Both devices fall into the traditional styling of their respective manufacturers: a shiny chrome colored plastic body for the Galaxy S4 Mini and glass and aluminum frame for the iPhone 4S. The stark contrast between the two devices shows the different philosophies between the two manufacturers: aesthetic design versus ergonomic design. The Galaxy S4 Mini has a more rounded shape than the 4S, which feels squarer and has sharper edges when held.
As regards to physical buttons, both smartphones have central physical “home” button, two volume buttons on the left, and a power button. For the iPhone 4S, the power button is on the top right hand side of the device, for the Galaxy S4 Mini, it’s on the right side. For charging, the iPhone 4S Mini uses the microUSB standard at the bottom of the device while the iPhone 4S is the last in the apple line to use its proprietary 30 pin connector. The display on the Galaxy S4 Mini is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 2 and the iPhone 4S has the original Corning Gorilla Glass.
Contrary to appearances, the iPhone 4S only has a singular speaker located in the lower portion of the smartphone. While it does have what looks like two speakers, the other one is just a microphone.
While almost being the same size, the Galaxy S4 Mini features a display that is 0.8 inches taller, which is definitely a plus.
As well, with no microSD port on the iPhone 4S, the S4 Mini allows for expandable storage up to 64 GB. As well, on the S4 Mini, the battery is removable and replaceable.
Both display technologies are different within the two devices, the Samsung is powered by a Super AMOLED 4.3-inch display that provides deep black, good viewing angles, and sharp contrast. The famous retina display on the iPhone 4S is actually an IPS LCD display and as such, whites and colors tend to be more natural and has better brightness.
Still, the screen resolution on the S4 Mini is nothing to brag about when compared side by side. It comes in at 960 x 540 with a pixel density of 256 ppi, which is a far cry from its big brother, the Samsung Galaxy S4. Compared to the iPhone 4S which comes in at 960 x 640 with a pixel density of 324 ppi.
Without delving into the major differences that are repeated constantly, Android against iOS, both devices either come equipped or will be updated shortly to the latest version of their respective operating systems. On the Galaxy S4 Mini, Android 4.4.2 is available and on the iPhone 4S, iOS 7.1.1. Specific features, such as Touchwiz for the Galaxy S4 includes gesture control among some other Samsung specific software. The iPhone 4s also has some Apple specific apps: Maps, messaging, Mail, and Calendar, among others.
Voice Control is somewhat of a delicate point of comparison, but we must admit that S Voice is sometimes lagging behind the power of Siri. However, when compared to Google Now, it’s hard to draw anything other than a tie.
The Galaxy S4 Mini has a Qualcomm snapdragon dual-core processor that comes in clocked at 1.7 GHz with 1.5 GB of RAM. The iPhone 4s sports
The Apple A4 chip with a dual-core 1 GHz processor and 512 MB of RAM. While on paper the iPhone 4S loses hands-down, the reality is quite a bit different. Relying on different systems and architectures doesn’t allow a direct comparison but when in use, both smartphones are quite equal. Whether in navigation, playing games, or other intensive tasks the two smartphones are quite equal. It is also important to note that the Galaxy S4 Mini comes only with a standard 8 GB worth of internal storage but can be boosted via microSD. The iPhone 4S is available in 8, 16, 32, and 64 GB versions for a price that increases dramatically as you get up there in storage space.
|Apple iPhone 4s||Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini|
|System||iOS 7.1.1||Android 4.4.2|
|Screen||3.5 inch, 960 x 640, 326 ppi||4.3 inch, 960 x 540 (qHD), 256 dpi|
|Processor||Apple A5 dual core 1 GHz||400 Snapdragon dual core 1.7 GHz|
|Internal memory||8/16/32/64 GB||8GB, microSD up to 64GB|
|Battery||1432 mAh||1900 mAh|
|Connectivity||2G/3G, WiFi, Bluetooth, USB 2.0||2G/3G, WiFi, Bluetooth, USB 2.0, optional 4G|
|Camera||8 MP, LED (rear) / VGA (front)||8 MP (rear) / 1.9 MP (front)|
|Dimensions||115.2 x 58.6 x 9.3 mm||124.6 x 61.3 x 8.9 mm|
|Weight||140 grams||107 grams|
Note: The Galaxy S4 Mini is also available in a 4G version for a little bit of extra money, so be careful when you’re buying the device.
On this point, the choice is pretty easy: the Galaxy S4 Mini is equipped with some camera extras to help you catch those memories, but it’s not quite up to par with the iPhone 4S. The iPhone takes much better pictures, especially when light is lacking. If the quality of the camera is critical for you, the Galaxy S4 Mini might be somewhat a hard sell for you to choose.
The iPhone 4S is not recognized for good battery life. The larger capacity battery of the Galaxy S4 Mini does well for its 4.3-inch display and has a slightly better lasting power than the iPhone 4S. Depending on your use, the two smartphones will last through the day while the S4 Mini can help last a little bit longer with a spare battery.
It is always difficult to device between two smartphones when they are based on different operating systems and different manufacturing mentalities. The iPhone 4S has a better quality display and camera, the Galaxy S4 Mini has a lower price, slightly better battery, and a 4G option. If you hesitate between the two smartphones, the answer is simple: do you need 4G? If not, are you willing to put a bit more money for a better camera on your smartphone? In our perspective, the Galaxy S4 Mini offers a better device for the money spent.