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Galaxy S4 and iPhone 5s in video comparison

Kris Carlon
14

When it comes to the two most popular smartphones of 2013, the candidates are already clear: the iPhone 5s from Apple and Samsung's Galaxy S4. We've showcased the two blockbuster handsets in our direct comparison video, intended for new smartphone users who may not be intimately informed about the microscopic differences between them already, and who would appreciate a few general guidelines. Let us know what you prefer!

iphone5s galaxys4 teaser
© AndroidPIT

The pinnacle of smartphones

In the Android world, every smartphone this year had to compete with this bad boy: the Galaxy S4 is Samsung's current flagship model and it sets the bar high for the competition. It was presented way back in March, but even after a few months on the market, the S4 is still the most sought after Android smartphone.

For Apple fans, however, the iPhone 5s is the measure of all things since its presentation two weeks ago. Apple sets the standard for a compact luxury smartphone and shows once again that it can sell phones that don't depend only on pure technical data. Despite weaker hardware, the iPhone 5s still defies many beefier Android phones.

S45s
There's obviously a big difference, and yet both are top-selling devices. / © AndroidPIT

How do these show-stealing devices measure up in direct comparison? We'll show you in our video where we take a look at the design, the displays, the software and the camera.

Link to Video

No clear winner

Anyone looking for a clear winner will not find it here: despite being so different, the S4 and 5s are almost equal. The differences are clear to see: the display size and design, software and the user interface. Samsung and Apple have gone their own way while still borrowing heavily from one another. Ultimately, for many, the great advantage of the S4 can be distilled to the larger display and Android platform, while the 5s perhaps has better material selection and design. These are notoriously personal preferences however, but these seem to be the common threads in most responses to either device. 

video galaxy s4 vs iphone 5s
You may be surprised how similar the two smartphones are. / © AndroidPIT

Are you on the market for a new phone and are still undecided? We've already written about the major differences between iOS and Android 4.2 2 and last week we shared ten good reasons to switch from iOS to Android. We also put the specifications of the iPhone 5s up against those of some other recent Android smartphones.

Other than Android versus iOS, what other considerations for unfamiliar users are there between these two handsets?

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Comments

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  • Aayush Patil 11 months ago Link

    There's a slight mistake, It's Android 4.2.2 in the 4th last line, make the change :D

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    Kris Carlon 11 months ago Link

    Good catch, all sorted. Thanks!

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  • ljhaye 11 months ago Link

    One huge difference is that iPhone 5s is running on a 64 bit architecture and 64 bit operating system, which quite frankly mind boggling.

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  • Aayush Patil 11 months ago Link

    You're welcome :D

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  • pete pickett 11 months ago Link

    The S4's screen size and quad core do it for me. What also gets me is that everyone fusses about about materials used, but I think Samsung got it right. Everyone (who has half a brain) should be using a good cover of some sort. This hides the plastic or metal of the phone anyway. I always invest in a good metal and rubber mixed cover (Seidio or other) for my phone in case of drops/accidents. I chuckle at Iphone users with cracked screens and no phone cover. It seems Apple preys on the weak minded.

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    Kris Carlon 11 months ago Link

    Ah but lj, the thing with the 64-bit architecture is, as far as I'm aware, that it only really comes into play when a device has more than 4 GB RAM available, so for now it doesn't make any real difference. And Pete, in the last week alone I've noticed two cracked screen HTC's, a cracked screen iPhone and a friend has a Nexus 4 with a broken screen entirely, so you're dead on!

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  • pete pickett 11 months ago Link

    You could write a whole article about whether it matters you get a gold/metal phone or not since you should be using a cover anyway.. There is no reason to blast Samsung for having a plastic phone. its what's inside that truly counts.

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  • Philipp Junghannß (My1) 11 months ago Link

    isnt it better to compare 5s with Note 3, since they were introduced the same time???

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  • High Flyer 11 months ago Link

    Nice objective review....LOL

    * No mention that the iPhone 5S has the blazingly fast and powerful 64 bit A7 processor which beats the Galaxy S4 by a country mile in bench tests - despite Samsung cheating and artificially speeding up the S4 just for bench tests

    - No mention that the iPhone 5S is twice as fast as the Galaxy S4 in TouchMarks I: Smartphone Touchscreen Latencies tests, which makes the iPhone notably faster and smoother in response to touchscreen gestures.

    * No mention of the iPhone 5S having the separate power sipping M7 chip to monitor motion sensors 24/7

    * Not even a mention of the Touch ID easy to use and reliable, high security fingerprint system

    * No mention that the iPhone 5 is a lot tougher in drop tests

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  • High Flyer 11 months ago Link

    Kris Carlon: "Ah but lj, the thing with the 64-buit architecture is, as far as I'm aware, that it only really comes into play when a device has more than 4 GB RAM available, so for now it doesn't make any real difference. "

    I am amazed that a tech journalist could be so misinformed so as to believe the myth that Apple's iOS 64 bit architecture needs 4 GB RAM.

    Go check your facts.

    This myth about the need for 4 GB RAM came about because of MS's terrible implementation of 64 bit architecture.

    Didn't you know that Apple's OS X 64 bit Power PCs only needed 256 k to 512 K RAM?

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    Kris Carlon 11 months ago Link

    Hey High Flyer, while you make valid points, as I mentioned the article was meant as a very simple introduction to the main differences between two very popular phones for unfamiliar readers, not a hardcore breakdown of specs. I didn't mention any of the S4's gesture controls either, which are a major selling point of that device. And the processor speed comparison was based on real-world application, not benchmarks. Basically what the average user would notice.

    I didn't think TouchID was worth mentioning as you'd have to live under a rock not to be aware of that and as for drop tests, I haven't specifically read any comparisons but I hear a lot more about cracked iPhone screens than I do about S4 problems due to the plastic housing which absorbs shock better - plus, most people don't pick a phone based on drop tests. And the 64-bit architecture comment was based on my admittedly limited understanding of the technology - I'm not a architecture fiend, so if I make a common mistake I'm happy to own up to it. Thanks for your input though and for the clarification.

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  • popekw 9 months ago Link

    I have a droid. 4 Will i b happier with apple 5 is phone bet. Does it hav a keyboard and does it actually follow voice command. What is price for new and refurbished apple 5s

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    • popekw 9 months ago Link

      Im seriousely thanking about a change i have a contract till april but will verizon bend in rule ive been with them 15 yrs

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        Kris Carlon 9 months ago Link

        Hey @popekw, I don't know much about iPhone contracts (or off contract iPhones for that matter!), but a lot depends on what you want out of your phone. If you just want a phone that works then an iPhone is a perfectly fine choice. For Android lovers, the freedom to customize your phone any way you want is one of the most important aspects, which you just don't get with Apple products. But you can also weigh up price, screen size, support and cost of apps and so on to decide which way to go. Happy phone shopping!

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