Even though Samsung's Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge phones have probably been the most popular Galaxy devices so far, Samsung continues to rival Apple's twin iPhones with its massive inventory of over 150 phones, ranging from budget numbers like the J5 to the top of the line Galaxy S7 edge.
With the launch of the Galaxy Note 7, it will be interesting to see if the sales of the device alone in the future will be enough to see off Apple's charge once and for all.
The success of the Galaxy Note 7 will depend on how smooth it runs, remains stutter-free and doesn't go blank over long term usage. The phablet arrives with the tried and tested Exynos 8890 octa-core processor coupled with 4GB of RAM which is also present in Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge phones. However, the Exynos 8890 processor scored a little less than Apple's A9 processor in AnTuTu's Benchmark scoring which is a cause of concern.
Apple is expected to launch its next phablet next month with a more powerful A10 processor which will increase the gap even further, and it remains to be seen if the Galaxy Note 7 will continue to compete with other phablets featuring the likes of A10, Kirin 955 and Snapdragon 821 processors in the coming months.
While Apple hasn't experimented much with the design of its iPhones in the past couple of years, Samsung has hit the ball out of the park by introducing curved displays, earlier with its 'Edge' models and now with the Galaxy Note 7 whose display curves both ways, offering a beautiful and sleek look.
The display in Galaxy Note 7 is a 5.7" Quad HD Super AMOLED one which continues to impress like the ones in the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge phones did. The display is perfectly capable of supporting VR, consumes less power and its Always On feature will let you view texts, missed calls and battery levels one you get used to it. The display is also among the brightest in the industry and offers rich, vivid colours and deeper blacks to let you experience the best viewing experience in a smartphone.
When we reviewed the iPhone 6s Plus, while Apple is yet to bring in the much-talked-about OLED display, we found the existing Retina display with 3D Touch absolutely amazing. Even though the resolution is just a Full HD one, the 'Retina display' feature makes it 'pin sharp, crystal and a joy to stream content over'. The new 3D Touch feature which includes a Taptic Engine also makes the display highly sensitive to touch and lets you view options in apps they way you want to. Samsung is yet to catch up with this technology.
While the 12-MP camera in the Galaxy Note 7 doesn't sound very powerful, those who have experienced the 12MP cameras in Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge will be able to tell how good they are.
The 12-MP camera comes with 'Selective Focus' to bring in depth of clarity and beautiful landscapes as well as a 'Pro' mode which lets you adjust everything from ISO to white levels. The front camera also comes with features like 'beauty mode', wide selfie and video collage.
The rear camera in iPhone 6s Plus is also a 12-MP one and features Optical Image Stabilisation which also extends to 4K videos shot on the camera. The Live Photos feature also lets users take 2 second videos while taking pictures and when viewed later in the album, they look like short video snippets which can be a lot of fun to play with. The selfie camera is crisp without any heavy-handed airbrushing and focuses in an instant and the flash is more of a white light that momentarily blinds you to take some of the best lit photos on inky dark nights. It has the ability to go from chalky white to beige to make sure you are the star of the photo you are taking.
Given that both cameras feature the best technologies and offer brilliant results, it will be down to user ratings and personal tastes to measure which of them is superior to the other.
Samsung definitely had the battery life on the back of its mind when it started designing the Galaxy Note 7. Compared to a 3,000 mAh battery in Galaxy Note 5, Galaxy Note 7 brings in a powerful 3,500 mAh battery which will let you consume media, play games and chat for many hours at a go. While reviewing the iPhone 6s Plus, after streaming and downloading all day over 4G, we had to charge it once every 1.5 days which is a great feat for a phone battery which doesn't claim to be the best in terms of mAh capacity.
Just like iPhone 6s Plus comes with low power modes, Galaxy Note 7 will also benefit from a range of battery saving features that will come with Android as well as some built-in by Samsung. Once we make the phablet go through a rigorous hands-on review, we will let you know more about its battery prowess.
Samsung has decided to launch a single storage model of Galaxy Note 7 with 64GB as fixed storage compared to 32GB and 64GB variants of the Galaxy Note 5. Being a Note device, people will surely use it to store tonnes of media, work files and apps so as to access them at all times with the touch of a button. For those who need more, the device, unlike its predecessor, also features a MicroSD slot to let you add data to your heart's content.
While Apple seems highly averse to SD slots, the iPhone 6s Plus is available with as much as 128GB of storage, negating the need for extra slots. At the same time, the iCloud is a highly popular feature and is less prone to crashes, making it very convenient for users to back up their files in it and download them whenever they please. Given that both devices offer you unlimited storage capacities, either as hardware or online, picking a winner is depends solely on preferences of users.
Both the Galaxy Note 7 and iPhone 6s Plus are excellent devices with far-reaching capabilities. However, Samsung seems to have raced ahead with the design concepts it has employed so far this year and the Galaxy Note 7 is poised to become yet another success story for the Korean smartphone giant.
However, Apple will be launching its own contender next month and it will be interesting to see how the battle pans out by the turn of the year.