Flagship showdown: Samsung Galaxy S6 series v HTC One (M9)

The best of Samsung up against the best from HTC

Cameras

Our ‘cons’ list for the One (M8) listed only the following: “Low resolution camera”. Otherwise we found the One (M8) to be the divine marriage of hardware, software and design.

Criticism of its low resolution Ultrapixel camera has motivated HTC to replace it with one that will take photos five times larger at 20 megapixels. This is a bold step and one in the right direction.

The rear camera of the One has an aperture of f/2.2, is bordered by a dual-LED flash and supports Ultra high definition video recording.

Read more: Top 5 reasons why the smartphone market needs Sony

HTC hasn’t ditched the Ultrapixel camera as much as it has relocated it to the front, where its 4 megapixel resolution is among the largest in the market. The Ultrapixel camera has an aperture of f/2.0 and will record videos in Full HD resolution.

Rivalling HTC’s photographic credentials are two proficient cameras on Samsung’s duo of Galaxy S6 smartphones. The rear camera continues to take photos at 16 megapixels and records videos in Ultra high definition. Improvements include an aperture of f/1.9 – which should improve its low-light performance – and a higher resolution front camera.

Selfies taken with the S6 will span 5 megapixels and will too benefit from an f/1.9 aperture, while the front camera will record videos in Full HD.

Good Gear Guide has taken sample shots with pre-production versions of both cameras, but we will reserve judgement on camera performance until we have reviewed both models.

Software

The Galaxy and One series of smartphones both grew to prominence off the back of Google’s Android operating system. The latest iterations run Android 5.0 Lollipop and they each prove competitive.

Samsung has, to the company’s credit, simplified its TouchWiz Android overlay. The design of the smartphone’s software is closer to Android’s material design and is representative of the user experience coming first.

HTC’s Sense UI is among the best Android overlays on the market because it has a lighter footprint than most rivals. The key focus of Sense 7 is customisation. An advanced theme editor lets you pick from a gallery of professional themes that change the background, colours, fonts, back/home/apps buttons and the clock widget.

Miscellaneous features

HTC remains pragmatic with its BoomSound speakers. This time its amplified stereo speakers benefit from hardware and software tuning from the respected folks at Dolby.

Samsung has packed its Galaxy S6 duo with an improved rendition of its finger scanner and a heart monitor.

Verdict

There is only one winner here, and it is you — the consumer — because whether you buy a Samsung Galaxy S6 or an HTC One (M9), you’ll be the proud owner of a phone that is powerful, feature rich and uniquely beautiful.

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Tags AndroidhtcsamsungOneAndroid 5.0LollipopGalaxy S6S6 EdgeM9

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Tony Ibrahim

Tony Ibrahim

Good Gear Guide

@slicktonyi

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