Having trouble choosing between the GS6 and LG's new pocket-friendly Nexus? Here's the case in favor of Samsung.
With the fall flurry of new smartphone launches already well underway, many of us will be weighing up the many high-end Android phones coming to market in the weeks ahead. Samsung's Galaxy S6 is undoubtedly the highest-profile Android phone of the year, but the newly-announced LG Nexus 5X — a successor to the highly popular Nexus 5 will surely be tempting Android enthusiasts away from more traditional flagships in the coming weeks.
A smartphone purchase is a uniquely personal decision, so we're going to look at this question from both sides. First up, here's the argument in favor of Samsung. Head past the break for five reasons to pick the Samsung Galaxy S6 over that cheaper, stock Android-running LG Nexus.
1. Wireless charging
Google has ditched wireless charging in this year's two Nexus handsets, meaning you'll need to wire up when it comes time to charge. So much for all those Nexus-branded wireless chargers.
Meanwhile Samsung is embracing both major wireless charging standards, with support for Qi and PMA across all three Galaxy S6 models, as well as the Galaxy Note 5. And while the smaller Galaxy S6 and S6 edge might not be battery champions, they offer the most versatile charging solutions of any high-end phone.
(And there's also the fact that the GS6 series works with the microUSB cables you probably already own, as opposed to the relatively new, rare and expensive USB Type-C standard.
2. That screen
As we discovered in our hands-on, the Nexus 5X sports a perfectly nice-looking 5.2-inch 1920x1080 Full HD IPS LCD display. And while that's all well and good, it's no match for Samsung's leading Quad HD SuperAMOLED, which offers vivid colors, incredible daylight visibility and almost unrivalled pixel density.
Samsung's also turning heads this year with its edge screen, having finally found a decent balance between eye-catching aesthetics and (somewhat) useful functionality with the Galaxy S6 edge and S6 edge+. Over on the Nexus, you'll find a less futuristic flat screen atop the device's plastic shell.
3. Materials and build
This one is pretty much indisputable — Samsung wins hands-down with a gorgeous glass-backed, metal-framed design that feels as premium as it looks. After years of unimpressive plastic flagships, the Korean company has stepped up its focus on build quality in a big way, and the result is a handset that can really rival the aesthetics of Apple's iPhones.
Being a much cheaper handset, the Nexus 5X has to make do with a less ostentatious plastic-backed chassis frame. There's nothing wrong with that — and again, you have to consider the price of these two phones. When you're paying more for a phone, there's more money to spend on more exotic materials.
4. A proven camera
Google's making a lot of noise about its 12.3-megapixel rear camera (with new 1.55-micron pixels) this year — and the new Nexus camera, found in both the 5X and 6P, may well be worthy of the hype. In the meantime, Samsung's optically-stabilized 16-megapixel shooter has been taking some of the best pictures to come out of an Android phone for almost half a year.
While Nexus handsets have never really lived up to their potential in the area of digital imaging, Samsung now has a proven track record here, and if you opt for a GS6 over a Nexus, your pictures will be in safe hands. Indeed, initial testing on the Nexus 6P from DXOMark shows that the Nexus camera, while good, can't match up to the GS6's rear shooter.
That said, lab tests can only go so far, and we're still eager to test these two out in the real world.
5. Immediate availability
This year we've thankfully avoided the nightmare of delays, broken storefronts and other problems that've plagued previous Nexus launches. But if you want a Nexus 5X or 6P, you're still going to have to buy direct from Google at full price. (Or go all-in with Project Fi and a monthly payment plan for the phone as well.)
Being the mobile giant that it is, Samsung's flagships are available to buy on just about every carrier on the planet, including subsidized deals that'll allow you to walk away with a phone without paying the full retail price.
Have your say
We'll take a look at the case for picking the Nexus 5X over the Galaxy S6 in a future article, so stay tuned!