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Should you buy Samsung’s Galaxy S6 phone?

The Galaxy S6 Edge.

The Galaxy S6 Edge.

In what appears to be a clear play for the iPhone 6’s dominance of the premium smartphone market, Samsung has unveiled the latest in their Galaxy S-series line of smartphones, the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge. And boy, are they stunners.

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They’re also very familiar, calling to mind the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus in a variety of ways, including design, features and third-party options.

Bridging the divide that previously existed between the company’s Galaxy S5 and Apple’s line of premium smartphones – differentiated by metal casings, practical features and merchant systems – the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge are clear improvements on design and feel, but less so on specifications.

The Galaxy S6 range.

The Galaxy S6 range.

Size

Both models feature a 5.1-inch Super AMOLED display, which sits between the iPhone 6’s 4.7-inch and the iPhone 6 Plus’s 5.5-inch Retina HD screens.

Samsung already found this sweet spot for smartphone size with the Galaxy S5.

Memory

The new phones come with various memory storage options, both offering 64 and 128 Gig models, but only the S6 is available in a smaller 32 Gig model.

This indicates the S6 Edge will come with a premium price tag.

Camera

Samsung has decided to rest a little while they’re ahead, packing the same 16-megapixel rear camera found in the S5 into the new S6 and S6 Edge. However, video resolution has been doubled in the process.

Compared to the iPhone 6’s 8-megapixel iSight camera, the S-series phones are still ahead.

Display

Both sides of the Galaxy S6 Edge sport a smooth curve for access to features and display flexibility.

The curved sides, previously seen on the Galaxy Note Edge, can be populated by widgets and other info, like text messages, contacts and alerts, offering a greater amount of visual flexibility.

Price

No Australian release date or pricing is available at this time, but check back for details as they are announced.

The Galaxy S6 Edge.

The Galaxy S6 Edge.

Other notable features

• Metal body: No more dropping your smartphone and watching the plastic shell fly off in various directions!

• Samsung Pay: Boasting more partners than Apple Pay, this new mobile payment system offers users a cardless and cashless payment alternative. Hats off to Apple for doing the leg work with merchants.

• Wireless ‘Qi’ charging: Although the wireless charging pad will be a paid extra, it’s good to see the Korean manufacturer embrace this feature in a flagship model.

The verdict

So is it worth upgrading your smartphone to the new Galaxy S6 or S6 Edge?

Whereas Apple deviate minimally each year from the same basic design – earning jibes from all and sundry in the process – Samsung has clearly introduced a number of design changes to bring the new Galaxy S6 up to standard with its peers from Cupertino.

There’s bad news for 19 percent of smartphone users: the new S6 and S6 Edge aren’t waterproof, so that dive into the toilet bowl is now a deadly express trip into a bag of rice for a week (iPhone users already know this song).

There are also two other major changes in territory for Galaxy fans that will likely polarise opinions. Samsung has eliminated the removable battery and memory expansion slot – features that defined many generations of the Galaxy S line – in favour of a sleeker design.

It’s an odd move, considering battery life is a major gripe of many smartphone users and the S6 battery has slightly less capacity than the S5 – 2600mAh and 2800mAh respectively. For comparison, the iPhone 6 battery comes in at 1810mAh and the 6 Plus at 2915mAh.

The removal of this flexibility may mean many users face a tough decision: try the new user experience of the S6 or S6 Edge, or swing over to Apple’s side of the fence.

Are you excited about the new Samsung Galaxy S6? Tell us what you think in the comments below.

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