I have typically wondered how a brand like Samsung may have tousled so badly within the smartphone space. When I saw the Samsung Galaxy S4, I sighed. When the Samsung Galaxy S5 rolled around, my shoulders sagged additional.
How may a brand with so many hyper-intelligent researchers and nicely paid designers make something so bland but complex repeatedly? Each phone packed superb power in a boring case, with every element somehow negating the other.
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This year although, following a reshuffle, things have changed. The Galaxy S6 is a thing of magnificence, a complete redesign that actually works, but blended with massive swathes of power once again.
The important thing right here though is, it seems that power will not be there for the sake of it – every element has a purpose, to make sure the Galaxy S6 works effectively under the finger whereas lastly being a phone you would consider alongside an HTC or iPhone.
For years, we have been complaining about Samsung’s plastic phones. The Samsung Galaxy S5 and its predecessors, all the way again to the Galaxy S in 2010, were plastic. Within the previous days it was nice, however, we received bored with paying for phones that felt, well, low cost.
All that has modified. There’s practically no plastic on the Samsung Galaxy S6. It’s back and a front is super-powerful Gorilla Glass 4, its sides are from aluminum.
The Sony Xperia Z3 has the same glass ’n’ metallic style, however, the Galaxy S6’s curves are softer and the handset itself much less large. There is a hint of boxiness to it, however at just 6.8mm thick it is not going to be too much of a handful for many adults out there.
It feels nice. And switching between it and the Note 4 simply proves that Samsung should actually have given up on its dream of leather-based effect plastic phones lots earlier.back to menu ↑
The Samsung Galaxy S6 feels extra high-finish, more expensive than any phone Samsung made a final year. It is a unibody phone too, that means you can not rip off the back panel to get hold of the battery.
We are fine with that, however, Samsung has additionally removed the memory card slot. It has presumably observed that Apple makes quite a lot of quid upselling people to 128GB iPhones and need a piece of the action.
Why would you otherwise when a 64GB card these days?
Some persons are sure to be irritated, but then loads will be happy with the entry-level 32GB Galaxy S6 anyway. On contract, the improve to the 64GB model will price you and extra, and there is even a 128GB model out there for those happy to spend a small fortune on a phone.
It is disappointing when that is so clearly a money-making exercise. However apart from that, the Samsung Galaxy S6 hardware is superb. As normal, it is jam-filled with features together with an IR transmitter, NFC, apt-X support & Wi-Fi at. There is even a barometer inside.back to menu ↑
Not everybody cares about these extras, however, the basics are good too. The power button sits properly under your thumb, & finally, Samsung has aced its fingerprint scanner hardware.
As with the Samsung Galaxy S5, it sits below the main Home button. However now, instead of having to swipe a finger throughout it, you simply place a finger on it, similar to the iPhone 6 Touch ID sensor. It really works simply as well, too, if maybe a fraction of a second slower.back to menu ↑
There’s additionally a giant shift in display screen tech. As with the LG G3, the Samsung Galaxy S6 makes the leap up to QHD display screen resolution. Stretched across 5.1 inches that will get you the pixel density of 577ppi. Fairly superb, right?
Except your eyes are far, much better than ours, it is physically not possible to discern the pixels. Suppose you possibly can? You are probably an eagle.
Funnily enough, though, the display screen is not really one of the Samsung Galaxy S6’s most obvious enhancements. However only because the Samsung Galaxy S5 already has a corker of a display.
Both use Tremendous AMOLED screens getting you flawless contrast and deep blacks no matter whether you are outside or frantically sending a textual content in the cinema before the trailers begin. It is the kind of screen that makes you marvel: the place does we go from here? Nicely, there are still reflections and we guess there are a couple of more curved screens just like the S6 Edge’s and LG G Flex 2’s somewhere on the horizon. However, this is quite the achievement already.
