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Samsung Galaxy S3 vs Apple iPhone 5: Which One is the Best?

Updated on March 8, 2013

Samsung Galaxy S3 is no doubt the reigning emperor of the Android world. How does it fare with a war with the hottest thing of the tech world: the Apple iPhone 5? Many users worldwide are seeking the answer of this question. The warring camps: the apple fanboys and android geeks are throwing missiles to each other and the war between iPhone5 and Galaxy S3 has now gained the height and momentum of a world war. How can we forget the legal wars between Apple and Google?

I shall have to make one thing clear to you; how I am going to compare these two flagships. It is simple. I shall compare these two mobile phones in different categories. To not waste much of your time I have kept this article short (look how I have concealed the fact that I am lazy).

Vote Please

Which one is the Better?

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Sex Appeal of iPhone5 vs the Cool Samsung Galaxy S3

Everybody knows that Apple makes sexy gadgets. It is true for iPhone 5 too. It is cool and the best looking handset available at the market. Yes, it looks way better than Samsung Galaxy S3. The new iPhone 5 has a great aluminum shell which makes it much more durable than the predecessor, iPhone 4. The glass front is scratch resistant and can endure quite a few falls.

On the other hand, Samsung Galaxy S3 or SGS3 (I’m not lazy!) has a polycarbonate body which makes it hardy. There is also a scratch proof gorilla glass display in it.

Thickness makes the iPhone5 better looking than SGS3. It is only 7.8 mm thick! A full one mm less than the SGS3. The Apple phone is also notable for its lightweight (112 grams, 21 grams lighter than the SGS3).


iPhone5 vs SGS3 : 2-0

Apple iPhone 5
Apple iPhone 5

Display Quality

The display or the screen is very important in today’s touch operated phones. These two phones sport world’s best quality displays. The iPhone boasts of its 4 inch 326 dpi ‘retina’ display. This screen is made of latest IPS technology. The Samsung Galaxy S III sports an AMOLED screen of 4.8 inches diagonal length. It is massive! The display has the dpi of 306, close to iPhone 5.

Though both displays are gorgeous, in that case the winner is iPhone5. But if you are a fan of bigger displays then the decision might changed.


iPhone5 vs SGS3: 1-0

User Experience

The main point of fight is in the user experiences. The iOS and Android was fighting for a long time to woe users worldwide. The first iPhone was a huge hit because of superb usability. For a long time there was no match for iOS in regard of usability, functionality and ease of operation.

But Android is a fast developing platform. It is very much improved now from the uglier 1st or 2nd gen versions. Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean (Android 4.0 and 4.1) has revolutionized the user experienced of Android devices.

The iPhone5 is fast. Every game and app opens very quickly in it. The interface is consistent and you shall be getting used to it very quickly. The iOS 6 is designed precisely to let the users use the device with as less learning curve as possible.

Samsung Galaxy S3 is not a slow beast though. The latest Android OS is eye pleasing and very user friendly. The main forte of Android is that it is very much customizable. The OS of iPhone5 is more user friendly but less customizable than the Samsung Galaxy S3’s Android.


iPhone5 vs SGS3: 1-1

iPhone  Camera Sample Shot
iPhone Camera Sample Shot
Samsung Galaxy S3 Sample Photo
Samsung Galaxy S3 Sample Photo

Camera Performance

Why should I bother about the camera of a phone while I have a great SLR?

Well, the answer is simple, portability. You can carry a phone everywhere but not a DSLR.

So, how are the cameras of Samsung Galaxy S 3 and Apple iPhone 5?

Yes, both of the phones have decent cameras on which you can snap a quick shot or two and post these pictures in Facebook or Instagram. The SGS3 features an 8MP camera with autofocus and LED flash. The camera app has some great features like face and smile detections. The camera can take burst shots at 6fps and select the best shot according to face or smile detection. It has HDR and very good dynamic range of colors. The phone can record videos at 1080p full HD. There is a front facing camera of 1.9 MP. It can also record videos at 720p HD.

The iPhone 5 camera is one of the industry best. It also has an 8MP shooter. But the camera has not any control of shutter time or ISO. But you can take HDR shots for better full sunlight and light and shadow shots. It also has a built in panorama mode by which you can take 8 continuous photos which will be stitched to produce a huge 28MP panorama image.

The Samsung Galaxy SIII cameras video capturing mode beats iPhone5. While the SGS3 can record stereo while video capturing at 134 Kbps, the iPhone5 can only get mono.


iPhone5 vs SGS3: 0-1

How Strong is iPhone 5?



