Joanna Stern’s Galaxy S6 Review

Joanna Stern, for the WSJ:

Since the dawn of the smartphone wars, there have been basic truths about Samsungs: They’re made of flimsy plastic, their cameras can’t keep up with the iPhone’s, and their modified Android software is ugly and intolerably cluttered.

With the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge, which arrive at U.S. carriers on April 10, none of that is true anymore. I am not afraid to say it: I love Samsung’s new phones, maybe even more than my own iPhone 6. Like a child who just found out that Santa isn’t real, I have spent the past week questioning everything I know.

A rave review for everything but Samsung’s software:

Samsung even tidied up many of its ugly app icons. Still, from the app tray to the pull-down notification menu, the styling of the operating system isn’t nearly as polished as stock Android 5.0. On top of that, Samsung’s keyboard seemed to hate my fingers, constantly inserting typos. A phone this beautiful deserves equally beautiful software.

The Galaxy S6 — like the iPhone 3GS lookalikes from 2010 — proves that it’s easier to create Apple-reminiscent hardware than software. Skin-deep software styling is one thing — just look at the Galaxy S6’s keyboard — but copying the whole experience is a nearly Sisyphean task that Samsung clearly isn’t up to.

Friday, 3 April 2015