Samsung Galaxy Note 5 vs Apple iPhone 6 Plus: Specs comparison

Samsung has officially announced the Galaxy Note 5, the newest phablet on the market. With a few new changes, can the Galaxy Note 5 stand up to the extremely popular iPhone 6 Plus?

Design

Samsung and Apple are arguably pushing out the most well designed smartphones in the industry. After a slump for a few years, Samsung has found its stride with the dual-glass design and metallic frame.

The iPhone 6 Plus is a touch larger and wider than the Galaxy Note 5. The iPhone 6 Plus also seems to have a slightly larger display, even though the Galaxy Note 5 has a higher pixel density.

There isn’t much difference when comparing the two models. The Galaxy Note 5 has a back cover curve, whereas the iPhone 6 Plus curves on the side. The iPhone 6 Plus camera is also located on the top-left, while the Galaxy Note 5 is in the center and much larger.

Personal preference is going to be the decider for this part. We found the iPhone 6 Plus more attractive, but only by a small margin.

Display

The Galaxy Note 5 display is the winner here, with a 2,560 x 1,440 resolution display surpassing the iPhone 6’s 1,920 x 1,080 display. Even though Apple optimises its display to surpass some of the other panels on the market, Samsung is also one of the better display manufacturers in the industry.

The Super AMOLED display offers a rich set of colours from the darkest blacks to the glaringly white, which the IPS LCD panel on the iPhone 6 Plus cannot reach. That said, AMOLED has a history of messing up the colour accuracy, something an IPS LCD panel is much better at achieving.

Camera

Apple decided to keep the iPhone camera at 8MP, despite growing concerns that 8MP is not good enough for photographers on mobile. Samsung upgraded the camera on the Galaxy Note 5 to 16MP, adding optical image stabilisation and generally made it a much higher quality sensor.

Even though the iPhone 6 Plus has OIS technology, we still give this one to the Galaxy Note 5. The extra megapixels, coupled with the amount of features Samsung has pushed onto the camera, will make for a better photo and video experience.

Under the hood

Samsung has blown us away with plans to add 4GB of RAM to the Galaxy Note 5, a large upgrade over the already large 3GB of RAM inside the Galaxy S6. Add to that the Exynos 7420 octa-core processor, and you have a stellar machine capable of running almost any app.

Apple continues to pump out the dual-core processor with 2GB of RAM, and though arguments can be made that the iPhone 6 Plus needs less power to compete, the Galaxy Note 5 still surpasses it in performance.

The Galaxy Note 5 is the one for the power users, capable of doing a whole lot more things with the performance under the hood.

Verdict

Samsung has delivered a high-end, super fast and well designed smartphone. Unless the iPhone 6 Plus design appeals to you, or there is a specific app on iOS not available on Android, we would consider the Galaxy Note 5 the winner.

Samsung Galaxy Note 5 Apple iPhone 6 Plus

Display

Screen size 5.7in 5.5in
Resolution 2,560 x 1,440 pixels 1,920 x 1,080 pixels
Pixel density 518ppi 401ppi
Type Super AMOLED IPS LCD

Processor and battery

Family Exynos 7420 Apple A8
CPU Cortex-A53 / A57 Cyclone
Cores Octa-core Dual-core
Clock speed 1.5GHz / 2.1GHz 1.4GHz
GPU
Battery 3,000mAh 2,915mAh
Claimed 3G talk time Up to 20h Up to 24h

Storage and memory

RAM 4GB 1GB
Internal storage 32 / 64 / 128GB 16 / 64 / 128GB
microSD No No

Camera

Rear 16-megapixel 8-megapixel
Video 2,160 (Quad HD) 1,080p (Full HD)
Front 5-megapixel 1.2-megapixel

Wireless

Standard 4G LTE 4G LTE
Wi-Fi Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac
NFC Yes Yes
Bluetooth v4.2 v4.0
Integrated wireless charging Yes No

Dimensions

Size 153.2 x 76.1 x 7.6mm 158.1 x 77.8 x 7.1mm
Weight 171g 172g
Operating System Android Lollipop 5.1 iOS 8
Price (SIM-free) £619 / £699 / £789
Availability August 2015 September 2014