The Galaxy S6 Edge is a high-end smartphone from Samsung, with a Quad HD (2560 x 1440) 5.1” screen, 3 GiB of RAM, 64 GiB of storage, 16 Mp rear and 5 Mp front cameras, Exynos 7420 eight-core GHz CPU, support to 4G LTE and Android 5.0 “Lollipop” operating system. Let’s see if it worth its price.
The Galaxy S6 Edge can be found in versions with 32, 64, and 128 GiB of storage, all of them with 3 GiB RAM. Its model number is SM-G925, plus a letter which indicates the world region.
Figure 1 shows the box of the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge, which has a very clean design.
Inside the box, besides the smartphone, we found a wall charger, USB cable, earphones, an opening tool for the NanoSIM drawer, and a quick guide to the device.
The highlight of the Galaxy S6 Edge is the Super AMOLED screen with curved edges, as seen in Figure 3. The front of the device is all covered with Gorilla Glass 4, with a metal frame. In the lower part of the front is the physical home button, with fingerprint reader. The front camera is on the top.
Figure 3: the screen with curved edges of the Galaxy S6 Edge
[nextpage title=”Overall Look”]
The Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge uses an Exynos 7420 64-bit CPU from Samsung itself, which has four Cortex-A53 cores running at 1.5 GHz and four Cortex-A57 cores running at 2.1 GHz. Even being an eight-core processor, it uses the big.LITTLE architecture, where low-consumption cores are combined to high performance ones, so when the CPU is not under heavy load, the four low-consumption cores are active, and the power-hungry ones are inactive, and the opposite when high performance is demanded. The GPU is a Mali-T760MP8.
It has 3 GiB of RAM and 64 GiB of storage, but it can be found with 32 GiB or 128 GiB, as we mentioned before.
The 5.1-inch Super AMOLED LCD screen has a resolution of 2560 x 1444 pixels (Quad HD), resulting in 577 dots per inch. Image quality and angle of vision are excellent, as expected.
Figure 4 shows the back side of the device, which is covered by Gorilla Glass 4. The model we tested is black (actually, dark blue), but you can find it on white, golden, and green.
The phone is very thin, being with only 7 mm thick. There is no way to open it to access the battery.
In the back of the device, you can see the 16 MP main camera, with a LED flash. Next to it is the heartbeat sensor.
Figure 5 shows the top of the Galaxy S6 Edge, where is the secondary microphone, infrared transmitter, and the NanoSIM drawer.
At the bottom are the headphone jack, the MicroUSB/charge connector, main microphone, and the loudspeaker. Notice that the device uses an USB 2.0 port, which is a throwback when compared to the Samsung Galaxy S5, which uses an USB 3.0 port.
At the left side are the volume buttons.
At the right side is the power button.
In Figure 9 you can see the detail of the screen edge, that gives the name of the model.
[nextpage title=”Using the ZenFone 2″]
As expected for a high-end smartphone, the Galaxy S6 Edge is excellent in use. The Samsung Exynos 7420 processor, together to the 3 GiB RAM, make the device fast and nimble.
The 5,1” Super AMOLED screen is excellent and the very resolution of 2560 x 1440, with 577 DPI, is stunning. It is actually an overkill: there is no visible difference comparing to Full HD screens of the same size, even because it is said that the human eye can perceive details at no more than 300 dpi.
The Galaxy S6 Edge supports only one NanoSIM chip, with 4G LTE support.
The device also supports NFC, which is a short distance communication standard for data transfer and electronic payments.
The phone is pretty compact, measuring 5.6” x 2.8” (142 x 70,1 mm), and it weighs 4.66 oz. (132 g.) A small problem is that it has a small protuberance around the main camera, so it is a little thicker in this point.
The curved edges are a little controversial. There are specific features for them, like shortcuts for up to five contacts, or a clock on the edge, but these are more curiosities than practical features. And, using the phone, they can spoil the grip of the device. If you have big fingers, it is easy to accidentally touch the screen while holding the phone, which can mess up your typing. In short, it is beautiful, but not practical.
Besides using an USB 2.0 port and not an USB 3.0, another drawback when compared to the Galaxy S5 is that the Galaxy S6 Edge is not water resistant.
The Galaxy S6 Edge comes with Android 5.0 operating system. The interface is the TouchWiz, very intuitive and easy to use, and not too different from “neat” Android.
Figure 10 shows the initial screen when you turn on the Galaxy S6 Edge for the first time.
Pressing the icon with sixteen dots, you enter the list of applications, shown in Figures 11, 12, and 13. The Galaxy S6 Edge comes with a lot of preinstalled apps and games.
