According to sales data, Samsung suffered a huge defeat for its flagship phone last year, the Galaxy S5. Not only did the phone fail to satisfy its customers, it was also lambasted by the critics for not being innovative. It simply did not justify its huge price tag. So to bounce back from this defeat, Samsung just went back to its drawing board. It identified all the problems that lay with the S5 and rectified them all. It went all in when it released its new flagship phone for the year 2015 the Samsung Galaxy S6. Similarly Apple, which has a reputation to not follow market trends while coming up with a completely new market for itself, has chased the popular market this time with its flagship phone the iPhone 6 Plus. According to critics, it deviated from Apple’s previous line of restrained products to introduce some features just to compete with its other competitors in the high budget phones range. So as many say, the iPhone 6 Plus has been one of the most un-Apple-like products. In short, the iPhone 6 Plus design has been defined by its fiercest competitors in the phablet market.
Again with both phones, it was clearly observed that the manufacturers had radically revamped their thinking about their flagship phones which have brought about a change in the design philosophies. Apple with the iPhone 6 Plus has finally entered the market with a phone that has a larger screen. This completely defies its philosophy that phones should be small enough to be easily operated by one hand only. Samsung’s changes are far more evident. The company was usually inclined towards using plastic for its high-end phones. This often led to absolutely bogus designs which failed to meet customer expectations and were often described as not being worthy of their price tags. Samsung has changed all this by introducing an all aluminium rim for the first time in its product line. Apart from this, the home button has been enlarged to accommodate the fingerprint reader. Designers have also successfully reduced the screen bezel down the side of the phone. Also, the phone looks more attractive due the rounding off of the bottom and top edges.
Samsung has also replaced plastic with Gorilla Glass for the back cover. This means that the battery will be irreplaceable, but customers still love the S6 due to the wireless charging feature. A big glaring hole in the design is the big protruding rear camera which looks like a giant mole on the elegant body of the phone. Even though it doesn’t cause any problem with the phone’s functionality, it does somehow diminish the aesthetic value. But the Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus is much nicer to grip mainly because it curved aluminium uni-body design. But this advantage doesn’t help it against the Galaxy S6 which towers over the iPhone 6 Plus with its design.
When comparing screen sizes, the first and foremost criterion is the screen size. The S6 has a 5.1-inch screen which is significantly bigger than the iPhone 6 Plus 4.7-inch screen which means that users get more room to enjoy their videos, games and other needs. The second criterion for judgment is screen resolution. The S6’s resolution upgrade has given it a much sharper display than the iPhone 6 Plus. So the S6 is a winner only for a user who wants to own the latest technology in the market. All in all, the sharpness display is pretty much same on both phones if not looked closely enough.
Now we compare the differences in the display technologies. Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus used an LCD screen while the S6 has an OLED display. Hence, this enables the S6 to have a much better contrast ratio when compared to the iPhone 6 plus. Also, it presents almost perfect black levels. The iPhone 6 tries to beat this by providing the user with stronger viewing angles and higher colour accuracy. So, even if the iPhone 6 Plus has a great screen, it is just not up to the mark with the S6’s new 2K display.
Apple has put in an A8 CPU, which is a dual-core 64-bit chip with a quick GPU. The A8 CPU is backed by only 1 GB of RAM. Samsung had again broken convention when it decided to opt for its own custom produced Exynos processor over the Qualcomm’s Snapdragon. The Galaxy S6 uses a 64 bit Exynos 7420 chip which has an octa core set up. The processor chip is backed by 3 GB of RAM which is three times of what the iPhone 6 Plus provides. Samsung has introduced a DDR4 RAM in the S6 making it the first smartphone to use the new DDR4 technology. The iPhone 6 Plus still uses the DDR3 version. Now considering the fact that the DDR4 is almost over 80% faster than its previous version, the S6 can be deemed to be a much faster phone than the iPhone 6 Plus. But again this does not affect day to day use as both phones are fast and they very easily match up to the user’s needs. So when the phones are judged on performance, it is a tie.
The S6 uses a slightly tweaked version of the S5’s camera which ruled over all the other competing smartphone camera setups last year. So like the S5, the S6 also has the ability to quickly capture images that are not only sharp but are also vibrant. Some features like the unique HDR and optical image stabilization ensure that the S6 stands out in camera performance under low light conditions. But this also fails to completely remove the noise in these low light images. Samsung uses a 16-megapixel rear camera which on paper clearly triumphs over the iPhone 6 Plus 8-megapixel one. But again the iPhone uses its camera to the best of its ability by using a great set up that allows the user to click photos that can be compared to the photos clicked with the S6.
The iPhone loses when it comes to low light images. The absence of the features present in the S6 does severely affect low light performance. Again the S6’s front camera triumphs over the iPhone. So the S6 wins this round.
So, the conclusion is that the Samsung Galaxy S6 is currently the most technology advanced phone on the planet. On paper, it triumphs over the iPhone 6 Plus in many areas, but in reality, there is not much difference between them. But still the Galaxy S6 is the phone to buy now mainly due to its new features.
The author is a smart mobile device critic for a popular gadget website www.bestmobs.com and also runs his own blog.