Samsung Galaxy S3 Or Nexus: Which Is A Smarter Buy?

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The Samsung Galaxy S3 is the company’s flagship, compared to the slightly dated Galaxy Nexus. The S3 has a TouchWiz UI and Ice Cream Sandwich whereas the Samsung Galaxy Nexus has stock Jelly Bean. So is JB and the prospect of regular updates in the future enough to choose a Nexus over the powerful Samsung Galaxy S3? Let’s find out.

Samsung Galaxy S3 vs Samsung Galaxy Nexus

Both the Samsung Galaxy S3 and the Nexus have Super AMOLED screens,with the 4.8” screen of the S3 beating the 4.65” display of the Nexus. The Nexus wins on ppi, though, with 316 compared to 306, but this won’t be noticeable. Winner: Samsung Galaxy S3

The Samsung Galaxy Nexus is behind the S3 on chips as it has a dual-core TI OMAP 1.2GHz Cortex A9 processor compared to the quad-core Exynos 1.4GHz Cortex A9 processor in the S3. The Samsung Galaxy S3 also features a Mali 400 GPU and 1GB of RAM, and even the dual-core US S3 with its 2GB of RAM and 1.5GHz Snapdragon processor beats the Galaxy Nexus. Winner: Samsung Galaxy S3

Battery is a biggie, and the Samsung Galaxy S3 holds sway over the Nexus, with a 2,100mAh power source that rules over the Nexus’ 1,750mAh battery. The S3 offers two hours more talking than the Nexus (620 minutes compared to 500). It also has Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Direct and NFC. The S3 also has GLONASS, A-GPS and Bluetooth 4.0. Winner: Samsung Galaxy S3

The two phones are pretty much the same in size. The Samsung Galaxy S3 is 81.88 cubic cm and weighs 133g. The Nexus is a shade bigger at 82.93 cubic cm and 135g despite having a smaller display. Design wise, you have to choose between textured and matte or glossy and svelte. Personally I prefer the cleaner design of the Samsung Galaxy Nexus over the S3 as it has no Samsung logo tatooed up front. Its rear cover also looks better than the somewhat cheap looking shiny plastics of the S3. Winner: Samsung Galaxy Nexus (matter of personal preference)

The Samsung Galaxy Nexus is let down by its 5MP front camera – the S3 is 8MP. The front camera on the Nexus is smaller too – 1.3MP compared to 1.9. Winner: Samsung Galaxy S3

Verdict: Get the Samsung Galaxy S3 or await the “next” Nexus

The S3 has sold more than 20 million units to date, and has the specs and features nailed. The Nexus has fallen from grace a bit, although a Jelly Bean upgrade has liven it up a bit. However, if you’re willing to hold out for Jelly Bean and are all about the hardware, the Samsung Galaxy S3 is your best bet.

If you’re more about the OS and want frequent updates, it’s the Nexus for you. You’ll need a GSM unlocked rather than a Sprint or Verizon model, though. These networks are notoriously bad at upgrades. It is also important to note that in a few months there’ll be a new Nexus to consider, so if you’ve still got a few months to run on your contract, you might be able to get update hardware alongside the benefits of faster updates that come with Nexus devices. If rumors serve true, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus 2 (Premier or Superior as it has been dubbed) will feature similar hardware to the S3 so hang on folks.

Cecelia has the patience of a praying mantis. She spends the day sifting through press releases from all the major brand’s PR reps. From the most ridiculous announcements to those you really want to know more about, Cecelia makes it a point to skim through as many daily as possible so you won’t have to.