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iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Design, Screen and Power

Andrew Williams


iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3

Samsung Galaxy S3 or iPhone 5? It's a tough question, and there are vocal advocates and detractors on both sides of the Apple/Android divide.

The Galaxy S3 and iPhone 5 were the two most successful phones of 2012 and are still the some of the hottest mobiles in the world, but which should you buy?

2013 May Update

The Samsung Galaxy S3 is now a 'previous generation' phone. Its successor, the Galaxy S4 is available to buy, and improves upon the S3 in almost every way.

For more, read our Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S3 feature.

However, the iPhone 5 is still the latest Apple phone. It's not likely to be nudged into the past until September, when the iPhone 5S is expected to launch.

We've now spent several months with both these phones and understand what it's like living with them and using them day to day. We’ve also compared their specs, screens, software, apps and media skills to give you an expert and impartial assessment and help you decide whether the iPhone 5 or Samsung Galaxy S3 is right for you.

There's even more to choice now. Make sure you also read our Samsung Galaxy S4 vs iPhone 5 comparison.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Price and Deals

The positive side of being an 'old' phone is that some great Galaxy S3 deals are available - you can get hold of one for a good deal less than you have to pay for an iPhone 5.

Shop around and you'll find the Galaxy S3 for free on contracts of £20 a month. From Carphone Warehouse, you can buy the S3 with a decent T-Mobile contract that costs £21 a month, which includes 1GB mobile internet, 500 texts and 100 minutes. The cheapest robust iPhone 5 contracts that get you a free phone cost £33 a month.

SIM-free there are similar price disparities. The 16GB iPhone 5 costs £529.99 direct from Apple, and the Galaxy S3 is currently a mere £349.99 on Pay As You Go from Three at the moment.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Video Comparison

If you want a detailed analysis of the Samsung Galaxy S3 and iPhone 5, you should read on below but you can also see the both phones in action and next to each other in our video review.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Design

iPhone 5 - 7.6mm thick, metal casing, non-removable battery

Samsung Galaxy S3 - 8.6mm thick, plastic casing, removable battery

A case of metal versus plastic, and hard lines against smoother curves, the iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3 have quite different approaches to handset design. The two iPhone models released prior to the iPhone 5 featured glass panels on the front and rear, which gave the phone’s a hard, solid feel. However, rear glass plate has now been replaced with metal - aluminium.

This marks an even greater shift in design than a simple switch of glass for metal, as the previous iPhone 4S used steel for its metallic parts, rather than aluminium. Steel is harder, but also heavier. The use of aluminium is what lets the iPhone 5 slim down to 112g and 7.6 thick. It’s a very slim and light phone.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 has slightly less of an obsession with being small and thin, and it’s structurally closer to its forebears than the iPhone 5 is. It’s a plastic-bodied phone – another design choice that help keeps weight down – with a removable rear battery cover.

Much of the criticism the Samsung Galaxy S3 has received since its launch in May 2012 is down to this plastic battery cover. It’s perilously thin, which becomes especially noticeable when you take the thing off to access the phone’s battery or microSD memory card slot.

Real-world testing of the ruggedness shows that there’s nothing wrong with the Samsung Galaxy S3’s construction, though.

A few months ago, Android Authority produced a neat little video showing the torture of these two phones. You can see the results below.

The iPhone 5 survives a little better, but it’s the glass screen covering of the Samsung Galaxy S3 that takes more of a pounding than the plastic frame. Both phones use toughened glass as their front armour. The Samsung Galaxy S3 uses Corning Gorilla Glass II, the iPhone 5 a comparable form of toughened glass.

Both phones are tough, despite feeling lightweight (iPhone 5) and a touch plasticky (Samsung Galaxy S3) in-hand.

The shapes of the phones are quite different, though. With a more widescreen-aspect display, the iPhone 5 is a good deal less wide - 58.6mm against the Samsung Galaxy S3’s 70.6mm. This is one of the most compelling design reasons to choose a Galaxy S3 over the iPhone 5 for people with smaller hands.

