We've all heard the hoopla about the Galaxy S6 Edge Plus, the crowning glory of Samsung's Galaxy range. It's bigger, it's better, it's widely regarded to be the fastest Android phone available. So we put it to the test. The results are in and the Galaxy S6 Edge+ was actually beaten in every benchmark we put it through by a six month-old device. So what could possibly be faster than the S6 Edge+?
Before we tell you, we'll explain the process we used. We selected six current flagships – the Galaxy S6, the S6 Edge+, HTC One M9, OnePlus 2, LG G4 and Xperia Z3+ – for our performance test. We then subjected them to three laps, one after another, in a variety of different benchmarking apps: AnTuTu, Vellamo ('metal' and multi-core tests) and Geekbench 3 for single and multi-core results.
We then took an average of the three results per test, weighted each benchmark score equally and then added them together to come out with a score out of 100. The winning device was used as our 'standard' and the other devices were placed in a position relative to the best performer. So which phone was it that outgunned the Galaxy S6 edge+?
The Galaxy S6, that's what. You may be asking yourself how a six-month-old phone could possibly outperform the brand-new, best-of-the-best, new-and-improved S6 Edge Plus. The Galaxy S6 Edge+ has an additional gigabyte of RAM, after all.
Having one-third more RAM is actually the most likely culprit. Even though, generally speaking, more RAM means better multi-tasking, having 4 GB instead of 3 GB also means the memory management overhead increases, and that means more demands on the system. For a more scientific explanation, you can read this.
Both devices are running the same version of Android 5.1.11 and both had their caches cleared before each test. We can't rule out the possibility of some firmware bug having an effect, but our results clearly show the S6 defeating the S6 Edge Plus in every round of every benchmark we ran, so it would have to be one very consistent bug. We'll look further into the specifics a little later, but the results were clear. (Click here to see our results spreadsheet.)
Now, of course, Samsung has a bit of a bad reputation for 'gaming' benchmarks by being able to recognize a benchmark app and running all cores at full throttle for the duration of the benchmark (something that never happens in real life). But even if that is the case, both of our best performers were Galaxy devices, so both would be gaming the system the same way, and the S6 still won.
Furthermore, these benchmarks test different things. Some test raw speed on a single task, others test multi-tasking, others test graphical performance. There are plenty more benchmarks we could have run and plenty more phones we could have tested. We encourage you to run your own benchmark tests and see where your phone fits in comparison to these (and be sure to let us know in the comments!).AnTuTu Benchmark Vellamo Mobile Benchmark Geekbench 4
One thing is certain: the Galaxy S6 has in no way been eclipsed by the bigger, newer, flashier Galaxy S6 Edge+. If you want the fastest Android available right now, you're going to want to take a second look at the Galaxy S6. That thing is a true beast and even after six months it's still the fastest phone around.
Did you see this result coming? Which phone do you think is the fastest of all right now? Let us know in the comments.