Friday, 27 March 2015 15:49

Samsung Galaxy S6 and Edge – smooth


While the official launch in Australia is not until Monday 30 March, little has been written about Samsung’s new direction – and how it plans to win the battle for smartphone supremacy and the Samsung ecosystem.

First, let’s position the S6 and Edge. They share design cues with the S5, S4 and S3 – perhaps more rounded edges and a better quality feel but instantly recognisable as a Samsung. In other words, it has incrementally improved on its predecessors – all worthy of the title of flagship.

The Edge (pictured) is in my opinion more than a marketing gimmick – it makes good use of the previously useless real estate – whether the unique design is worth the extra dollars is up to you – I think it is.

The construction is an aluminium uni-body with Corning Gorilla Glass 4 on the front and back – Very hard to scratch and in four colours - White Pearl, Blue Topaz, Black Sapphire, and Gold Platinum.

The 5.1” screen is 2560x1440 Super AMOLED – 577 pixels per inch. Easily the best screen on the market.

Camera is 16MP rear – 5312x2988 pixels with image stabilisation and LED flash. Early reviews say it blows the HTC M9 and iPhone 6 cameras away.

Under the bonnet – let’s do an Apple and not comment – except to say it has heaps of grunt and all the advanced features and sensors needed.

The S6 uses a Samsung developed processor (GeekBench 4916) that blows HTC M9 (3873) and Apple iPhone 6 Plus (2884) out of the water.

New is Samsung Pay system – replacing a credit card and an improved finger print scanner. We are not sure if the payment system will work in Australia at first.

Its also compatible with the Oculus designed Samsung Gear VR – nice.

Now for the not so great.

Samsung have developed a Touch Wiz overlay for Android 5.0 Lollipop. It’s OK but early reviews tend to call it bloat ware – I will comment further in a formal review.

Like the iPhone, it does not have a removable battery – but it does have Qi charging - nor a micro SD slot. Hey if Apple can get away with that the Samsung can too. Note the Samsung battery is actually removable with special tools. See page 138 of the the manual here.

And gone is IP67 water and dust resistance of the S5. An Activ model is rumoured for later in the year and it will be bigger and probably have a removable battery and micro SD card.


It’s a premium phone with a premium feel that is top of the Android heap. Android keeps getting better and its going to sell like hot cakes.

Analysts have predicted that 55 million units will be sold this year (don’t ask me how except that Samsung has pre-orders for 25 million). Orders are about three to one for the S6 over the Edge – there is a significant price premium for the latter.

In independent camera tests the S6 came second to the Lumia 930 – that is saying something.

How will Samsung win - the same way they did with the S4 and S5 - its great kit, and they will outspend and outmarket Apple until the next round of releases later this year.

Samsung Galaxy 6 Specs

  • Screen: 1440 x 2560 Quad-HD Super AMOLED display 577ppi
  • Dimensions/Weight: 143.4 x 70.5 x 6.8mm x 138g
  • Processor: 64-bit 14nm Samsung Exynos 7 Octa processor. Four cores run at 1.5GHz and four run at 2.1GHz.
  • RAM: 3GB of LPDDR4 RAM
  • Storage: 32GB, 64GB or 128GB of UFS 2.0 flash memory
  • Wireless: LTE category 6 modem (300mbps download), 802.11ac MIMO 620mbps, and Bluetooth 4.1, NFC.
  • Front camera: 5MP, f/1.9 lens with real-time HDR and wide-angle selfie
  • Rear camera: 16MP, f/1.9 lens
  • Battery: Built-in 2550mAh lasting WiFi 12 hours, LTE 11h, video 13h, music 49h. Wireless charging.

Samsung Galaxy 6 EDGE Specs (all same as S6 except where listed)

  • Screen: 1440 x 2660 Quad-HD Super AMOLED display 577ppi
  • Dimensions/weight: 142 x 70.1 x 70mm x 132g
  • Battery: Built-in 2600mAh lasting WiFi 12 hours, LTE 11h, video 13h, music 49h. Wireless charging.

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Ray Shaw

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Ray Shaw  has a passion for IT ever since building his first computer in 1980. He is a qualified journalist, hosted a consumer IT based radio program on ABC radio for 10 years, has developed world leading software for the events industry and is smart enough to no longer own a retail computer store!

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