The big AMOLED screen of Galaxy S III is a treat while watching movies. The SGS3 can play almost any video file, despite of its size, format or resolution. Full HD videos are playable without any lags.

On the other hand, the iPhone5 video player is pretty good but it lacks support. You cannot play any Divx or Xvid coded video on it.


iPhone5 vs SGS3: 0-2


The iPhones have always maintained a great audio quality in the past. This latest model is no exception. But the audio quality of iPhone 5 is a tad lesser than iPhone 4S, its elder brother.

The audio quality of SGS3 is outstanding too. The Audio quality of both of these phones is very close to perfect. So, it can only be a draw.


iPhone5 vs SGS3: 1-1

Facetime in iPhone 5

Telephony and Messaging

But how good are Samsung Galaxy S III and iPhone 5 as phones? I mean, how well they perform their basic duty, telephony?

Apple iPhone5 has noise cancellation microphone which helps to make clear calls from even very noisy backgrounds. The SGSIII is also very good as a basic phone. The call quality is clear and flawless. The iPhone phonebook has deep facebook integration. The Galaxy SIII has great dial pad.

The iPhone system has well advertised Facetime video calling. The good thing about it is that it is integrated with the phones main software and does not behave as a 3rd party. But this can hardly be considered as an advantage for iPhone 5 because you can do such video calling easily by using apps like fring in Samsung Galaxy S III.

Both of these phones have cool and functional email client apps. The iPhone email client supports multiple inboxes. The gmail of Samsung Galaxy S 3 is very functional too. There is the GTalk app for instant messaging. There is iMessage in iPhone, which is an apple to apple free message sending app.


iPhone5 vs SGS3: 1-1

App Stores

The iPhone Apps are cool. The iPhone5 is connected to the app store from where you can download many great apps and games. The Android play store is also not far behind. But the overall quality of Apps and games available for iPhone is a bit better than those available for the Samsung flagship on the Google Play Store.


iPhone5 vs SGS3: 1-0


The Google Maps are much better than the Apple Maps. In these department Samsung Galaxy S3 beats Apple iPhone 5.


iPhone5 vs SGS3: 0-2

Web Brosing Video on SGS III

Web Browsing

The Safary web browser has revolutionized the internet experience on a Smartphone. The Apple iPhone 5’s browser can render web pages quickly. The mobile supports LTE now. The Samsung Galaxy SIII’s stock browser is fluent too. The iPhone’s Safary has a reader mode but it still lacks the Flash support. That is why and also for the bigger screen Samsung Galaxy S3 wins here.


iPhone5 vs SGS3: 0-1


As we mentioned before, both phones support LTE or 4G, the superfast mobile internet. Samsung Galaxy S III has the NFC functionality, by which you can transfer files between two NFC supported devices. NFC can also be used to make payments. Sadly, the iPhone5 has no NFC support. The iPhone has also no mass storage mode and cannot be use as a portable flash drive like SGS3.


iPhone5 vs SGS3: 0-2


As we can see, the fight between these two giants was tough. I know this comparison is not perfect. The points can be viewed from many different angles. There are also many points of comparison which I have missed. You may add your opinion regarding this subject. Here is the final scorecard.

Final Scores:

iPhone 5 = 8

Samsung Galaxy S 3 = 12

Apple iPhone 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S3 : Score Card

Apple iPhone 5
Samsung Galaxy S III
1) Display Quality
2) User Experience
3) Sex Appeal
4) Camera
5) Video
6) Audio
7) Telephony and Messaging
8) App Store
9) Maps
10) Web browsing
11) Connectivity
12) Build Quality
The comparison table and score card; iPhone 5 vs Galaxy S 3


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    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I own a S3 and I'm very happy with it but I'm really jealous about i5's hardware :X cpu+gpu

    • pinappu profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from India

      Thank you ChristyWrites for stopping by.

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 

      5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      A good comparison here pinappu and well researched!

    • pinappu profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from India

      The idea of open source has made the actual user experince cheaper on Android phones like Samsung Galaxy S III. On the other hand, the rigid quality control of Apple has resulted in much sleek and fuller experience in iPhone5. It all depends upon your personal choice @Demetry.

    • Demetry profile image


      5 years ago from Australia

      Apple have always done great designs first and good functionality second. I prefer the android devices such as the Samsung Galaxy S III. I like the idea of 'open source' - apps can be created and made available by users rather than having a company like Apple dictate what is sold on their app store...


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