Sheer size means that most people will have to stretch to reach from one side of the Galaxy S3 screen to the other, one-handed. And it gets surprisingly annoying. Galaxy S3 colours

The Samsung Galaxy S3 wins a point back for its fairly wide choice of finishes. The iPhone 5 is only available in two colours, black and white. The Galaxy S3 comes in white, black, blue, red, grey and brown.iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 1

iPhone 5 vs Galaxy S3 - Audio

iPhone 5 – 38S1077 Cirrus audio codec, No Apt-X, mono speaker

Samsung Galaxy S3 – Wolfson DAC, Apt-X Bluetooth, mono speaker

Like your music? The audio internals of phones aren’t talked about much, compared to – say – their cameras. But search hard enough and you can find out exactly what bits and bobs they use.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 has a particularly impressive DAC, which converts your digital music files into the analogue signal that comes out of the headphone jack. The iPhone 5 has a custom DAC using the Cirrus Logic 38S1077 class-D headphone amp.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 is the clear audio winner. Not only is its DAC superior, it also supports Apt-X. This is a high-quality Bluetooth codec, for use with higher-end Bluetooth headphones like the Sennheiser MM 550.

When using the standard SBC Bluetooth codec to stream audio, as the iPhone 5 has to do, there’s a noticeable loss of fidelity, much like listening to a lower-quality MP3 file. Apt-X is near-lossless. If you’ve spent a lot of cash on a Bluetooth speaker or Bluetooth headphones, this is something to consider.

Back to the core hardware, both phones have mono internal speakers. On an iPhone 5, you’ll find the speaker grilles on the bottom edge – two of them. On a Samsung Galaxy S3, the speaker is up by the camera lens.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Price and Deals

iPhone 5 – From £529 SIM-free, or £36 a month on contract

Samsung Galaxy S3 – From £391 SIM-free, or £30 a month on contract

Now that both the Samsung Galaxy S3 and iPhone 5 are at least a few months old, the benefits of not buying Apple have become very clear. The price of the Samsung Galaxy S3 has steadily dropped since May, but in most places the iPhone 5 has maintained its initial high cost.

SIM-free the 16GB iPhone 5 costs £529, while the 16GB Samsung Galaxy S3 sells at around £390-400. Slightly better deals are commonly available online if you search around too, letting you save a few quid extra with a bit of effort.

The price difference continues in contract deals. One of our favourite deals available at present for the Samsung galaxy S3 is the Tesco £30-a-month contract. It gets you the phone for free, 500 minutes, 5000 texts and 1GB of data a month. Comparable deals are available from the other main carriers too.

Similar deals on the iPhone 5 tend to cost around £5 more a month. It’s not a wallet-sucking extra expense, but do consider how much this might add up to over a two-year contract - £120. That’s almost exactly the price difference between the SIM-free cost of the phones.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Screen

iPhone 5 - 4in IPS, 1,136 x 640 resolution

Samsung Galaxy S3 - 4.8in Super AMOLED, 1,280 x 720 resolution

Cards on the table time – both the iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3 have excellent screens. However, they’re about as different as top-end smartphone screens get.

The iPhone 5’s is more widescreen, letting the display expand without making the phone any wider than the iPhone 4S. Less concerned with keeping the phone palm-friendly, the 720p 4.8-inch monster screen of the Samsung Galaxy S3 does not compromise on size.

What’s more important from a comparison perspective is the screen technology working underneath. The iPhone 5 uses an IPS (in-plane switching) screen, the Samsung Galaxy S3 a Super AMOLED panel.

Each excels at different things. The Samsung Galaxy S3 is the king of contrast. In a dark room, the black areas on the phone’s screen will look much more convincing than the iPhone 5’s, which will take on a slightly grey-ish hue. Rich colours and deep blacks are what characterise the Samsung Galaxy S3’s screen.

However, the IPS screen of the iPhone 5’s maximum brightness is more dazzling, which is handy if you want to use the phone outdoors. Its surface is a little less reflective to boot and colours appear more natural, as Super AMOLED displays often oversaturate colours to show off what they’re capable of.

