Samsung officially unveiled the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge yesterday at its Unpacked event at the Mobile World Congress 2015 in Barcelona, to take on Apple’s iPhone 6, which has been grabbing smartphone market share ever since its launch in September.
We take a look at how the Samsung Galaxy S6 stacks up against Apple’s iPhone 6.
Click on this link to see the bigger version of the comparison table
Samsung has certainly raised its game with the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge with an all-new design. The front still has a familiar look and feel to it, but the metal frame with the shiny bezel, and glass back panel instead of using cheap-feeling plastics that it has always been criticized for, makes them the most visually stunning devices Samsung has ever made.
We have mocked Samsung for blatantly copying the bottom section of the device (the speaker grille and the antenna bands), but sometimes you get the feeling that the company is just trying to troll Apple fanboys, as it just doesn’t make sense that a company that has improved upon the Galaxy S5’s design in such a dramatic way, would end up copying design elements from a device made by its arch rival, who has successfully sued them for billions of dollars. At the end of the day, if you’re looking for a smartphone, it shouldn’t really matter if a device is inspired by another device.
Samsung hasn’t just focussed on design, it has also ticked quite a few boxes where the iPhone 6 falls short by offering the entry level model with 32GB storage (compared to iPhone 6’s 16GB), 3GB RAM (compared to iPhone 6’s 1GB), front and back facing camera with f/1.9 lens for improved low-light performance. Samsung has tried to match it by introducing the one-touch fingerprint sensor instead of previous generation’s swipe-based fingerprint scanner that didn’t work too well. At the same time, Samsung has also taken things to another level by adding innovative features such as Fast Charging, which allows users to charge their device with up to 4 hours of battery life after only 10 mins of charging and takes half the time to charge compared to the iPhone 6, the 577 pixels-per-inch display and built-in wireless charging that supports both WPC and PMA wireless charging standards.
The Galaxy S6 also comes with faster LPDDR4 RAM, which is supposed to provide 80% more bandwidth compared to LPDDR3 RAM used in the iPhone 6. It also comes with faster and more energy efficient UFS 2.0 flash memory instead of the eMMC memory standard. Compared to the eMMC 5.0 memory currently found in the iPhone 6, UFS 2.0 memory is 1.40 (sequential read speed), 1.66 (sequential write speed), 2.71 (random read speed) and 1.07 (random write speed) times faster.
Interestingly, Samsung has followed Apple’s footsteps, by finally letting go of features such as removable battery, microSD card slot and waterproofing. Samsung has ironically mocked Apple in the past for not having a removable battery. But I think it’s a non-issue, when you consider that Apple has sold so many devices with these limitations. However, these features seem to matter to Android users, so it remains to be seen if Samsung’s decision will backfire, and end up alienating its own user base.
On paper, the Samsung Galaxy S6 looks very impressive. But the last time I used a Samsung smartphone (it was the Galaxy S4), I was turned off by the overall user experience, and also with the lack of the same quality of apps that are available in the App Store.
Samsung has promised that they have also made significant improvements on the software front by bundling a lighter version of TouchWiz and getting rid of almost 40 percent of bloatware. It is going to be tough to beat iOS when it comes to ease of use and tight integration of hardware, software and services.
Galaxy S smartphones have always boasted cameras with higher megapixel count, but the iPhone has consistently outperformed them.
So will it be enough to beat the iPhone 6 when it comes to user experience and real world performance, which matters the most, remains to be seen.
Let me know what you think in the comments below.