So last night Samsung and LG announced their new flagship phones. So firstly, which is best out of the phones and then how do they compare to the iPhone 6S Plus.
Well the decision is not clear cut and really depends on your personal priorities. However, these are my thoughts on each phone.
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge – This is the most attractive phone out of the bunch. The super amoled screen is gorgeous and using this tech for the always on screen is really good. For gaming, the Vulkan API is a great step forward, once developers support the API in their games. Quick wireless charging is good too as well as having larger batteries than last year’s model. Whilst the micro SD card has returned, the maximum storage is 32gb. Unfortunately, the S7 Edge does not support adoptable storage, nor does it support the latest USB-C standard. But it does have Gorilla Glass 5. Samsung has gone to town with its 12mp rear camera which has large pixels. Virtual Reality is also being heavily pushed. However, my experience of a Samsung VR headset involved feeling very sick. The accessories for the S7 Edge are decent too, from official cases and a case that has add on camera lenses. What is unknown is how good the loudspeaker is, and how good is the sound via headphones? Is there a HiFi DAC included? Personally, if I already had the S6 Edge, I wouldn’t upgrade to this phone. Samsung Pay is coming to the UK this year, but no firm date has been provided yet. However, when it does arrive, it will work with all terminals and not just contactless ones.
LG G5 – The design or look is just average. I need to see it in person, but from all the media footage it doesn’t inspire me. However from a specification point of view, the G5 appears to trounce the S7 Edge. Stunning IPS display capable of 850 nits. Really amazing camera with wide angle shots and some pretty funky options in the camera app. APT-X High Definition, infra red blaster, extra plug-in modules, and the kitchen sink. However, it doesn’t have any payment options unless Android Pay arrives soon. The Friends accessories are geeky too. So on paper it is likely the G5 will take high resolution photos and sound much better with headphones. The loudspeaker sound is unknown. What is also unknown is how the 16mp camera really compares versus the 12mp camera of the S7. Hard evidence is needed before being conclusive. Of course, it could depend on what type of environment you take photos in, which ends up dictating which phone camera suits you better. You may find having the option to shoot wide angle photos more useful than low light. With the G5 you won’t need to use an add on lens for wide angle shots that you will need with the S7.
Apple iPhone 6S Plus – So on paper it looks like the above phones will take better still photos, and in lower light this is quite likely. However, iOS is fortunate enough to have amazing apps, and therefore with the right apps, incredible low noise, low light photos are possible. There are no alternatives on android for these type of apps. iOS also has better apps, 3D Touch, a more advanced app eco system making use of 3D Touch and Apple Pay in full force. There are a number of aspects of both the LG G5 and Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge that wipe the floor of the iPhone from a hardware point of view, but iOS is supported by good software services , like iMessage and FaceTime. The iPhone is also 6 months old now, and 18 months into its product change cycle. The iPhone 7 could streak ahead of the Samsung and LG, or just level the field from a specs point of view. For example, whilst Samsung has introduced Vulkan API, Apple has been using metal for ages. However, Samsung clearly has the lead on VR, along with a decent number of VR apps already. But like everything, iOS offers some fabulous extras.
To pick a winner is a difficult choice. But I will in due course. Will the iPhone 6S Plus be history?? 🙂