GS5 versus iPhone

Mobile World Congress

With the announcement earlier this week of Samsung's Galaxy S5, the stage is set for one of the biggest smartphone rivalries of 2014. The Galaxy S5 will go head-to-head with Apple's iPhone 5s until the Cupertino company announces the iPhone 6 — or whatever's next — later this year. And at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this week, the Mobile Nations team had the chance to compare Apple and Samsung's flagship devices.

Reporting for iMore, here's what Richard Devine had to say —

In terms of design, both Apple and Samsung went for iterative bumps with their respective flagship devices. Apple is of course in its 's' year with the iPhone which usually means nothing much in the way of design changes. Samsung has retained the overall look and feel of its recent Galaxy devices such as the Note 3 and its predecessor the Galaxy S4, while making some subtle and welcome changes to how its made.

Both have pretty fantastic looking displays. We know Apple's Retina Display looks the business, but Samsung has also done a pretty great job with the 5.1-inch 1080p panel on the Galaxy S5. This also means a pretty noticeable size difference between the two, but the Galaxy S5 has much slimmer bezels and a flatter home button to help keep the bulkiness to a minimum.

Check the link below for iMore's full report, or head past the break for the comparison video.

More: Galaxy S5 versus iPhone 5s on iMore


Reader comments

Samsung Galaxy S5 versus iPhone 5s


That's not even a fair test. S5 or LG G2, Sony Z2 heck even S4, LG G ,G Pro, HTC One all those already have better specs and offer more than the iPhone 5S. It's like comparing ford focus with a Porsche. Not a fair fight.

Posted via Android Central App Sony Xperia Z2.


Sent from inside a cave. Yes, T-Mobile covers caves. N5

The only real competition to the S5 is the 5S. This is a fair test because it shows how the top competition stacks against each other.

inb4 Touchjizz, $am$ung comments

No, a fair test would be comparing S5 with phones that are coming out around the same time. 5s was unveiled almost 6 months ago and soon be replaced by iphone 6...comparing a phone that just was announced couple days ago with someone that was announced 6 months ago is absolutely pointless and useless aimed at grabbing user traffic

Going with Apple's history I will almost guarantee that even the S4 will still be even more powerful than iPhone 6.

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Ha! Even the S3 has more functionality, and I don't even like Samsung phones.

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That's just the fact. Apple made the 5s a lowly device and now they have to deal with the facts.

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I lol'd so hard at " We know Apple's Retina Display looks the business".

What the heck does that even mean? The S5 beats the 5s hands down in every department of the screen. The more I see the S5 in black, I actually started to like it a bit. Those first shots of it in gold nearly made me throw up, but now that I am seeing more focus on the black model, I'm starting to like it. I doubt its enough to drag me back to Samsung though, since I've had a terrible past experience with them. I will most likely give HTC a good chance at winning my heart with the new One.

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I agree totally.
I quit Samsung too for LG with the G2. Best decision I've made. The radio improvement is incredible. No more random reboots, lag, constant reception problems, etc. No comparison. I will look at the new One also. Samsung is in last place to me in android now. Just my .02.

I wish I could afford a G2 right now :P. I will have to stick with my nexus 5 for now, but I am keeping a close eye on LG and HTC for whenever I can afford to upgrade.

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At least your man enough to admit you can't afford it. I wish I could get a dime every time I've heard the line "I'll wait for the next model" line.

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I agree. Samsung radios are junk. I live in the suburbs of Houston and my Note 3 barely gets signal in my house (in fact, I get no signal about 30% of the time). That, and the fact that Knox is here to stay, means that I will probably never buy another Samsung device.

Speaking of radios -
When I was in T-Mobile store (had an hour to kill while my brother in law was switching ☺_) and I compared their display models. To my surprise it came out that N5 was the worst. They were all at least a few meters, btw. It may be anecdotal but Note 3 was doing better than Z1 and N5.

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Yes, it is completely anecdotal. But this is my *second* Note 3, and the radio is no better than the first one. Is it possible to have bad luck and get two Note 3s with crappy radios? Absolutely. Does it build my confidence in Samsung phones? Absolutely not.

