Arguably the finest phone on the market, but its pricey and has lost features compared to previous models
The Samsung Galaxy S6 is undoubtedly the finest Android phone you can currently buy, and arguably the best phone overall, but not the reasons you might expect. While its new design married to ever-impressive Samsung hardware does indeed make it both perform and feel like a premium handset, it’s actually the little details that really make the difference.
Samsung Galaxy S6 – Key Features/Specs
Samsung Galaxy S6 – Design
The new snazzy design of the S6 is of course its big new feature as compared to previous flagship Galaxy phones such as the Galaxy S5. Its real metal sides and glass back really are such a vast improvement, with a fit and finish that easily rivals the iPhone 6.
There are still a few slightly questionable elements to the design, such as the choice to have a slightly patterned, metallic colour rather than a solid block of colour. This is particularly true of the front, where it means you loose that oh-so-desirable effect of the screen seemingly disappearing into blackness when turned off. Here it’s more clearly visible in the slightly blue tinged bezel.
I do, however, much prefer the choice of a glass back to the aluminium of the HTC One M9 and iPhone 6 as it’s simply more hard-wearing. It’s just such a shame that toughness couldn’t have been accompanied by a waterproof rating.
I had vowed never to buy a non-waterproof phone after Sony started bringing out models that included the feature on phones that weren’t otherwise compromised in design. In time I may go back to using a Sony Xperia Z3 instead – or move onto the upconing Sony Xpeira Z3+ – but for now the S6 has won me over.
There are another couple of design slip ups in the form of the protruding camera lens and the headphone jack placement.
The former is largely forgiveable given the camera’s position and specs, and the otherwise impressive slimness of the phone but I’d certainly count myself among the many that would rather have a thicker phone overall, or have the camera in the corner, so that it can be kept flush with the rest of the phone.
The latter is simply a symptom of all the phone manufacturers slowly but surely copying Apple (yes, it wasn’t first but it’s set the modern trend) so it was somewhat inevitable, but it’s no less annoying. Phone manufacturers take note: THE HEADPHONE JACK SHOULD BE ON THE TOP EDGE! PERIOD! Why? Because the headphone jack gets in the way when holding the phone and it’s no more convenient in any other circumstance.
Overall, though, Samsung really has nailed the hardware design of the S6. Well, except for the obvious…
Samsung Galaxy S6 – Removing the removable
Yes, the S6’s design has two massive compromises: no microSD and no removable battery.
Now, up to a certain point I actually didn’t mind either of these too much. However, with time one of them has come to be quite an annoyance.
Starting with the removable battery, I was a paid up member of the two-batteries club, merrily popping off the back of my Galaxy S4 to swap out my dead battery for a freshly charged one. However, a year or so ago I picked up a 6000mAh portable battery and have basically never used my second battery since. A portable charge is simply far more convenient as you don’t need a separate battery charger, it you don’t need to turn your phone off to charge and it can charge any other devices you may have.
If and when the original battery in the S6 starts to loose its ability to hold charge then it will become more of an issue but it’s still not an insurmountable on: I’d rather pay £30-£50 to have a new battery fitted in two or three years time – or more likely just sell the phone on ebay – then faff around with two batteries again.
However, when it comes to the removable storage things are less clear. The biggest problem is that you have to now pay quite a lot more to get your extra storage, rather than just chuck in a £20 64GB memory card. This is countered by thee entry level model coming with 32GB anyway, though, so most people will do just fine. Then there’s the fact that there are circumstance where copying files to and from a microSD card – or indeed swapping out cards to share files – is that much more convenient and speedy.
All told, while the ditching of the removable back and removable battery is largely understandable from a design and manufacturing perspective and there are only modest compromises – non of which are financial – Samsung could’ve and should’ve fitted in a microSD slot, especially as the phone isn’t even waterproof.
Samsung Galaxy S6 – Features
Both certainly create inconveniences
indeamsung has announced its latest flagship Android phone, the Samsung Galaxy S6, which features a host of improvements over last year’s S5, including a new metal and glass chassis.
Samsung has upgraded just about every aspect of its new phone, from internal specs to external design. There’s a new processor, new camera, net metal chassis and new glass back. This is somewhat in contrast to the HTC One M9 which largely looks the same and has the same 1080p screen.