSD card. Samsung Galaxy Note 10 employs the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor ticking alongside 8 gigs of RAM and 256GB of onboard storage with no storage expansion facility. However, buyers in certain European countries and India get an Exynos variant of both the phones.
The Galaxy Note 20 relies on a 4,300mAh battery that supports the proprietary Super Fast Charging tech which can top up the battery to the halfway mark in 30 minutes. Coming to the Galaxy Note 10, it comes equipped with a 3,500mAh battery that supports 45W charging as well as wireless charging.
Galaxy Note20 vs Galaxy Note 10: Cameras
The camera department is where the Galaxy Note20 offers both improvements as well as downgrades. It packs a 12MP primary camera with OIS, a 64MP telephoto lens that is also backed by OIS, and a 12MP ultra-wide-angle camera with a 120-degree field of view. The Galaxy Note 10 comes equipped with a higher resolution 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera with a wider 123-degree field of view, accompanied by an optically-stabilized 16MP telephoto camera and a 12MP wide-angle camera with OIS support.
The 10MP selfie camera remains unchanged, as it offers the same f/2.2 aperture and 80-degree field of view. However, the Galaxy Note20’s telephoto camera offers a higher 3x hybrid optical zoom output and 30x super res zoom output. The Galaxy Note 10 is limited to 2x optical and 10x digital zoom output. The latest Note-series flagship can also capture cinematic 21:9 videos at 24fps frame rate and can also shoot 8K videos, while the Galaxy Note 10 is limited to 4K video capture at 60fps.
Galaxy Note20 vs Galaxy Note 10: Price
The Galaxy Note20 starts at $999.99 and will hit the shelves August 21 onwards. Samsung offers it in three colors – Mystic Bronze, Mystic Green and Mystic Gray. As for the Galaxy Note 10, you can currently buy it for $699.99 from the official Samsung store, which is quite a compelling price point for the device. It is up for grabs in Aura White, Aura Black and the stunning Aura Glow shade.