Yeah, that was a pretty laughable statement considering how Apple no longer has the best mobile displays on their devices.

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Or just anything that's good to be honest. They haven't made anything innovative for the last 10 years.

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Seems like this article was posted to generate as many views, shares and comments as possible. No real insight to be had here.

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A free tech news site writing articles in an attempt to get more page views? Whoa!

As long as the trolling don't get as bad as it is at Android Police or The Verge, I honestly wouldn't expect anything else. I guess they have to pay their bills in some way.

Certain things about high end Android devices are better than the iPhone in many ways. However, the iPhone 5s is the best ALL-AROUND phone IMO. Just needs a bigger screen.

How? It's a great phone but how is it the best? If you feel it's the best then that has to because you like ios and hey that's fine but there is nothing about an iPhone that I can justify calling it the best

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I would say that it's ecosystem is still the best. Even though I use Google on it still. Excellent camera, efficiency of iMessage, consistency of performance etc.

I would mostly just say that I give it the edge overall over the Android devices. I actually believe that the Nexus 5 is the best Android device. Kit Kat is wonderful. Just blows that not everything about it is premium.

Ecosystem? Do you even know what that means?
Let's see, the camera is good, but nothing special compared to other smart phones. iMessage is all but useless, it is an iPhone only tool. Consistency of performance? What does that even mean?

If you prefer the iPhone, just say so. Saying it's better and then throwing out reasons that aren't actually better is just BS.

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Well I said IMO in my original post. And I am not sure why you don't understand what I mean by ecosystem. I also said iMessage because 80% on people I know use them. And I am talking about lag and other issues with performance. Also, this latest version of Android update that is always a question. Big ups to HTC though.

Anyways, I prefer it as my daily driver but I also enjoy the hell out of Android phones. I am really anticipating the M8. Not sure what I think about the S5 though. Almost passed out when I heard it took 8GB of storage for TW.

I still don't think you know what you mean by ecosystem, because iTunes, the most important part of the iPhone 'ecosystem' is the biggest steaming pile in the software market. The iPhone ecosystem is a locked down closed gated community where everyone has to conform. Yeah, that sounds great. Your espousement of I message is akin to BB fans hollering over BBM, except at least BBM is cross-platform these days. If you can only reach a small portion of the market (by design), it's not much of a messenger.
I've seen just as much lag on iPhones as I have on any other device. The exception being Samsung's devices which seem to be laggy specifically by design. Perhaps to encourage consumers to buy the next one.

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If you have seen an iOS device lag, it is either because the device is 2+ generations old trying to run the latest version of iOS, or the owner put some janky Cydia crap on it. Let's see how well your 2 year old android phone runs the latest KK build — if it is even available, and preferably without root since iOS device owners don't need elevated privileges to update to the latest iOS.

And iMessage does not reach just a small portion of the market. I have no problems receiving messages from my friends & family with iPhones. If you do, the problem is on your end and you should consider getting another device or carrier.

The iphone DOES lag, but its very slow animations, somewhere between 1.5x and 2.0x on Android, hide it.

The iPhone is a great package overall. I got my 5S when Verizon had that glitch on their website that let me upgrade and keep unlimited data. I chose the iPhone for three main reasons: 1. resale value, 2. battery life, and 3. camera. I know there were Android phones with good battery life and camera, but after the ThunderBolt and Galaxy Nexus, I wasn't willing to risk it again.

I'll most likely switch back to Android for my next phone, but for now I wanted a phone that doesn't give me any issues, even if it can't do as much as I want it to. Plus I still have my Nexus 4 that I use on WiFi to satisfy my Android craving.

I've used both the Thunderbolt and Galaxy Nexus for extended periods. I can say with some experience that you used two of the worst battery performers in the history of Android phones. Don't let it be a hang up the next time around. Things are much improved (in general).

I agree with you on camera. I've not used an Android phone that had a camera anywhere close to what the iPhone can do (not that I've used them all).

Still loved the build of the thunderbolt and the cool boot animation lol but yes terrible battery.

