LG Nexus 4 vs Galaxy S3 vs iPhone 5: Who’s On Top?

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The Samsung Galaxy S3, the LG Nexus 4 and the iPhone 5 are topping lots of Christmas lists this year, but which one do you want to find in your stocking?

Samsung Galaxy S3 vs LG Nexus 4 vs iPhone 5

The Samsung Galaxy S3 came out in May and has become the year’s best-seller. The iPhone 5 came out in September, and the LG Nexus 4 debuted last month. The Nexus 4 has a 1.5GHz Qualcomm quad-core chip, the iPhone 5 has a 1.2GHz dual-core A6 and the Samsung Galaxy S3 has a quad-core Exynos chip (the US version is dual-core and 1.5GHz). The iPhone has the slowest chip of the three, but it’s still twice as fast as the chip in the 4S. On paper, the Nexus 4 has the best chip, with four cores and 2GB of RAM. The Samsung Galaxy S3 has either 1GB of RAM and quad-cores, or dual-cores and 2GB of RAM. The Nexus has the best of both worlds.

The Nexus 4 has 8 or 16GB versions, with no SD card. The Samsung Galaxy S3 comes in 16, 32 and 64GB models, with SD support for another 64GB. The iPhone 5 has the same storage options as the Samsung Galaxy S3, minus the SD card. This makes it the runner-up to the S3.

OS is a huge deal – the Nexus 4 has Jelly Bean 4.2, the Samsung Galaxy S3 has JB 4.1 and iPhone 5 has iOS 6. If you want streamlined, you’ll want iOS 6, but for customisation and flexibility, you’ll need Android. The Nexus and the Samsung Galaxy S3 both have Android, but the Nexus will get regular updates. It’s really a personal choice, so we have to declare a draw.

The LG Nexus 4 has a 4.7” True HD IPS Plus screen, with a 1,280×768 resolution and 318ppi. The Samsung Galaxy S3 has a 4.8” Super AMOLED, 1,280×720 resolution and a 306ppi. The iPhone 5, at 4”, has the smallest screen, and it’s IPS with 306ppi and 1,136x640p resolution. All brilliant screens, and people will pick the screen that offers what they need most. IPS does well in bright light, and AMOLED is deep and vibrant. IPS is more naturalistic and performs better in bright light, so it’s more popular. The big IPS screen wins, then, for the LG Nexus 4.

You should get 15 hours of talk from the 2,100mAh battery in the Nexus 4. The Samsung Galaxy S3 and the iPhone 5 give around eight hours. A recent test by AnandTech put the iPhone 5 in first place, with the S3 second and the Nexus third.
On to cameras now – the Nexus 4 has an 8MP camera with LED flash, autofocus and 1,080p video. It also has a 1.3MP front camera. The Samsung Galaxy S3 has an 8MP rear camera too, also with LED flash and autofocus, and a 1.9MP front camera. The iPhone 5 8MP rear camera also has LED flash and autofocus, and it has a 1.2MP front offering. The Samsung Galaxy S3 can take simultaneous films and stills, the Nexus 4 gives you PhotoSphere and the iPhone 5 is almost unbeatable in low light. You’ll go for the option that suits you best, but objectively speaking, the iPhone 5 has the best camera thanks to its BSI sensor.

The Nexus 4 is 133.9mmx68.7mmx9.1mm, and 129g. The Samsung Galaxy S3 is 136.6×70.6mmx8.6mm and 133g. The iPhone 5 is much smaller – 112g and 123.8mmx58.6×7.6mm. In design and looks, the iPhone 5 and the Nexus are level-pegging, but the iPhone 5’s smaller stature means it wins.

The Nexus starts at $299 for an 8GB version and $349 for the 16GB version, but only from the Google Play Store. The S3 generally starts at $550 off-contract. An off-contract iPhone 5 starts at $650, so the Nexus 4 has a definite advantage.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 and the LG Nexus 4 both have NFC, and the iPhone 5 and the S3 have LTE. If you want both, you’ll have to go for the S3. This versatility means a win for the Samsung Galaxy S3.

To sum up: the iPhone 5 is the simplest, most user-friendly phone, and the Nexus represents the best value for money. The Samsung Galaxy S3 is the best all-rounder, with loads and loads of features for a medium price.

Always looking for something new to learn, Mario looks at the internet as one big startup. With him at the helm, continues to head in the right direction of providing high quality and unbiased information on the latest new car models and electronics.