Samsung Galaxy S III display outdoes iPhone 5's, teardown reveals

IHS iSuppli analyst says differences likely not enough to affect buying decisions

Samsung Galaxy S III's display is thinner and has a greater range of colors than that of the Apple iPhone 5, according to a IHS iSuppli teardown analysis.

But IHS iSuppli analyst Vinita Jakhanwal noted that the differences between the displays are fairly subtle and likely doesn't matter to users.

Jakhanwal said Apple chooses features in products like the iPhone 5 that are designed to yield profits and "deliver a superior customer experience, rather than to provide technology for technology's sake."

The iSuppli teardown revealed that the iPhone 5 display has a 1.5 mm thickness, while the Galaxy S III is only 1.1 mm. Also, the iPhone 5 displays 72% of the colors in the NTSC (National Television System Committee) standard, while the Galaxy S III reaches 100% of those colors.

Overall, the iPhone 5 is 1 millimeter thinner than the Galaxy S III, which IHS said was most likely due to a fatter Galaxy S III battery.

Apple used in-cell technology in the iPhone 5 LCD display.

The in-cell technology eliminates the standalone touch panel layers used in the iPhone 4S, making the iPhone 5 18% thinner than its predecessor.

The in-cell technology's elimination of the separate touch overlay layer allows more light to emit from the display without added refraction and glare from added touch layers, IHS said. As a result the iPhone 5's display provides a "more vibrant and crisper image with improved color saturation than the iPhone 4S."

"The lower color gamut measurement (72% of the NTSC standard compared to the Galaxy S III's fully meeting the standard) may not necessarily make the iPhone 5 display look worse than the Galaxy S III," IHS noted.

The iPhone 5 provide more accurate and realistic colors and contrasts as a result of better calibration, higher brightness and superior power efficiency of the display, it said.

Jakhanwal noted that some reviewers of the Galaxy S III have found that its colors look "oversaturated and unrealistic."

IHS said that the Galaxy S III uses an active-matrix organic light emitting diode (AMOLED) display in contrast to the low temperature polysilicon (LTPS) Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) of the iPhone 5.

AMOLEDs don't use a backlight, and potentially have better power efficiency than LCD's, IHS said.

Still IHS said a smartphone's battery life is dependent on many factors other than the display's power consumption, and didn't draw any conclusions about power consumption in either of the smartphone displays studied.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen, or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed . His e-mail address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

Read more about mobile/wireless in Computerworld's Mobile/Wireless Topic Center.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Matt Hamblen

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?