The iPhone 5, the Samsung Galaxy S3 and the LG Nexus 4 are on a few wishlists this Christmas, but which one will make people the happiest this Christmas?
Samsung Galaxy S3 vs LG Nexus 4 vs iPhone 5
The Samsung Galaxy S3 came out in May and is the best-seller of the year. The iPhone 5 debuted in September, and the LG Nexus 4 came out a week or so ago. The Nexus 4 has a 1.5GHz Qualcomm quad-core chip, the Samsung Galaxy S3 has a quad-core Exynos 1.4GHz chip (although it’s a dual-core 1.5GHz chip in the US). The iPhone 5 has a 1.2GHz A6 chip, which, while slower than the other two, is twice as fast as the A5 in the 4S. On paper, the Nexus 4 is in front, with more cores and more RAM (2GB).
The LG Nexus 4 has a 4.7” True HD IPS Plus, 1,280×768 screen, with 318ppi. The Samsung Galaxy S3 has a 4.8” Super AMOLED, 1,280×720, 306ppi screen. The iPhone 5 has a 4”, IPS, 1.136×640, 306ppi screen. These are top-notch displays and it comes down to what you want, really. IPS always does better in direct light, but AMOLED gives intense blacks and colours. Lots of people prefer IPS to the ultra-real colours of the AMOLED screens, so because the LG Nexus 4 is both IPS and big, it wins here.
The LG Nexus 4 comes with just 8GB or 16GB of storage, and there’s no SD card! The Samsung Galaxy S3 comes in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB options, and you can add up to 64GB of SD. The iPhone 5 comes in the same sizes as the S3, but lacks the SD card, so the S3 wins by a Swedish mile.
The LG Nexus 4 has an 8MP camera that has LED flash, autofocus and can take 1,080p films. It’s helped along by a 1.3MP front camera. The Samsung Galaxy S3 also has an 8MP rear camera with LED flash and autofocus, and it has a 1.9MP front camera. The iPhone 5 camera is also 8MP, and there’s LED flash, autofocus and a 1.2MP front snapper. There’s good points to each camera – the S3 can take simultaneous stills and films, the LG has PhotoSphere from Android 4.2 and the iPhone 5 BSI sensor is almost unparalleled in low light. Again, the winner is the camera that has what you value most, but in terms of hardware, the iPhone 5 takes the lead.
Operating system is an important factor – the LG Nexus 4 has pure Jelly Bean 4.2, and the Samsung Galaxy S3 is getting Jelly Bean 4.1 now. The iPhone 5 has iOS 6, of course. It comes down to what you want from a phone – if you want a streamlined OS that just gets out of the box and goes to work, choose iOS 6. If you want widgets a-go-go and lots of customisation, then you’ll need Android. The Samsung Galaxy S3 will give you the same stuff as the Nexus 4, but with the S3 you won’t have the same reliability with updates.
The LG Nexus 4 will give you around 15 hours of talk time, with its 2,100mAh battery. The Samsung Galaxy S3 lasts for around 11 hours on 3G, and the iPhone 5 brings up the rear with its wee 1,440mAh battery, with eight hours of talk. A recent test performed by AnandTech, however, had the iPhone 5 in the lead, with the Nexus 4 and the S3 in joint neck and neck second place.
The Samsung Galaxy S3 is 136.6mmx70.6mmx8.6mm and weighs 133g, whereas the LG Nexus 4 is 133.9mm x 68.7mm x 9.1mm and 139g. The iPhone 5 is a mere 123.8mmx58.6mmx7.6mm and 112g, so it’s the smallest and lightest of the trio. Design-wise, the LG Nexus 4 and the iPhone 5 are as stunning as each other, but as the iPhone 5 is lighter and thinner it nudges ahead. The LG Nexus 4 starts at $299 for the 8GB and $349 for the 16GB, both unlocked. This price is only at the Google Play Store, though. An unlocked Samsung Galaxy S3 starts at $500, and the unlocked iPhone 5 should go for around $650. The winner on price is LG.
It’s also worth remembering that the LG Nexus 4 and the Samsung Galaxy S3 have NFC, unlike the iPhone 5. The S3 and the iPhone 5 both have LTE, and the Nexus 4 doesn’t. If you want both capabilities, you’ll have to get a S3.
For sheer user-friendliness, the iPhone 5 has it, but the LG Nexus 4 is the best value for money device. The Samsung Galaxy S3 is the best all-rounder, with a medium price (unlocked) and loads of features.