Sharpness is slightly better in the iPhone 5 too. Although the pixel densities of the displays are comparable, 306dpi for the Samsung Galaxy S3 and 326dpi for the iPhone 5, the Samsung Galaxy S3 uses a PenTile pixel construction. This is an uneven subpixel array that makes text look slightly fuzzy.

Samsung claims that a PenTile-style display increases the lifespan of screens, but as it ironed-out the problem in the Samsung Galaxy Note 2, it clearly sees there is an issue here. The Note 2 has a full-RGB subpixel structure, avoiding the PenTile sharpness problem.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 1

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Software

iPhone 5 - iOS 6

Samsung Galaxy S3 – Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, w/ TouchWiz

Whether or not you want iOS or Android is just as important as the picking between the hardware of the Samsung Galaxy S3 and iPhone 5. The cleanest distillation of their differences is that iOS is simple but a little restricted, Android is harder to get to grips with, but more flexible and feature-packed.

The iPhone 5 runs iOS version 6. Although the system is known for its streamlined, largely bug-free nature, Apple's iOS 6 was a fraught launch. It saw Apple replace Google Maps with its own mapping solution, single-handedly making the iPhone 5 a bit useless as a navigation tool. Apple’s maps are not good, packed full of out-of-date and plain wrong information. However, now that Google Maps has been released as a separate app for iPhones, iOS is back on track.

Other than its simple, app icon based home screens, iOS doesn’t offer quite as many features as the Samsung Galaxy S3’s Android, though. The Samsung phone has more bells and whistles than a fleet of old-timey steam trains, including gesture navigation, face unlock, gesture typing, an FM tuner, AllShare video streaming, NFC sharing, video multitasking and more.

Some of these are added through TouchWiz, the interface Samsung has laid upon basic Android in the Galaxy S3. For the full run-down of neat features, check out our list of the top 50 Galaxy S3 tips and tricks.

The iPhone 5’s list of extra features is much shorter, and they’re mirrored in the Galaxy S3 anyway. Siri is the voice assistant that lets you search the internet, check movie times and run apps without touching the screen. However, the Samsung Galaxy S3’s S Voice can perform similar feats.

iOS 6 also offers Passbook, which is a repository for things like online vouchers, virtual cinema tickets and so on, but it’s virtually useless in the UK at present and NFC-enabled apps for the Samsung Galaxy S3 have a great deal more potential.

Things aren’t looking too hot for iOS. However, for simple day-to-day use it remains an excellent, easy and quick system. And many of the Samsung Galaxy S3’s extra frills can feel unnecessary. For those relatively new to technology, we recommend iOS over Android.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 2

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Apps and Games

iPhone 5 – App Store, 700,000 apps

Samsung Galaxy S3 – Google Play, 700,000 apps

The Google Play store is rapidly catching up with the Apple App Store in terms of sheer volume of apps and games. In late 2012, both stores revealed that the number of apps available had hit the 700,000 mark. However, quality is much more important than quality in this field, and here the Apple App Store still has a clear lead.

The wealth of creativity apps available on the Apple App Store in particular is worth a mention. Music creation tools like the official Korg iKaossilator and Apple’s own Garageband do not have worth alternatives on Android, and it’s unlikely a top dev will fork out to fill this gap any time soon.

Games trail behind on Android too. Developers tend to use iPhone editions as their lead SKUs – the version that is developed first – because the iPhone gaming market is simply much more valuable commercially than Android’s. Android games are often effectively copies, known as ports, of iPhone originals.

There is an app advantage to using an Android device, though. You can manually install apps using their respective APK installer files – this is called side-loading. Download them with a computer, pop them on a microSD card, put it in the Samsung Galaxy S3 and you can load them from the phone's file explorer app. With an iPhone 5, you can only install apps from the official App Store unless you hack the phone.

Side-loading of apps lets you circumvent the restrictions applied on official app stores, each of which has a set of guidelines that often means apps are pulled or not allowed on the store’s shelves in the first place. However, this also circumvents the light security checks that go on at the Google Play store (apps with dodgy malware are quickly removed, in theory) and you could easily end up with an Android virus.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 1

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Power

iPhone 5 – Apple A6 1.2GHz dual-core CPU, triple-core PowerVR SGX 543MP3 GPU, 1GB RAM

Samsung Galaxy S3 – Exynos 4412 1.4GHz Quad-core CPU, Mali-400MP GPU, 1GB RAM

When thinking about processing power, there are two sides to consider. You can assess raw power through benchmarks, and how well developers have put the power to good use.

