At Samsungs Unpacked 2015 event tonight, Samsung unleashed the Galaxy S6 and the slightly more ‘edgy’ Galaxy S6 Edge. We’re live here in Barcelona and we’ve taken a quick look at the phones and here’s what we think.
The two phones are cut from the same cloth when it comes to specs, but when it comes to looks and feel, the Galaxy S6 Edge is definitely a different animal. There’s some striking similarities between the two phones, with both definitely falling into the ‘fingerprint’ magnet category. The phones are both covered in Corning Gorilla Glass 4 which is the toughest Gorilla Glass yet, it’s smooth, a warm feel to it but it’s definitely going to irk you if you don’t like fingreprints.
The Galaxy S6 has a beautifully rounded edge curving round to the front of the screen, while the Galaxy S6 Edge has a slight lip around the edge screen which can feel a little sharp, but is still comfortable to hold.
The phones are not overly large, with a simple 5.1″ display, but with a QHD resolution, the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge screen is stunning up close. The colours are warm and pop as you’t expect with an AMOLED display and it seems quite bright, but this is under the glow of the bright lights of a display booth.
The big change under the hood is the decision to go with their own in-house Exynos 7420 Octa-Core processor. From first experience with the device though it’s quite responsive when you put both of the phones through their paces. Being stuck in a booth means you can’t really download and run the latest games, but the experience when swiping around the homescreens is smooth, but these days what Android flagship phone isn’t?
The camera is of course the big question for any Android phone and Samsung is promising a lot with the 16MP camera on the Galaxy S6 phones. The big play is in low-light and for ‘instant’ (well 0.7 seconds really) response to taking a picture, with Samsung advising that the camera is always in standby mode. In reality it’s fast and takes a darn good shot. We snapped a couple of pics on the S6 and retrieved them, they’re taken in a fairly well lit area so you can take that with a grain of salt.
Samsung seems to have toned down their skin for this latest release. The notifications seem to be fairly easy on the eyes, but again in a booth environment there’s not much to see, and I’ll need a lot more time with them to see.
The sotware has an array of pre-installed apps, but there doesn’t seem to be as many as there used to be. The rumour that Samsung would ‘tone down the bloatware’ hasn’t come completely true – S Voice, S Planner and S Health are all present – but it’s a pretty solid effort. The biggest note is that there’s three Microsoft apps pre-installed: One Drive, One Note and Skype – but given Skypes general acceptance for VOIP and video chat, it’s fairly forgivable.
Overall, the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge appear to be great handsets, or at least have the potential to be. A long time using the handsets extensively will tell. Samsung plans to launch the Galaxy S6 and the Edge variant in 20 countries in April, and we hope that Australia is one of them. We’ll have more information on local availability soon.