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All of your points are right on. Anyone that has used both platforms and is willing to be completely objective would agree with you.

One of android's greatest shortcomings is the fact that it requires extremely hefty specs to come close to the smoothness of iOS and WP. Project Butter and KK have brought much needed polish, but android still needs quad core 2+ghz cpus and buckets of RAM to approximate the user experience of iOS/WP (both of which make do with less impressive hardware). And such system requirements drain battery faster than a fat kid eats cake. So until major advancements in battery tech are made and/or android gets some serious optimization (ie, a complete overhaul), the situation will likely remain the same.

Cameras are another recurring problem. Android cameras have always been notoriously bad, at least until the most recent generation of top tier phones came along. Even those camera systems are not leaps & bounds ahead of the competition, and no reason alone to choose an android phone over the others. Whereas plenty of buyers have made their purchase decision based soley on the camera capabilities of other devices/platforms. I am not saying that is the best decision-maker for everyone...I am simply offering an example of why some buyers steer clear of android.

Coming from both ecosystems i can tell you that you are wrong, Android can manage memory as good as ios, do not confuse pure android with the bloated version of the phone manufactures, battery wise, both drain really quick too if you are a heavy user. The biggest drain on the battery is the screen, iPhones have little screen so it seems they last longer but in reality they are both about the same, camerawise, they are both about same also, you have to be a professional photographer to note the big difference between a top of the line Android camera phone and ip 5s. Moneywise you get more hardware for your money in android. The only superficial advantage I see in the ios ecosystem is that it is control by apple, which puts less worries on the average user.
The big probem with Samsung is they bloat their devices to much and modify android so much that they end up making a basket with to many eggs.

Well I mentioned that the N5 is probably the best Android phone. But the camera compared to the 5s's? That is not true. The only thing that has come close is the G2 (as for as phones that are out goes)

Agreed. Android devices tend to do a few things well, but everything else is just mediocre (at best). iOS devices do *most* things well, and hide their shortcomings much better.

LoL. Who makes their number one reason to buy a phone resale value? Keep a phone for more than a year and they'll all be worthless anyways.

He specifically says IMO. In internet speak, that means "In My Opinion". He need not say anymore and your response is unnecessary.

The Iphone looks nice no doubt. Metal and glass are nice, but that only takes it so far. The features are what matters and how the phone work and for ME android is better. I really want to hold the SGS5 before i make a judgement about it.I would love Galaxy phone with metal and glass at about 4.5 display. But that is me.

Indeed, although the One Mini' specs are a little lackluster for someone who wants a Galaxy S phone.

The Z1 Compact would do well.

Posted from one of an unnecessarily large collection of Nexus devices because I'm That Guy

Because OMG SPECZ are what count... The MotoX and G have much leaner specs than the GS4, but have a lot less lag (especially on launch day). Fat lot of good all those specs do when performance misses the mark.

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'cept specs do matter... I've used a Mini. It has bad touch response and the animations definitely aren't smooth and don't look polished. the Moto X and G can get away with those specs because they're using a lightly seasoned version of Android, not a full-blown UI ontop of AOSP.

You missed the sarcasm. brendilon's real point is that specs aren't everything, but they DO matter on devices that are loaded with bloat and useless "features" that get used once or twice, then never again.

To me iphone 5s has some real design flaws. My wife just got her iphone 5s and noticed two things. 1. Phone edges are real sharp and it's not comfortable when holding it. 2. Homr button is so awkward especially due to the finger print sensor. I used to have iphone 4 and I think contoured home button is much much better.

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I agree with you about the sharp edges. I think the iPhone 5 is really attractive, but it doesn't feel quite as good in the hand as the 4/4S.

Posted from one of an unnecessarily large collection of Nexus devices because I'm That Guy

Seems to me that the less time you have on your hands or the less you are interested in technology the more likely you are to pick an iPhone because guess what? It's a solid well rounded phone. That said it's not for me now or in the foreseeable future

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Why not wait till this year's iPhone come out then compare? We all know what limitations the iPhone 5s has. So of course it probably won't fair to good against the Galaxy S5 or even the next version of the HTC One.

