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How Samsung won me back with the Galaxy S6, S6 Edge

I’ve been waiting for this smartphone maybe since two years ago, but I’ve been constantly disappointed by Samsung with its constant use of plastic, gimmickry and slow TouchWiz. That’s not to say they weren’t improving with every iteration – it’s just that they decided not to take a lot of risks and go with very small updates for the past few years, and that really underwhelmed me.


I’ve used several U.S. Galaxy S phones and a Galaxy S2, my brother got a Galaxy S3, my dad has a Note 4, my sister had a Galaxy Nexus and my mom uses a Galaxy Note 2. I think it’s clear that I know how upgrades feel for Samsung, and for the past iterations of Galaxy devices, I choose not to go back to Samsung ever since the Galaxy S2, because I felt that they were too gimmicky, and that they lacked inspiring design. It’s true that they win in spec wars most of the time, but I feel like they missed on the user experience by a mile, and I think this is due to the fact that they are trying to differentiate itself from Apple through a lot of things.


Seeing how my family uses their Galaxy phones, no matter how much I tell them to use these “other software features”, they just won’t. Heck, I won’t either – because the implementations on TouchWiz are quite unintuitive. Deciding that these gimmicks don’t really add value (more often, they slow down and add junk to your device), I became a loyal stock Android user with the Nexus 4, Nexus 7 and the Nexus 5 – and I never looked back at Samsung… until now.

I’ve always considered getting an HTC One, because of its amazing design, its toned down Sense UI and the BoomSound speakers, but the cameras and the support here in the PH tell me not to. I’ve always considered an Xperia Z because of its design, camera & waterproofing, but the semi-annual release cycle of Sony keeps me hanging. And hey, I haven’t shut myself from buying an iPhone, but I’d like to stay away from jumping ecosystems until Android devices really start to bore me. Those were the only smartphone series that I could choose from now, but with the Galaxy S6, Samsung won me back.


It’s no secret that companies take pages out of their competitors’ play books, and Samsung is no different. The South Korean firm has finally gambled, while maintaining most of what made their Galaxy S lineup. The Galaxy S6 is in some ways Samsung’s reply to HTC’s premium metallic build and Sony’s glass-backed Xperia smartphones. It’s also quite an iPhone with the fingerprint scanner and the design on the sides, ditching a removable back and micro SD card support. To top it all off, there’s Samsung’s top of the line hardware and whether you like it or not, TouchWiz.

This won me back. Call it copying, but they copied the things that actually matter and ditched a lot of those that don’t.


So, Samsung listened to all the cries complaining about their lack of innovation and design, how about TouchWiz? They did smoothen out the edges by removing a lot of junk, claiming it to be a lot faster. We’ll have to see that in our full review, but surely it’s a step in the right direction.

As for the removable back cover, I don’t see where the buzz comes from as I barely see anyone bring an extra battery to switch. The micro SD card might be missed by some, but coming from a Nexus, that’s okay with me. Besides, the base model now starts at 32GB, whereas with the iPhone and the Nexus, it’s still 16GB.

Samsung Galaxy S6 (6)

And did I mention how beautiful the S6 Edge looks like? Say what you may, but Samsung didn’t copy that from anyone, and it’s not as gimmicky as you think it is. First off, it has the looks, which will surely catch a lot of people’s attentions (the other color variants will add to this). Second, there’s functionality added by Samsung, namely People Edge, Information Stream and more. Finally, the curve should also add to the user experience in swiping. This is something that I’ve felt for myself on the curves of the Nexus 4, and something iPhone 6 users felt as well with the glass curving to the metal on the sides. Considering Android has a lot of swipe gestures from the left and from the right, a curve will surely feel a lot better on the screen.


I still have some gripes with what they’ve done though. They sacrificed battery capacity and allowed the camera to bulge out the back just to slim down the Galaxy S6 when it would have been okay to make the device a little thicker; TouchWiz could have used a redesign; they’re probably going to be slightly more expensive because of the materials used and the storage options, and I also think they should have released only one Galaxy S6, and it should have been the Edge (because of fragmentation and branding confusion).

The Galaxy S6 speakers are not front-firing, it’s not waterproof – so there’s still plenty of reasons to get other phones. But for the most part, Samsung may have just gotten its mojo back, and they might have created one superphone worthy of my attention by getting ideas from everybody else.

And that’s great.

Samsung Galaxy S6 hands-on, first impressions
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge first impressions
Samsung Galaxy S6 vs HTC One M9: spec comparison
Samsung Galaxy S5 vs Samsung Galaxy S6: spec comparison

Bob Freking occasionally contributes articles to the website. He is a UST Graduate of Commerce & Business Administration, Major in Marketing Management, and a full-time Sith Lord with three dragons.

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28 Responses

  1. emman says:

    you sure you have nothing to disclose here?

