The Samsung Galaxy S4 was finally announced in New York City's Radio City Music Hall. It's full of features all stuffed into a sleek and portable body. Here's how it compares to the Samsung Galaxy S3.
Both phones use a similar design styling, but it's the Samsung Galaxy S4 that's the smoother, more modern looking phone - the brushed metallic bezel is a particularly eye pleasing addition. And, despite a larger screen, larger battery and more features, it's the same size (well actually slightly smaller) than the older S3, and 3g lighter.
The older Samsung Galaxy S3 uses a 4.8" HD Super AMOLED display. It's a great display, but the new phone has it beat. At 5" - well, Samsung were at one point referring to it as 4.99" - it's bigger, and uses a newer version of the Super AMOLED technology. It has excellent contrast and good viewing angles, and the colours are more true to life than the S3. It's also a fair bit brighter. The Galaxy S4 also has 1080p full HD resolution compared to 720p HD of the S3, so it's sharper too, giving more details in visual media such as videos or photos.
With a 1.9GHz quad core processor, the Galaxy S4 has the more powerful processor. The S3's 1.4GHz quad core processor is a fast, fast chip, but with 33% less clock speed, and older technology, it'll struggle to beat it for power or efficiency. Here's why. The four cores of the S3 are all high powered, so when they're on, they're using lots of power. The 1.9GHz Snapdragon 600 quad core processor of the S4 has four super powerful, state of the art processors that are perfect for high end gaming, streaming HD content and heavy multi-tasking, but they can actually vary their speed and their energy consumption depending on what tasks you're doing. When you're doing simple tasks such as texting or replying to emails, the processor will know and turn off say, three cores and run one core at 25% power. And don't forget, the new S4 has twice the amount of RAM - 2GB RAM against 1GB RAM - letting it run more apps more easily.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 has the S3 outgunned when it comes to cameras. The rear camera of the S4 is 13 megapixels (MP), while the S3 has an 8MP shooter. Front cameras? The S4 wins again with a 2MP lens versus the 1.9MP of the S3. The higher MP count means you get more detail in your photos, creating better images. The S4 also has a fair few more features too. It has Dual Camera mode for taking shots with the front and rear cameras simultaneously, Beauty Shot for photoshopping on the fly, Sound & Shot for taking an audio sample with your images, the Eraser feature for deleting random objects or even people from photos, and much more.
Inside the Samsung Galaxy S3, the older phone, is a 2,100 milliamp hour battery (mAh). That's pretty big. But inside the Samsung Galaxy S4 is a 2,600mAh - that's a battery that's 23.8% larger. When you take into account that the processor is more efficient and the new technology used in the screen uses less energy, the battery life of the S4 is going to be an improvement on its older brother.
The Samsung Galaxy S3 is a particularly feature rich smartphone. It has Smart Stay for keeping the screen on while you're looking at it, Burst mode in the camera for taking rapid fire photos, Pop Up play for playing videos in a floating window on top of other apps and much more. Well the game has changed with the Samsung Galaxy S4. The new phone has practically all the features of the old phone and loads more besides. There's Smart Pause that pauses videos when you look away from the display, Smart Scroll, Air View and Air Gesture so you can interact with the screen without touching it, Dual Camera mode, Samsung Knox for splitting the phone into work and personal areas, S Translator, S Voice Drive, S Health, Story Album and more.
The Samsung Galaxy S3 is a great smartphone and still packs a huge punch... but now the Samsung Galaxy S4 is with us. The successor has taken over and takes the fight to every other smartphone out there.
The spec differences in a nutshell (blue highlighting shows the highest spec):
|Samsung Galaxy S4||Samsung Galaxy S3|
|Size||136.6 x 69.8 x 7.9 mm 130g||136.6 x 70.6 x 8.6mm 133g|
|Display||5" HD Super AMOLED||4.8" HD Super AMOLED|
|Processor||1.9GHz Snapdragon 600 quad core||Exynos 1.4GHz quad core|
|RAM||2GB RAM||1GB RAM|
|Front facing camera||2MP||1.9MP|
|Connectivity||4G, NFC, Wi-Fi /b/g/n, DLNA, Bluetooth 4.0||NFC, Wi-Fi /b/g/n, DLNA, Bluetooth 4.0|
Battery size: 2,600mAh
Battery size: 2,100mAh
|Memory||16/32/64GB on board storage (depending on model), microSD up to 64GB||16GB on board storage, microSD up to 64GB|