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Wow the iPhone is inferior all round. Android w/o Sammy--a la nexus--is a pig as well. Samsung with Touchwiz and it's incredible suite of apps is the only thing that gives Android value.

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Why does nobody get what he means by the 5S screen being better? It's not just the screen, it's how the UI looks. Because of AMOLED saturation and Samsung's color choice for UI, Touchwiz just gives a very odd appearance, making it seem as if the screen isn't high quality. 5S has an LCD panel that makes the white in iOS 7 really pop and give it an overall modern polished look.

Not knocking any Galaxy phones. I have a Note 3 sitting in front of me. But sometimes I wish it had an LCD panel instead of AMOLED.

This is a joke right, the Retina may have accuracy, but its low res and pathetic size make it a joke. The blacks arent that great and ive seen far better viewing angles and resistance to off axis fade. Its a 4 year old screen, and looks it.

I'm going to give the 5s that it's the best looking phone out there but that's it. If they ever decide to run android, I may consider getting one....

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"The fingerprint scanner works brilliant" then his 5s tells him to try again. That was pretty funny.

Hate this nonsense that aluminum is premium

Almost different generations. The S5 should be compared to the iPhone 6 I think. But, nice comparisons nonetheless.

Also, why does something like the new HTC One get razzed on for big bezels when half the front of an iPhone is a giant top and bottom bezel? Just look at that wasted space..

Because it supposedly has onscreen navigation buttons, which makes the huge black bar below the screen redundant.

Why are they even comparing the gs5 with the iphone 5s..? The gs5 of course is gonna be has the latest technology in it!! You need to compare it with the iphone 6 if anything. .even though I'll go 100% with samsung because I love samsung galaxy's. .but fare is fare..If you gonna need to do so with the latest brand new phones..

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I would still get the S5 despite it not being much of an improvement over the S4.

I don’t know. When I read articles like this, I genuinely don’t get it. I got my first smartphone in 2010, and got really into Android then. Not that I’m super tech-savvy or anything, but it’s interesting, and I always enjoyed trying custom ROMs, etc. Even as much fun as I had with Android back then, I could understand how someone with different priorities could decide to go the iPhone route. As many strengths as Android had, it also had some glaring weaknesses.

These days though, since Jellybean, and especially now with KitKat, Android has gotten so good that I no longer understand why anyone would choose an iPhone other than that they can’t be arsed to do any product comparisons or learn to do anything with technology (basically, they’re old).

And particularly since last year (and continuing this year in a big way with the Xperia Z2, and probably also the HTC M8), Android hardware has also attained a similarly impressive level. This is only my opinion, but Android closed the software gap a while ago, and now that they’ve closed the hardware gap (more than closed it, in my personal opinion). The only thing Samsung needs to do is revamp TouchWiz to include more stock android. I just really don’t see what Apple has to offer with the iPhone. I mean the iPhone 5S vs the Galaxy S5?

To me, it’s a no brainer.

Anyway, that’s just me.

I phones are completely inferior to a few of the high end
Smartphones , no comparison ! Apple makes great products, but has been pushed into last place .
The Note 3 , LG G2, HTC ONE, ALL blow the iPhone away,
Better cameras, better everything.

I'll match my Note 3 against 5s anytime !

I have note 3 and iPhone 5 and IMO the note is awful in comparison. Firstly the radio is useless, I can barely get a call signal and the wifi is always 'unstable'. I love the big screen and pen but somehow the iPhone screen just looks nicer. Samsungs bloat ware is hideous and considering the phone is so powerful it's not as snappy as iPhone. All that aside IMO a phone is as good as it apps and ios apps are far better. The note 3 definitely does not have a better camera than iPhone and as for HTC 1 (are you serious!?). I'm sending my note 3 back and will try Xperia z2 when it lands. I will miss the s pen but that's about it.

