Galaxy Note 4 vs iPhone 6 Plus: which is the better phablet?

Galaxy Note 4 vs iPhone 6 Plus: which is the better phablet?

With the iPhone 6 Plus, Apple is in an unusual situation: this large-screened iPhone is a new arrival in a category created by its arch-rival Samsung, and recently re-crowned with the arrival of the Galaxy Note 4. Now that Apple's seen the big-screen light, is its biggest-ever iPhone likely to tempt anyone over from Android? Lets take a closer look in comparing the Note 4 vs the iPhone 6 Plus.

iphone 6 plus vs samsung galaxy note 4 teaser
The iPhone 6 Plus is Apple's start in the phablet realm of Android. © Samsung/Apple/ANDROIDPIT

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 vs iPhone 6: Design

The iPhone 6 Plus is quite thin, measuring just 7.1 mm. It looks like Apple is wanting to boost the size of their phones while keeping them thin to keep up with the ''the thinner the better’’ trend. The Note 4 on the other hand is not as thin, measuring 8.5 mm, however it packs a stylus.

The power button has been moved onto the side of the iPhone 6 Plus, which is more similar to the Note 4, and is now easier to reach. The difference of course between these two is a question of material: the iPhone 6 Plus is made of metal, while the Galaxy S5 is made of plastic with a little bit of metal, that being the frame. It comes down to a matter of taste on what you prefer though.

Both the Note 4 and the iPhone 6 Plus come with fingerprint sensors, but the Note 4 has it beat in that it comes with a heart rate monitor and UV detector, as well as being water-resistant (IP67 certified). A big ''accomplishment'' for Apple is that they've now included an NFC chip, which Android has had for quite some time now. No further comment.

keynote apple iphone6 8
Both the new iPhones are pretty radical design departures, and the iPhone 6 Plus is huge. © Apple

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 vs iPhone 6: Screen

The new iPhone 6 Plus comes with a 5.5-inch Retina HD display (1,920 x 1,080 pixels), which is SRGB active. This basically means that it is an LCD screen. Plus it is ‘'ion strengthened’’. They’ve also said that the viewing angle has also been improved upon. Also, they mention that the 6 Plus has 185% more pixels than the iPhone 5S.

There’s an improved polarizer, photo alignment with IPS liquid crystal, and ultra-thin backlighting. The Note 4 on the other hand has a 5.7-inch Super AMOLED display (2,560 x 1,440 pixels), which we have found to be dazzling in our hands on review, and obviously beats out the iPhone 6 Plus in pixel count. Looks like the Note 4 might still be ahead here.

As a side note, Apple boasts that the iPhone 6 Plus can work in horizontal mode, which the Note 4 can obviously do as well, but it seems that this is a breakthrough for Apple. 

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 vs iPhone 6: processors

The iPhone 6 Plus comes with a brand new processor, the Apple A8, which is a 64-bit chip. Apple says that it is a 25% faster CPU with 50% faster graphics than the iPhone 5, and is 50x faster than the original iPhone. A 64-bit processor can only be found in very few Android devices, and the Note 4 has a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 805, clocked at 2.7 GHz, which isn't 64-bit. Nevertheless, the Note 4 processor is very powerful, along with its 3 GB of RAM. We would have to put it to test to really decide which processor is actually faster.

samsung galaxy note 4 s pen close up
The Note 4 is very nice, but it doesn't quite have Apple's premium feel. / © ANDROIDPIT

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 vs iPhone 6: Software and features

We’re comparing Apples and not-Apples here: where the Galaxy Note 4 has Android 4.4.4 with TouchWiz (and Android 5.0/L when Google releases it), the iPhone 6 runs Apple’s own iOS 8. 

Some changes that Apple made to its controls is that you can now double touch the home button to make the entire display come down, to reveal the top buttons. This reminds me a bit of pulling down the notification bar to reveal the Quick Settings, which the Note 4 obviously has.

Also, apps now need to be fitted to the new screen size: developers will need to customize their apps for the bigger screen.

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 vs iPhone 6: battery

The battery on the iPhone 6 Plus is said to have 16 hours of standby time, with 24 hours of 3G talk. When looking at the Note 4, the battery of 3,220 mAh offers substantial battery life. However, until we find out a definite battery capacity, then we can't say which is better for sure (and a longer test would naturally be required).

iphone 6 plus battery life
Apple is pretty secretive about battery life, but at least we know how long they think it will last on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. © Apple

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 vs iPhone 6: Tech specs

  GALAXY NOTE 4 iPhone 6 Plus
OS Android 4.4, TouchWiz iOS 8
Display 5.7 inch Super AMOLED, 2,560 x 1,440 pixels (515 ppi) 5.5-inch Retina HD LCD, 1,920 x 1,080 pixels (401 ppi)

153.5 x 78.6 x 8.5 mm

158.1 x 77.8 x 7.1 mm
Weight 176 grams 172 grams
Battery 3,220 mAh Up to 24 hours of 3G talk
Camera 16 MP with OIS / 3.7 MP, 4K video 8 MP iSight / 1.5 micron pixels, f/2.2 aperture., "digital" image stabilization 240 fps slow-mo, 1080p at 30 or 60 fps
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 805, Quad-Core, 2.7 GHz Apple A8, dual core, 1.4 GHz, M8 motion co-processor
Internal Storage

32 GB (+ microSD up to 64 GB)

16/64/128 GB
Connectivity Bluetooth 4.1 BLE, micro USB, Wi-Fi ac, GPS, NFC, IR LED, USB 2.0, MHL 3.0 Wi-Fi is 802.11ac, VoLTE, NFC
Price TBA 299 USD (16 GB), 399 USD (64 GB), 499 USD (128 GB), on a two-year contract

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 vs iPhone 6: early verdict

So far, the iPhone 6 Plus puts on a good show, however it's obviously difficult to compare some of the aspects, such as processors and battery, when we haven't had the device in-hand. From what we can see, the iPhone 6 Plus is definitely encroaching on Samsung territory, but is it enough? 

