Spec smackdown: Samsung Galaxy S III vs. iPhone 4S vs. HTC One X

Here's how the new Samsung Galaxy S III stacks up against its competitors from Apple, HTC, Nokia, and Google.

Samsung Thursday unveiled the Galaxy S III, the highly-anticipated successor of the popular Galaxy S II, and of course, the iPhone’s newest big rival. The Galaxy S III is like a sequel to the Galaxy Nexus that was made in collaboration with Google, but has a bigger screen, a beefier processor, and a better camera.

There’s no word on availability in the U.S. besides an expected summer launch, or any details on pricing and carriers. But since we know the specs, here’s how the Galaxy S III stacks up against the competition.

Display Comparison

The display of the Samsung Galaxy S III is huge. It’s 4.8 inches in diagonal, bigger than the HTC One X’s 4.7 inches or the Galaxy Nexus’ 4.65 inches.

But while the screen is bigger, the resolution has not gone up: It’s still 1280 pixels by 720 pixels, as with the One X and Galaxy Nexus, making the S III pixel density 306 pixels per inch (ppi), which is still below the iPhone 4S’ 326 ppi for its 3.5-inch screen--which is the leading pixel density in this comparison.

Width Comparison

The bigger screen and size of the S III allows for a thinner phone, the thinnest of the bunch at 0.34 inches, only by a hair slimmer than the 0.35 inches HTC One X. The iPhone 4S and the Galaxy Nexus are 0.37 inches thick, while the chunkiest is the Nokia Lumia 900 at 0.45 inches. At just under 4.7 ounces, the Galaxy S III is also lighter than the iPhone 4S, and only slightly heavier than the One X.

Processor Comparison

Samsung packs an Exynos 4 Quad 1.4 GHz quad-core system-on-chip in the S III, which is the most powerful processor in this comparison. The HTC One X has a 1.5 GHz dual-core processor, while the iPhone 4S runs on Apple’s A5 1GHz dual-core chip. The Galaxy S III runs on 1GB of RAM, just like the HTC One X. That's double what’s inside the iPhone.

The Galaxy S III will come in 16GB and 32GB versions, with a 64GB model promised. All the other phones in the comparison also come with a minimum of 16GB, but the S III has one advantage over them all--it has a microSD card slot.

Camera Comparison

Samsung didn’t go overboard in the camera department. The 8-megapixel shooter on the S III matches the camera on the iPhone 4S, the One X, and the Lumia 900, and the Samsung phone can shoot 1080p HD video like the iPhone and HTC. The best front camera comes with the Galaxy S III, while the iPhone is at the bottom of the league in this category.

So Far, the Galaxy S III is the most powerful Android smartphone of the moment, and doesn’t make compromises on looks with its svelte and rounded design. Its camera doesn’t go leaps and bounds above the competition--more of a catch-up--but the quad-core processor and 4G LTE connectivity should satisfy your need for speed.

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Daniel Ionescu

PC World (US online)
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