Got a Galaxy S10? You’ll find out that… no LED notification, but tap to wake and more

The Galaxy S10 trio may shoot Samsung back on the road to flagship sales success story, judging from the pre-order numbers and the launch day lines in the East and the West. What’s so special about the 10th-anniversary edition of the line that brought a veritable Apple-Samsung duopoly in the high-end phone market? 

Well, we already did a review and a tips&tricks video detailing all the new and exciting features, but what we learned during our time with the phones is that, as usual, it’s the little things that matter. Here’s what you’ll find once you get your hands on a Galaxy S10e, S10 or S10+:

Don’t search for Galaxy S10 LED notification settings on missed calls and messages, but there’s a solution

Unfortunately, since Samsung went with an ultrathin top bezel and a hole-in-display design, the LED light that used to bring us visual notifications about charging status, or missed calls and messages, is also gone. There is a ring that lights up around the front camera area when you do face recognition and such, but it doesn’t serve a notification purpose just yet. 

Hopefully, Samsung can fix this with an update, and in the meantime, you can use the Always On Edge lighting app from the Play Store as a stopgap solution for visual notifications. Bummer, but here’s what the app can do.

Double-tap to wake arrives to the Galaxy S10

Got a Galaxy S10? You'll find out that... no LED notification, but tap to wake and more

Lo and behold, Samsung’s One UI on the S10 trio is bringing what may be the richest suite of navigation gestures on any Android brand, including the Chinese juggernauts if we count the One Hand Operation+ options you can tack on. 

Swipe down to pull the notification shade? Check. Swipe up to bring the app drawer? Check. Navigation gestures from the bottom of the screen? Check. 

Navigation gestures from the sides so you don’t have to stretch down on biggies like the S10+. Check-mate. Lift to wake? Check. What’s missing? Why, double-tap to wake, of course, but not anymore, as the neat option is now an integral part of the S10e, S10 and S10+ interface. Sweet!

Do not remove the official S10 screen protector, but don’t use polarized glasses either

Official screen protector through polarized sunglasses

Official screen protector through polarized sunglasses

For the first time in Samsung’s S-line history, the S10 trio comes with a factory screen protector preinstalled. Those, however, are not the plastic screen covers that a lot of Chinese phones ship with, which suffice until you get a quality tempered glass one, so don’t mess with it. 

Samsung deliberately installed a screen protector material that is durable, scratch- and shatter-proof, while at the same time it works perfectly with the new ultrasonic fingerprint sensor under the S10 and S10+ displays. 

Unless you wear polarized sunglasses, that is, then the protector will distort the image, as you can see in the example on the right with the protector half-peeled.

We cannot guarantee the experience with screen protectors made of the traditional glass or polyurethane materials,” warns Samsung, so word to the wise. If you damage it by any chance, the official replacement from Samsung will run you $29.99, so rest assured the one that comes on the phone is no cheap film protector you’d better replace with glass one. This year, things are different.

Got a Galaxy S10? You'll find out that... no LED notification, but tap to wake and more

Machine-assisted drop tests put the Galaxy S10 in the same fragility category as the S9

Oh, the places you’ll go, and the phone dropping you’ll do! One can’t insure themselves against life, and phone insurance is expensive, so if you want to know how your S10 will fare compared to its predecessors, take a peek below. Spoiler alert: glass backs do crack the same.

Yes, all S10 models work with the Gear VR headsets

Samsung’s latest SM-R325 version of the Gear VR headset that already supported 14 different Samsung smartphone models, thanks to its spring-loading mechanism, now can also carry the new Galaxy S10 extended family as well. Needless to say, you’d need Samsung’s USB-C adapter, which ships in the box together with your new Gear VR, but not the special adapter they made for the Note 9 that results in a wobblier S10+ lodging. The older Gear VR (2016) would still work, too, though it didn’t ship with the awesome remote control, yet you can still get one separately. Other than that, smooth sailing with your oldie but goldie Gear VR, and your brand spankin’ new S10 phone.

Works with Galaxy S8, works with Galaxy S10, good guy Samsung

Works with Galaxy S8, works with Galaxy S10, good guy Samsung

Schedule your life around the S10 with Bixby Routines

Macros on life, that’s what the Bixby Routines option is and, frankly, if you set aside the time to set up a pattern, your wrist and thumb will be thankful for it. Seriously, check this feature out, you won’t be disappointed. There is a rich variety of preset if-then options to choose from, too, covering the most widely used scenarios.

Yes, you can see the S10 fingerprint scanner under the display

Don’t fret now, but if you shine a very bright light over your Galaxy S10 or S10+ displays at an angle, and the screen is off, you will be able to see the contours of the ultrasonic finger scanner underneath the display. That’s not to say it will cause burn-in, of course, as some users are worried, and you can see exactly where to lay your finger relative to Samsung’s imprinting animation, too.
Got a Galaxy S10? You'll find out that... no LED notification, but tap to wake and more

Shattered S10 screen or back replacement won’t come cheap 

The $299 (S10 and S10+) and $225 (S10e) repair deductible can make you pause before you decide to carry the S10 family without a case, but at least the screen protector comes pre-installed now. The deductibles are a tad higher than for the S9 and S9+, but let’s not forget the new punch hole-in-active-area design that is harder to produce and fit after an incident. Compared to, say, the iPhone XS Max, these prices are a tad lower, too, especially for a shattered rear.

Got a Galaxy S10? You'll find out that... no LED notification, but tap to wake and more

You can apply multi-pack wallpapers to the S10 lock screen

On the Galaxy S10 trio, Samsung has grouped the wallpapers by themed multi-packs in the respective settings section. Choose one, and it will start rotating a set of beautifully styled wallpapers in the same vein every time you unlock the screen. Cool.

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