With the iPhone 6 release date finally here and the Galaxy Note 4 release confirmed for October, consumers are sizing up the two big screen smartphones ahead of their arrival. While we can’t make that decision for you, we can provide you with details that could help to make you come to a quicker and perhaps, a better decision. This iPhone 6 vs Galaxy Note 4 comparison addresses the most important differences, and similarities, that buyers need to know.
Earlier this month, Samsung took to the stage in Berlin, Germany to announce several new products for the fall. First, we saw another intro for the Samsung Gear S, an Apple Watch competitor and a device that appears to be a solid alternative to current Android smartwatches. We also saw the Gear VR virtual reality headset make its first appearance.
The star of the show though was arguably the new Samsung Galaxy Note 4, Samsung’s Galaxy Note 3 successor and a device that’s poised to strike in the United States in October. As expected, the Galaxy Note 4 is a tantalizing flagship smartphone and one that should be tempting for those looking to grab a high-end, big-screen device.
This year is a little more complicated though. On September 9th, Apple unveiled two new iPhones that both feature larger screens. The 4.7-inch iPhone 6, along with the iPhone 6 Plus, will replace the iPhone 5s as the company’s new flagship smartphone options. While the iPhone 6 doesn’t have a massive display like the iPhone 6 Plus, it will still be a device that consumers will be taking a look at this fall.
Consumers that haven’t already made up their mind are almost certainly weighing the iPhone 6 against the Galaxy Note 4. And while we can’t tell you what to do, we can push you in the right direction. Ahead of the Galaxy Note 4 release, we take a look at the five most important things buyers need to know about the iPhone 6 vs Galaxy Note 4.
iPhone 6 Release vs. Galaxy Note 4 Release Date
The iPhone 6 release date is today. Today, Apple and its carrier and retail partners in the United States and select other regions released the iPhone 6 to lines and enthusiasm from Apple customers. As expected, the iPhone 6 Plus is a little difficult to find though we’ve heard that the smaller iPhone 6 stock is much healthier.
Its supply issues haven’t been nearly as bad as the iPhone 6 Plus and we’re expecting iPhone 6 shipping times and stock to remain much better than those for the iPhone 6 Plus. Some models might be difficult to find, the 16GB model in particular. The important thing though is that you can now go hands on with Apple’s brand new iPhone, something that will be vital in your hunt for your next smartphone.
Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 release date was confirmed for October earlier this month and now, two weeks later, we finally have concrete and specific Galaxy Note 4 release details to share with you.
AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon confirmed the Galaxy Note 4 release date for October 17th, or, a little over a month from now. Expect that date to remain concrete as we move forward. AT&T and Verizon are currently taking pre-orders for the Galaxy Note 4. T-Mobile will start taking them on September 24th and Sprint will take them on September 26th. It’s not clear if U.S. Cellular will take them or not. AT&T, Sprint and Verizon will all be charging $299.99 on-contract, or, $100 more than the base 16GB iPhone 6 model.
Today also marks the start of Galaxy Note 4 pre-orders in the United Kingdom. Select Samsung stores across the UK are now taking pre-orders ahead of the Galaxy Note 4’s release date which is now confirmed for October 10th. That date falls a week ahead of the U.S. release date and several weeks after the Galaxy Note 4’s rumored September 26th release in Korea and China.
What this means is that you probably won’t be able to physically compare the two for at least a few weeks as Samsung works to deliver the Galaxy Note 4 to regions and carriers around the world.
iPhone 6 Size vs. Galaxy Note 4 Size
The Galaxy Note 4 is a large phone. And while the iPhone 6 sports a larger display at 4.7-inches, it’s noticeably smaller than the Galaxy Note 4. Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus, with its 5.5-inch display, is more on par with the size of the Galaxy Note 4. Here is how that size difference looks.
Here’s how the size difference breaks down from a numbers standpoint:
- iPhone 6 – 138.1 x 67 x 6.9 mm – 129 grams
- Galaxy Note 4 – 153.5 x 78.6 x 8.5 mm – 176 grams
The Galaxy Note 4 is taller, wider, thicker, and heavier than the slim and svelte iPhone 6. These differences are going to be tangible especially when using the phone with one hand or trying to store your phone in a tight jean pocket. The iPhone 6 is much more pocketable and far easier to use with just one hand.
iPhone 6 Specs vs. Galaxy Note 4 Specs
Not all of you will want or need to compare specs, but if you do, you’re going to find that both of these phones offer some powerful features that will help to make your decision that much harder. We’ll point out some of the key differences and some things that you probably shouldn’t dwell on in the buildup to their release.
iPhone 6 Specs
- Apple A8 64-bit Processor
- iOS 8
- 4.7-inch display – 1334 x 750 – 326 pixels per inch
- 16GB / 64GB / 128GB storage options
- 1.2MP front-facing camera
- 8MP rear-facing camera
- 4G LTE
- 802.11ac WiFi
- Touch ID Fingerprint Sensor
Galaxy Note 4 Specs
- Snapdragon 805 processor (U.S.)
