Phablets often draw polarising views from smartphone users — you either love them or hate them. And truth be told, I’m not a particularly big fan of phones that you can barely stuff in your back pocket. But when a phone looks as good as the S6 edge+, it might be time to reconsider.
The question is, is design enough reason to go big?
Let’s hash this out…
We’ll start off with design
By far the most noticeable feature of the S6 edge+ is its sexy, stylish aesthetic. Its curved screen became a unique, new feature (introduced with the S6 edge) that really set it apart from any other smartphone in the market. Set it next to all the latest mobile models in the market today and it’s bound to make all the others look dated.
And Samsung wasn’t about to let anyone forget it.
With much fanfare, Samsung launched the device with emphasis on how digital technology is crossing the boundaries of fashion. And precisely because of its impressive design, anyone would be hard pressed to disagree.
The curved Gorilla Glass 4 is encased in an aluminum alloy frame that makes it look sleek and futuristic. And while the S6 edge+ is bigger, it’s also slimmer and sturdier.
My only complaint stems from my inexperience with phablets. A 5.7-inch screen is already tricky to operate, and while handling the edge+, I almost wished I had more frame to grasp. Still, it was never uncomfortable enough to trade for style. Beauty, after all, demands sacrifice — and it was a small price to pay for a mobile as beautiful as this.
Now on to the display
Features: 5.7-inch screen, Super AMOLED display, 2,560×1140 resolution (Quad HD), curved edges
Images are crisp and bright, colours really pop out and its Super AMOLED display, like the edge+’s design, stands out from the competition. Given its size, it’s hard not to be tempted to pack the mobile’s memory with your favorite TV shows or stream movies from it while on the go.
Which leads us to performance
Features: Quadcore 1.5Ghz with Quadcore 2.1 Ghz Exynos 7420 processor, 4GB RAM, Mali T760MP8 GPU
A phone that looks this good makes your forget that at the end of the day, it’s what’s inside that counts. But what would style be without substance?
Thankfully, Samsung lives up to the hype with the brand ensuring that all the chipsets and tech will combine to create a fast and seamless smartphone. Instead of the typical Qualcomm chips used by competing brands, the S6 edge+ uses a 64-bit Exynos processor — a great choice, given the issues about overheating that the Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 was rumored to cause.
Efficiency was also a focus. The edge+ taps on its quadcore 2.1 GHz CPU to complete major multimedia tasks such as streaming and gaming, while the quadcore 1.5 GHz takes over smaller tasks such as listening to music or web browsing. This means that the edge+ may have just sorted out the perennial issue of battery efficiency in mobile phones today.
The extra RAM also means that the phone will run smoothly — quick and responsive, without any lags.
Then there’s the camera
Features: 16 megapixel rear camera, 8 megapixel front camera
Samsung was never known for having a bad camera, but the S6 edge+ lets you enjoy it even more with the addition of numerous features that cater to the personalities of its users.
Snap-happy users will note that the camera boots quickly — perfect for quickly capturing that Snapchat-worthy moment before it’s missed. It also comes stocked with filters for Instagram enthusiasts and does surprisingly well in low light conditions.
And finally, the battery
Features: 3000mAh, Fast charging, Wireless charging
Given its size, I would assume that it would do well by way of battery life. But with the numerous options for functionality, regardless of how much juice the edge+ packs, you still end up carrying a portable charger anyway.
That said, the dual CPUs help a lot with this. With data running, the screen up at 75%, occasional gaming, a couple of video streams, emails, chats and all attendant smartphone duties, you end the day with maybe 30% of battery remaining. All things considered, that’s a leap from the iPhone 6 Plus, where you end up charging your phone midday just to make sure you have enough power for the drive home.
Just in case you run through all your power and don’t have a portable charger handy, the edge+ comes with a power saving mode that leaves you with a phone that is only able to send and receive calls and texts.
Fast charging is now standard across Samsung phones, and this one does pretty well, going from zero to a hundred in just an hour and 30 minutes. It also allows you to charge wirelessly, and is over 20% faster than it predecessors.
Not much, apart from the price, which is currently at $600. But then again, this is arguably the most beautifully designed phone in the market today with impressive internal specs — it could well be worth every penny.