iPhone 6s vs Samsung Galaxy S6: fight of the flagships

iPhone 6s vs Samsung Galaxy S6: fight of the flagships

iPhone 6s vs Samsung Galaxy S6: Specs and battery

For the S6, Samsung has decided to use its own octa-core Exynos 7420 processor, comprising two quad-core CPUs (one at 1.5GHz, the other at 2.1GHz), and a Mali-T760 GPU. The iPhone 6s has a new dual-core A9 processor, which is touted as being up to twice as fast as the A8 in the iPhone 6.

In our benchmarks, the iPhone 6s blew other phones away, managing a GFXBench score of 59.1fps for T-Rex onscreen and 56.3fps for Manhattan onscreen. The Galaxy S6 managed comparably low figures of 37fps and 15fps, although these are still well above competitors like the LG G4, which got 25fps and 9.3fps. To be fair to the Galaxy S6, this is because it has more pixels to manage on its display. In real terms, both the iPhone 6s and Galaxy S6 are powerful devices, although if you playing the most cutting-edge games, you’ll probably want to vouch for Apple’s most recent handset.

Apple iPhone 6s review: Main shot from front

When it comes to storage the S6 features 32GB, 64GB or 128GB varieties, while the iPhone 6s has 16GB, 64GB or 128GB – not a great deal of difference there, although 32GB is a much better storage size for a base-tier model.

The battery on both phones is non-removable, with a 2,550 mAh capacity on the Galaxy S6 and a 1,715 mAh capacity on the iPhone 6s. That gives Samsung a point for battery size, but Apple still manages to have an impressively sturdy stamina – in our benchmarks, the iPhone 6s depleted at a low rate of 3.6% an hour when playing audio, compared to 5% per hour with the Galaxy S6.

Samsung Galaxy S6 - bottom edge

Altogether, both phones excel in terms of specs, and it’s a close toss up between battery size and depletion rate, but the iPhone 6s ultimately racks up a point.

Winner: iPhone 6s

iPhone 6s vs Samsung Galaxy S6: Camera

The rear camera on the Galaxy S6 has the same 16-megapixel resolution as the S5 and retains that super-quick phase-detect autofocus, but adds a wider aperture and optical image stabilisation. In all but the darkest of environments, the S6 is capable of capturing stunning images and smooth, stable video. Noise is still visible when capturing murky objects in low light, but even then you’ll get usable results in most circumstances.

Samsung Galaxy S6 - camera sample, low light

(Above: Taken with the Samsung Galaxy S6)

With the iPhone 6s, Apple are taking aim at Samsung’s prestige in the camera division with a 12-megapixel rear camera and a S6-matching 5-megapixel front camera – a much needed upgrade that makes use of the phone’s display as a makeshift flash. This selfie flash happens in two stages, flickering on once in bright white to provide full illumination, then again in a lower intensity yellowish colour in an attempt to balance out the skin tones, a bit like the dual-tone LED flash on the rear.Apple iPhone 6s review: Camera sample, low light

(Above: Taken with the iPhone 6s)

Throw in other features such as the Vine-like Live Photo option and you’ve got enough to inject new life into your photography, but ultimately the Galaxy S6 is still the premier snapper. With an aperture of f/1.9 it makes easy work of tricky light conditions, and its video capture that benefits from object-tracking autofocus. If you’re looking for a good camera, the Galaxy S6 is your best bet. 

Winner: Samsung Galaxy S6

iPhone 6s vs Samsung Galaxy S6: Price

Seeing as these are two very expensive phones, most people will decide on a monthly payment scheme. The fresh-out-the-gate iPhone 6s is currently the most premium handset on the market, so if you’re eyeing up a contract you’ll be looking at a minimum of something around £40 to £50 per month, compared to £30 to £40 a month for the Galaxy S6. If you plan to buy outright, the iPhone 6s will currently set you back a minimum of £539 (16GB), while the Galaxy S6 can be bought for £415 (32GB).Apple iPhone 6s review: Logo

That’s a significant difference in price, but you also have to consider that the Galaxy S6 has been out since April while the iPhone 6s has only just hit shops. That said, the Galaxy S6 remains a strong contender, so it deserves a point for offering a powerful phone at a cheaper price tag.

Winner: Samsung Galaxy S6

iPhone 6s vs Samsung Galaxy S6: Verdict

After sizing up the iPhone 6s and Samsung Galaxy S6, it seems that, while Apple’s new contender has a lot going for it, Samsung ultimately retains the crown.

The Galaxy S6 is gorgeously designed, has a great camera, a fantastic display and, perhaps most importantly, comes at a substantially lower price than the iPhone 6s. Apple’s new handset boasts a number of winning features such as 3D Touch, but the range of the Galaxy S6’s abilities keep it fixed in the limelight.Samsung Galaxy S6 - camera

Ultimately, these are phones from two companies working at the top of their game. You’re not going to go wrong with either of them, but the gap in price is more than enough to sway attention to Samsung’s flagship. If you’re looking for the best balance between cost, prestige and power, the Samsung Galaxy S6 is the phone you want in your pocket. 

Overall winner: Samsung Galaxy S6 

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