These days it's hard to keep a lid on new smartphone releases and we think it's safe to say that everybody and their dogs knew that the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge Plus (or Galaxy S6 edge +, to give it its Google-unfriendly moniker) was coming.

But, seeing one in the flesh gave us a better indication as to why; it is, quite simply, gorgeous.

Its 5.7-inch curved screen - deemed "dual edge" by Samsung - looks stunning, with the Quad HD Super AMOLED display suiting that size even more, perhaps, than the 5.1-inch screen on the standard S6 edge. Yes, the pixel density lessens as you go up in size, but 2560 x 1440 is always going to look good, even on a 42-inch TV.

In almost all other terms, it is simply a larger version of Samsung's existing flagship phone. internal specifications, for example, are nigh-on identical.

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The Galaxy S6 edge Plus has the same octa-core Exynos 7 processor, running four cores at 2.1GHz, four at 1.5GHz. There is 4GB of RAM and the handset will be available in 32GB and 64GB storage options. Like the standard edge, there is no microSD card slot for expansion.

The front and rear cameras are 5-megapixel and 16-megapixel respectively, both F/1.9 and with optical image stabilisation. Samsung has introduced several new software features though, that will eventually be coming to the smaller edge but will launch pre-installed on the edge Plus.

READ: Samsung Galaxy Note 5 hands-on: Classy evolution but no UK launch currently planned

These include digital image stabilisation for video recording and camera modes for slow motion capture, instant collage creation and a "series" function for video that stiches different, shorter clips together in Vine style automatically.

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Also new for the Galaxy S6 edge Plus (and the Note 5) is a live broadcast mode that streams live video to family and friends over YouTube.

The edge Plus and Note 5 also introduce high quality audio technology for both in device decoding and for wireless transmission over Bluetooth. There is an upscaler inside that converts existing MP3s and other audio formats to 24bit/192KHz for wired listening. A proprietary Samsung codec, UHQ-BT which is a bit like aptX, is capable of streaming 24bit/96KHz audio.

Other than that, it is also Bluetooth 4.2 compatible, with NFC and Wi-Fi up to 802.11ac built-in too. It has a USB 2.0 connection, not USB Type-C.

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Like the Note 5, the edge Plus has 4G LTE connectivity but the standard varies by region. It is LTE Cat.9 capable in countries that support it, Cat.6 in those that don't.

One area where it differs from the standard-sized edge is in battery - there's a considerably bigger screen to power after all. The battery in the edge Plus is 3,000mAh, but thanks to some cunning engineering work that has gone on behind the scenes in the last few months, it actually charges more speedily than the existing model.

For example, when charged wirelessly it is capable of being fully charged within two hours rather than the three of the S6 edge.

Other additional features include an new version of Samsung's PC syncing software, SideSync 4.0, to have a virtual Android screen and interaction between a computer and the phone. There is also Samsung Pay, the company's contactless payment tech that uses both NFC for compatible terminals and magnetic strip technology for those without.

READ: Samsung Pay hands-on: Use your phone with every payment terminal, not just NFC

Samsung Pay won't be available in the UK initially as more deals with banks, etc, need to be set up first. It will launch in the beginning in the US and Korea.

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As will the Note 5, because Samsung UK has made the bold decision to concentrate on the Galaxy S6 edge Plus solely at first. But, having had both in our hands we can understand why.

In specifications terms both phones are almost identical. Bar the S-Pen stylus, the edge Plus has everything the Note 5 has, but with that gorgeous wrap-around screen. At 154.4mm tall it is slightly longer than its stablemate, but it is thinner (6.9mm) and less wide (75.8mm). It is also lighter, at 153g.

But the most important factor is that, for our time with both, the edge Plus just feels nicer. It feels about as premium as phones get, and the 5.7-inch screen size seems made for this form factor.

Samsung is to release a range of accessories alongside it, including a keyboard case that effectively turns it into a BlackBerry, but owners of the edge Plus might be loathe to add anything to the handset for want of distracting from its natural beauty. And in that it is a triumph, even before we've had a chance to review it fully.

The Samsung Galaxy S6 edge Plus will hit UK stores in early September and even if Samsung decides to bring the Note 5 to these shores too, we suspect this is the 5.7-inch handset most will want.

Related read: Samsung Galaxy S7 edge review: The new smartphone champion