With the iPhone 6 Plus having already been released, two new competitors for its phablet crown are about to hit the stores. Samsung is to bring out the latest model in its Galaxy Note series, the Galaxy Note 4, while Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG) is also readying its Nexus 6 for release to consumers.
Although there are other competitors in the marketplace, these three devices will together represent a commanding triumvirate. Most people who wish to buy a phablet will opt for one of these devices, so how do these three significant handsets compare to one another? Here is a rundown of their strengths and weaknesses.
iPhone 6 Plus v Galaxy Note 4 v Nexus 6
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has made its reputation in this department, and the iPhone 6 Plus is no exception to this general rule. The iPhone 6 Plus has been extremely well received critically in terms of its looks, and the phablet’s success commercially has also indicated that the public is enthusiastic about its appearance.
Both the Galaxy Note 4 and the Nexus 6 are to some degree swimming against the tide trying to compete with the iPhone. But Samsung has failed to improve upon the image of its Galaxy Note series in this department, and Google has already been commended for the efforts it has made with the Nexus 6. But for now, Apple is still on top.
Size and Weight
The phablets category of mobile device doesn’t suit everyone. Many consider the whole concept of the phablet to be an unattractive one, deeming them to be too big, bulky and unwieldy. Thus, it is essential for all manufacturers of phablet devices to pay particular attention to the issue of size and weight. Generally speaking, the lighter the better it is a good rule of thumb here.
There are very marginal difference between the weight of the three devices, but the Apple iPhone 6 Plus is somewhat superior. The iPhone 6 Plus weighs 172g, while the Galaxy Note 4 is slightly heavier at 176g, and the Google Nexus 6 the heaviest of the three at 182g. This made mean little in practical terms, but given that the iPhone 6 Plus is also the most compact of the three, it will probably appeal to a wider audience.
However, the iPhone 6 Plus is a poor relation in this department. Samsung has long since prioritized the quality of its displays, and the Galaxy Note 4 is no exception to this rule. Its Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen is capable of displaying 1,440 x 2,560 pixels, as is the Google Nexus 6. The Samsung device probably has a slight age over the Google Nexus 6, but the iPhone 6 Plus is clearly the weakest after three here, despite its adequate full HD capacity.
The Nexus 6 has been armed with an extremely powerful processor, and it seems likely that it will be the strongest of the three devices in pure processing terms. The quad-core 2.7 GHz Krait 450 will ensure that this is an outstandingly powerful mobile device. The Apple iPhone 6 Plus appears to be the weakest of the three devices in terms of processing speed, but Apple has always greatly benefited from its software manufacturing capabilities, which mean that its devices are optimized to perfection. But one could easily argue that the Google Nexus 6 has a clear edge in this department, despite its device being manufactured by Motorola.
This is an interesting area, as both the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and Nexus 6 camera outrank the Apple iPhone 6 Plus in terms of megapixel rating. However, the Samsung Galaxy range has been criticized for its picture quality in a low-light conditions, whereas the iPhone 6 Plus has performed extremely well when tested critically. Google has provided a snapper with a 13-megapixel rating, which is sandwiched between the two, but it could be that this provides the best of both worlds both in terms of spec and performance.
However, the outstanding optical image stabilization functionality included in the iPhone 6 Plus has been critically acclaimed, and additionally it is an excellent video camera. The quality of photography produced by the iPhone 6 Plus outranks it specifications, and all keen photographers should consider it carefully.
Apple has attempted to ensure that the iPhone 6 Plus has a decent battery life, but it still flounders somewhat in this area. Both the Google Nexus 6 and Samsung Galaxy Note 4 ought to outperform Apple’s phablet by some distance in this department. Of the three, Samsung’s mobiles are well known for having excellent battery life, and extra work has gone into this with the Galaxy Note 4, which suggests that its 3220 mAh battery will provide the most life of the three.
All three devices certainly provide owners with a significant amount of value for money. However, the iPhone 6 Plus provides access to Apple’s unequalled App Store, possesses the superbly slick operating system and engine which has made the iPhone the world’s most popular smartphone, and additionally Apple has just added Apple Pay functionality to the device. Certainly, the iPhone 6 Plus takes some beating in terms of its feature set and ease and pleasure of use.
Both the Google Nexus 6 and the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 cram an awful lot of spec into their phablet devices, and both will certainly appeal to a wide range of consumers. Apple continues to deliver a package which is physically attractive and supremely slick to use, meaning that the extra premium in price is no barrier to many fans of the iPhone.