Call quality

One area in which HTC's flagship clearly surpasses the performance of Samsung's is call quality. The One M9's earpiece produces loud, clear tones, and the other side reported just as great results. With the Galaxy S6 we're looking at a more average showing, with audible, but hissy voices coming through the tiny speaker on top, and equally powerful, but thin voices heard on the other side.

The same can be said for the performance of the two loudspeakers – you can hold call with both, but while the Galaxy S6 mostly banks on being loud enough so that a call can be comfortably held, the One M9 tops that with both volume and better sound clarity.

Battery life

Like the microSD card, gone is also another trademark Samsung feature – the removable battery. This first in Samsung's book is owed to to the extremely thin body of the S6, and the sacrifices didn't stop there – the company also had to go with a relatively small, 2,550 mAh battery. The HTC One M9, too, doesn't allow users to meddle with the cell, but the one embedded within has a slightly higher capacity at 2,840 mAh.

In reality, these capacities translate into battery endurance in a way you wouldn't expect, especially since the M9 has a bigger battery and a far less pixel-dense display. Indeed, while the Galaxy S6 manages the very decent 7 hours and 14 minutes on our custom battery life test, the One M9 is average at best, with a score of just 6 hours and 25 minutes.

Battery life (hours) Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy S6 7h 14 min (Good)
HTC One M9 6h 25 min (Average)
Charging time (minutes) Lower is better
Samsung Galaxy S6 78
HTC One M9 106


If you've ever struggled picking between two great flagships in the past, you'll likely know what we ourselves understand all too well – when you're looking to make the most out of your hard-earned cash, choosing can be difficult. Fortunately, with the Samsung Galaxy S6 and the HTC One M9, things are clear-cut enough for you to simply have to identify what's important to you personally – the answer will then come to you naturally.

So, do you value camera performance and battery life above all else? The Galaxy S6, then, is the obvious choice – it steamrolls the One M9's unsatisfying, 20-megapixel shooter, and manages almost an hour longer on our battery life test. It also has the slightly larger display, which is notably superior to its competitor's solution when set to 'Basic' mode.

Are you more intrigued by the design work that goes into your gadget? Is sound quality an overly important consideration for you? And are you annoyed by software gimmicks? If you mentally noted a 'yes' whilst going through those three questions, then your choice is simple, and its name is HTC One M9. Indeed, while Samsung has spent a considerable amount of effort trying to classy up the Galaxy S6, the M9's full aluminum body is uncompromisingly beautiful, and comes with none of the oily mess that is the S6's back. What's more, the One M9 is a superior platform for listening to music – whether you go wired or not.

Ultimately, point-for-point, the Galaxy S6 is the superior device of the two. But it's not the classier – a subtle, but important difference.

Samsung Galaxy S6


  • Considerably thinner and lighter
  • Has a more color-correct display in 'Basic' mode
  • Offers a more feature-rich experience
  • Speedier internal flash storage
  • Markedly better camera, especially in low light

HTC One M9


  • Arguably the classier phone
  • Has a more streamlined interface
  • Handles graphics-intensive benchmarks better
  • Superior, stereo front-facing speakers
  • Better call quality



1. tiara6918

Posts: 2263; Member since: Apr 26, 2012

Even as a die hard htc fan, I must admit samsung did a way better job than htc with the s6. This is the phone that makes me want to come back to samsung

11. JesseJames

Posts: 226; Member since: Feb 22, 2015

No, samsung did a better job with the s6 edge.

13. j_scorp

Posts: 61; Member since: Oct 22, 2013

I sadly agree too. I have the HTC M8 and I will be trading it in for the Samsung S6 Edge. I really wanted to stay with HTC, but the choice is really clear. Let's see how I can get by without my MicroSD....

17. JunitoNH

Posts: 1946; Member since: Feb 15, 2012

That lump on the back.

3. Zack_2014

Posts: 677; Member since: Mar 25, 2014

HTC M9 is unappealing to me. I don't know why but TouchWiz seems to be the most beautiful looking interface compared to all other manufacturers. LGs UI is way too cartoony, HTC is old school and has a really boring interface, Sony looks nice and futuristic but cluttery.

4. tiara6918

Posts: 2263; Member since: Apr 26, 2012

I tested out an s6 edge yesterday, it was very smooth and fast. It doesn't remind me of the sluggishness of touchwiz in previous versions. Touchwiz on the s6/s6 edge looks the best, I agree with you.

5. mostafawael.1998

Posts: 241; Member since: Oct 01, 2014

+1 New touch wiz is a beauty to hold, and since it is heavily streamlined now, then it will be prime time to go back to touch wiz What I want to ask, is the power of 0.54 volts in the headphone good enough for loud bass, electro and trance stuff? It is similar to iPhone 5 I guess, so may be an iPhone-5 user can tell me ? I also plug in the phone to my subwoofer often, so it is better to be loud enough. And btw, as for audio quality,according to GSMA, S6 is on par with the M9, specially when headphones are plugged in. I hated Sammy once I got the S3 and once I used the S5, but now I am literally impressed with what Sammy has done this year!!! Maybe the biggest concern is the 'removable battery' feature, but not a big deal.

6. MrET1

Posts: 110; Member since: Jan 29, 2015

I think the M9 shows 0 innovation. The design and screen are the same specs for 3 years, the M7 and M8's screens are even better looking. Instead of making a higher resolution(8-12MP) Ultrapixel camera they went with a cheap non-OIS 20.7Mp. And the SoC is just a cheap 'high end' option that can't even run at the speeds it's marketed with. I really don't see a reason for anyone to 'upgrade' from M7 or M8 to the M9.

