The iPhone 5 is among us, the hype is over and the real comparisons with the Samsung Galaxy S3 can start.
Samsung Galaxy S3 vs iPhone 5iPhone unveilings usually have a special, magical feel to them, but this feeling was missing earlier this month at the iPhone 5 event, and the flatness was worsened by the fact that Apple’s competitors have caught up with some amazing smartphones in the last 12 months. Apple had lots to say about the iPhone 5 and iOS 6, but it just seemed as if it was nothing special. Many analysts have said that the OS and the device itself lacked innovation.
A couple of weekends ago Samsung released an ad that compared the iPhone 5 to the Samsung Galaxy S3, and conveniently missed out anything that defended the iPhone 5. In the interests of objectivity, we’ll have a go as well.
The first thing you’ll notice about the iPhone 5 is how high-end it looks and feels – aluminum and glass, low weight and all that. However, there are many smartphones out that feel just as premium without the premium price tags.
Apple’s data sheets claim that the new A6 chip in the iPhone 5 is twice as fast as the A5 in the 4S. Many think that the chip is twice as fast because it’s integrated with Cortex A115 processors. There have been a few benchmark tests to back this up, and some have shown the iPhone 5 to be faster than the Samsung Galaxy S3 even. Others, however, show that the S3 with Jelly Bean is still faster than the iPhone 5 on iOS 6.
The iPhone 5 4” screen has a 1,136x640p resolution, which gives it a pixel density of 326ppi. The Samsung Galaxy S3 4.8” screen has a ppi of just 306 with its 1,280x720p resolution. The iPhone 5 isn’t any better than the Samsung Galaxy S3 here at all. Also, HD is becoming standard in Android smartphones – even the Nokia Lumia 920 has 1,280x768p, and a ppi of 332. This makes it bigger and better than the iPhone 5 in both size and ppi.
More battery life has been promised, and the data sheets say that the iPhone 5 will give up to eight hours on 3G and LTE, and 10 hours on Wi-Fi. This isn’t that great when compared to the Samsung Galaxy S3 which boasts longer battery life as well as a removable battery.
Storage wise, the iPhone 5 comes in three flavours, 16GB, 32GB and 64GB, but there’s still no external card slot. The smallest Samsung Galaxy S3, the 16GB, can support an microSD card of up to 64GB, making it 80GB total. This means that with a microSD card, the 64GB Samsung Galaxy S3 can take up to 128GB, twice as much as the most expensive iPhone 5 model you can buy.
So, the Samsung Galaxy S3 gives users the same – or even better – value for money and features as the iPhone 5. It is also cheaper than the iPhone 5, on or off contract. You can grab the iPhone 5 from 3rd party retailers like Amazon from as low as $149, and even T-Mobile ran a “no money down” sale last week to offer its Galaxy S3 for free on contract. If you missed it then there’s more to come. Next month Sprint is going to offer the S3 for $49.99 on contract as part of their Black Friday 2012 sale.
Price of course isn’t the real problem here. It is what the iPhone brand stands for. We can slate the iPhone 5 for not being as life-changing as we’d hoped, but we have to realise that the smartphone market has changed a lot since 2007. Apple could get away with a once-a-year release cycle as the competition was way behind. Now they’ve caught up, with rivals sending out innovative Android phones every few months.
Apple fans have still been queuing to pick the iPhone 5 up, though. Apple does need to remember that it has these fans because of the design and innovation of the past. The company has been stuck with the same looks for three years now, and isn’t pulling ahead of its rivals in the hardware stakes. Apple needs to step up and stop resting on its laurels. It needs to bring back that “magic” the original iPhone showed us and release a product that is revolutionary instead of just evolutionary.