It’s also possible to select whether to have your colors super-vivid or extra accurate and natural. That is nothing new, being a Samsung staple, but continues to be a fantastic feature anyway.back to menu ↑
At first the software appears familiar too, however, there is loads of new stuff as well. The Samsung Galaxy S6 runs Android 5.0 and has the newest version of Samsung’s custom UI.
What’s new? Well very similar to vanilla Android 5.0, all the things moves somewhat in a different way. There’s a parallax effect for the wallpapers once you tilt the phone and all of the animations have a bit extra inertia to them.
It makes the Samsung Galaxy S6 really feel a bit more natural and compared older phones such because the Galaxy Note 4 appear a bit stiff and business-like. It’s a great change.
Similar to the HTC One M9, the Samsung Galaxy S6 has also adopted themes. These change things such as the wallpapers, icons, widgets & system font. It is a full facelift.
Nevertheless, proper now we do not assume the themes out there are many cops. There is a bunch you may download on-line, however, none of them is remotely subtle enough. The Samsung Galaxy S6 might really take a few pointers from the HTC One M9 right here, which may automatically create a theme around any picture you select.
Apart from that, although, the software is fairly solid. The Samsung TouchWiz lag of old appears to have just about disappeared, making the Galaxy S6 a joy to make use of. There were a few moments where the phone outright paused for just a few seconds, but this looks like an early software glitch rather than a normal efficiency problem.back to menu ↑
The sheer processor power can not hurt, both. As of March 2015, the Samsung Galaxy S6 has essentially the most powerful phone processor we have tried. Samsung has broken away from the pack this year, utilizing its own Exynos 7420 CPU rather than a Qualcomm Snapdragon chip just like the HTC One M9’s.
We had heard that the top dog Snapdragon 810 CPU’s being liable to overheat was the reason, however, the Exynos additionally appears to be a deal more highly effective. This is not the sort of factor you are going to notice day by day, however, Samsung has actually done superb work right here.
Our Geekbench three scores suggest the Galaxy S6 is a large 20% more highly effective than rival flagships such as the HTC One M9. It scores upwards of 5200 factors, where you will high out at about 4400 points from a Snapdragon 810 CPU – at least from our testing so far. That is incredible energy, outdoing some laptops.
We are additionally pretty impressed with how hot it will get. Or to be extra precise, how hot it does not get. Certain, it will get a bit warm when put underneath pressure for some time, however, nothing like what some people experience with the Sony Xperia Z3, one other metallic and glass phone. It appears to get warmest when charging, which Samsung has turbo-charged.
How does it hold its cool? I’ve to get slightly bit geeky to clarify it. The Galaxy S6’s Exynos 7420 CPU has transistors which are 14nm across, whereas the rival Snapdragon makes use of a 20nm process. Smaller transistors are the gray matter cells of a CPU, and smaller ones mean larger efficiency, and less vitality wasted as heat.
We are not quite sure how Samsung has soldiered so far forward, nevertheless, it actually appears to have done so – and it may show a huge benefit via this phone era.back to menu ↑
This super-advanced processor additionally works wonders on battery life. The Galaxy S6 has a 2,550mAh battery, which actually is not that enormous for a phone with a QHD 5.1-inch display screen. Nevertheless, stamina is fairly improbable regardless.
We got 14 hours of video off a charge and the phone ought to last day and a half without much effort. It appears to last a shade longer than the S6 Edge even, despite having a barely smaller battery. We would have liked to see a Samsung Galaxy S6 with the identical advanced CPU and a 3000mAh battery because the Edge, however maybe Samsung decided that might be overkill.
Samsung has amped-up the charger too, though, getting you a faster recharge than the Galaxy S5. It is now insanely quick, getting to 70% in about half-hour. Earlier we said the S6 will get hottest when charging. For this reason.back to menu ↑
Efficiency is the name of the game with the camera, too. The place HTC has bumped-up the One M9’s camera resolution to a whopping 20MP, the S6 sticks with sixteen – the same as the Note 4.
