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Posted April 30, 2015 by The Editor in Tech Articles
 
 

HTC One M9 vs Samsung Galaxy S6 – Which is Better?

HTC One M9 vs Samsung Galaxy S6 Comparison
HTC One M9 vs Samsung Galaxy S6 Comparison

The HTC One M9 and the Samsung Galaxy S6 are this year’s flagship smartphones released from two of the biggest mobile phone manufacturers in the world. These lines of phones have been two of the biggest selling and most revered mobile devices on the planet for the last couple of years and many people are wondering which is the better device; or more importantly – which is the best device for them.

This easy to digest comparison between the HTC One M9 and the Samsung Galaxy S6 is a face-off in terms of specs and features, highligting the key good points and bad points of each phone.  At the end, you’ll be in a better position to decide which is the best phone for you, or if indeed you will better off buying a different smartphone.

HTC One M9 Samsung Galaxy S6
OS Android 5.0 with HTC Sense 7 UI.
Score: 9/10.
Android 5.0 with TouchWiz UI.
Score: 8/10.
Design Brushed aluminium body with metal bezel.
Score: 9/10.
Front and rear gorilla glass panels with aluminium bezels.
Score: 8.5/10.
Size H: 144.6 W: 69.7 D: 9.6 mm.
Score: 8/10.
H: 143.4 W: 70.5 D: 6.8 mm.
Score: 9/10.
Screen 5.0″ Super LCD3, 1080 x 1920 pixels, 441 ppi.
Score: 9/10.
5.1″, Super AMOLED, 1440 x 2560 pixels, 577 ppi.
Score: 10/10.
Internal Specs Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 chipset: 8-core, 2000 MHz ARM Cortex-A57 and 1500 MHz ARM Cortex-A53, 64-bit. Adreno 430 GPU, 3GB DDR4 RAM.
Storage: 32GB, with microSD slot, expandable up to 128 GB.
Score: 9/10.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 chipset: 8-core, 2100 MHz ARM Cortex-A57 and 1500 MHz ARM Cortex-A53, 64-bit. Adreno 430 GPU, 3GB DDR4 RAM.
Storage: 128GB (also comes in 32 and 64BG models). No external storage.
Score: 8.5/10.
Camera 20MP sensor with f/2.2 aperture, wide angle lens, digital image stabilisation, HDR mode, 4K video recording @ 30fps, 1080p @ 60fps, 4MP “ultrapixel” front-facing camera, dual LED flash.
Score: 7.5/10.
16MP sensor with f/1.9 aperture with optical image stabilization, HDR mode, AF Assist Beam, autofocus, HDR, 4K video recording @30fps, 1080p @ 60fps, 5MP front-facing camera.
Score: 9.5/10.
Audio Dual front facing stereo speakers with HTC BoomSound™ and Dolby Audio.
Score: 10/10.
Single, bottom-located speaker.
Score: 8/10.
Battery Non-replaceable 2840 mAh LiPo (talk time up to 22 hours, standby time up to 400 hours).
Score: 7.5/10.
Non-replaceable 2550 mAh LiPo (talk time up to 18 hours, standby time up to 400 hours). Built-in wireless charging.
Score: 8.5/10.
MSRP price: $649 / €749 / £499
Score: 8.5/10.
$999 / €899 / £799
Score: 7.5/10.

HTC One M9 Score: 77.5
Samsung Galaxy S6 Score: 77.5

There we have it – a tie. You can see that both phones are endowed with market leading specs, but how does this lead to real-life user experience and what are the areas that each phone lacks in, as well each phone’s really strong points?

The HTC One M9

The HTC One M9 excels in design, audio experience and has probably the slickest user interface on any Android smartphone.

The HTC One is only a small improvement over last year’s HTC One M8.  The main area of improvement, other than the expected upgrades to the internal specs, is a higher resolution rear-facing camera.  Speed, features, colour reproduction and detail is very good, but overall it’s disappointing. It lacks optical image stablisation, which helps with focus when moving and many pictures show luminance noise.  It also struggles with dynamic range when there are light and dark areas in the scene and somewhat ironically, struggles in low-light situations compared to many other high end phones.  The front-facing 4MP ‘ultrapixel’ selfie camera however, does better with this.

The non-replaceable battery life is also a little disappointing and it doesn’t feature wireless charging like the Galaxy S6 does – though it does feature rapid charging, which allows the phone to be charged to over 50% from a flat battery in just 30 minutes.

If you can get over the above two negative points, the HTC One M9 is a joy to use: it’s beautifully built, fits well in the hand, the UI is fast, fluid, customisable and user-friendly and those BoomSound™ front-facing speakers are the best to be found on any smartphone.

The Samsung Galaxy S6

The Samsung Galaxy S6 excels with its screen and camera – both possibly the best available on any smartphone right now.

The disappointment on this year’s Samsung flagship smartphone are the non-replaceable battery and the non-expandable storage: both of these features are what helped to differentiate the Galaxy S line of phones from  most of the competition.  You could argue that expandable storage isn’t really needed on a phone with a huge 128GB of internal storage, especially with so much free or cheap cloud storage avaialable and on this, we have to agree.  However, there is a price to pay for this generous helping of internal storage, literally – the 128GB model is expensive.

If you can get over this fact, then the Galaxy S6 is a stunning phone and a real upgrade over last year’s S5 and a much bigger upgrade than HTC have made with their M9.  The Super AMOLED screen is simply stunning – probably the best display out there on a mobile phone right now.  The camera is also class leading, producing great results in both video and stills format.  Then there’s the design: Samsung have finally caught up with consumer’s expectations of ‘premium design’ and have ditched plastic for glass and aluminium, resulting in a phone that you’re actually happy to show off.

The UI (TouchWiz) of the Galaxy S6 has also had a makeover and while it’s not as slick and classy as the HTC Sense UI, it’s most definitely a move in the right direction, being less cartoony and laggy than its predecessors.  Oh, and it features a fingerprint sensor.

So which phone is best for you?

Both phones are fast and more than capabale in the specs department but where the HTC One really wins out is in the audio and price departments.  The Samsung Galaxy S6 shines in the camera and display departments.  The deciding factor is what’s important to you in a smartphone.  Leave us your comments below and don’t forget to subscribe so you’re kept up-to-date with our last phone reviews.

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The Editor