Sony and Samsung are battling to create the best smartphone screen. Samsung struck first this year with the Quad HD dual-curved Super AMOLED display on the Galaxy S6 edge+. But Sony has responded with the world’s first 4K phone screen on the Xperia Z5 Premium.
Specs don’t always tell the whole story, however, and there’s a lot more to these two phones than their screens, so let’s see which is best.
4K or Quad HD?
We’ll start with the screens. The 4K screen on the Z5 Premium really is amazing for movies and photos, but that’s all it shows in 4K, everything else appears in Full HD. Sony says that’ll save battery, but it would have been nice to have the option to play games in 4K.
Samsung’s curved panel, however, is always giving you something useful – quick access to your favourite contacts and apps. And most of the time, its Quad HD display is showing more detail than the Sony’s 4K one.
How do they show so much more detail when your movie was only recorded in HD? Both phones have clever technology that upscales the quality, so you get a better picture even when looking at low-res stuff.
Whichever screen you go for, you’ll want to make the best of it. And with the cameras on both phones, you’ll have photos and videos to do just that.
With a 23MP camera, Sony has given the Z5 Premium an advantage on paper – the S6 edge+ has a comparatively small 16MP sensor. But when you look at the photos themselves, it’s hard to find a problem with either. Colour accuracy and detail are fantastic with both phones; just take a look at our sample shots in the video above.
Design is another thing we judge high-end phones on, and this year, Samsung is beating everyone on that front. The S6 edge+ is elegantly thin and the curved screen makes it look like something from the future. The Sony isn’t ugly, being made from a similar mix of metal and glass, but Samsung has really outdone itself and everyone else.
Battery life is key too, and it’s the Sony that wins here. The Z5 Premium can last two days between charges compared to a day and a half for the S6 edge+. But Samsung has given its phone fast wireless charging so you don’t need to fiddle with cables, yet you still get to charge up quickly.
There really isn’t much to separate these phones, and if you’re on the lookout for a world-beating smartphone your choice really will come down to personal preference. Let us know whether you’re going for the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+ or Sony Xperia Z5 Premium in the comments below.