Samsung Galaxy S6 specs, release date & pricing: Now on sale in the UK

'Record-breaking' pre-orders for new Galaxy series, now available in the UK

The hotly anticipated Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge are now available in the UK.

Samsung has reportedly received 20 million pre-orders combined for its two new phones, which gives a clear indication of just how popular they are likely to be when on sale. 

This demand may be a problem for Samsung, however, as reports have claimed that the company will likely have trouble meeting demand due to limitations in production, reports The Telegraph.

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"Some carriers are switching existing orders to get more of the S6 edge, and it looks like demand for the model will exceed supply throughout this year," HMC Investment analyst Greg Roh said.

"That means average selling price will fall at a slower rate, which will have a positive impact on Samsung overall."

Interest from mobile carriers account for the huge demand for the phonemaker's latest models, according to the Korean Times, which cited an anonymous source from a top European Samsung customer.

The source told the publication: "Samsung received some 20 million pre-orders for the S6 and S6 Edge - 15 million of S6 and five million of the S6 Edge from mobile carriers worldwide. This is a record."

Though Samsung didn't directly comment on the figures, the Korean Times quoted mobile chief Shin Jong-kyun as saying: "To be honest, pre-orders for our two Galaxy variants from our major clients are really huge."

Samsung Galaxy S6 price & specs

The 32GB version of the Samsung S6 will cost 599, while a 64GB version of the edge will be priced at 760 SIM-free. 

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More information on the phone is now available after the Korean firm published an S6 manual on its website.

Trusted Reviews reports that the phone's battery is removable, after earlier criticism from users that the batteries were rumoured not to be replaceable.

However, the process is complex, involving removing the circuit board, and it will invalidate a user's warranty.

The two new devices will boast more accurate fingerprint sensors, but will cost more than the iPhone 6.

As mentioned, the S6 device will ship for $699 in the US, according to a pre-release giveaway by T-Mobile, cited by Forbes, which outlined its approximate retail value in the terms and conditions.

The figure is $50 more expensive than Apple's iPhone 6, which costs $649 without a contract.

However, the S6 does come with double the storage capacity of the latest iPhone, with 32GB capacity.

The S6 and S6 Edge will arrive with a swathe of new features, including upgraded security.

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Users of the devices will be able to flip between professional and personal personas just by pressing a touchscreen button, and their bosses can delete sensitive information remotely.

While previous Galaxy phones had trouble with their fingerprint sensors, the latest models run TouchWiz software that captures a better image, in order to cut down on those issues, reports TechRadar.

Meanwhile, the edge display of the S6 Edge lights up when someone is contacting you, without buzzing or ringing, when you've placed it face down on a surface.

It uses up to five different colours you can assign to identify different contacts, and you can even hold your finger on the heartrate monitor on the phone's back to send a text saying you're busy.

Samsung officially announced the two Galaxy S6 devices at Moblie World Congress, introducing a design overhaul and a mobile payments system.

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All the major network operators including EE, O2, Three and Vodafone will offer the handset, with UK pricing to be confirmed nearer the time.

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Virgin Media has also confirmed it will be offering the S6 and S6 Edge on "freestyle contracts". This will allow customers to vary their tariff on a month-by-month basis.

The network will also pre-load a "Wi-Fi buddy" app onto devices allowing users to access 150,000 Wi-Fi hotspots. Any existing Virgin broadband and TV customers will also receive a 5 discount on their monthly bill.

Core specifications of the two Galaxy S6 devices are almost identical:

OS - Android 5.0 with TouchWiz

Display - 5.1in Quad HD Super AMOLED (577ppi) - Gorilla Glass 4 

Processor - Exynos processor 64-bit, 14nm, Octa-core (4-cores at 1.5GHz & 4-cores at 2.1GHz)

RAM - 3GB RAM (LPDDR4)

On-board storage - 32/64/128GB 

Connectivity - 4G support (up to Cat 6), 801.11ac Wi-Fi (620Mbps), Bluetooth 4.1

Camera - 16-megapixel rear camera with OIS camera (5-megapixel front)

Sensors - Accelerometer, Light, Gyroscope Proximity, Compass, Barometer, Fingerprint, Heart-rate sensor

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Dimensions - 143 x 71 x 6.8mm 138g (S6), 142 x 70 x 7mm, 132g (S6 Edge)

Battery - 2,550mAh (S6) and 2,600mAh (S6 Edge)

Design

Samsung designed the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge from the ground up, switching to an all-metal chassis. Previous handsets were heavily criticised for using plastic, and despite attempts to mitigate with soft-touch covers, the firm feels it's now time to use a metallic unibody. 

This is massive shift in design and introduces two major concessions for the Galaxy range. The battery pack can no longer be removed and micro SD support has also been been scrapped. 

On the plus side, the devices look stunning - with a two-tone effect giving the HTC One M9 and iPhone 6 devices a run for their money.

The key difference between the two models is that S6 Edge has dual-curves - which will be able to show contacts and provide more information within applications.

Performance 

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Samsung claims using DDR4 RAM will increase performance by 80 per cent compared to its predecessor and says the custom-made Exynos processor is 35 per cent more efficient than the chip used in the Note 4.

Battery life

Because the battery pack is now built-into the chassis, Samsung has increased the performance of the battery. Charging the device for 10 minutes will give 4 hours usage. 

Wireless charging is built-in as standard and users will be able to charge from 0 - 100 per cent in half the time of the iPhone 6.

Samsung Pay

This will be accepted at 90 per cent of US retailers using NFC + MST (magnetic secure transmission) technology. Users will be able to authorise payments using the fingerprint reader on the home button. However, at this time it's unclear how this will work in the UK where chip + pin is the prevalent form of payment.

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Camera

Improvements have also been made to the camera. Double tapping the home button will open up the camera app. Samsung has continued to use 16-megapixels, but has switched to an  f/1.9 aperture (up from f/2.2 on the S5). This lets in a third more light - for better low-light performance. The S6 devices also have real-time HDR enabled by default and Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS). 

Operating system

Another area where Samsung claims it has taken feedback on-board is the operating system. The firm claims that it has reduced bloatware by 40 per cent. Users are now given the option to download third-party applications rather having them pre-installing them.

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