Apple is learning, slowly but surely, that larger screen sizes are what people want! And the price difference between the iPhone 6 Plus and the Galaxy S5 won't be so jaw-dropping. We will have to wait to know the outright pricing on the iPhone 6 Plus to really judge the price-performance ratio. Stay tuned for more, folks.

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  • Russell Wilson Sep 13, 2014 Link to comment

    So from what I understand, Samsung has taken the time to improve their devices and apple has just put the same phone they have had for five years in a new casings.

  • CJ Brown Sep 11, 2014 Link to comment

    From the specs, I can honestly say that the iPhone 6 + is an impressive product from Apple (and is thee best smart phone they have available for their hipster cult consumers to gloat over (lol) ....

    The 3 biggest 'epic fails' are the cameras (8mp / 2mp - that's the best Apple can offer?) along with the battery (quoting usage on a 3G network? I'm estimating you will get 10 hours of use on a 4G LTE / WiFi before it needs to be recharged) and the RAM (1gig? Apple should've strived for @ least 2gig) ....

    Neither Oppo, or Huawei, offer flagship phablets - but even their devices (Find7, Ascend Mate2) offer better specs overall (yes, the iPhone 6 + has s fine build and its one of the thinnest smart phones available - which means hipstets will still buy an $70 otter box to protect it (lol) ....

    I guess Apple / Tim Cook are done wasting time with patent court cases (I hope) while they spend more time (and $) into offering better products (that mimic Android) , except they haven't learn the value of the 'no contract' market (which continues to grow)

  • Kong Ling Sep 10, 2014 Link to comment

    When you read the picture, it says "standby(DAYS)". So it is 16 days on standby.

    • My1 Sep 10, 2014 Link to comment

      well that is impossible for a smartphone...
      I mean 10 days for tthe 5s? no no, definitely not...

  • My1 Sep 9, 2014 Link to comment

    16h standby, until reading the rest of the sentence, I lol'ed (as always, bad battery, I thought)

  • dean Sep 6, 2014 Link to comment

    Got to get some page click s let them do it as apple site's seem to compare the latest iPhone to samsung year old plus devices.

  • Bojan M. Sep 5, 2014 Link to comment

    While I understand the desire for such comparisons, as other people already pointed out, you compare non-existing device with Note 4, not to mention that you can't actually compare any device with Note 4 or any other Note device. Its stylus alone, and all features it provides, sets it apart from any other device available. It's on a whole different level. It seems anyone can release a phablet wannabe these days, but that doesn't mean they are anywhere near Note series.

    • My1 Oct 11, 2014 Link to comment

      truly. I use Samsung Note 3 and had the note 2 and the only thing that's better at the iphones is that they usually are fast until their end of life update.

  •   16
    Deactivated Account Sep 5, 2014 Link to comment

    The Galaxy Note products are the GOLD standard of technology today the proven legitimate product in a category made prominent by Samsung Mobile.

    Everything else is obsolete until they establish a legitimate track record which Apple isn't even close.

  • Byron Garay Sep 4, 2014 Link to comment

    What a stupid post, seriously, and that iphone is not even announced yet...You cant compare that against perfection anyways...And 4.7 is not a Phablet.

    • Russell Wilson Sep 13, 2014 Link to comment

      I know this is a late response but, the iPhone 6 was announced before this article was released. that's why they were able to provide the specs

    • My1 Oct 11, 2014 Link to comment

      also the article isnt about the i6 but about the i6 plus which has 5.5 inches.

  • ljhaye Sep 4, 2014 Link to comment

    Why didn't you compare the 5.5" iPhone 6 to the Galaxy Note 4 as they are more similar in size and the 4.7" iPhone 6 to either the galaxy S5 or S6 as they are closer in screen size?

    • Gary Marshall Sep 5, 2014 Link to comment

      We will, as soon as the final specs have been announced :)

    • Ken Here Sep 14, 2014 Link to comment


      • Aakash Patel Oct 8, 2014 Link to comment

        I m agree with u..! I dont know y people r mad about iphone

    • Ken Here Sep 14, 2014 Link to comment


      • My1 Sep 14, 2014 Link to comment

        seriously, stop shouting...
        of course The note 4 will (probably) kill with those specs, but, I must say that apple is going in the right direction, even thought they will probably need a long time to arrive at the finish line.

        Also we shouldnt underestimate Touchwiz with it's slowdown power. I know from the Note 3 that it will start to lag over time, And so will probably the Note 4, I mean I am a Samsung user and I love the Note series, but this is a fact that cannot be ignored...

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