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Galaxy S6 Edge+ Impressions (from a Galaxy user)

Hands on first impressions of Samsung's Galaxy S6 Edge+ from a Galaxy S6 Edge user who's used every Galaxy flagship. Does Samsung's new device hit the mark?
By
August 17, 2015
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge Plus Hands On-16

After what seemed like a never ending stream of leaks, Samsung finally unveiled the Galaxy S6 Edge+ at its London event last week. For the past few months, we’ve expected Samsung to unveil two new devices and while it did so at its New York global event, the London event only saw the launch of the Galaxy S6 Edge+.

As a Galaxy S6 Edge user (who has also used every Galaxy S and Note flagship released in the UK), does Samsung’s latest big-screen device hit the mark?

Design

Galaxy-S6-Edge+-Gold-Hands-On-AA-(4-of-20)

There’s no doubt that the Galaxy S6 Edge is one of the sexiest smartphones ever released and the S6 Edge+ brings the same sex appeal in a larger body. Despite the larger size, the handset definitely looks as good as the original and if you need a big device, it will definitely appeal.

The biggest issue, however, is that the Galaxy S6 Edge+ is certainly a large device. Compared to the Galaxy Note 4 (which was just manageable), the S6 Edge+ is taller but narrower and a lot thinner and although the slimmer profile is welcome, the handset does feel a tad too tall in the hand. The curved back does make the handset a lot easier to use but make no mistake about it, the Galaxy S6 Edge+ is a BIG phone.

The extra mm in height is definitely apparent and despite having big hands, I found the handset just a little too big. Like most devices however, I’m sure it’s something that would be manageable and appreciated given extensive time with the phablet.

Display

The Galaxy S6 Edge+ also stood out for me as the display seems to be better than the S6 Edge, despite the drop in density (from 571 pixels per inch to 518). One potential reason for this could be down to the human eye, which stops being able to discern individual pixels once density exceeds 350ppi. Based on this, the less density in the Galaxy S6 Edge+ appears to be in its favour and even with the lower density, it’s still one of the densest displays on the market.

The curved edges of the Galaxy S6 Edge+ don’t curve as much as they did on the Galaxy Note Edge and are identical to the display on the Galaxy S6 Edge. The curves certainly look impressive but the handset does distort images in the same way, meaning movies and photos are likely to distort as well. Not a major problem and one that you’ll eventually grow to ignore but worth keeping in mind anyway.

Hardware

A lot of the hardware in the Galaxy S6 Edge+ is very similar to the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge, which again is not exactly a bad decision. Samsung’s Galaxy S flagships were certainly some of the fastest and slickest ever released by Samsung and the Galaxy S6 Edge+ is likely to continue this, especially as Samsung have upped the internal RAM.

The 4GB RAM on the Galaxy S6 Edge+ certainly appeared to make the handset a lot snappier than the Galaxy S6 Edge but performance is something that changes with use and we’ll definitely put it through its paces in our upcoming review. Personally, I can’t see any issues when you’ve got 4GB RAM under the hood and I’d be surprised if performance deteriorated much.

Galaxy S6 Edge battery life review - 28 days later
Features

The other big change in the Galaxy S6 Edge+ is the battery; like the first Edge device, the battery is non-removable but has been upgraded to 3000mAh capacity. As far as Samsung’s flagship phablets go, this battery is definitely on the slimmer side and it remains to be seen whether the battery can actually last a full day.

Software

Galaxy-S6-Edge+-Gold-Hands-On-AA-(20-of-20)

One change that is definitely apparent when you use the Galaxy S6 Edge+ is that Samsung has updated TouchWiz with new, sharper icons that definitely look more premium. Other than that small change, not much has changed with TouchWiz in general but there have been some additions and a few tweaks.

One of the biggest improvements is the addition of app shortcuts to the Edge Screen. You can now add shortcuts to five favourite apps and according to a Samsung demonstrator at the launch event, this should save you a tap or two. As he put it:

“Imagine being in Facebook and wanting to check something on WhatsApp. Now you can load up the Edge screen and open it, without needing to exit out to the home screen.”

Having used the Galaxy S6 Edge, the addition of apps to the Edge Screen is certainly a welcome improvement but whether it’s enough, remains to be seen. I will say that it is nice to see Samsung improving the features of the Edge and it will be interesting to see how Samsung improves it further going forward.

The Galaxy S6 Edge+ also sees Samsung appeal to music and media lovers alike, with the introduction of a new easy broadcast option letting you share to YouTube directly from the camera and hi-res audio ensuring music has never been clearer. Personally, the former option does appeal and seemed to be very good in the demo and the audio, while not something for me, definitely sounds good and should appeal to many.

Conclusion

If it isn't broken, don't fix it
The saying that seems to have inspired the Galaxy S6 Edge+ is “if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it” and for the most part, Samsung’s decision to keep the Edge design is unsurprising. As a Galaxy S6 Edge user, the larger device does appeal to me but the dual curves are less ergonomically-friendly compared to the smaller device.

The Galaxy S6 Edge was so unique it had a certain appeal but the S6 Edge+ is no longer new and Samsung’s smartphone is less than an iterative upgrade. It is curved for the big-screen market and designed purely in mind for those who liked the Galaxy S6 Edge but found it too small for their needs.

Should you buy the Galaxy S6 Edge+?
Should you buy the Galaxy S6 Edge+? If you already have the Galaxy S6 Edge, then certainly not unless the extra screen space is absolutely essential and you don’t mind the larger size. However, if you’re looking for a capable smartphone that’s feature-packed and think the Edge Screen will be useful for your needs, the Galaxy S6 Edge+ is certainly one to consider.

Of course, this is just a preliminary look at Samsung’s latest curved phablet and we’ll bring a much more in-depth analysis of it in the full review. What do you think of the Galaxy S6 Edge+? Will you buy it? Let us know your views in the comments below guys!