The Samsung Galaxy S6 and HTC One M9 are going to be two of the hottest devices of 2015. They will be direct competitors with each other right of the gate; they will both be announced on March 1st at Mobile World Congress (MWC) two hours apart from one another.
HTC is trying to follow up their hugely successful HTC One M8, which will be a tough task to complete. The One M8 not only had a great specs, but it had an even better design. HTC is one of the few Android manufacturers that has adopted the ‘premium’ design with an all aluminum unibody.
Where HTC lacked was in the camera and battery departments. The camera was more-so the most complained about issue, as HTC continued with their UltraPixel design over the standard megapixel. They were the only manufacturer to include a larger front-facing camera (5 megapixel) than the rear-facing camera (4 UltraPixel). While the camera was the main issue, the battery life wasn’t anything special. It sported a 2,600 mAh battery that was enough to get through the day, but that was about it.
While HTC is trying to follow up a critically acclaimed device, Samsung is on the opposite side of things. The Galaxy S5, while it was successful, wasn’t nearly as successful as they had hoped for. It was outsold by both of its predecessors.
The Galaxy S5 had the same specs as the HTC One M8 (Snapdragon 801 processor, 2 GB of RAM), but it had a larger battery (2,800 mAh) and camera (16 megapixel). Although the Galaxy S5 had better internals overall, it lacked where HTC accelerated.
Samsung devices have long been criticized for their lack of ‘premium’ design and being made of plastic that felt cheap. The S5 was indeed the best looking Galaxy S device to date, but it still was lacking, especially when comparing it to the HTC One M8 or even the iPhone 5.
The good news is, as far as rumors go, both manufacturers are expected to listen to their consumers demands. The Galaxy S6 is expected to feature an all-new metal unibody never before seen on a Samsung device and HTC is expected to employ a redesigned body with a larger camera and battery.
The design of the HTC One M9 is expected to remain similar to that of the One M8, whereas the Galaxy S6 has completely taken a 180. Both devices are expected to sport a metal unibody, with the Galaxy S6 to include glass on the back of the device.
HTC has perfected the unibody design, so it will be tough for Samsung to overtake them on this one. The images that have been leaked of the Galaxy S6 however, do look promising. It will be extremely thin, but it seems as if Samsung is taking notes from Apple.
The Galaxy S6 will feature curved sides with a flat back, similar to that of the Apple iPhone 6. The One M9 instead will employ the same style of unibody as its predecessor. The back will be slightly curved outwards to provide comfort when holding the device for extended periods of time.
This is a tough choice, but just off the One M8, I’m going to have to give this one to HTC. Until we get our hands on a Galaxy S6 and see how premium the device actually feels, HTC will remain the champ of design. Samsung does present a strong case with the thinness of the S6, but that just isn’t enough to overtake HTC.
Originally, it was expected that nearly every flagship device of 2015 would come with the highly-touted Snapdragon 810 processor, then something happened. Qualcomm has been continued to be mentioned in rumors of the S810 having overheating issues.
While Qualcomm continued to deny these rumors, LG confirmed that the S810 heat up, but they dealt with it on the design of the G Flex 2. It also seemed confirmed by the rumors of Samsung dropping the processor altogether on the upcoming Galaxy S6 in favor of their in-house processor. This was since confirmed by Qualcomm announcing that a “big manufacturer” dropped their processor for the 2015 year.
This category would have been a wash, going with a tie, but now we have ourselves a competition. The HTC One M9 will be backed by a the Snapdragon 810, which has since been redesigned, whereas the Galaxy S6 is expected to sport the new Exynos 7420 processor.
Both processors have 64-bit architecture and will have an octa-core setup. Thankfully, both these processors have shown up on Geekbench. It gives a very detailed comparison, if you would like to check that out.
The S6 and M9 are both sporting 3 GB of RAM and Android 5.0, so that both evens out. Other than that, the Exynos 7420 seems to edge the Snapdragon 810 in nearly every statistical category. The image above says it all; the Exynos tops the Snapdragon in both single core (1520 vs. 1309) and multicore (5478 vs. 4055) tests.
On paper, it seems as if the Galaxy S6 will have the better processor, but at the end of the day, these are just benchmarks. How it preforms in the real world, is a different story. As of now, the performance category will hands-down go to Samsung and their Galaxy S6.
The other main category when comparing smartphones is the display. Out of any category, this is one of the most important ones. The display is used constantly used and it is obviously what the user will actually see. The HTC One M9 is expected to come with a standard 5 inch FHD display with a resolution of 1080 x 1920 (443 ppi). The Galaxy S6 will move into the QHD territory with a 5.1 inch display with a resolution of 1440 x 2560 (577 ppi).
The Galaxy S6 will obviously have a crisper, better display thanks to the QHD, but that comes with a hit on battery life. It takes a lot of power to push all those pixels. Although the One M9 will stick with 1080p, it will make up for the lack of (barely) picture quality with battery life.
It is very difficult to tell the difference between QHD and FHD, unless it is being viewed very closely. This category will definitely go to user preference. Samsung is known to have very vivid displays, but HTC can hold their own too. QHD and FHD are in totally different categories, but each come with pros and cons.
It seems as if both HTC and Samsung will try to make up for what was lost on their previous devices. HTC will boost the battery size and boost the camera size even more. Both in the front and the back. Samsung will continue off the where the S5 left off, but employ an all-new design that is expected to make waves on the Android market.
Last years battle between the HTC One M8 and Samsung Galaxy S5 was already one for the ages, but this one will top it handily. Both devices are packed to the gills with specs and on top of it, both will have the most premium designs on the Android market.
At the end of the day, it will come down to user preference, but neither device will disappoint. 2015 is looking to be a great year for smartphones, and it will start out with a bang. Both the Galaxy S6 and One M9 will be debuted on March 1st, just hours apart from one another. Both devices will sell extremely well, but it is unknown who will come out on top. We’ll just have to wait and see.
|Samsung Galaxy S6
|HTC One M9
|143.3 x 70.81 x 6.91 mm
|144.3 x 69.4 9.56 mm
|5.1″ (1440 x 2560) | 577 ppi
|5″ (1080 x 1920) | 443 ppi
|20.7 megapixels (rear) OIS | 5 megapixels (front)
|20.7 megapixels (rear) | 13 megapixels (front)
|64-bit octa-core 1.8 GHz Exynos 7420
|64-bit octa-core 2.0 GHz Snapdragon 810
|3,000 mAh (non-removable)
|32/64/128 GB (expandable – unknown)
|32 GB (expandable)
|Android 5.0 Lollipop | TouchWiz
|Android 5.0 Lollipop | Sense 7.0
|Galaxy S6 Active variant only (IP67)
|Black, White, Blue
|Gray, Silver, Gold
HTC One M9 renders courtesy of Phone Designer
Samsung Galaxy S6 renders courtesy of Under KG