iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: We compare Apple and Google’s best phones in 2016

In 2016, the smartphone market is currently a two-horse race, with Windows Phone a somewhat distant third. Figures from 2015 suggested that Android and iOS handsets make up around 98% of the market, so it’s very likely your next phone will be running Apple or Google’s mobile OS. The iPhone 7 isn’t out yet, and that means the best iOS handset is the iPhone 6s Plus, while the Nexus 6P represents Google’s unaltered vision of the ultimate Android phone. But which is best? We put the iPhone 6s Plus against the Nexus 6P and compared everything from the camera and battery to the specs, to find out which is phone best.

iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: We compare Apple and Google’s best phones in 2016

iPhone 6s vs Nexus GP: Which is the best phone in 2016?

iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Camera

The camera on the 5X is excellent, and the 6P’s is just as good. It’s simply fantastic, capable of producing stunning results in good light as well as bad, and it’s one of those cameras – such as the one on the Samsung Galaxy S6 – that has that uncanny knack of being able to capture scenes exactly as you see them.

But, the iPhone 6 Plus is capable of capturing some beautiful shots, too. The speedy hardware inside means that the camera app flicks into view almost instantaneously from the lockscreen, and the lightning-quick autofocus does its bit to help grab pin-sharp impulse snaps. In most cases, the results are excellent: photographs look crisp and well focused across the frame, colours are rich and true, and the low-light performance is second only to the Lumia 1020.iphone_6s_4

And as for the camera specs? The iPhone 6s Plus and Nexus 6P use a 12-megapixel camera, and both make use of a dual tone flash for more natural skin tones. The Nexus 6P can produce pictures of 4,608 x 2,592, while images from the iPhone 6s are 4,032 x 3,024. The iPhone 6s Plus uses a 5-megapixel camera for FaceTime and selfies, while the Nexus 6P brings three extra megapixels with its 8-megapixel front-facing camera.

Verdict: A draw. While both phones feature varying approaches towards photography technology, the end result is the same. If you have either of these phones, you can trust them to take a clear, accurate snap at a moment’s notice.

iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Specifications and battery life

Apple has placed one of its A8 processors under the hood of the iPhone 6s Plus, and while the company hasn’t given solid details about it, we now know it’s a dual-core 1.84GHz processor. In contrast, Google has shoehorned a quad-core 1.55GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor into the Nexus 6P. Google’s handset also uses 3GB of RAM to the iPhone’s 2GB.

As for storage? The Nexus 6P is available with 32GB, 64GB or 128GB of storage, while the iPhone 6s Plus comes in 16GB, 64GB and 128GB versions.


Google’s smartphone uses a huge 3,450mAh battery, which is significantly more than the iPhone 6s Plus’ 2,750mAh battery. While it’s important to take efficiency and power consumption into consideration, it’s no suprise the Google handset provides superior battery life.


Verdict: Nexus 6P wins by KO. While user experience could tell a different story, when it comes to specs the Nexus 6P blows the iPhone 6s Plus away.

iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Design

Apple’s iPhone has led the pack when it comes to smartphone design, with companies such as HTC, Samsung and Huawei all taking inspiration from its Jonathan Ive-designed handsets.

The latest iPhone continues the company’s exquisite industrial design, and is one of the best-looking Apple handsets to date. Available in silver, gold, “Space Grey” and now “Rose Gold”, the iPhone 6s Plus is a thing of beauty. Featuring a Gorilla Glass cover that seems to melt into the rest of the chassis, the front of the handset is is flat and rounded – only interrupted by Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint sensor. After the iPhone 5s, Apple needed to step up its game, and the iPhone 6s Plus does just that.iphone_6s_vs_nexus_6p_4

Handsets such as the HTC One A9 show many companies are happy to copy Apple, but Google has taken a different route. The Huawei-manufactured Nexus 6P does what many seem to think is impossible: it delivers premium feel, great looks and a timeless design – and looks nothing like an iPhone. It may feature an all-metal body and a glass screen, but that’s where the similarities end. Its slightly retro styling might not be for everyone, but I think the Nexus 6P is the best-looking Android handset since the HTC Desire or Hero.

Verdict: A draw. Looks are subjective, and in this case either handset could be the winner. The iPhone 6s Plus oozes the effortless refinement we’ve come to expect from Apple, but the Nexus 6P is equally sophisticated, and a real achievement from Huawei and Google. You’ll feel impressed handling and using either phone.

iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Display

The iPhone Plus uses an LED-backlit IPS LCD with a resolution of 1,080 x 1,920 and a pixel density of 401ppi. However, the screen on the Google Nexus 6P is even more impressive. As well as using vibrant AMOLED technology, the Nexus 6P has a resolution of 1,440 x 2,560 for a stunning pixel density of 518ppi.

When it comes to sheer real-estate, the screen of the Nexus 6P has the 6s Plus beat, too. Featuring a display measuring 5.7in across the diagonal, the 6P’s screen is around 0.2in larger than the iPhone’s.

Verdict: Nexus 6P wins by KO. Google’s flagship destroys the iPhone in this arena, but that doesn’t come as a great surprise. The last few iPhones may have been the best smartphone overall, but their screens have literally paled in comparison to those of their Android counterparts. The iPhone 6s uses outdated LCD technology, looking decidedly lacklustre when compared to the vibrant high-resolution screen of the Nexus 6P.

iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Features

The Nexus 6P and the iPhone 6s Plus represent the best Google and Apple has to offer, so, as you’d expect, they’re bursting with features. Both phones feature – albeit differently placed – fingerprint readers, both offer a way of wirelessly paying for goods, and both also feature a camera that could replace your standalone one.

However, both phones include one or two unique features of their own. The iPhone 6s Plus features 3D Touch, revolutionising the touchscreen experience by giving users more ways to communicate with their handset.

While the Nexus 6P doesn’t feature a 3D Touch equivalent, it does support USB Type-C, so it will allow you to charge other compatible devices using your handset. It’ll also be far more future-proof than the iPhone 6s Plus’ Lightning connector.

Verdict: A draw. Both the iPhone 6s Plus and the Nexus 6P have everything you’d need from a smartphone, and the extra features they bring aren’t essential enough to give one an advantage.


iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Price and verdict

Google’s Nexus 6P starts at £449 for the 32GB version, and extends to £499 for the 64GB handset and £579 for the range-topping 128GB version. The iPhone 6s Plus is much dearer, costing £699 for a 64GB model – £200 more than the equivalent Nexus 6P.

Verdict: Nexus 6P wins on points. On paper, the Nexus 6P beats the iPhone 6s easily. Like many Android phones, it features more impressive hardware than its iPhone counterpart and for a much lower price. Better still, the Nexus 6P can compete with the iPhone 6s on a superficial level, too.

However, buying a phone is more subjective, and the best phone for you will depend on a number of factors. While both handsets represent a great purchase, users will also need to consider which devices they already own, and if they’re likely to buy more Google or Apple products in the future.

Read next: Our comparison of the iPhone 6s vs the Samsung Galaxy S6.

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