7. rockers123

Posts: 137; Member since: Sep 08, 2013

PA, pls re check your geeckbench scores. Your results shows very low scores for 7420

9. MrET1

Posts: 110; Member since: Jan 29, 2015

True, every other review I've seen lists ~1500/~5000. PA is obviously showing a best case result for the M9 vs a worst case result for the S6

8. JoshN

Posts: 202; Member since: Apr 01, 2015

I currently sport a samsung galaxy S4 and absolutlu love it except that touchwiz is quite slow, laggy, and hogs my RAM im hoping that when sammy upgrade S4 to lollipop it takes away the lag i currently face

15. PinkSquabbit

Posts: 1; Member since: Apr 01, 2015

Try the Nova launcher. It is much faster and has more customization options than TouchWiz.

10. bello

Posts: 27; Member since: Mar 01, 2015

Guys from PA are you blind the m9 is more stylish than the s6 ?

20. j_scorp

Posts: 61; Member since: Oct 22, 2013

It is more stylish. But who walks around without a case...It's the guts and performance that really matter.

12. caesantos

Posts: 90; Member since: Feb 27, 2014

It's been a while that my 2 year old S4 has been upgraded to Lollipop. And it's running better than ever.

14. AppleJuice

Posts: 145; Member since: Sep 12, 2013

The M9 is a joke. How can a successor of a flagship be worse at low light photography? Joke.

16. mostafawael.1998

Posts: 241; Member since: Oct 01, 2014

M9 over the M8: 3 GB RAM Overkill camera Ultra pixel selfie M8 over the M9: Better SoC (at least it ain't throttle like crazy S810) Cooler smartphone and better thermal handling Boom sound are louder with much more punchy bass Excellent low light photography Battery life Screen Tie between M8 and M9: Design (somehow) Call quality That's it And yet HTC expect better sales Lol!!!

18. fzacek

Posts: 2486; Member since: Jan 26, 2014

Is this comparison even necessary? The S6 is clearly better than the M9 in every way...

19. Scorpion

Posts: 103; Member since: Apr 28, 2012

Gonna disagree with all of you guys. I have a Galaxy S4 and I did play with the S6 and the Edge at the store, still think about going HTC with the M9, It's just better as whole. Samsung has great screen and camera but that's it. Design? Cathes up, but the front panel of the Galaxy series hasen't changed since the S3! The back and sides did. The M9 has great sound, good camera + ultrapixel on the front, great build, and great UI. A good handset is a balanced handset. The S6 feels great in the hand, the Edge really feels like from another dimension, but use your head not just your feelings. Happy shopping...

21. theflu88

Posts: 13; Member since: Mar 15, 2015

The front panel hasn't changed much from the S3??? You should rethink that statement based on these points: - 720p (HD) resolution increased to 1440p (UHD) resolution - Screen size went from 4.8" to 5.1" - Pixel arrangement has changed from pentile to "diamond" pentile - Colors are a lot more accurate (almost a spot on accuracy in Basic mode) - Energy efficiency has increased - No fingerprint sensor to actually having one, then to having one that works well - Gorilla glass to Gorilla glass 4 - The button arrangement has changed (they got rid of the redundant menu button) - The color accents have changed (the panel on the S6 literally changes color from a dark blue to a black depending on how light hits it, where as the panel on the S3 was just a blue color) - Front facing camera resolution from 2 MP to 5 MP While on HTC's M9, here's what's changed on the front panel from the M7 (which came out a year after the S3): - Ultrapixel as the front facing camera from a regular 2 MP - The HTC logo is not a button (however its still on the panel, making the phone a lot larger than it should be) - Super LCD 2 to Super LCD 3 - 4.7 inch to 5 inch - THATS IT So, based on this evidence, the S6 is a HUMONGOUS improvement over the S3, S4, S5, HTC M7, M8, and M9 HTC lacks innovation, Samsung is at least trying to innovate with the S6 Edge Do you even know anything about smartphones at all?

22. christyhicks

Posts: 1; Member since: Apr 18, 2015

Well, I'm just a cell heavy user, and I received my new HTC M9 yesterday. I bought my first "bag phone" in 1988, back in the days when you could actually choose your own phone number... advancing through the brick, the "beam me up Scottie".....tethering for internet service before most knew we could, pretty much I've used all shapes and sizes. I listen to debate after debate over which phone is best...people arguing over minute details and miniscule differences that really hardly EVER affect the average user. After going through TWO Samsung cracked screens in a few weeks, I insisted my provider exchange the second one with an HTC. Three years later, after almost daily drops and at least two or three water dunks, it's still going strong. I can't TELL you how many times my HTC M7 has landed facedown on tile, concrete, etc. . . and every time I think, "oh gosh, it's cracked for sure"...and once again, no crack! I am a HEAVY user, and my battery is getting weak, so after three years, I'm due for a new phone. I can buy any phone I want, my husband even suggested I buy an Iphone and smartwatch....but in the end, I ordered a new M9. I've watched my sons, also heavy users, use Samsung after Samsung with cracked screens, misc hardware issues and I wonder just how great those "better specs" really are when your screen, speaker, camera, etc are not working! I need a phone I can use all day, every day!

23. mqmorasch

Posts: 12; Member since: Nov 18, 2013

A great point about durability, PLUS the HTC Uh oh protection!!! I have an M9 and had to use the uh oh protection.... Easy as can be, no questions or hurdles, just replaced with a NEW(not refurbished) phone with NO deductible!! That being said, I'm debating on the second device (work) of what to do. It is the whale known as the Nexus 6, and it I am tempted to venture to Sammy, but am she'll shocked from previous nightmares of touch wiz lag and cheap components. Also, do I want better sound or occasional pic??

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