The iPhone 5S is Apple’s latest and greatest phone, so what better to put it up against than the Samsung Galaxy S4. Samsung’s handset is a few months older, but it’s a fantastic phone and probably the only one that might be able to compete with the iPhone 5S in sales.
Apple iPhone 5S vs Samsung Galaxy S4 – Build quality
The iPhone 5S has a premium metal build. Exactly the same build in fact as the iPhone 5. It’s perhaps a little disappointing that Apple didn’t change it up, but the iPhone 5 is one of the best looking phones on the planet and now so too is the iPhone 5S.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 just can’t compete in the looks and build quality stakes. It’s big and plastic and is likely to impress absolutely no-one at first glance.
Apple iPhone 5S vs Samsung Galaxy S4 - Display
The iPhone 5S has a 4 inch 1136 x 640 Retina display with a pixel density of 326 pixels per inch. That too is the same as the iPhone 5, but it’s still pretty good, making for a true widescreen experience.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 has a 5 inch 1080 x 1920 Super AMOLED display with a pixel density of 441 pixels per inch. Both the size and resolution are greater than the iPhone 5S, making the display on the Samsung Galaxy S4 the one to go for.
Apple iPhone 5S vs Samsung Galaxy S4 - Power
The iPhone 5S has a 64 bit A7 processor, which is supposedly twice as fast as the 32 bit A6 processor in the iPhone 5. Apple hasn’t revealed the exact speed of the processor or how much RAM the phone has, so we don’t have much to go on, but if it really is twice as fast that’s a substantial improvement.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 has a 1.9 GHz quad-core processor with 2GB of RAM, which makes it very fast and very powerful. Without more stats on the iPhone 5S we can’t conclusively say which is better, but they’re both definitely top tier performers so we’ll call it a draw.
Apple iPhone 5S vs Samsung Galaxy S4 - Camera
The iPhone 5S has an 8 megapixel camera with dual-LED flash. While the iPhone 5 also had an 8 megapixel camera it’s been improved here thanks to a larger active sensor area and a ‘True Tone’ feature which brings out more natural colours in photos. It can also shoot 1080p video at 30fps and slow motion video at 120fps. Then there’s a 1.2 megapixel front facing camera for use with FaceTime.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 has a 13 megapixel camera with a single LED flash. It also has a bunch of different scene modes including unusual ones like ‘Sound & Shot’ which allows you to record a few seconds of audio along with an image, giving your photos an extra dimension. It can shoot 1080p video at 30fps and has a 2 megapixel front facing camera.
Both phones have good cameras then, but we’d have to give the edge to the Samsung Galaxy S4 as it has significantly more megapixels.
Apple iPhone 5S vs Samsung Galaxy S4 – Battery life, memory and connectivity
The iPhone 5S has a 1434 mAh battery which can manage up to 250 hours of standby time or up to 10 hours of 3G talk time. The Samsung Galaxy S4 has a much bigger 2600 mAh battery which is capable of 370 hours of standby time or 17 hours of 3G talk time, for substantially better battery life overall.
The iPhone 5S comes in 16, 32 and 64GB flavours but it has no micro SD card slot so you’re stuck with what you buy. The Samsung Galaxy S4 comes in the same 16, 32 and 64GB varieties but it does have a micro SD card slot, giving it more potential storage.
The iPhone 5S supports Bluetooth 4.0, 3G, Wi-Fi and 4G LTE. The Samsung Galaxy S4 supports all of those as well as NFC and infrared.
Apple iPhone 5S vs Samsung Galaxy S4 - Conclusion
In the end the choice of whether to get an iPhone 5S or a Samsung Galaxy S4 will largely come down to whether you’d rather have an iOS or Android phone, that said there are other things to bear in mind. The iPhone 5S has far better build quality while the Samsung Galaxy S4 has a slightly better camera and display, as well as longer battery life and NFC support. That’s enough for the Samsung Galaxy S4 to seem like the better overall option, but its victory is marginal.
By Kevin Thomas on 13th September, 2013