So the word “Plus” could mean many things, right? Better processor? Camera? Features? In the case of the S6 Edge Plus, though, it’s just size. This phone is almost an exact copy of this year’s S6 Edge except for its whopping 5.7-inch display. As far as “innovation” goes, Samsung is kind of phoning it in with this one.
Yeah...sure...it’s big. If you’re into hand torture or have monstrous-sized mittens, then you might’ve been looking forward to the Godzilla version of 2015’s weirdest phone. Luckily, Samsung’s been able to make a whole lot of phone feel comfortable, a skill honed over five years of selling big Notes to people. In part, the sloping edges make this phone feel not as gargantuan as you’d expect, and in comparison to my current sidekick, a Nexus 6, the S6 Edge Plus is way more manageable.
Samsung still doesn’t fix the Edge’s inherent ergonomics flaw. That sloping display makes the aluminum bezels incredibly thin, so holding the phone isn’t the most enjoyable experience.
On the software side of things, it’s business as usual. We’re still dealing with the Lollipop version of Touchwiz, which is the best Samsung’s skin has ever been. As with the S6, Samsung’s dreamed up more software “features” that take advantage of those sloping edges (but not really). The biggest one is Apps Edge, which is just like People Edge but, you know, with apps. So when you swipe left or right (depending on where you place the Edge feature), you can now have quick access to your five favorite apps. If you want to go to People Edge, you just swipe again and it brings up your contacts.
Apps Edge in action
Now, I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again—you don’t need a specific edged phone for this to be useful. In fact, there are apps out there that already do this but better, and you can get it on any Android phone. Samsung has yet to deliver anything that makes that weird screen on the S6 Edge Plus any more useful than its predecessor. But hey—it sure looks cool!
The S6 Edge Plus’ guts are almost a carbon copy of the new Note 5, including an upgrade to 4GB of RAM and a slightly bigger 3,000 mAh battery. They also dropped the 128GB storage config for this guy.
The S6 Edge Plus also comes with some of the extra software frills that are debuting on the Note 5, like the cool YouTube livestreaming baked into the camera app. It’ll also inherit its super-great Qi/PMA wireless charging abilities from the S6 and will be equipped with Samsung Pay at launch, which Samsung’s been beta testing all summer in South Korea.
So if you were seriously depressed over how dinky the S6 Edge’s 5.1-inch screen was, then this is the phone you’ve been waiting for. But in defiance of a common cliché, bigger isn’t better—it’s simply bigger.
Sooo silver...and also not available in the U.S. : (
Dat edge, the sequel
Galaxy S6 Edge Plus (Black) with the Note 5
- Network: AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint, U.S. Cellular
- OS: Android 5.1(Lollipop)
- CPU: Exynos 7420 processor, 64-bit octo-core
- Screen: 5.7-inch 2560x1440 Super AMOLED (518 PPI)
- RAM: 4GB
- Storage: 32GB/64GB
- Camera: 16 megapixel rear camera / 5 megapixel front camera
- Battery: 3,000 mAh
- Dimensions: 6.08 x 2.68 x 0.27 inches
- Weight: 5.4o ounces
- Colors: Black Sapphire and Gold Platinum
- Price and Availability: In stores August 21 (pre-order at 3pm Aug. 13), will be announced my carriers and retailers specifically (expect around $700-$800 starting).
Images by Michael Hession.