Big Battle; iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Apple vs Google, the ultimate smartphone showdown

Big Battle; iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Apple vs Google, the ultimate smartphone showdown
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Its clear that the next smartphone you buy will probably have either iOS or use some form of Android. While the iPhone 6s Plus is the best iOS handset you can buy, the brand new Nexus 6P now represents Google’s vision of the perfect Android phone.

Unlike the Android handsets from Sony, HTC, OnePlus and now BlackBerry, the Nexus 6P comes with Android exactly as Google intended it. That means it’s the true Android equivalent of the iPhone 6s Plus, and the perfect phone to pit against it.
So how does the best of Android stack up against the best of iOS? Read our comparison of the iPhone 6s Plus and Nexus 6P to find out.

iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Design

Apple’s iPhone has led the pack when it comes to smartphone design, with companies such as HTC, Samsung and Huawei all taking inspiration from its Jonathan Ive-designed handsets.

Apple iPhone 6s Plus review: 3D Touch is more usable on the 6 Plus' 5.5in display

The latest iPhone continues the company’s exquisite industrial design, and is one of the best-looking Apple handsets to date. Available in silver, gold, “Space Grey” and now “Rose Gold”, the iPhone 6s Plus is a thing of beauty. Featuring a Gorilla Glass cover that seems to melt into the rest of the chassis, the front of the handset is is flat and rounded – only interrupted by Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint sensor. After the iPhone 5s, Apple needed to step up its game, and the iPhone 6s Plus does just that.

Google Nexus 6P: Front

Handsets such as the HTC One A9 show many companies are happy to copy Apple, but Google has taken a different route. The Huawei-manufactured Nexus 6P does what many seem to think is impossible: it delivers premium feel, great looks and a timeless design – and looks nothing like an iPhone. It may feature an all-metal body and a glass screen, but that’s where the similarities end. Its slightly retro styling might not be for everyone, but I think the Nexus 6P is the best-looking Android handset since the HTC Desire or Hero.
Verdict: A draw. Looks are subjective, and in this case either handset could be the winner. The iPhone 6s Plus oozes the effortless refinement we’ve come to expect from Apple, but the Nexus 6P is equally sophisticated, and a real achievement from Huawei and Google. You’ll feel impressed handling and using either phone.

iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Display

The iPhone Plus uses an LED-backlit IPS LCD with a resolution of 1080 x 1920 and a dpi of 401. However, the screen on the Google Nexus 6P is even more impressive. As well as using vibrant AMOLED technology, the Nexus 6P also uses 1440 x 2560 pixels for a stunning ppi figure of 518.
When it comes to sheer real-estate, the screen of the Nexus 6P has the 6s Plus beat, too. Featuring a display measuring 5.7in across the diagonal, the 6P’s screen is around 0.2in larger than the iPhone's.
Verdict: Nexus 6P wins by KO. Google’s flagship destroys the iPhone in this arena, but that doesn’t come as a great surprise. The last few iPhones may have represented the best overall smartphone, but their screens have literally paled in comparison to those of their Android counterparts. The iPhone 6s uses outdated LCD technology, and that means it looks decidedly lacklustre when compared to the vibrant high resolution screen of the Nexus 6P.

iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Features

The Nexus 6P and the iPhone 6s Plus represent the best Google and Apple has to offer so, as you’d expect, they’re bursting with features. Both phones feature – albeit differently placed – fingerprint readers, both offer a way of wirelessly paying for goods, and both also feature a camera that could replace your standalone one.

Google Nexus 6P review: Rear view

However, both phones include one or two unique features of their own. The iPhone 6s Plus features 3D Touch, and it revolutionises the touchscreen experience by giving users more ways to communicate with their handset.
While the Nexus 6P doesn’t feature a 3D Touch equivalent, it does support USB Type-C, so it will allow you to charge other compatible devices using your handset. It’ll also be far more future-proof than the iPhone 6s Plus' Lightning connector.
Verdict: A draw. Both the iPhone 6s Plus and the Nexus 6P have everything you’d need from a smartphone, and the extra features they bring aren’t essential enough to give one an advantage.

iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Specifications

Apple has placed one of its A8 processors under the hood of the iPhone 6s Plus, and while the company hasn’t given solid details about it, we now know it’s a dual-core 1.84GHz processor. In contrast, Google has shoehorned a quad-core 1.55GHz processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 into the Nexus 6P. Google's handset also uses 3GB of RAM to the iPhone’s 2GB.
As for storage? The Nexus 6P is available with 32GB, 64GB or 128GB of SSD space, while the iPhone 6s Plus comes in 16GB, 64GB and 128GB versions.

Google Nexus 6P review: Rear, in landscape

On the camera front, things are more level. Both the iPhone 6s Plus and Nexus 6P use a 12-megapixel camera, and both make use of a dual tone flash for more natural skin tones. The Nexus 6P can produce pictures of 4608 x 2592, while images from the iPhone 6s are 4032 x 3024. The iPhone 6s Plus uses a 5-megapixel camera for FaceTime and selfies, while the Nexus 6P brings three extra megapixels with its 8MP front-facing camera.

We don’t know much about the battery life of the Nexus 6P, but we do know the size of its battery. Google’s smartphone uses a huge 3,450mAh battery, which is significantly more than the iPhone 6s Plus’ 2,750mAh battery. While it’s important to take efficiency and power consumption into consideration, it’s very likely the Google handset provides superior battery life.
Verdict: Nexus 6P wins by KO. While user experience could tell a different story, when it comes to specs the Nexus 6P blows the iPhone 6s Plus away.

iPhone 6s Plus vs Nexus 6P: Price and verdict

Google’s Nexus 6P starts at £449 for the 32GB version, and extends to £499 for the 64GB handset and £579 for the range-topping 128Gb version. The iPhone 6s Plus is much dearer, costing £699 for a 64GB model – £200 more than the equivalent Nexus 6P.

Verdict: Nexus 6P wins on points. On paper, the Nexus 6P beats the iPhone 6s easily. Like many Android phones, it features more impressive hardware than its iPhone counterpart and for a much lower price. Better still, the Nexus 6P can compete with the iPhone 6s on a superficial level, too.
However, buying a phone is more subjective, and the best phone for you will depend on a number of factors. While both handsets represent a great purchase, users will also need to consider which devices they already own, and if they’re likely to buy more Google or Apple products in the future.
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