However it is an incredible camera, with an enhancement far higher than these conservative-sounding numbers may suggest. The sensor has not had an improve it appears, and it has OIS identical to the newest Note, but the lens is all-new.
And it is an excellent fast f/1.9 lens. Loads of phones have lenses across the f/2.0 mark (the smaller the number, the faster the lens), however, the latest Note 4 is slower, with f/2.2 aperture. It’s no nice surprise, then, that the low-light efficiency of the Galaxy S6 is way higher. Nighttime photography is far clearer and brighter, whereas your average indoors shot will probably be that a lot less noisy and higher defined.
Add in the great detail you get with a 16MP sensor with good lighting and nice dynamic range and you’ve got a real photographic winner. Samsung has become an archduke of HDR photographs lately, and it provides an additional option within the Galaxy S6. As well as turning HDR on and off, you possibly can set it to ‘Auto’.
What this does is to get you a dynamic range increase where wanted, however not to the identical extent as a full HDR shot.
The Samsung Galaxy S6’s camera efficiency is so darn good that you should use HDR on a regular basis if you like. It shoots them at the sort of speed most good phones shoot regular images at while without HDR engaged you can shoot nearly as fast as your finger can tap. That is in good lighting: issues slow down a little at night time, however not all that much. It is way sooner than the Galaxy S5 in any situations.
That quicker sensor permits you to get great natural arty effects too, with a fairly shallow depth of subject blurring out the background nicely when capturing close-up topics. You simply do not get this with a lesser phone camera.
We even just like the camera app well sufficient too. It places the HDR switch by your left thumb (our most-used button) together with a couple of different essentials, whereas the shutter and mode selection is on the best side. It is pretty plain-looking, simply as it should be.
New for this year, you additionally get a Pro mode. This allows you to manually select focus, ISO, and some different things. It is good for getting these ultra close-up macro photographs without fighting with the autofocus (which is fairly good itself).
Is this the camera that has it all? We expect so. It might not have the biggest camera sensor around — it is not a Nokia Lumia 1020 — however high-quality components work along with smart software and a brilliant fast camera processor to make one thing that’s extremely enjoyable and fast to use. This is likely one of the best phone cameras, ever. And it is much more reliable than the HTC One M9’s.
The selfie cam is not too bad either. It has a 5-megapixel sensor, which is quickly changing into the norm. It is fairly good at managing brightness so that your photographs do not look too dull indoors. Nonetheless, detail does take a dive in lower lighting. For selfies, the HTC One M9’s UltraPixel camera is best.back to menu ↑
Does HTC still have the speaker victory too? Nicely, we are truly stunned at how a lot effort Samsung has put into its Galaxy S6’s inside speaker this year.
After placing fairly piddly little speakers on the bottom of its phones for ages, Samsung has moved the Galaxy S6’s speaker down to the bottom edge, and put it on steroids. It is loud and it has a far meatier sound than earlier Galaxy phones.
There is far more mid-vary warmth, and even a little bit of bassy thwack too. Up towards the HTC One M9, the Samsung Galaxy S6 is definitely a fair bit louder, however, HTC still has the edge for sound quality. It is a bit extra refined, the place the S6’s driver sounds prefer it is actually being pushed to its limits. The BoomSound brothers (HTC’s audio system) still rule, however, Samsung has made up a lot of ground right here.
The Samsung Galaxy S6 is a king amongst phones. Far from being a determined attempt to get us all to hand over £500 or extra yet once more, it is a smart improve that fixes not simply things that have been amiss within the Galaxy S5, but issues which have plagued Samsung phones for years.
It is a brand new era for Samsung phones. We simply wish it was not beginning without a microSD slot because serious media followers will have to fork out £800 for the big daddy 128GB version.
That is bound to place off a certain section of phone consumers, and for dealing with, ergonomics and speaker high quality, the HTC One M9 still wins, however only simply.back to menu ↑