- Android 4.4.4 KitKat
- 5.7-inch Quad HD display – 2560 x 1440 – 515 pixels per inch
- 32GB storage with support for 128GB microSD cards
- 3.7MP front-facing camera
- 16MP camera with Optical Image Stabilization
- 4G LTE
- 802.11ac WiFi
- Fingerprint sensor
- UV sensor
- Heart rate sensor
- 3220 mAh battery
- S Pen
Both displays are big but the Galaxy Note 4 provides far more real estate for gaming, browsing the web, and more. Again, that comes with a cost which is its overall size. One thing to keep in mind though is that Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 sports a higher resolution.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s going to blow the iPhone 6 display out of the water but it does mean that it will be able to keep pace with Apple’s new Retina HD display. DisplayMate, one of the leading voices on display technology, calls the Galaxy Note 4 display the best they’ve ever seen.
The Galaxy Note 4 will feature Optical Image Stabilization with its camera, technology that minimizes shakiness to deliver better looking photos and video. The iPhone 6 Plus has OIS but the smaller model does not.
We should point out that Samsung has added a ton of new features to its popular camera application including new models for selfies. Apple has also improved its camera app with iOS 8 though it still doesn’t offer the same amount of choice.
While the iPhone 6 comes in three sizes, the Galaxy Note 4 comes in one. What the Galaxy Note 4 lacks in internal storage, it makes up for with its expanded storage. Users can pop in a microSD card that’s up to 128GB. The iPhone 6 does not come with expandable storage. Nor does it come with a removable back plate.
The Galaxy Note 4 and iPhone 6 both have large batteries. However, the Galaxy Note 4 has a removable back which means that users can easily replace the stock battery with an extended one. This is something that iPhone 6 users cannot do.
iPhone 6 Features vs. Galaxy Note 4 Features
Apple’s new iPhone always comes with a ton of new features. So do Samsung’s Galaxy Notes. So it’s no surprise that both of these flagships are full of powerful features.
If you upgrade to the iPhone 6, you’ll get an assortment of features that aren’t found on the Galaxy Note 4. Here, we take a look at a few of the iPhone 6 features that standout from the bunch:
- Apple Pay – NFC in the iPhone 6 will allow you to pay for things with the iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus. It turns your iPhone into a mobile wallet. The Galaxy Note 4 has NFC on board as well though it will use different solutions for mobile payments.
- Touch ID – The fingerprint sensor inside the home button provides added security and convenience. As we’ve noted, Apple’s Touch ID sensor is far better than the one that Samsung’s using in the Galaxy Note 4. It uses the same sensor that’s found in the Galaxy S5.
- Colors – The iPhone 6 comes in gold, white and gray. Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 will come in black and white at first with gold and pink options coming later.
Now, we want to take a look at a few of the more intriguing Galaxy Note 4 features:
- UV Sensor – Allows you to measure UV radiation with your phone. This is something that could help to prevent health issues and it’s something that isn’t found on the iPhone 6.
- Heart Rate Sensor – The Galaxy Note 4 comes with a heart rate sensor tucked away near the camera. The sensor can help track your pulse and ties into the company’s new S Health 3.5 application. The iPhone 6 does not feature one.
- S Pen – This is one of the biggest differences between the two. The Galaxy Note 4 comes with a bundled stylus called the S Pen that can take advantage of unique apps. It also allows you to write and draw on the screen. It can be seen in action in the video below. Needless to say, the iPhone 6 does not come with an S Pen made by Samsung.
iPhone 6 vs. Galaxy Note 4 Software & Updates
The iPhone 6 comes stock with Apple’s iOS 8 software, seen in the video below. iOS 8 is much different than the software found on the Galaxy Note 4 and because of that, software is going to play a key role in your final decision.
Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 runs Google’s Android 4.4.4 KitKat operating system as a base though the software has been modified with Samsung’s TouchWiz user interface. And not just any version of TouchWiz, a version that’s designed for the S Pen and mulitasking in mind.
Samsung’s made some significant improvements to this year’s S Pen including increased sensitivity on the Note 4 screen to make the note taking experience on the Galaxy Note 4 feel more like writing on paper. More sensitivity also leads to better looking text from handwriting. Samsung’s also made some significant improvements to the S Pen’s applications including, Air Command, S Note and Voice Memo, and more.
More importantly, the company has improved the Galaxy Note 4’s multitasking, multitasking that the iPhone 6 simply cannot match. One of the reasons why is a feature called Multi-Window View. It can be seen in action on the Galaxy Note 4 in the video below.
Multi-Window View, at its most basic level, allows users to run multiple applications on screen at the same time. With the Galaxy Note 4, Samsung has made some admirable changes including the ability to access applications in full, split or pop-up screens. Galaxy Note 4 users will now also be able to reposition apps on the screen with just one swipe.
As we’ve pointed out, iOS 8 rumors point to split-screen multitasking for the iPad but those rumors have not pointed to a release for the iPhone or iPhone 6 Plus.