Well folks, it’s here. After months of speculation, Samsung has finally taken the wraps off of the long-awaited Galaxy Note 7, the company’s flagship phablet offering. The device acts as a successor to the highly successful Galaxy Note 5 and Note 4. Yes, Samsung skipped the Note 6 — supposedly to bring the Note series in line with the flagship S series. The name, however, doesn’t really matter — what’s important is how well it performs.
Of course, Samsung isn’t the only phablet maker. Perhaps the only phablet more famous than the Galaxy Note is the iPhone — specifically the Plus series of iPhones. Apple’s iPhone 6S Plus may have been out for almost a year now, but it’s still an excellent phone with top-of-the-line specs.
So which one’s better? The newer Galaxy Note 7 or the iPhone 6S Plus? We put the two devices head to head to find out.
Samsung Galaxy Note 7 vs iPhone 6S Plus: design
Apple has long been hailed as the king of design, but that doesn’t mean that no one else has anything to offer. In fact, with the Galaxy Note 7, Samsung proves quite the opposite. The device takes a number of design cues from other Samsung phones, but looks somewhat sleeker and a little more stylish. Of course, that’s not to say it’s overly small — it’s still a phablet.
In terms of hard dimensions, the Galaxy Note 7 comes in at 153.5 x 73.9 x 7.9mm (6.0 x 2.9 x 0.3 inches), while the iPhone 6S Plus sits at 158.2 x 77.9 x 7.3 mm (6.2 x 3.1 x 2.9 inches). In other words, while the iPhone is certainly a little larger, it’s also thinner than the new Note 7.
In this case, it seems like smaller equals lighter — while the iPhone 6S Plus sits at 192g (6.8oz), the Galaxy Note 7 weighs in at 169g (6.0oz).
Samsung Galaxy Note 7 vs iPhone 6S Plus: display
When it comes to the display, the Galaxy Note 7 seems to be better all around. The display resolution sits at 2,560 x 1,440, which ends up at around 518 pixels per inch on the 5.7-inch screen. The iPhone, however, has a 1,920 x 1,080 pixel resolution, which sits at 401 ppi on the iPhone’s 5.5-inch display. In other words, not only is the Galaxy Note 7 display sharper, but it’s also larger and on a smaller device.
There’s another metric to consider with display — display type. Apple has been criticized of late for being a little behind the curve in adopting OLED displays, and that shows in comparing the Galaxy Note 7 and iPhone 6S Plus. While the iPhone has an LED display, the Galaxy Note 7 has a Super AMOLED screen, which should not only boast deeper and clearer colors, but should also be better on the battery.
Basically, if you’re concerned about display, the Galaxy Note 7 is the clear winner.
Samsung Galaxy Note 7 vs iPhone 6S Plus: specs
It’s sometimes a little difficult to compare Apple processors with those in other devices because of the fact that Apple keeps the specifications for its processors pretty secret. The iPhone 6S Plus features an A9 64-bit processor coupled with an M9 motion coprocessor. The Galaxy Note 7, on the other hand, features a Snapdragon 820 in the U.S. and in China, and a Samsung-built Exynos 8890 internationally — both top of the line processors.
According to Antutu’s rankings, the Snapdragon performs slightly better than the Apple A9, however the Apple A9 performs slightly better than the Exynos 8890, so we’re going to give this one a tie. All three processors are in the same ballpark when it comes to power, and they’re all absolutely top-of-the-line processors that should be able to handle almost anything you can throw at them, at least for the next year or so.
Coupled with the processor on the Galaxy Note 7 is 4GB of RAM, while the iPhone 6S Plus features a somewhat lacking 2GB. So, while the processor itself might be a tie, the processor and RAM goes squarely to the Note 7.