iPhone 6s vs Xperia Z5: in-depth specs comparison

iPhone 6s vs Xperia Z5: in-depth specs comparison
Apple's iPhone 6s has finally been announced, bringing a much welcome hardware bump, packed in a well-known chassis design. The iPhone 6 represented the largest incremental increase in an iPhone screen diagonal in the franchise's history, and the iPhone 6s now brings some more noteworthy upgrades – a 12 MP camera (up from 8 MP), 3D touch, and possibly 2 GB of RAM, though, the latter is yet to be confirmed.

How does it stack up against the Android competition, and namely against Sony's Xperia Z5, with which we had a close encounter at the IFA expo just a few days ago? Let's see...

Design


The iPhone 6s is very slightly thicker than its predecessor, but its still a pretty compact handset – measuring at 5.44 x 2.64 x 0.28 inches (138.1 x 67 x 7.1 mm). The Xperia Z5 has a generous screen-to-body ratio of 71%, but a 5.2” display still takes its toll and makes the phone noticeably larger than the iPhone 6s, measuring at 5.75 x 2.83 x 0.29 inches (146 x 72 x 7.3 mm). Still, we wouldn't say that Sony's phone felt difficult to handle, especially since its frosted glass back finish gets rid of the slipperiness that we've learned to expect from the Xperia line. Still, users who put compact first will perfer the iPhone 6 in this comparison.

Sony's handset can be submerged in five feet of water without any problems, while Apple's creation eschews the water-resistant certification altogether. Moreover, Sony offers two front-firing stereo speakers, stylishly hidden near its top and bottom borders. The iPhone 6s still carries a single speaker, though, given Apple's history, we'd expect it to be a loud and clear one.

Apple iPhone 6s

Apple iPhone 6s

Dimensions

5.44 x 2.64 x 0.28 inches

138.3 x 67.1 x 7.1 mm

Weight

5.04 oz (143 g)

Sony Xperia Z5

Sony Xperia Z5

Dimensions

5.75 x 2.83 x 0.29 inches

146 x 72 x 7.3 mm

Weight

5.43 oz (154 g)

Sony Xperia Z5 Compact

Sony Xperia Z5 Compact

Dimensions

5 x 2.56 x 0.35 inches

127 x 65 x 8.9 mm

Weight

4.87 oz (138 g)

Samsung Galaxy S6

Samsung Galaxy S6

Dimensions

5.65 x 2.78 x 0.27 inches

143.4 x 70.5 x 6.8 mm

Weight

4.87 oz (138 g)

Apple iPhone 6s

Apple iPhone 6s

Dimensions

5.44 x 2.64 x 0.28 inches

138.3 x 67.1 x 7.1 mm

Weight

5.04 oz (143 g)

Sony Xperia Z5

Sony Xperia Z5

Dimensions

5.75 x 2.83 x 0.29 inches

146 x 72 x 7.3 mm

Weight

5.43 oz (154 g)

Sony Xperia Z5 Compact

Sony Xperia Z5 Compact

Dimensions

5 x 2.56 x 0.35 inches

127 x 65 x 8.9 mm

Weight

4.87 oz (138 g)

Samsung Galaxy S6

Samsung Galaxy S6

Dimensions

5.65 x 2.78 x 0.27 inches

143.4 x 70.5 x 6.8 mm

Weight

4.87 oz (138 g)

To see the phones in real size or compare them with other models, visit our Visual Phone Size Comparison page


Displays


Both Sony and Apple refuse to put their flagship smarthpones on the QHD bandwagon. Apple's phone packs a 750 x 1334 resolution stretched across its 4.7" screen, resulting in a 326 PPI density. The Xperia Z5 has the more orthodox 1080 x 1920 resolution, which culminates in a sharp-looking 424 PPI density over its 5.2" display. While the iPhone's panels are famous for their accurate color representation, Sony's Triluminos tech tended to be a bit more vivid and saturated. We did notice the Xperia Z5 at IFA 2015 to be a bit more tame, with a more natural color temperature, so jury is still out.

Interface


Sony doesn't skin the stock Android too much, and doesn't offer as many features as the overlays of Samsung, LG or HTC, but it's still a well-rounded UI with immediately recognizable branding. Even though its flagship handsets have been updated to Androud 5 Lollipop, Sony's app visuals haven't really been overtaken by the Material Design philosophy, so some of them may contrast with the stock Google apps, which you will inevitably use on the phone. Overally, though, the interface is smooth, simple, and good-looking.

The iPhone 6s sports the newest iOS 9, which makes no changes to the flat look, but adds numerous functionality enhancements to Apple's phones – a touchpad function for the keyboard, much better Notes app, battery life enhancements, et cetera. Needless to say, aside from running perfectly smooth on the hardware that it has been built on, we expect that, thanks to its new features, iOS 9 will also fare quite well in a match against its current competitors.

Processors and memory


Outfitted with a Apple's own sparkly-new A9 processor, the iPhone 6s offers 64-bit computing and specialized coprocessors. While its yet-unknown core clock and count will probably trail behind the 2 GHz octa-core Snapdragon 810 in the Xperia Z5, it certainly won't fall in cross-platform benchmarks against the Z5, and the typical iPhone/iOS synergy would yield splendid interface behaviour, too. Apple also touted a 90% improvement in the graphics department, so 3D games will run without a hitch on both handsets. The iPhone is also rumored to have been treated to a 100% RAM increase, finally bringing the Apple handset's memory up to 2 GB. However, Apple traditionally doesn't like to talk about memory specifics, so we will have to wait a while before that can be confirmed. The Xperia Z5 comes with the regular 3 GB of RAM and 32 GB of storage, expandable via microSD – the latter can't be said about the iPhone 6s.

