Although the Samsung Galaxy S3 is 2012’s best-selling smartphone, the LG Nexus 4 could make life tricky for the S3 in 2013 when it starts shipping again. Of course the LG Nexus 4 has an attractively low price, but there are also a few negatives that we should look at before deciding if it’s an S3-killer. Let’s get cracking.
Samsung Galaxy S3 vs LG Nexus 4
Design: Two good-looking phones – the Samsung Galaxy S3 is bigger and slimmer, and the LG Nexus 4 is glass in front and back, with a subtle glitter under the light making it sexier. The LG Nexus 4 is 0.36”x2.70”x5.27” and 139g against the S3, which is 0.34”x2.78”x5.38” and 133g. These are fairly light phones, then. The LG Nexus 4 looks a lot more high-end, though, with its glass casing and superior build. It wins – just.
Screens: The LG Nexus 4 has a 4.7”, 1,280x768p display, with a 318ppi. The Samsung Galaxy S3 is a bit bigger at 4.8”, and it has a 1,280x720p resolution and 306ppi. The screen produces hyper-real hues, which can seem over-saturated to some. The LG Nexus 4 looks more realistic and performs well in direct light, although some might describe it as weak-looking. I always go for realism over hyper-realism so points go to the LG Nexus 4 and its IPS screen.
Software: The LG Nexus 4 gives a pure Android 4.2 user experience, which means loads of new features like a Swype-like keyboard. There’s also PhotoSphere for 360 composite photos. The LG Nexus 4 leads here, because it’ll also get reliable and frequent updates – unlike the Samsung Galaxy S3.
Connectivity: The LG Nexus 4 doesn’t have LTE, as it has HSPA+ instead. HSPA+ promises speeds up to 42Mbps, but tests on AT&T, which uses HSPA+ and LTE, showed that LTE is faster. The Samsung Galaxy S3 has LTE, and because it’s seen as the connectivity to take us into the future, it wins.
Chips: The American version of the Samsung Galaxy S3 has a dual-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 chip with 2GB of RAM. The international version has 1GB of RAM but has a quad-core Exynos chip. The LG Nexus 4 has four cores AND 2GB of RAM – a clear winner given that it has the best of both worlds.
Storage: The LG Nexus 4 comes in 8 or 16GB versions, and lacks SD storage. The Samsung Galaxy S3 is a definite winner with 16, 32 and 64GB versions and up to 64GB in SD add-on.
Cameras: Both the Samsung Galaxy S3 and the LG Nexus 4 have 8MP cameras, but because the S3 has a bigger front camera – 1.9MP to 1.4MP – it wins out.
Battery: It’s a draw here, with both phones running off a 2,100mAh battery, which gives the same amount of talktime (on paper).
In conclusion: The LG Nexus 4 is the best Nexus so far, but its limited storage and lack of LTE are big omissions. If LTE and storage are important to you, opt for the Samsung Galaxy S3 without thinking twice. If not then the LG Nexus 4 is superior in all other ways.