Is the Galaxy Note 10 S Pen compatible with the Galaxy Note 20?

Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra vs. Galaxy Note 10+
Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra vs. Galaxy Note 10+ (Image credit: Hayato Huseman / Android Central)

Best answer: Yes, the S Pen included with the Galaxy Note 10 is compatible and will work with the Galaxy Note 20.

The S Pens are interchangeable

Galaxy Note 20 Ultra camera interface

Source: Hayato Huseman / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Hayato Huseman / Android Central)

In a world where smartphone OEM's usually make things "proprietary" for new devices, Samsung has bucked that trend a bit. At first glance, the stylus of the Galaxy Note 10 and that of the Galaxy Note 20 are identical when it comes to the dimensions. This gives us the obvious question of whether you can use the Note 10 S Pen with the new Galaxy Note 20.

The great news here is that yes, in fact, you can use the older stylus with your new smartphone. We have confirmed that the Note 10's stylus not only clicks into the slot on the bottom of the Note 20, but you'll have access to the same features. That includes the Floating Cursor, Air Gestures, and more.

The only potential "catch" is trying to match up the Note 10 stylus to the color of your Note 20. Or maybe you want to get that sweet Mystic Bronze and pair it up with the Blue and Silver S Pen. Knowing that you can is just half the battle, and you can rest easy with the knowledge that they will work perfectly together.

Are there are any differences in the S Pen?

Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra vs. Galaxy Note 10+

Source: Hayato Huseman / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Hayato Huseman / Android Central)

Before explaining the differences between the current and previous S Pen, it's important to make note of a major difference between the Note 10 and Note 20. With last year's model, Samsung only included a 60Hz refresh rate, which is just fine but after seeing devices like the OnePlus 7 Pro, we were left disappointed.

That's changed with the Note 20 Ultra (not the regular model, unfortunately), as Samsung finally upped the ante and included the amazing 120Hz refresh rate. Samsung already has some of the best displays in the business, but the move to 120Hz makes things look buttery smooth.

With the improved display, Samsung made the astute decision to improve the latency in the S Pen provided with the Note 20. The S Pen from the Note 10 was equipped with a latency delay of around 45ms, but that has been almost cut in half for the Note 20. There's just a 26ms latency delay when using the Note 20 and its included stylus. This makes writing, drawing, and interacting with your Note more smooth than ever before.

Outside of this, both the Note 10 and Note 20's S Pen are capable of performing the same tasks, including the aforementioned Air Gestures and more. So while you may miss out on the latency of the newer S Pen, the rest of the features remain the same and work across both opitons.

Andrew Myrick
Senior Editor - Chromebooks, tablets, and wearables

Andrew Myrick is a Senior Editor at Android Central. He enjoys everything to do with technology, including tablets, smartphones, and everything in between. Perhaps his favorite past-time is collecting different headphones, even if they all end up in the same drawer.