Starting with raw power, in the Geekbench benchmarking tool, the Exynos 4412 processor of the Samsung Galaxy S3 beats the iPhone 5. It scores 1720 points against the iPhone 5’s 1660. Geekbench is designed to comprehensively test a device’s processing power.


Galaxy S3 wins the Geekbench CPU test battle

The Galaxy S3 doesn’t win every benchmark challenge, though. In the Sunspider Java benchmark, which roughly judges web browsing speed, the iPhone 5 is significantly faster, completing the test in 915ms against the Samsung Galaxy S3’s 1143ms. Predictably, then, the iPhone 5 also beats the Samsung Galaxy S3 in the similar Browsermark test. It scored roughly 190,000 points, against the Galaxy S3’s 172,000.

Testing the GPUs of the phones, the iPhone 5 wins once more. In the GLBenchmark 2.5 fill test, the iPhone 5 trotted out an impressive 1797 MTexels/sec to the Galaxy S3's 781 MTexels/sec - not that much more than an iPhone 4S.


...but GLBenchmark's GPU tool is a solid win for iPhone 5 (M/texels/sec)

This power is put to better use in an iPhone too, because of a situation we already mentioned when discussing apps and games. As the iPhone gaming market is more lucrative than Android, games are often made for iPhones first, rather than Androids, and if a device’s full potential is to be realised, it’ll be the iPhone 5’s.

Of course, there’s an extent to which developers have to keep in mind the “limited” power reserves of the millions of iPhone 4s and iPhone 4Ss out there too. The iPhone 5 dev scene isn’t perfect, but it is healthy.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 1

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Connectivity

iPhone 5 – Lightning port, 3.5mm headphone jack, Wi-Fi, 3G/4G,

Samsung Galaxy S3 – microUSB port, MHL w/adapter, Wi-Fi, 3G (4G option available), Wi-FI Direct, NFC

Connectivity in these phones sums-up the differing approaches of Samsung and Apple. Apple’s connectivity is almost all proprietary. The new Apple Lightning port, the main connector of the iPhone 5, is used across most of Apple’s mobile devices these days, but you won’t find it elsewhere. The iPhone 5 has 3G and 4G connectivity, but while it has a form of Wi-Fi Direct, it’s not the standard type that’ll work with other devices.

But, hey, at least it has a 3.5mm headphone jack.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 has much better, more open connections. It uses the industry-standard microUSB port, with MHL compatibility. This lets you output video and audio from the phone to a TV, letting it function as a dinky little lounge media player.

Wireless connectivity is great too. AllShare lets you fire over music and video to Samsung TVs and Blu-ray players using your home Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Direct makes transferring files with other up-to-date devices quick and easy, and it has NFC too.

NFC is the latest darling of the wireless connectivity world. It stands for Near-Field Communication and can already be used to pay for some small items on the high street, without the use of a credit card or cash. We are talking about paying for cups of coffee at present, though.

This is an easy win for the “everything including the kitchen sink” Samsung Galaxy S3.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Storage

iPhone 5 – 16/32/64GB non-expandable

Samsung Galaxy S3 – 16/32GB (64GB exists but not widely available), expandable via microSD

Again, the Samsung Galaxy S3 wins on storage. The iPhone 5 offers a good range of options, 16GB, 32GB and 64GB of internal storage, but those extra gigabytes cost you a lot of extra cash. Want a 64GB iPhone? That’ll be £699.

There’s no way to increase the internal storage of an iPhone 5, either, so you’ll have to rely on cloud storage if you need more.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 comes in fewer storage flavours in the UK than elsewhere. Most retailers sell the 16GB edition, although a 32GB has also been available from Vodafone (it’s not available to buy at the time of writing). A 64GB edition of the Samsung Galaxy S3 has been produced, but there just isn’t the demand for one in the UK and consequently they are near-impossible to buy.

