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Spec showdown: HTC One M9 vs. Samsung Galaxy S6

Spec showdown: HTC One M9 vs. Samsung Galaxy S6

The hottest smartphones at Mobile World Congress go head-to-head

If you're on the lookout for a new Android high-end smartphone, the One M9 from HTC and Samsung Electronics' Galaxy S6 are two hot possibilities.

The products were announced on Sunday in Barcelona. They are both good-looking devices with the latest components integrated, but there are also differences that might sway you one way or the other. Here's a spec comparison between the phones:

Processor

As anticipated, Samsung chose its own Exynos processor to power the S6. The version used by the smartphone has four cores running at 2.1GHz and another four cores running at a slower 1.5GHz. HTC decided to stick with Qualcomm, and the One M9 is powered by a Snapdragon 810, which has four cores running at 2.0GHz plus another four cores running at a slower 1.5GHz.

Screen

Samsung and Google appear to be in agreement that a smartphone in the high-end segment should have a 5-inch screen, or 5.1-inch to be exact in the former case. But when it comes to resolution there is a difference; the Galaxy S6 has a 1440 x 2560 pixel resolution compared to 1080 x 1920 on the One M9. You might think that the extra pixels aren't necessary on smartphones that small, but the screen on the Galaxy S6 looks really good. It will be interesting to see how the two do in battery tests once they are shipping.

Storage

HTC and Samsung have also chosen a different approach when it comes to the amount of integrated storage. The Galaxy S6 will come with either 32GB, 64GB or 128GB, while the One M9 has 32GB of storage. But users who buy the latter can expand the capacity by up to another 128GB using the MicroSD card slot, which Samsung decided to skip. Both models have 3GB of RAM.

Size

The Galaxy S6 is 19 grams lighter than the One M9, which weighs 157 grams. The Samsung device is also smaller: the S6 measures 143.4 x 70.5 x 6.8 millimeters, compared to the One M9 measurements of 144.6 x 69.7 x 9.6 mm.

You can feel the weight difference when holding each device, but it isn't something that's holding back the One M9.

Camera

Cameras continue to be something that vendors make an effort to improve to get us to upgrade. The Galaxy S6 has a 5-megapixel camera on the front and a 16-megapixel camera on the back. The latter is the same resolution as on the Galaxy S5, but Samsung has improved performance in low-light conditions, for example. The main camera on the One M9 is no longer based on the company's Ultrapixel technology; instead it has chosen a 20-megapixel sensor. However, the front camera is still based on the technology, with a 4-megapixel resolution.

Send news tips and comments to mikael_ricknas@idg.com

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