The competition level in the worldwide smartphone market is higher than ever at present. Although iPhone 6 has got off to a great start, there is no dearth of competing (really good ones at that!) devices. We here take a look at some of them.
Say what you will about the technical glitches and issues that still remain in new flagship iPhones (both 6 and 6 Plus), there is no denying that they have been huge hits. From the smartphone markets in the United States and Great Britain, to those in France, Spain and even China – the sales figures have been record-breaking. Although the adoption rate of iOS 8 on older iPhones is still low, iPhone 6 is well on its way to set a new benchmark in terms of first-quarter sales. The feat is all the more remarkable, since Apple had to fight it out with several impressive rival devices to capture this market leadership position. Here’s a roundup of how Apple iPhone 6 holds its own against its principal competitors:
- iPhone 6 vs LG G3
The LG G3 handset is a direct rival of both iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. The Quad high-definition display of the G3 is remarkably good – and it supports resolutions of up to 2560×1440 – which is significantly higher than that on Apple’s offerings. The quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor is also a high point of LG G3. According to smartphone market analysts and mobile app developers, where the G3 lags behind the iPhone 6 is the built-in storage space (128 GB vs 32 GB). Also, the lackluster record of LG in the smartphone sector till date is not helping matters.
- iPhone 6 vs Samsung Galaxy S5
This was billed to be the biggest fight of them all – and suffice to say that the S5 is not trailing iPhone 6 by much. Apart from the handsets, this is also a fight for supremacy between iOS 8 and Android 5.0 Lollipop. The Apple device has an advantage due to its smaller dimensions and lightweight nature (4.55 oz vs 5.11 oz), while Galaxy S5 gets a leg up in terms of better battery performance. The latter also supports the downloading of a large number of Android apps – thanks to its extendable microSD option. Interestingly, Samsung has persisted with a plastic case for its high-profile S5, which is no match to the aluminium body of iPhone 6.
- iPhone 6 vs HTC One (M8)
HTC One can, in the long run, become the strongest competitor of iPhone 6. The high-end quad core processor of the handset is, if anything, just a tad faster than the Apple A8 chip – while the unibody aluminium design ensures that it is a treat for the eyes too. The only issue with HTC One (M8) is its 5.1” screen size – which does not make it a like-for-like alternative for either iPhone 6 (4.7”) and iPhone 6 Plus (5.5”). The audio features of HTC One (M8) are excellent too – thanks to its front-facing speakers. There is a Harman Kardon edition of HTC One (M8) available as well.
- iPhone 6 vs Sony Xperia Z3
Be it general users or mobile app development experts, everyone has been going ga-ga over the 20.7 MP camera of the Xperia Z3 (compared to the apparently ho-hum 8 MP camera of iPhone 6). Even the front ‘selfie’ camera of the Sony handset is more powerful than that of the Apple flagship phone. However, megapixels aren’t everything about phone cameras, and iPhone 6 edges ahead in terms of focal length, aperture size, and the camera sensor size. Neither device has the option of battery-replacement. The smaller dimensions and the higher default phone memory of iPhone 6 tilts the balance in its favor ever so slightly.
- iPhone 6 vs Microsoft Lumia 930
The last Nokia handset (before the brand name permanently changed to Microsoft) also puts up a stiff fight to Apple iPhone 6. Where the latter wins hands down is the number and quality of available iOS apps at iTunes. The Windows Phone store has a lot of catching up to do in this regard. The A8 chip is probably a tad faster than the Qualcomm Snapdragon processor of Lumia 930. The latter’s Pureview camera is definitely a high point, however – and the wireless charging option comes in handy as well. The million dollar question is – at a time when iOS and Android phones rule the roost, does a new Windows phone (however good it might be) stand a chance?
- iPhone 6 vs Samsung Galaxy Alpha
There has never been any love lost between Apple and Samsung – and it is hardly surprising that the South Korean technical giant launched Galaxy Alpha as a direct competitor of iPhone 6. The screen sizes of both the devices are same (4.7”), and the Samsung phone borrows generously from iPhone 5S, as far as its design features are concerned. To combat the ‘thinnest iPhone ever’ feature, Samsung has made this handset ultra-slim (6.7 mm thickness) as well. There remains some doubt over the long-run performance of the octa-core Exynos processor though, and the fact that the Galaxy Alpha is not a flagship device might lead to it being crowded out by other Samsung handsets.
- iPhone 6 vs Moto X (2nd Generation)
The battle royale between the ‘most advanced iPhone’ and the ‘best Android phone’. Moto X is available in a wide range of colors – giving the picky buyers a much larger choice set than what the iPhone 6 does. The leather/wooden casings ensure longevity, and the Snapdragon 801 processor – while not something out of this world – is at par with most other similar devices. The default OS on the second-generation Moto X is Android Kitkat, although Android app developers have confirmed that the handset can be easily upgraded to Android Lollipop. The Apple vs Samsung fight have always drawn the maximum attention of mobile marketers – and this year, the new Moto X might just steal a march over either. The poor track record of the earlier Moto X phone can turn out to be a problem, however.
- iPhone 6 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 4
The cutting-edge active stylus input feature of the Galaxy Note 4 has contributed to its uniformly positive reviews. Unlike the iPhone 6, this Samsung offering is slightly clunky though (it is nearly 50 grams heavier than the Apple flagship), and physical dimensions are also significantly larger. The camera features are comparable (the megapixel count, at 16 MP vs 8 MP, is skewed in favor of Note 4), but iPhone 6 has the better camcorder options, with 240 frames-per-second (fps) recording feature. The screen resolution and pixel density of the Note 4 are both higher than that of iPhone 6. Most device analysts feel that the IPS LCD screen of the Apple phone has greater appeal than the Super AMOLED screen of Note 4. There is nothing to choose between the two devices in terms of mobile app availability (both iTunes and Google Play Store has 1.3 million+ applications).
- iPhone 6 vs iPhone 5S
With iOS 8 running into one trouble after another, many Apple fans are not feeling motivated enough to move over to iPhone 6. That, in turn, has made its predecessor – the iPhone 5S – an unexpected rival. The new flagship device has a bigger screen (4.7” vs 4.0”), the multi-touch feature (as opposed to the regular touchscreen feature) is a major advantage, and the battery capacity has been significantly boosted up in it. As soon as the Apple developers manage to iron out all the bugs of the new platform, iPhone 5S should cease to be a competitor of iPhone 6. The Cupertino company would certainly not want one of its devices eating into the sales figures of another.
Mobile analysts and app development experts feel that Samsung Galaxy S4 is still a worthy-enough rival of iPhone 6. Although iPhone 6 Plus is positioned as a phablet, it can also put buyers in a dilemma as to whether they should go for it, or settle for the smaller iPhone 6. The brand name of Apple Inc. has helped iPhone 6 get off to a rollicking start – but all the above rivals are almost equally good, and it would be interesting to see whether any of them can actually trump it over the next few quarters.