Post updated February 5th, 2020 at 09:28 pm
The one thing missing from last year’s Samsung Galaxy Note 10 series is an entry-level equivalent to the “e” variant found on its other flagship cousin, the Galaxy S10. About five months after the series’ launch, a Lite variant has finally made its way to the market which introduces an affordable Note 10 experience to users.
The biggest difference that most would notice on the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite is that, unlike its siblings, it lacks a curved display. While that may sound like a big takeaway at first, the kicker is that the Lite variant actually features a larger screen when compared to the standard Note 10. In fact, it’s actually 0.1-inch smaller than the Plus variant. Specifically, the Galaxy Note 10 Lite sports a flat 6.7-inch Super AMOLED Infinity-O display with top-centered punch hole cutout.
Despite having “Lite” in its name, the smartphone is quite hefty. It’s not really a complaint, as I do like feeling a bit of weight when I hold a smartphone in my hands and it’s actually quite comfortable to hold. While the Note 10 Lite’s front features a flat surface, it does have a curved glass body on its back. Another notable change from its siblings is that the volume rocker and lock button is now located on the phone’s right hand side instead.
A SIM card tray is situated on its left, while at the bottom of the Note 10 Lite is where most of the goodies are at. There you’ll find the S-Pen in its storage compartment, a USB-C port to charge its 4500mAh battery and to transfer data, and a much appreciated addition of 3.5mm headphone jack. Instead of a rectangular camera island found on current Samsung smartphones, the Galaxy Note 10 Lite features an almost square-like housing for its triple camera setup. More on that later.
In terms of hardware specifications, the Lite is equipped with Samsung’s Exynos 9810 chipset paired with 8GB of RAM, and features 128GB of internal storage. If the chipset sounds familiar, it’s actually the same one used in 2018’s Galaxy S9 series – an enhanced version of it, rather. The Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite runs on the brand’s One UI 2 with Android 10 out of the box, and has no problems running typical day-to-day applications and current generation games.
The S-Pen retains most of the features found on the Note 10 Lite’s siblings. Aside from jotting down digital notes with Screen Write and accessing the Air Gestures feature, you could also use it as a remote control for media playback as well as for photo and video capture. The stylus features Bluetooth connectivity, and has its own battery which is automatically charged when stored within the Note 10 Lite itself.
As for the phone’s cameras, its setup consists of a triple 12MP combo for its main, ultra-wide angle, and telephoto. While the number sounds less impressive on paper, its main camera actually features a large pixel size of 1.4µm which captures sharp and vivid images in most lighting conditions. The Lite is currently the first phone in Samsung’s flagship line-up to feature a telephoto camera, albeit being capable of only 2X optical zoom.
Video-wise, the smartphone’s camera setup is able to record high quality videos at 2160p (up to 60fps) and 1080p (up to 240fps), and features other modes including slow-mo and so on. Like my previous hands-on with the Samsung Galaxy A71, the Note 10 Lite also features the impressive Super Steady function that virtually eliminates camera shaking during video recording.
The new Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite has left a good impression on me with its overall performance so far. Consumers who are considering a more affordable flagship smartphone from the brand – and a Note series at that – will want to keep an eye out for the Lite.
The Galaxy Note 10 Lite is priced at RM 2,299 and pre-orders will go live on 3 February on Samsung Malaysia’s website. It will be available in three colours: Aura Glow, Aura Black and Aura Red.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite loan pre-release unit courtesy of Samsung Malaysia.