Why? It’s because expanding the memory with a microSD memory card is a good deal cheaper. Underneath the plastic battery cover of the phone is a microSD slot that’ll take cards up to 64GB. A class 10 64GB microSD card can be bought for around £40 these days – giving you an 80GB phone for less than the cost of a 16GB iPhone 5.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Cameras

iPhone 5 – 8MP, LED flash, user-facing camera

Samsung Galaxy S3 – 8MP, LED flash, user-facing camera

Specs-wise, the iPhone 5 and Galaxy S3 cameras are near-identical. Both have 8-megapixel sensors with an LED flash a piece. However, the approaches of their camera apps are completely different.

The iPhone 5 camera interface is stripped-back and simple. Your only control is over whether HDR mode is enabled, whether you want to take a panorama photo or not, and if the screen grid is enabled or not.

HDR melds two exposures to reveal more detail in photos taken in difficult lighting situations, panorama takes a full-resolution 240-degree view of your surroundings and grid is a preview overlay that lets you line-up your shot with the horizon.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 offers many, many more options – along with the panorama and HDR modes the iPhone 5 supplies. Many of these options are things that the iPhone does behind-the-scenes anyway, such as stabilisation and face detection. But not all are.

Useful extra features include burst mode and resolution settings.

In practice, the iPhone 5 wins out for pure photo quality. It grabs that bit more detail, has slightly more natural-looking colour and less invasive upping of contrast. The Samsung Galaxy S3 LED flash is more powerful, however.

Both phones offer a good-quality user-facing camera for video chat over Skype/FaceTime.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 1

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Media Skills

iPhone 5 – Limited codec support, restricted file transfers

Samsung Galaxy S3 – Excellent codec support, free file transfers

One of the clearest wins for the Samsung Galaxy S3 is media support. It can play a wide array of audio and video formats, including lossless FLAC tracks and MKV videos. Media fiends will be in heaven.

The iPhone 5 only handles a severely limited range of formats. Most videos downloaded from the net will need to be transcoded before the native video app will be able to play them.

Any limitations in video skills can usually be plugged-in with third-party apps, though, for both of these phones.

No matter which media app you use, transferring files is simpler with a Samsung Galaxy S3. Plug the phone into a computer and its internal memory will show up as a disk drive, letting you drag and drop files. With an iPhone, you need to hook up to iTunes.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Battery

iPhone 5 – 1440mAh, non-removable

Samsung Galaxy S3 – 2100mAh, removable

Battery stamina is a hard thing to measure in phones, because we use them for such a wide array of tasks. However, the pure numbers show that the Samsung Galaxy S3 undeniably has a much larger main unit than the iPhone 5, 2100mAh against the iPhone’s 1440mAh

Set to constant tasks, such as web browsing, the Samsung Galaxy S3 wins. Consumer advocate Which? Set the phones to web browse the web constantly until their batteries gave up. The Galaxy S3 lasted for 359 minutes, while the iPhone 5 conked out after a mere 200. Ouch.

In general use, the difference is less marked. With 3G engaged, you’ll need to charge the devices every other day, or every day with intense use.

An additional benefit of the Samsung Galaxy S3 is that you can carry around a charged spare if you’re going to be away from a power socket for a while. Official batteries are available for around £15, or third-party knock-offs can be bought from eBay for just a few pounds.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 - Accessories

iPhone 5 – Lightning connector, charger plug, EarPod headphones

Samsung Galaxy S3 – microUSB cable, charger plug, Samsung earphones

What else do you get in the box? The iPhone 5 and the Samsung Galaxy S3 offer almost identical accessories. They offer their respective cables, a plug to jam them into for charging, and a pair of earphones a piece.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 offers reasonable-quality IEM-style earphones – these use rubber tips to give you some degree of noise isolation from the outside world. Apple’s EarPods are a bit more interesting. They replace the earbuds Apple has offered with its phones and players for years, using a design that’s in-between an earbud and an IEM pair.

