Samsung’s Galaxy S6 edge: Game changer or incremental improvement?
I consider myself a mobile tech enthusiast. Why? Well, I own more smartphones, tablets and laptops than I probably should, and I’m always the person my friends come to when they can’t figure out how to make something work on their mobile devices. I also work in the tech industry – go figure.
So when I was offered the opportunity to get a Galaxy S6 edge shortly after the 2015 Mobile World Congress, I jumped at the chance. I’ve heard a lot of the hype surrounding this device over the past few months, and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on one to see if it’s really as great as many tech analysts have been saying it is. And after spending the past few weeks with the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge, I can confidently say it’s an amazing smartphone. But is it truly a game changer? Or is it simply an incremental improvement on the Samsung Galaxy S5? You’ll have to keep reading to find out.
To kick things off, let’s take a look at some of the many things I like about the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge:
The 5.1” dual curved edge screen – One of the many cool things about this device is that it’s the world’s first smartphone with a dual-curved edge screen. The screen runs on Quad-HD Super AMOLED display technology that allows for clear, vivid images with deep colour contrast. It’s also more than large enough to check and respond to emails, watch videos, check out my friends’ pictures on Instagram, browse through Facebook and Twitter, etc. I often watch TV on my mobile devices – especially during my commute to and from work – and my Galaxy S6 edge is the first smartphone I’ve used that lets me catch the game on the go without feeling like I’m missing my Ultra HD TV at home. Plus, it comes with added functionality that you won’t find on most other smartphones in the market – including People Edge, Notifications and Edge Lighting, and Information Stream. We’ll do a deep dive on all of these in a future post though, so for now, let’s keep things moving.
The speed and functionality – It would be an understatement for me to tell you that the Galaxy S6 edge is a powerful – and unexpectedly smooth – device. With a new 64-bit octa-core processor, the Galaxy S6 edge performs faster than any other Samsung smartphone. The device runs the latest version of Android – Lollipop 5.0.2 – and also includes the newest version of Samsung’s TouchWiz user interface, which may be its best and most intuitive user interface yet. Moving between menus and applications is a breeze – largely due to the new streamlined menu structure that provides reduced depth and scrolling across the OS – and the device handles graphic-heavy games extremely well. In fact, I experience zero lag, even with multiple applications running at the same time. And as an added bonus, the Galaxy S6 edge supports LTE Advanced, which means it can take advantage of the fastest speeds available on the Bell network.
The design and aesthetics – Samsung has taken a major step up in design and aesthetics recently, and in doing so, they’ve left behind the plastic-based designs that are commonly found on older smartphones. The Galaxy S6 edge features a unique metal and glass uni-body design that’s absolutely beautiful. Whenever I’ve used it in public places over the last few weeks, people have struck up conversations with me to ask what type of phone it is, discuss how sleek and stylish it looks, and to ask me how I like it so far. And as a nice added touch that many multitaskers (myself included) will appreciate, Samsung decided to wrap the Galaxy S6 edge in Corning Gorilla Glass for extra impact resistance.
The camera – For me, this is one of the biggest highlights of the GS6 edge, and it’s another one that we’ll explore with a dedicated post. For now though, I’ll mention that the 16mp rear camera delivers crisp and vivid photos, and Samsung included a helpful low light feature that allows me to combine multiple shots to get the best possible image. Habitual selfie takers will also love this phone because it’s got a 5mp front-facing camera that produces some of the highest quality selfie shots I’ve seen. And as an added bonus, the quick launch functionality ensures the camera is always in standby mode, which means I’m never too late to catch the moment. All I have to do is double click the home button and the camera launches in less than 1 second. How cool is that?
The extra perks – In typical Samsung style, they’ve packed the Galaxy S6 edge full of extra perks. One of them is a feature called Smart Manager, which allows me to see the amount of battery life I’ve got left and find out how much storage and RAM I’m using. It also allows me to put extra security measures in place to protect against malware.
Another one of the many additional perks included in the device is the fast charging capability. This is something that I didn’t really think about before I got my GS6 edge, but now that I’ve had it for a while, I’m not sure I could ever migrate to another smartphone in the future that doesn’t have it. The convenience of being able to use my Adaptive Fast Charger to recharge my GS6 edge for 10 minutes and getting up to 4 hours worth of power can’t be understated.
But even with all of the extra perks that Samsung has added in, I find myself thinking that it may be the little things that I love the most about the Galaxy S6 edge. For example, the messaging feature has learned my speech patterns with such accuracy that I can often have full conversations with family and friends without having to type more than a few letters. Quite impressive indeed.
The bottom line
After reading the rest of the post above, you’re likely wondering why I didn’t outline what I disliked about the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge. The reason is simple – I haven’t found anything to complain about so far. In fact, I believe it’s a true game changer that absolutely lives up to all of the hype. And with the awards stacking up for the device even before its official launch, it’s clear that many others in the industry have a very high opinion of the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge as well.
What are your thoughts on the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge? Let me know in the comments section below.
Nick Nunes is Bell Canada’s Senior Manager of Social Media Community & Content Strategy