Samsung Galaxy S10+ Review: 10th Generation Android Greatness

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Samsung Galaxy S10+ Gaming And Graphics Performance

Next we'll test the Samsung Galaxy S10+ through GFXBench, which has been one of our standard mobile graphics performance benchmarks for quite a while now. In order to ensure display refresh (v-sync) and resolution are not limiting factors, we are comparing off-screen test results here. GFXBench tests OpenGL ES graphics workloads and we're specifically testing GLES 2.0 and 3.0 rendering performance in the following two benchmark modules. 

3D Graphics Benchmarks: 3DMark & GFX Bench
Pushing The Pixels
GFX TRex Galaxy S10

GFX Manhattan Galaxy S10

Once again, we were able to pull in Apple's finest to our benchmark grouping and the iPhone XS Max takes the top rung by a comfortable margin. Beyond that, the Samsung Galaxy S10+ racks up a 10 - 17 percent performance advantage over the fastest Android phone phone we've tested to date.

We also ran Futuremark's 3DMark, which has been a staple 3D graphics benchmark at HotHardware across all mobile and desktop platforms for many years. In this case we were running 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited, which is targeted for mobile devices and also runs at 720p in offscreen mode, so as to take display resolution out of the equation. This test and its 3D graphics engine are also based on the legacy OpenGL ES 2.0 API. 

3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited Galaxy S10 Plus

Here we're seeing a bit of an anomaly with this aging 3DMark benchmark component. Though the Samsung Galaxy S10+ and its Snapdragon 855 processor with integrated Adreno 640 GPU cranks out much better performance in the Graphics tests, its Physics score holds it back from the top spot overall versus the previous generation Snapdragon 845-powered devices. We actually have a couple of questions in with Qualcomm on this and will circle back once we have more detail. 

In the meantime, let's take a look at the more current-generation 3DMark Sling Shot test, which is powered by an OpenGL ES 3.1-based graphics engine. 

3DMark Sling Shot is a newer benchmark module that's been added to the 3DMark mobile suite, though we do have a few top-shelf Android phones, the iPhone X, and Samsung's own Galaxy Note 9 in the mix. Sling Shot is a much more advanced OpenGL ES 3.1 and Metal API-based test that employs more advanced rendering techniques, like volumetric lighting, particle illumination, multiple render targets, instanced rendering, uniform buffers and transform feedback.

3DMark Sling Shot Test
Futuremark 3DMark Sling Shot Extreme Benchmark

In this test we again run it in off-screen mode, so as to remove display resolution differences from the equation and thus can compare cross-platform results more reliably.

Galaxy S10 3DMark Sling Shot Extreme


Here the new Samsung Galaxy S10+ and its Snapdragon 855 SoC with 8GB of RAM backing it up, drops in where we expect it to, at the very top of the stack. Its graphics performance is some 23% better than the fastest Android smartphone we've tested previously in this benchmark, and in terms of Physics throughput it's about 19% faster. 

Let's look at battery life next, then wrap this thing up...

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