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Nexus 6 vs iPhone 6 vs Note 4: See Who’s the Fastest in This Video

December 11, 2014 - Written By Nick Sutrich

Speed matters when it comes to new phones. That’s partly why we buy new phones, besides the obvious bevvy of features and coat of polish that always come with a new phone of course. This is why we love seeing speed tests, pitting the latest and greatest against each other to crown a winner with each new phone generation. PhoneBuff has taken the best from the three biggest players out there, Apple, Samsung and Google, and has pitted them against each other in a real-world test of opening apps and games one after another to see who finishes the list first. It’s a test that’s not only accurate for everyday usage, but one that’s really entertaining.

Like any good sporting event, this one goes back and forth between competitors with the Galaxy Note 4 and the iPhone 6 taking the lead almost right from the beginning. Surprisingly given Samsung’s history with TouchWiz and it generally being slower and more prone to lag than other OEM skins of Android, the Note 4 leads for the vast majority of the video. It not only opens apps faster but loads them quicker too, likely showing the muscle of Samsung’s latest octo-core Exynos processor and the ultra-fast 3GB of RAM on board.

The iPhone 6 likely gets its speed from the fact that it is less than half the resolution of both the Nexus 6 and the Galaxy Note 4, showing just how much faster the processors on the Android chipsets are than Apple’s. You’ll also note that the iPhone 6 only has 1GB of RAM, meaning it’s less likely to keep applications in memory over time vs the two competing Android handsets here, so apps will have to reload after enough other apps have been opened.

The Nexus 6 lags behind during the first set of tests in which all the apps in question have been opened the first time. This is most definitely due to the fact that the Nexus 6 has Android 5.0 Lollipop’s new encryption method enabled, yet the Qualcomm drivers for the hardware decryption module are missing from Android at this point. This makes the Nexus 6 artificially slower than it would be, which is evidenced by the fact that the Nexus 6 not only catches up after the second round, but even pulls ahead in the end. This is because the phone was able to keep these apps in memory and it appears that either Lollipop or the lack of Samsung’s TouchWiz skin does a better job at using all 3GB of RAM within the phone.  With encryption off or even with working hardware decryption drivers there’s no reason to think that the Nexus 6 wouldn’t have absolutely smoked the other two devices. Check out the video below to see it in action for yourself!