Apple EarPods

EarPods have hard plastic outer shells that roughly plug your ear canal, although not enough to isolate like Samsung’s IEM pair. They offer significantly improved audio quality over Apple’s previous models, though. For more on EarPods, check out our full Apple EarPods review.

iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 2


Choosing between an iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3 is a tough decision and – unlike some of the comparisons we do – there’s no clear overall winner. For those less interested in the tech, the iPhone 5 is much easier to use, easier to hold and is more robust. However, tech fans may well find the Samsung Galaxy S3 easier, thanks to its relative open-ness, micro-SD card slot and lack of restrictions.

For games, the iPhone 5 wins, as it does for its camera, by a whisker. However, the Samsung Galaxy S3 is a much better media player, with much greater codec support and more flexibility as to how it can bung video over to a television.

If money is an issue, though, the Samsung Galaxy S3 takes the lead, with at least £120 savings to be made.


June 25, 2012, 6:42 pm

Apple will use "liquid metal" The last reference too liquid metal was in the T1000 in Terminator 2. Is retina display just a glowing red light with a fancy cover? Is this another step towards Apple trying to take over the world ?


June 25, 2012, 8:01 pm

Well honestly speaking it would be very tough for the Iphone 5 to match up to the galaxy in most aspects. For chances are that the Galaxy s3 with its new Exynos processor would trump it as it is currently the best processor on a mobile device (including tablets). Also the iphone 5 may have a good camera but the question is will apple throw in the features like panorama, zero shutter lag, burst shot...etc.

Even if we compare screen with screen the resolution on the S3 still looks better and your comparison between the superLCD displays and the AMOLED display is also not fair. Fistly you forgot to mention that amo"LED" uses LED technology which is far superior in terms of contrast to LCD technology. It also is significantly healthier to read off an LED display than an LCD display and after hours of reading LED does not cause eye irritations like LCD displays. Sure there might be slightly "less natural colours" but the beauty of android is that it allows you to change the contrast on your S3.

The last thing i would like to talk about is the design. Now i highly doubt that the Iphone will be slimmer than the S3 and if it is slimmer than that would be a disadvantage to apple as the phone already feels like a brick in my hand (ergonomic design is good on the iphone but ergonomic feel is terrible) and if a brick was thin it would be easy to drop. The S3 feels natural in the hand and seamless in the pocket (maybe too seamless). The cheap and materials used to make the S3 honestly is a letdown and in terms of build quality samsung has a lot to learn from HTC but the design on the other hand is simple and like i mentioned, feels seemless and natural in the hand( perfect for videos)


June 25, 2012, 9:32 pm

>> rather than the 4:3

I think your getting confused with the iPad..
You of course meant to say widescreen 3:2 :)

Georgi Chelebiev

June 25, 2012, 10:56 pm

AMOLED stands for Active-Matrix Light-Emitting Diodes and does not have a lot in common with conventional LEDs


June 26, 2012, 12:21 am

Everything else I've read on the Galaxy S3 says it has 2 Gb of ram, but I suppose that's just the US version


June 26, 2012, 1:41 am

You've been misled, the Galaxy S3 is not MHL compliant unlike the S2, Samsung changed the spec. You need a proprietary cable that only works for S3.

See: http://blog.clove.co.uk/201...

Trevor Totten

July 27, 2012, 2:39 pm

Actually, it's Active-Matrix Organic Light-Emitting Diodes...

Trevor Totten

July 27, 2012, 2:43 pm

Apparently Samsung decided to add an extra 1GB of RAM because they weren't sure of what the hardware requirements would be. So I think the newer S3's are shipping with 2GB RAM.

Trevor Totten

July 27, 2012, 2:45 pm

No offence to anyone at TrustedReviews, but I'm a bit tired of these "SpeculativePhoneWithRumouredSpecs vs CurrentBestPhoneOnTheMarket"

Isn't it all a bit pointless?

Trevor Totten

July 27, 2012, 2:46 pm

Meant to say, hardware requirements of JellyBean...


August 25, 2012, 7:37 am

Oh my god could this guy be any more opinionated? It's hard to take anything in the article considering the writer is clearly a die-hard apple fan who can't see reality.

Samsung Galaxy SIII is manufactured in a democratic country (Korea); everything apple is made by slave Chinese labor under brutal conditions. You can save a lot of money by having your products made in that type of environment.