The iphone5s screen better then the Note 3??? If you want a dull greyish screen you can change that in the settings for Note 3 to movie, the iphone though can't be changed.
Not as snappy??? Try uninstalling your faulty app and see to it that you at least have the third Note 3 update installed. We tested three Note 3 against three iphone 5s and the average was 42.6% speed advantage for Note 3.
There must be something wrong with your phone.

I want metal. My company gave me a HTC One. Love the build and the phone is pretty nice. I'm surrounded by S4's S4 mini, and Notes of various models. The HTC One impresses me the most. Sammy needs a metal S5 to get my attention. I'm ready for a new personal phone.

No bias in that report at all.. Snark.

Comparing the not even HD puny retina with the full HD screens on just about any android is amusing to say the least.

Is like comparing a dodge avenger (not a bad car) with a Ferrari. The dodge just can't compare. Same with IPhone 5S and Galaxy S5, Sony Xperia Z2, LG G2. Even older phones like the LG G galaxy S4, HTC One and others. Are better specs offer more can more. Iphone 5S is still just 4 inches and such. Wasn't that like so 2009? Kinda stuck in the old days.

Posted via Android Central App Sony Xperia Z2.

Nexus 5 owner here- The Galaxy S5 is fugly as hell and the Iphone 5S (which my girl owns) looks much better IMO.

We had a poll here on Android Central recently on what they wanted to change about the Galaxy. The TOP TWO things they wanted to change was bloatware and better build quality.

Samsung didn't learn and basically didn't do anything about those two. We still have BS bloatware _S-Voice, S- everything which is a pale imitation of Google apps. And teh build is the same but uglier with those stupid dots. It's even uglier than the S4.

SEVERELY disappointed. When will Samsung learn? I personally hate IOS but the Iphone 5S is much nicer than the fugly Galaxy S5.

Samsung's S-apps is just a taste of what is to come when they put Tizen on more of their devices. Samsung is expanding their own gapps suite under everyone's nose.

The day iPhone goes 5' Galaxy (flagship) line will lose the market share big time. Just wanna see the percentage.
This comparison can be fair only if you try to execute same apps and games and see how smooth and fast they go. I bet that Galaxy can't win. Other than that, it's like comparing a race bike with a touring one.

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the only good thing I can say about apple is they don't put logos on the face of the phone.
all phones including the gs5 would look better if they copied that

I wouldn't choose iPhone (my whole family is all Android device) but I still want iOS as a sustaining competitor with Android. That will keep pushing Google & OEMs to make better and better Android devices.

I agree with Dante. This is not a fair test. A more fair comparison spec wise might be when iPhone 6 comes out. Apple specs aren't up to the level of newly released Android phones. No doubt they will be in the Fall.

So...comparing the S5 with an older iPhone today isn't fair to the iPhone. But, when the the new iPhone comes out months from now, it will be fair then to compare it to the now "old" S5?

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Not that the Android will be old then, it just seems by the release dates Apple is 6 months behind on current year specs, so if they release iPhone 6 with specs like the current Android, then it would be fair. Then the cycle will get off again at the beginning of next year, and Android will jump ahead.

And I think Apple does that to release the hot new device before Q4 and the holidays because it makes economic sense, but it does put them behind in the cycle.

My favorite part is when talks about how "brilliantly" the iPhones fingerprint scanner works as it gives him his 3rd fail.

One thing to note.... yes, the iphone is older tech over the S5. However, that asterisk should not apply to features that the iphone could have improved but didn't. I'm thinking of NFC, an HD display, home screen widgets, SD Card, an IR Blaster, etc. These are all things that were already on the S4, but Apple actively chose not to add them to the 5S.

I really wish Amazon would release a Instant Video app for Android phones. As the two ecosystems get closer and closer, small things like that become more important to some users.

Seems like this guy knows the S5 is better but just refused to say it. He didn't sound too excited stating the 5s camera was 8mps versus the S5 was 16.

Just sayin...

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What a bad comparison, is he blind if he can't see a difference between the screen types. What about sd card and removable battery etc. Nothing is easier to do on that redicousely small 4 inch screen and it's got the worst hardware of all manufacturers top models. Iphones 12.9% of the global smartphone market is surely going to decrease.