Figure 11: list of applications
Figure 12: list of applications
Figure 13: list of applications
You can install new applications using the Google Play Store, which has thousands of applications and games available.
The smartphone uses a 2,600 mAh lithium battery, with a good endurance for this kind of smartphone. We ran the battery benchmark of the Android PCMark app, and it measured 5 hours and 44 minutes, which is a good time.
A highlight of the Galaxy S6 Edge is the fast charging: according to Samsung, it can be used for four hours with only 10 min charging. It is also compatible with wireless charging (the charger must be purchased separately).
The 16 Mpixel camera is excellent. Besides that high resolution and great quality, it is very fast, taking pictures almost instantly. It is also capable of recording Full HD (at 30 or 60 fps) and 4K videos.
The front camera (for video chat and “selfies”) has a 5 Mpixel resolution, which is also excellent.
[nextpage title=”Performance Tests”]
In order to check the performance of the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge, we ran some benchmarking apps. We ran the PCMark Work test, which simulates real world tasks, the 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited benchmark, which measures 3D performance, and AnTuTu 5.7.1, which runs several performance tests, including memory, storage, and 3D graphics benchmarking to create a final score. We also ran the same tests on the ZenFone 5 and on the ZenFone 2.
Keep in mind, however, that the smartphones tested are not direct competitors, because they have very different price points.
In the PCMark Work benchmark, the Galaxy S6 Edge was 32% faster than the ZenFone 5, and 12% slower than the ZenFone 2.
In the 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited, the Galaxy S6 Edge was 11% faster than the ZenFone 2, and 291% faster than the ZenFone 5.
In AnTuTu, the Galaxy S6 Edge was 35% faster than the ZenFone 2 and 78% faster than the ZenFone 5.
[nextpage title=”Main Specifications”]
The main specifications for the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge (model SM-G925) include:
- Dimensions: 5.6 x 2.8 x 0.28 inches (142 x 70.1 x 7 mm)
- Weight: 4.66 ounces (132 grams)
- Display: 5.1 inches, 2560 x 1440, Super AMOLED touchscreen
- Operating System: Android 5.0 (“Lollipop”)
- Main Processor (CPU): Samsung Exynos 7420, four Cortex-A54 cores at 1.5 GHz and four Cortex-A57 cores at 2.1 GHz
- Graphics Processor (GPU): Mali-T760MP8, embedded in the CPU
- RAM: 3 GiB
- Storage: 64 GiB (there are 32 GiB and 128 GiB versions too)
- Memory Card Slot: no
- GPS: yes
- FM Radio: no
- Sensors: accelerometer, proximity, light, gyro, compass, barometer, heartbeat, fingerprint reader
- SIM slots: one NanoSIM
- Networks: GSM/GPRS/EDGE 850/900/1800/1900 MHz, UMTS/HSPA+ 850/900/1900/2100 MHz, 4G LTE 1700/1800/1900/2100/2600 MHz
- Wi-Fi: IEEE 802.11b/g/n/ac
- NFC: yes
- Bluetooth: yes, 4.1
- Rear camera: 16 Mpixel
- Front camera: 5 Mpixel
- Flash: yes
- Battery talk time: 16 h talk, 50 h standby
- Battery: 3.7 V, 2,600 mAh Li Ion, not removable
- More information: https://www.samsung.com/
- Average price in the U.S.*: USD 930.00
* Researched at Newegg.com in the day this review is published.
The Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge is better than its predecessor, the Galaxy S5, in some points: it is thinner, has a better frontal camera, and faster CPU. But it also has some throwbacks, like the USB 2.0 connection and the fact it is not water resistant.
The screen with curved edges (which is the only difference from the Galaxy S6 Edge and the “regular” Galaxy S6) gives the smartphone a nice design, but we didn’t find it useful. Actually, it can spoil the use of the phone sometimes, until you get used to them.
Except for that, the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge is what you would expect from a top-shelf smartphone: brings high performance, excellent camera, exceptional screen, and it is slim and light. Its only real problem is its price; it is only worth to have if you get it from your service provider at a lower price.
- Crisp screen with very high resolution
- Slim and light
- Great design
- Excellent performance
- 5 MP front camera
- 16 Mp rear camera
- Capture videos at 4K or at Full HD with 60 fps
- Supports 4G LTE
- Supports NFC
- Fast battery charge
- Supports unlocking with fingerprint
- Expensive (on unlocked versions)
- Does not support memory card
- Not water resistant as its predecessor
- Offers USB 2.0 connection, and not USB 3.0 as its predecessor
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