Samsung Galaxy S6 unveiled with bold new vision and outstanding specs
Today marks a milestone in Samsung's mobile history. Right on cue, the tech giant unveiled the Samsung Galaxy S6 – its latest and greatest flagship smartphone – and boy is it a phone worthy of attention! While Samsung has been criticized for reiterating with every new Galaxy S flagship rather than innovating, the Galaxy S6 seems to put an end to this as it separates itself from its predecessor on many levels.
Still, if our intuition is not mistaken, some fans of the brand might take the changes brought by the next Galaxy with mixed feelings. Why is that, you ask? Well, allow us walk you through the Galaxy S6 specs and features.
For the latest Galaxy flagship, Samsung has taken a radically different approach to design and build materials. Most strikingly, plastic is nowhere to be found. It is a layer of Gorilla Glass 4 covering the back sides of the device instead, splashed in one of four distinctive hues – White Pearl, Black Sapphire, Gold Platinum, or Blue Topaz. Furthermore, the frame around the sides of the phone, as well as the buttons that reside there, are now made of metal, just like the case is with the Galaxy Note 4. The weight of 4.867 ounces (138 grams) and thickness of 0.267 inches (6.8 millimeters) make the Samsung Galaxy S6 both slimmer and lighter than the Galaxy S5.
But as we mentioned, some of the changes brought by the Galaxy S6 might spark a riot among the Samsung fanbase. The smartphone's new design does away with the removable back cover, which practically makes the battery inaccessible by the end user. There are no options for expandable storage either. And if you liked the Galaxy S5 for its water-resistant properties, you'd be disappointed to know that the Galaxy S6 does not boast an extraordinary resistance to the elements.
At the same time, the Samsung Galaxy S6 has adopted quite a few traits and features from last year's Galaxy S5. Among them are the curved corners and the button arrangement, with a physical "Home" button below the screen coupled with a pair of capacitive ones for navigation. As before, there's a fingerprint scanner built into the home key – thankfully, one you have to touch, not swipe, to get your finger scanned. Around the back of the phone we find little more than a protruding camera and a heart rate sensor as the opening for the single speaker is now at the phone's bottom.
5.1 inches of Super AMOLED goodness – that's what you get with the Samsung Galaxy S6. While the screen's diagonal size has been left unchanged compared to the Galaxy S5, the panel's resolution has been upped to Quad HD, or 1440 by 2560 pixels. This translates to an astonishing 577 ppi of pixel density for a crispy-clear image lacking any visible pixelation. Moreover, the brightness output of the panel reaches 600 nits for ideal outdoor visibility.
Android 5.0 Lollipop comes running on the Samsung Galaxy S6, along with Samsung's own software solution known as TouchWiz, and as the rumor mill predicted, the latter has been streamlined even further for a simplified, hassle-free user experience. The interface's clever perks like Ultra Power Saving Mode, S Finder, and Private Mode are still present, however. To make it fun and easy for users to personalize their Galaxy S6 handset, Samsung has implemented themes support into its interface.
Processor and memory
You can't have a great smartphone without a great processor to power it, isn't that so? In that respect, Samsung is right on top of its game as its Galaxy S6 flagship runs on the most advanced Exynos silicon yet. Its 64-bit, octa-core processor consists of a 2.1GHz quad-core cluster paired with a quad-core 1.5Ghz one, together providing a processing punch or power efficiency, depending on the use scenario. As it is the first mobile SoC built on 14-nanometer architecture, its power efficiency is expected to be hard to beat. The silicon is accompanied by 3GB of speedy, yet battery-friendly LPDDR4 RAM. Sure, 4GB of RAM would have been nice, but we guess we'll have to wait for that until the right time comes.
As we mentioned above, the Samsung Galaxy S6 skips the option for expandable storage – a microSD card slot is, surprisingly, absent from the new Galaxy flagship. But on the bright side of things, the handset comes with at least 32GB of built-in storage space. 64- and 128GB models are to be made available as well. The UFS 2.0 flash storage promises quicker access speeds while consuming less power than previous technologies.
Samsung's high-end smartphones have always excelled in the camera department, which is why our hopes for the Galaxy S6's 16MP camera are set quite high. With its f/1.9 aperture, Smart OIS, and automatic real-time HDR, the snapper is expected to be among the best in its class. In addition, Samsung has added a white balance detection system that uses infra-red light detection to set the white balance accordingly, even in tricky light situations. To make the camera on its smartphone easy to access, Samsung has enabled the camera app to be accessed with a double-press of the Galaxy S6 power button. As for its front-facing camera, the Samsung Galaxy S6 packs a 5MP snapper with a wide, f/1.9 aperture.
While the 2550mAh battery seems small by today's standards for an Android flagship, the Galaxy S6 relies on power efficiency to last you through the day. Yet only a thorough battery test will show how good of a performer the Galaxy S6 really is. To make charging more convenient, users may take advantage of the phone's built-in support for wireless charging, or simply use its wired charger, which is said to provide 150% faster charging compared to the Galaxy S5.
Price and release date
While Samsung has not released any details as to how much the Galaxy S6 will cost, it is safe to assume that the new flagship will be an expensive handset. For the base, 32GB model, we're likely looking at the typical $200 price tag for buyers committing to a two year contract or $650 outright. If you want one, mark April 10 in your calendars as that's when the Samsung Galaxy S6 is launching globally.