Cameras


Apple finally updated the 8 MP resolution of its camera to a 12 MP one, outfitting it with a brand-new sensor, which also improves image quality by restricting photodiode cross-talk. The video capture has been improved, too, with slow-mo available in 1080p resolution, and 4K recording finally making it to the iPhone platform. The Z5 shooter's 23 MP resolution might sound impressive, but we can't say that we were too awestruck with its image quality when we had our hands on it at IFA. Still, the Z5's hybrid autofocus system is, indeed, lightning-fast as promised, and the Xperia's snapper is in no way bad, plus the dedicated shutter button makes using the phone as a camera a second nature.


Expectations


If we do a direct, spec-for-spec comparison of the Xperia Z5 with the iPhone 6s, Apple's handset would certainly lose the fight. The Z5 sports a larger display with higher resolution, a higher CPU clock count, more cores, and more RAM memory, plus it has a bigger camera resolution, and more capacious battery.

Apple's way of doing things, however, is not by stuffing a bucketload of powerful, marketable hardware in the iPhone, rather taking advantage of the fact that it develops both its software and its hardware. This allows it to have its operating system work in strong synergy with the hardware, and the user experience is often difficult to beat.

Sure, the Xperia Z5 has a good amount of things going for it – a facelifted design, which still looks great, water-resistance, larger screen, stereo speakers, snappy, clean Android experience – it's easy to see why some people would fall in love with Sony's newest flagship and stick by it.

But we expect that the iPhone 6s will beat Sony's flagship in the camera department, while providing an extremely fluid iOS experience, and being a bit more compact and manageable than the Xperia.

Related phones

iPhone 6s
  • Display 4.7" 750 x 1334 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 5 MP front
  • Processor Apple A9 APL0898, Dual-core, 1840 MHz
  • Storage 128 GB
  • Battery 1715 mAh(14h 3G talk time)
Xperia Z5
  • Display 5.2" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 23 MP / 5 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 810, Octa-core, 2000 MHz
  • Storage 32 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 2900 mAh(17h 3G talk time)

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20 Comments

1. SirYar

Posts: 351; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

Let the stupid Phone #1 vs Phone #2 comparisons begin!

2. Biernot unregistered

sony z5

10. DoggyDangerous

Posts: 1028; Member since: Aug 28, 2015

although I am not impressed with Z5 but Z5 is clearly a better phone. who dont want a great battery?

3. Plasticsh1t

Posts: 3091; Member since: Sep 01, 2014

Z5 all the way.

17. techbuttcheex

Posts: 202; Member since: Jul 25, 2015

you need iphone for apple watch though

4. roldefol

Posts: 4744; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

At least the iPhone has been redesigned in the last two years.

6. buccob

Posts: 2952; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

every single iPhone from first gen to latest looks the same from the front...

14. roldefol

Posts: 4744; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

That's called design language. They look pretty different from the side and back. Also not saying their design language is great. Top bezels on the 6 and 6+ are ridiculous.

20. sunjay140

Posts: 118; Member since: Mar 19, 2015

Sony also has design language.

12. Taters

Posts: 6474; Member since: Jan 28, 2013

Every iteration of the Z series has been redesigned. Haters might not see it but the Z3+ is quite different from the Z3, so much so that it was too thin and overheats.

5. abeauchamp

Posts: 28; Member since: Feb 27, 2012

I can bet that the person that made the comparison has an IPhone also…

7. LionStone

Posts: 1048; Member since: Dec 10, 2010

Trippin hard here if they think the iPhone camera "beats" the Sony! They both take fine pics, but the iPhone lacks in durability and other features, like water/dust proof and can the iPhone record live to YouTube? And then PA says iPhone will beat the Sony because of compactness and manageability!? Hellooo! Sony makes a COMPACT version, ohhh the irony!

8. rsiders

Posts: 1887; Member since: Nov 17, 2011

So what then if Sony's camera beats the iPhone's camera? The Z5 has so much more to offer than the iPhone 6S that a slightly lesser camera quality is more than negligible. I don't buy into the it's great because it's an iPhone argument which seems to be the side PhoneArena will lean to despite everything else.

9. Taters

Posts: 6474; Member since: Jan 28, 2013

I hate to admit it but this is pretty even thanks to Sony using the dated SD810 instead of delaying and waiting for the SD820. Good job Sony....

11. Xperia14

Posts: 1205; Member since: Sep 01, 2015

Z5 for me. I'm not willig to pay more for less features. Z5 over 6S: beigger battery, IP68, stereo speakers, expendable memory, FM-radio, camera button, etc. 6S over Z5: ???

13. CamaroSS

Posts: 173; Member since: Jul 24, 2012

Home button. Doh! All joking aside, 6S is going to have higher single Core & GPU performance. That's pretty much is it - I guess. I'd still take Z5 over 6S.

15. SonyOwner unregistered

Lol, Paul K, you need some neurons too. Iphone never defeat Sony in terms of camera. Maybe in this site review. If you are intelligent enough, you will know how to use the Xperia Camera the right way. I understand you're not.

16. Kal-el

Posts: 96; Member since: Dec 14, 2012

IF people like Z5 picture Sony wins....if people like iphone pictures sony wins ...both are sony lens -__- LOL

18. dil2abu

Posts: 315; Member since: Nov 09, 2011

Z5 for me..

19. wg1234

Posts: 23; Member since: Sep 09, 2015

I hope you can compare Sony Z5 Compact with iPhone 6S, they are about the same size and have similar screen res.

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