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Galaxy S6 Edge review: Innovative, impressive -- and impractical

JR Raphael | April 6, 2015
The curved-screen version of Samsung's Galaxy S6 has looks to kill, but you may want to think twice before pulling the trigger.

On the S6 Edge, the only feature present when the screen is on is the ability to swipe over from the edge of the display to see a stack of starred contacts on your home screen. You can then view any missed notifications from those contacts or tap any of their faces to call, text or email them directly. It's nothing you couldn't accomplish with any number of widgets -- or, heck, even with the same exact setup on a traditional phone. (The curve itself really has nothing to do with the feature's execution.)

While the Edge's screen is off, you can swipe along the curved part of the screen to activate a tiny bar that shows your current notifications and optionally news or weather information. It's a weird way to consume that kind of content when you could more quickly turn your screen on all the way and see the same info in an easier-to-read format.

Finally, the Edge can show the time in a tiny side-of-screen bar while the display is off -- and if you want to keep your phone face-down on a table, it can light up the curved part of the screen to create a "glow" effect that lets you know when you have a missed call or message. It's hard to think of a scenario where either option would be particularly useful.

Aside from its curve-related components, however, the Galaxy S6 Edge has essentially the same hardware, software and performance as the regular Galaxy S6 -- and that device is one that's well worth considering. Check out my in-depth Galaxy S6 review for a detailed look at the main flagship model and why it might be the Samsung smartphone you've been waiting for.

Bottom line

Between the physical effects of its form and the usage-related quirks of its display, the Galaxy S6 Edge requires a lot of sacrifice just to get something that looks cool. Consequently, tempting as it may be, the device just isn't an advisable purchase for most people.

 

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