September 4, 2012, 6:58 pm

The device is only a small part of the whole. The OS and app are a much bigger part to the user experience. iOS (the iPhone) is a much better OS than Droid hands down, I've programmed in both and have use both phones, there are far more iOS only apps.

Also the integration of iPhone in the enterprise is becoming the standard one device vs dozens of Android devices, Droid will never become an enterprise OS.

Cost aside iPhone is the only clear winner.


September 12, 2012, 1:19 pm

Anandtech gave some nice insights about the upcoming CPU—it's semiconductor size will be 32nm, thus the phone will be much more energy efficient than the S3 which still relies on a 40-45nm design. However, we will know more today :)


September 13, 2012, 3:24 am

Let me point out that this is the most biased thing I've read. It's honestly not even fair to the S3 how much this article makes it sound like garbage. I waited an entire year for the iPhone5 because I hated the android I had. But then I did research and saw that the s3 is better in technical terms. It has a better processor, better resolution, longer battery, and the bigger screen. In my opinion it is also a lot more accessible. But none of what I just said is what I think its a fact...Now then, the iphone 5 is going to be a popular phone...because it's an iphone....and honestly I would recommend it to people that don't care about having an advanced phone. The iphone 5 just like all the other iphones will be a lot more simple to use. Which is exactly what makes it popular. The s3 has soo many more features that are seen as useless to some people. Which is why it's poplular. and because its made by apple. I'm just trying to say this. If you want to have a lot more accessible phone that doesnt have as great of a shell and might not be as "bright" (referring to brightness) then you definitely should be getting the s3. If you want a simple to use phone that is more sturdy and will be more than simple to get used to. Then the iphone is without a doubt what you should be getting. Also if you find this biased. I'm giving you straight facts. I am just as big of an apple fan as an android fan. So don't act like I just trashed the iphone 5...


September 13, 2012, 8:26 am

I've had all the iPhones and I'm just so tired of them, now i think they are so boring, all its just the samething. so I bought Galaxy s3 and I love it. but it feels like the iPhone 5 will be similar to the the old phones. its maybe looks some different or have a better processor, but its not any big changes? its still the same old boring phone?


September 13, 2012, 11:13 am

just wanted to add that I just watched a very extensive review on the S3. The reviewer had her S3 for only 2 weeks and already has a problem with "burn in" on the screen of her Galaxy S3. SHe loved the phone and in the end recommended it. There was no head to head comparison with the iphone 5 but she did enjoy the phone very much. She stated that there are numerous "issues" in the technical part of the phone as far as file sharing and transferring, etc along with battery longevity. I am so confused (than ever before) on which phone to purchase. I really like alot of features on each phone. I have only owned the iphone but I must say that for the first time that I am seriously impressed and considering the S3. Just wanted to share that, thanks.


September 13, 2012, 11:28 am

Did any of you watch the Apple Keynote Event? The quality of the iPhone 5 is incredible. I want one just because it's built to exacting standards (within microns) and can do what I want and has a larger screen. Very nice build and it does everything I could want since I already have the 4S. There is no comparison to the Samsung Galaxy S3 in terms of quality build.


September 13, 2012, 1:46 pm

Lol, this is hilarious - Evolution of the iPhone on 9GAG - http://bit.ly/iphone9gag


September 13, 2012, 2:47 pm

Indeed it does not matter whether you have an 8 core CPU or 3TerraBytes of memory. I remember a long time ago when I had a PC with a 486 processor. It ran windows 95 and was terribly slow. I once put Linux on it only to find it suddenly became blazingly fast. I realized the OS efficiency is the determining factor. The iPhone 4S is in daily use equally fast than the S3 despite the weaker processor. Apple has the advantage that they control the entire production process allowing them to perfectly match the software at the hardware. In Android's case you get a common OS that has to do something on a lot of devices. The situation is very comparable with windows on the PC. As a result you get a shitload of drivers for video cards and printers you don't need because only 1 of them applies to you. Hence your OS becomes bigger, consumes more memory space and searching through the code to find that app thus takes longer simply because there is much more garbage to browse through. In this eco-system in this architecture, Android will never be able to fully compete with Apple's approach. Either Android will need more memory or they'll need a faster CPU. Both will result in battery drain.