  2. phonebuddy says:

    Me too! I’m really impressed with the edge. I’ve played with the note edge and really like the feeling when swiping. It’s so natural. What’s bad now is my note 4 is still very new and I don’t want to replace it any time soon. But I really want the gold or green s6 edge in my pocket! Mukhang kikita na naman ang samsung sakin. =)

  3. ecaps24 says:

    I have same feeling when I saw the s6 edge in photos. What more if I’ll have the chance to hold this device. Also, does anyone know if the payment terminals here in the Philippines will adopt Samsung pay? If yes, I’m definitely sold.

  4. Ernest says:

    Just when I’m starting to loose faith on Samsung because of their insistence of using plastic. I know plastic is more durable but it isn’t worth 35k+ then here comes the beautiful and premium looking S6.I will surely buy one since my 2 year contract from globe expired this February. I don’t care really about SD cards because just like what the writer said, 32gb as the base model is huge enough for me.

  5. Biggs says:

    Paps, 32GB na ang entry-level Nexus ngayon.

  6. FiatLux says:

    Just my 2 cents:
    The Galaxy S6 (and the S6 Edge) had disappointed me. A lot.

    The battery life: not evolving. Just getting worse, even with the ultra power saving mode.
    The expandable storage: gone. Now I have to spend more money for the 64gb model! (And I watch full HD movies and listen to FLAC on a phone.)
    Metallic design: I don’t care. I didn’t buy a phone based on how it feels — beauty is only screen deep.

    That’s why I’m excited for HTC One M9.

    • Name: Cyril says:

      you will be putting a case on that phone anyway so the design really doesn’t matter..

      having a 20 to 30k+ phone without a case just feels so wrong well unless you are rich then you wouldn’t need to bother in putting on a case xD

    • archie says:

      Personal preference kasi ang article na ito at hindi neutral gadget review kaya walang argument na magagawa dito. Pero agree ako sa battery life, storage at metal design opinion mo. Don’t forget the pricing, Samsung will also compete against apple just to create the image of a premium device.

      They ditched Qualcomm 810 dahil cost cutting na sila. Mas murang gumamit ng inhouse Exynos, wag lang sanang magkakaroon ng overheating at glitch problems tulad ng unang Exynos dahil magiging katawa tawa ang pricing ng S6 pag maraming flaw sa engineering nito.

  7. Cyril says:

    ” As for the removable back cover, I don’t see where the buzz comes from as I barely see anyone bring an extra battery to switch ”

    seeing as the author is not a Galaxy series user then he wont know a thing or two about our sentiments..

    the echoes are coming from us the loyal Galaxy series users..

    while it might not matter to you, it definitely matters to us..

    now as for me i don’t care about the design since i’m gonna put a case on it anyway so why bother? & as for the SD card slot i don’t care about that also along with the water resistant feature, what i care about is the removable batteries it is the main feature that attracted me to the Galaxy series & now they removed it :(

    though we are a small segment in the market since only a few cares about the removable batteries & all the other lost features but hopefully our outcry will reach Samsung through the sale of the S6 & it will knock some senses into them not to make the same mistake with the future S7 xD

  8. eshada says:

    I like the edge too and will definitely get one.

    I don’t need the expandable storage and removable battery. Never been an issue for me.

  9. paolo says:

    Sorry for saying this, but people like you are why we lost the nice things about every Samsung phone BEFORE 2015. And frankly, why we can’t have nice things on our phones anymore.

    People like you who only care about design and aesthetics over capability and performance. Well, I’m happy for you that you finally are impressed with the Galaxy S6 (Edge,) but you people are the reason why we power users are now left in the cold.

    You wanted a thin phone, so the battery is now smaller and not replacable. You think you’re happy with 32GB internal storage and an unrealistic expectaion of internet performance, it’s a nightmare for us who switch phones often and need on the fly tranfer and access of our data (and Android backups) with microSD cards. And watch that memory fill up as soon as your photos, music, videos, and games come into your phone.

    And it’s insulting that ” [you] don’t see where the buzz comes from as[you] barely see anyone bring an extra battery to switch.’ People like you who work in the tech journalism industry can afford two,three phones and tabletS. While the rest of us make do with extra batteries – oh, scratch that, “suffer” from having to inconveniently switch from a dead power pack to a fresh one in as little as 30 seconds. Your patience from having to wait 2-3 hours to charge a sealed phone from a power pack must be admirable. In fact, the patience of anyone who can afford to wait that long for power is admirable.

    I don’t care if my phone is plastic and bulky, I want to last 2 days on a charge and can carry every discography and save all my panoramas in a pinch. But you people won, so enjoy your sealed up, closed, non-expandable phone while the battery is good anyway.

    • cK says:

      Grabe. So much hate in a post. Curious lang ako, ano’ng cellphone model mo ngayon? Ano’ng cellphone model ang nakasatisfy sa “2 days on a charge and can carry EVERY discography and save ALL my panoramas in a pinch?

