The big news is that the Galaxy S6 has been completely redesigned, with a fresh new aluminum unibody frame accented with Gorilla Glass 4. It’s something we’ve been expecting to happen for months now, and Samsung has come out swinging after getting back to square one. It’s not longer about cramming every last feature into a plastic shell. Samsung’s new approach is to focus on design, speed and services, and the Galaxy S6 is the perfect vehicle to serve the company’s immense fanbase.
With that said, the new approach doesn’t come without its sacrifices. Because the new devices features a glass back and unibody frame, Samsung didn’t leave any room for a removable battery or expandable storage; two very important features longtime Samsung fans will be sorely disappointed are gone. It’s a bold, brave move on Samsung’s part, and we’re excited to see how Samsung moves forward in the coming months.
Let’s take a gander at the five standout feature of Samsung’s new flagship.
Improved fingerprint reader
A lot of the time it’s the little things that make a big difference. Samsung’s original fingerprint reader was imperfect to say the least, but the company realized a change needed to be made, and it did just that. Rather than swiping your finger over the sensor, users simply need to place their digit over the Galaxy S6’s home button, and voila, instant security. Yes, it’s exactly like Apple’s Touch ID, but it’s just as slick, and we’re glad to see Samsung concede that the old swipe method was an inferior method.
In the Android world, Samsung cameras are consistently among the best, and the Galaxy S6’s improved 16-megapixel shooter promises to be even better. You get smart optical image stabilization, F1.9 aperture for better shots in the dark, auto real-time High Dynamic Range, and an IR Detect White Balance feature, which Samsung says provides advanced light sensitivity. You also get super quick access—Samsung promises less than a second—to the camera by simply pressing double-crossing the home button.
So you can’t remove the battery. Bummer. You do, however, get a device that comes with WPC and PMA certified wireless charging technology, so you can do away with pesky wires once and for all. In addition, the wireless charging has been improved, too, so you’ll be able to juice up the Galaxy S6 much faster than you would a Galaxy S5; the S6’s wireless charging is 1.5 times faster than last year’s S5, giving users about 4 hours of battery in just 10 minutes of charging. Not bad, Sammy.
Trimmed down TouchWiz
TouchWiz has always been a sore spot on an otherwise magnificent career in mobile. The software is often seen as slow, clunky and bloated—never good ways to describe something. This year, however, Samsung says it trimmed down TouchWiz by as much as 40-percent, which means users should only get the most basic of features, rather than Samsung forcing them down a user’s throat. Better yet, Galaxy S6 owners will get Microsoft apps out of the box, along with access to Google mobile services. And if that wasn’t enough, Samsung’s new flagship will also support themes, so users should be able to tweak the software to their liking.
TouchWiz still looks like TouchWiz out of the box (running on top of Android 5.0 Lollipop), but it’s a lighter, faster version of what people are used to, and I’m very much looking forward to seeing how it compares to the TouchWiz everyone is used to. It’s smarter, and more aligned with Samsung’s overall focus on design, speed and services.
You knew I was going to point this out, didn’t you? This year, Samsung went back to the drawing board, and came up with a new design we’ve been expecting for awhile now. There’s no plastic to be found—instead, users are getting all metal and glass. It looks very premium, and once again proves Samsung can design a mean device (we already knew that with the Note 4 and Galaxy Alpha). It definitely bears some resemblance to Apple’s iPhone 6, but so what?
Not everyone is in love with the Galaxy S6’s design, but I think it’s great. Samsung said in its release on Sunday that the S6 creates a “new standard for design, craftsmanship and performance.” Do you think Samsung has achieved that with its new flagship?
Of course, the Galaxy S6 can’t just be summed up in five simple features. The devices offers a lot more, much of which we discussed in the device’s official announcement. It has some pretty amazing specs, as expected, and it also supports Samsung’s new payment service, Samsung Pay, which promises to ramp up the competitive digital wallet landscape even more. This is definitely one of Samsung’s more controversial releases, but who doesn’t love a bit of controversy?