Having said that I must admit the S3 is a really cool device. Had it run iOS I might actually prefer it over the iPhone 5. I like the 5 but people want something new for a change. And the 5 looks too much like the 4. You barely notice the difference. While the Samsung S2 was a total flop and shameless copy of the iPhone, the S3 deserves some credits. If only they figured out the phone has to be a lot simpler in use. Android is trying so desperately to outperform iOS they are truly stuffing any possible feature in it they can think of. The result is 1000 icons that bury the true necessities of a phone: calling!


September 13, 2012, 4:36 pm

I totally disagree with the author being critical of the S3's plastic back, because there is nothing wrong with it. It costs $2 to buy a protective flip-case which is what's required to really protect your phone. Do a drop test of a Samsung S3 in a $2 flip-case versus a 100 naked iPhones and the S3 wins! In fact that a naked S3 does the same as the "super-duper" build iPhone in a drop test anyway. That's right folks: the having an expensive back cover will not improve your sex appeal nor will it improve protection of the phone's inners - contrary to the authors assertions.

The author wrote "flimsy, ultra-thin back cover". It's only flimsy if you remove it but when it's on the phone it's not flimsy. (What's the point of noting how the back cover performs when the phone is dismantled? - I honestly don't know.) Plus it's not extra thin. It's a 1.2 mm or so thick, which is exactly the thickness of every single other back cover of every other phone on the planet.


September 13, 2012, 10:12 pm

In your review you said "iPhone 5 - 7.6mm thick, metal casing, non-removable battery" yet you don't mention this in the battery section instead giving comparisons with battery life. Battery life, while important is pretty blown away by having the ability to switch it out instead of having a dead battery which in the real world equals a dead phone. That's what Apple gives us and continues to with all of it's products. I think it's an important aspect don't you?


September 14, 2012, 2:00 am

Certainly wouldn't agree that having interchangeable batteries is more important than out and out battery life but nonetheless the lack thereof should be noted. We'll update it in the morning.


September 20, 2012, 2:06 pm

Why do you highlight the metal case on the Iphone and plastic on the S3, within 10 seconds of getting the phone out the box 95% go into a case of some sort.
The tech in them is the important thing and i think the iphone 5 is just a restricted let down, it seems they have held back stuff for the 5s. They know like the Pied Piper that there customer base will follow them wherever they want them to go.


September 23, 2012, 9:33 pm

I'm a few months late in commenting. I just came across this review while searching since I'm contemplating one or the other at the moment. I've had android phones since the original Moto Droid. I love the android devices. But I also have an iPad2, iPod Touch (5th gen), and '09 MBP.

SO there are some benefits going iPhone5 for me because it keeps things consistent among my devices. Some tools, features, synching and apps work better amongst all iDevices and Macs rather than an Android phone (I know since that's my situation now).

But to me, the Galaxy S3 is simply a better phone all around compared to the iPhone5. Unfortunately the G S3 just doesn't have the seamless integration with my Apple devices computers and other iDevices that my other family members use... so the iPhone may give me the better experience

So I've got some decision making to do.

Someone should clarify though about the Galaxy S3 Processor... In the U.S.A, Canada, and Japan the CPU is a dual core 1.5GHz Qualcomm. Elsewhere it is the four core 1.4GHz Exynos.

I agree however with comments from Lawrence... looking at just the processors, cores, memory, speed, etc does not give a good indication of one device performing faster/better than another. The OS efficiency to use that hardware is what really counts.

That said, the 2GB RAM in the Samsung is sweet! I have a tough decision to make.


October 9, 2012, 1:08 pm

Most women love Iphones because of their looks(built) and style while most Men loves android phones because of its features.

Those who loves iphones are not geeky dudes, just displaying on the table saying: "Hey, here's my elegant premium looking phone". lol. While android user says: "Hey Apple fan Dude, look how cool and amazing my android phone is, it has lot of features, free applications and you can do personalization as well."

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