      When the GS5 was released, many people praised its specs and performance, but there were others too who complained about its boring design. The GS6 here on the other hand, leaned more on design than in specs and performance, and yet people are still divided. You can see where I am going with this, right? Smartphones are made to cater to A CERTAIN market, not ALL market. You can’t just point your hate towards the techbloggers, or to anybody who is not a “power-user”, and insult the way we carry our phone. Each of us have our own lifestyle. It just so happened that the companies are making their phones based on the lifestyle of the majority of the population. Therein lies your problem then – majority of the population are not “power-users”. Anong gagawin mo ngayon? Nakatulong kaya yang pangbabash mo sa other users?

      A-agree na sana ako sa post mo, kaso the way you brought it up, you made it sound it like you are the only one who knows how to use a phone while the rest of us ay nangungulangot lang.

  10. Nick says:

    Samsung? Nein, danke.

  11. sam says:

    Not Gimicky? Haha think again!

  12. Copycat says:

    Is this the NEW iphone??? ;)))))))

  13. Rom says:

    They could have made s6 edge as the lone flagship, but they did not. Why? They could not meet demand for s6 edge because they are having supply issues with the sloping screen.

  14. japorms says:

    really disappointed.
    some reviewers are raving about its beauty, but I personally feel its looks isn’t better than “older” phones from oneplus, huawei, lg,HTC etc.
    losing core features like sd, waterproof n removable battery is a dealbreaker for some.

    16mp only? 3 gb only? many china phones already outspecc this.

    anyway, hoping Samsung can give us a true cutting edge flagship in the note5.

  15. Stallion says:

    Non replaceable batt = once the batt gets fat you need to have your phone opened. Unlike S5, you can change it by yourself and see it anytime if your batt is still in a perfect shape.

    External SD = it’s still better if there’s an extra storage esp for people who saves a lot of movies and etc.

  16. NonSense says:

    “I think this is due to the fact that they are trying to differentiate itself from Apple through a lot of things.”

    HUWAAATTTTT? Were you living in a cave for so long? #JuiceColored.

  17. IdiiotAuthor says:

    ‘As for the removable back cover, I don’t see where the buzz comes from as I barely see anyone bring an extra battery to switch.’

    Author, I really believe you are either dumb or dumber. Users are not clamoring for the replaceable battery so that they can swap it with a fully-charged one when it gets low or when it dies. They want it so that it is easier and cheaper to replace once it has reached its maximum life expectancy. Compare that to replacing a non-user-replaceable battery where you’ll have to pay more for the service technician.

    ang sakit sa bangs ng article mo.

    • Manalo says:

      There is no WIRELESS CHARGING, Samsung Pay or even a thinner phone if the battery is removable. Plus the new battery is now Li-Polymer, not Li-Ion which is 3x more long lasting in lifespan than Li-Ion.

      Do your research bub, if you want a removable back cover then buy an LG G3.

    • psikick says:

      ^ boss Manalo.. ikaw po ang mag research.. ang nakikita nyo pong Li-Poly na battery sa market ngayon ay Li-ion din yung laman… ang orig na nadevelop na li-ion batt ay cylindrical (parang AA).. nakikita po yan ngayon sa batt na gamit ng mga e-cig at powerbank.. ang casing po neto ay metal (parang sa AA batts).. ang nadevelop po para sa mga cellphone ay li-ion din pero ang casing nya ay foil so mas magaan cya at mas flexible in terms of shape at space requirements… pero ang technology mismo ay li-ion pa rin kapareho ng li-ion na cylindrical… ang pinagkaiba lang po ay marketing… dahil medjo bagong tech cya (nauna kasi lumabas yung cylindrical model) binigyan ng bagong pangalan.. li-poly … strictly speaking wala pa pong totoong li-poly technology na battery in mass-production sa market.. ang definition po ng li-poly : yung electrolyte na gamit sa loob ay polymer at hindi liquid.. yang “li-poly” batt na meron kayo, kung buksan nyo yan, may liquid sa loob.. mababasa ang kamay nyo pag hinawakan nyo.. ang li-poly dry cya sa loob… wala pong ganun.. research pa lang po.. :)

  18. awts says:

    galing ng author…not!

  19. shutter says:

    I’m getting an S6.Because I want both z3 and iphone6. :)

  20. rodel says:

    improved aesthetics at toned down UI kaya mas smooth na ang user experience, latest SoC (14nm tech), best oled display, f/1.9 apperture ng camera, DDDR4 RAM at UFS 2.0 flash memory. ano pa bang rason para di bumili hehehe. syempre mamimiss ko ang sd card at removable battery pero ganun talaga, di mo makukuha lahat :)

  21. yyy says:

    Why would someone buy a Samsung, that looks like an iPhone ( for a similar price ) is beyond me. People used to buy Samsungs because they were different, had a memory expansion and could carry a replacement battery. They couldn’t stop bragging about it. Now it’s all gone. The worst move ever, provided that it is true. And a bit sorry too because I think it is good to have a competition ( this is not the case, because it is a ripoff )

    • Rodel says:

      There are some similarities but personally (and just based on pictures) are not that distinct. I will buy the S6 because I am more familiar with Android as well as Samsung’s capacitive buttons.

  22. res says:

    Tumahimik nga kayo. Bibili din lang kayo nyan mga bobo.

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