Is The Galaxy Note 10’s S Pen Holding It Back?

Galaxy Note 10 S Pen

rieo / Pixabay

Samsung’s Galaxy Note 10 is one of the most-anticipated handsets currently. However, it lacks many high-end features that other premium phones have, such as innovative cameras, full-bleed screens, super-fast charging and more. If a trusted tipster Ice Universe is to be believed, then the Galaxy Note 10’s S Pen, its signature feature, is to be blamed for holding it back.

Citing Samsung engineers, Ice Universe said the Galaxy Note 10’s S Pen has forced the company to reduce the battery capacity and make some design compromises. This could suggest that with no stylus, the Note 10 could have had a more advanced camera, a bigger screen or a larger battery.

As of now, it is not clear what he meant by “aggressive cameras,” but other smartphone makers such as Huawei and Oppo use periscope cameras to give users better optical zoom. Samsung also reportedly prototyped screens with extreme curvatures, but eventually dismissed those designs. It is possible that the stylus could be blamed for it.

The lack of a bigger battery in the Galaxy Note is understandable. One can easily store the S Pen safely inside the phone. The space that the Galaxy Note 10’s S Pen takes up could otherwise be utilized by including a larger battery. The Galaxy S10 Plus features a 4,100 mAh battery. So should Samsung ditch the S Pen? There are a few arguments against it as well.

One fact that can’t be denied is that a Galaxy Note 10 with no stylus would just be another version of the Galaxy S10. To differentiate between the two lines, the Korean firm needs a unique feature like the S Pen. Another reason why Samsung probably won’t kill the S Pen is that it is the Note series’ only competitive advantage.

When Samsung initially began the Note series in 2011, it had two competitive advantages. First, it had a bigger screen, and second, a built-in stylus. However, in 2019 it lost one of those advantages. Now all smartphone makers have been able to reduce the size of the bezels and expand the screen.

On the other hand, the S Pen is still a competitive advantage for the Galaxy Note series because there aren’t many phones with such a stylus. Therefore, Samsung probably will not take away the only remaining advantage the Note series has.

Samsung’s S Pen may be a competitive advantage for the Note 10, but a question many have been asking is whether there is a need for a stylus. The S Pen has been losing its importance over the years. Other than using the S Pen to take notes and draw, the stylus has no other practical use. Although Samsung has added features like creating animated GIFs from videos using the S Pen, such gestures can easily be done using fingers.

Other things like magnifying a part of the screen with the S Pen can also be easily done with the fingers. On the other hand, some of the S Pen’s capabilities might be irreplaceable, such as using it as a remote to take selfies or to controll music playback. However, not many use these features on a daily basis.

Additionally, there have been reports that Samsung should discontinue the Note line completely or merge it with the Galaxy S series. However, Samsung has continued the Note brand even after the Note 7 disaster, and it is expected to release a Note 10 as well. Nonetheless, it will be interesting to see what Samsung does with the Note line after the Note 10.

This latest tweet from Ice Universe about the missing Note 10 features can also be seen as a hint about what features to expect from the Galaxy S11 phones. The Galaxy S10 successor could feature an “aggressive” camera, a better battery and more advanced features.

Samsung is expected to launch the Galaxy Note 10 on Aug. 7. The launch event is set for the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. Rumors suggest the handset will feature a 6.66-inch screen, compared to the 6.4-inch screen in the Note 9.

A bigger screen does not mean that the overall size of the phone will also increase. Thanks to thinner bezels, it is now possible to put a bigger screen without increasing the overall form factor. Thus, it is possible that even with a bigger screen, the Galaxy Note 10 will be the same physical size as the Note 9.

The handset could come with a 4,300 mAh battery. In comparison, the Note 9 featured a 4,000-mAh battery, while the Galaxy S10 Plus has a 4,100 mAh battery.




About the Author

Aman Jain
Aman is MBA (Finance) with an experience on both Marketing and Finance side. He has worked as a Risk Analyst for AIR Worldwide, and is currently leading VeRa FinServ, a Financial Research firm. Favorite pastimes include watching science fiction movies, reviewing tech gadgets, playing PC games and cricket. - Email him at amanjain@valuewalk.com