Whenever Apple hits the stage and shows off a new iPhone, the tech world takes a breath in anticipation. What will they produce?
This year, for the first time, we saw two new versions released simultaneously - the iPhone 5c, and the flagship, iPhone 5s. But how does the iPhone 5s stand up against the Samsung Galaxy S4? We're about to find out....
So, how does the iPhone 5s compare to its smartphone rivals - does it have the specs to out-rank the Samsung Galaxy S4? A phone we gave a glowing five star review earlier this year? Read on for full enlightenment....
Apple iPhone 5s vs Samsung Galaxy S4: Build & features
The Apple iPhone used to be the king when it came to smartphone design. Sharp lines, glass, aluminium and a sense of sophistication surrounded Cupertino’s creation. However, no more is Apple the only company going all out for industrial design superiority, both the HTC One and Sony’s Xperia Z1 are marvels to gaze upon.
While it may sell in droves, you won’t find many people clamouring to appreciate the plastic driven design and slimy feel of the Samsung Galaxy S4. However, by using these materials, Samsung manages to keep the weight down to 130g and it’s only marginally thicker than the iPhone 5s.
Both the Samsung Galaxy S4 and iPhone 5s pack a hardware home button, though niftily the iPhone 5s builds in a fingerprint scanner so you can ditch the passwords on native Apple apps.
Looking to change the battery and add extra storage through a MicroSD card? You’ve only got one choice, the Galaxy S4.
LTE, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, GPS are features available across both devices, while NFC is still an iPhone no go.
Apple iPhone 5s vs Samsung Galaxy S4: Display
The first thing you will most likely see when you unpack your newest smartphone from its box is the touchscreen display that covers the front. Obviously, the size of the the display determines how big the phone is going to be, how well it will feel in the hand and sit in your pocket.
Apple has only ever used two screen-sizes for its iPhone range – a 3.5-inch version and an ever so slightly taller 4-incher. The iPhone 5s boasts, as we expected, the 4-inch version with a ‘Retina’ resolution of 640x1136 and a PPI of 326. Apple sets itself apart from the crowd by not constantly ramping up the screen sizes, something so common on Android handsets.
Samsung’s Galaxy S4 has a Full HD 1080x1920 display, measuring 5-inches - a whole inch bigger than Apple’s offering.
At first glance, it may seem like the iPhone 5s is lagging behind the competition with its screen resolution, and in many respects it is. However it’s not all about specs and we always felt the iPhone 5 had a brilliantly bright and vivid display, so we have very few qualms about the version on the 5s.
Apple iPhone 5s vs Samsung Galaxy S4: Operating System
The Samsung Galaxy S4 runs on Google’s Android software, though this has been heavily tweaked and customised. Samsung has overlaid it with the glossy TouchWiz, which adds a load of features that some find useful, but it doesn’t feel as sophisticated as stock Android. If you delve through the menus you’ll find apps for fitness, a useful one for controlling your television and more.
The iPhone 5s runs iOS7, the latest version of Apple’s mobile operating system and it’s the first time we have seen a dramatic overhaul in the design language used. Gone are the glossy icons, fake leather and strange textures, replaced with transparency, pastel shades and a lot of new features. Quick access to the settings menu, something we’ve seen in Android for a while now, is now available through Control Center and all the native Apple apps have been given a new coat of paint.
Many have their personal preferences when it comes to their OS of choice, some love the freedom and customisability Android offers, while other prefers the huge amounts of quirky, unique apps and games found on Apple’s App Store. If you’ve never liked iOS before, 7 probably won’t change your mind.
Apple iPhone 5s vs Samsung Galaxy S4: Camera
Apple didn’t increase the megapixel count in the iPhone 5s this year, instead deciding to focus on the optics, along with improving the flash and image stabilisation. Megapixels don’t mean everything folks; the 8mp snapper on the iPhone 5 took fantastic shots, even when compared to the 12 megapixel version on the Samsung Galaxy S4. We’re salivating a little at the thought of what the iPhone 5s could now achieve thanks to the ƒ/2.2 aperture, true tone flash and quirky slow-mo video.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 has a load of added camera features, including the ability to take a photo with both the front and rear cameras at the same time, add sound to your snaps and overlay numerous filters. It did produce great snaps – with great colours and vivid detail, though sometimes the saturation was a little over.
Apple iPhone 5s vs Samsung Galaxy S4: Processor
Powering the latest addition to the iPhone family is a brand-new A7 chip, this is built on a completely new 64-bit architecture and paired with a separate M7 chip for all things motion related. As is typical with Apple, they don’t really delve down into the nitty gritty specs, though they do state this is the first 64-bit smartphone in existence.
OpenGL ES version 3.0 is also supported, improving the graphics for gaming.
Samsung however, has no problem spouting specs for the Galaxy S4, which are rather impressive indeed. The device is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 quad-core chip, 2GB of RAM and an Adreno 320 graphics processing unit. If power is your thing, the GS4 has swathes of it.
Apple iPhone 5s vs Samsung Galaxy S4: Price
As each of these devices is a top of the line, flagship model with heaps of tech and features, you know they’re not going to come cheap. The iPhone 5s will set you back £549 (for the 16GB model) while The Samsung Galaxy S4 costs £550.
So, what do you think? Which one is the flagship to rule them all? Let us know in the comment box below, on Twitter and on Facebook.