(Pocket-lint) - After a tepid response to the Samsung Galaxy S5, the Korean giant has come out all guns blazing for the launch of its 2015 follow-up, most particularly in its curved screen format, the Galaxy S6 edge.
We've been using the phone for 24-hours ahead of its official global review embargo lifting, and will be digging deeper into the device to find its quirks before we're ready to pass the final verdict.
But why buy a phone that features curved screen edges anyway? Here are some tips and tricks you might not know about the SGS6 edge.
What do the S6 edge curves actually do?
There's not the same interface as the Galaxy Note Edge
When we first saw the Galaxy Note Edge - the S-series' larger cousin, similar to the Note 4 but with a single and functional curved edge - we didn't think its curved edge additional user interface was going to be of much use. But having lived with that phone for a week we were impressed with how apps could be arranged on the edge for quick access.
But the Galaxy S6 edge is not one and the same, and lacks this app shortcut feature. Its curved edges, which feature to both left and right sides of the device, are principally there for design purposes, but can also be used to display user-selected feeds and tuck in to some additional features, which we'll breakdown here.
Edge screen settings
To access the hub of the edge screen settings, simply swipe down from the top of the S6 edge screen to display the usual Android alerts, hit the settings cog in the top right corner, then scroll down to the orange-coloured Device section where "Edge screen" lives. Tap this to bring up the full menu of options on offer.
Favourite contacts have their own edge "tabs"
Principal to the baked-in features of the edge interface is "People edge" which allows up to five of your contacts, as selected by you via "My people" to be assigned a favourites spot on the curved edge. When a missed call, message or email comes through from any of those contacts, it can be side-swiped to bring up the alert.
Each of these contacts can be assigned one of eight bright colours and given a position - the higher the position, the higher the tab (shown in their relevant colour) will appear up the side of the edge.
However, there's no way to include anything beyond those three apps just yet - Email, Messages and Missed call - and as we use Gmail, not the default Email app, we aren't receiving alerts via this function. Each of the three app options can be toggled on or off though.
A similar feature to the Note Edge is the S6 edge's ability to display "Edge feeds", such as live weather, a Yahoo! news stream and more.
Within the Edge screen section, select "Information stream" as on or off. Within this sub-menu it's possible to select the time the edge display is active for, manage the feeds from an available list, and separately select whether weather is included or not.
To activate the edge display when the main screen is not active, simply swipe up and down the active edge. Then swipe left and right to spin through the carousel of options, depending on what you have selected.
However, there are fewer options than found with the Note Edge. No "Express me" or, it seems, third party apps are available at this stage in time.
Leftie? No problem: left and right edges can be selected
As the S6 edge has a curved screen on both left and right sides, it's up to you which edge is active. The phone's internal sensors know which way the phone is facing, so will flip the corresponding display to be the right way up, but it's down to you to choose whether that's the left/right/top/bottom position. Nice touch for lefties.
With the S6 edge out of action, all blacked out, a night clock can be activated for up to a maximum of 12 hours, with start and finish time elected by you. It displays the time and date, nice and simply, and without too much distracting brightness.
However, it doesn't automatically prevent additional disturbances during its active period, which is a nuisance. We had a flashing blue alert light due to an unchecked message, for example, so a tie-in with do not disturb would make sense.
Discreet alerts and call reject
If you're in a meeting, flip the S6 edge screen-side down and you'll still be able to spot a glow from the edge, which is partially exposed due to the design, when someone calls.
Rather than the usual panic of hammering the buttons while the ringtone and vibrate send your colleagues sighing, a two second press of the heart-rate sensor, positioned to the side of the camera lens, will reject the call, along with a pre-written text message if active. The message can be up to 160 characters in length.
What else can you expect?
The fingerprint scanner is far better than before
From PIN codes to swipe, almost every SGS5 user shunned the fingerprint scanning method of unlocking the phone as it's highly unreliable. Good news: the SGS6 edge has a far, far better system than before.
The registration process doesn't involve eight downward finger swipes like the older handset, but a progressive build-up of a fingerprint, including the fingertip. That makes a far more accurate map for unlocking purposes.
Multiple fingers and thumbs can be registered as you please and we're fun the static press on the lock button to release the phone with far greater success - only failing to unlock on occasions when the finger only partially covers an edge of the unlock key.
The S6 edge doesn't include a wireless charger
There's been a lot of shout about the standard S6 including a wireless charger. This is not the case for the S6 edge - there's not one in the box.
The S6 edge takes nano SIM
If you're thinking of buying an S6 edge outside of contract then make sure you order a nano SIM update too, otherwise you'll be in for a nasty surprise.
The SIM card tray is located to the top of the device, released by the included pin, as the fixed back of this phone means no removable battery of slot-in SIM like with the SGS5.
It's really expensive
Available from 24 April, the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge is, well, it's expensive. At £760 SIM free, and with 64GB internal storage (there's no microSD card slot), it's one of the pricier consumer phones we've seen.
There are plenty of contract options available too, which we've broken down into a more digestible additional feature for you to take a look at: