Samsung Galaxy S3 vs Samsung Galaxy S4 (Rumours)

Vs Paul Briden 13:07, 4 Dec 2012

Samsung is reportedly working on its next flagship, the Galaxy S4, we see how its rumoured specs stack up against the current Galaxy S3 champion

How will Samsung’s next-generation Galaxy S4 compare to the current model, the Samsung Galaxy S3? We find out.

Form

Samsung Galaxy S3 - 136.6x70.6x8.6mm, 133g

Samsung Galaxy S4 - TBC

The exterior build of Samsung’s Galaxy S3 has two contrasting sides to it.

On the one hand it looks pretty good - the shape is quite elegant and carefully contoured, it’s a thin device which sits well in the hand and is neither too heavy nor too light. The bezel around the display is very thin giving a modern, clean appearance.

Likewise, the build quality in terms of fit and finish is to a reasonable standard as this is not a phone which feels like it will break and there’s no creaking or flex to be found.

However, the flip side of this is Samsung’s use of unsatisfying plastics for the chassis, which is slippery, tacky and altogether feels cheap. This significantly dampens the impression of a ‘premium’ model.

With the Galaxy S4 only having spec leaks and rumours at present, we’ve nothing to go on in terms of build and aesthetics, so there’s everything to play for.

We’d like to believe Samsung will come to its senses and implement some kind of polycarbonate or a premium metallic finish.

But we can’t say we’d put money on that happening and it’s equally likely we’ll see the same squiffy plastics re-appear.

That said, Samsung has a history of making flagship models which look good even if they’re made from questionable materials, so you can rest assured the Galaxy S4 will stand out from the crowd.

Despite the 5-inch display it’s not even clear at this point whether the Galaxy S4 will be significantly larger – handsets such as the Motorola Razr i have started to appear with bigger, virtually edge-to-edge displays in smaller bodyshells.

So, if Samsung pulls off something like that the actual handset size doesn’t necessarily need to expand that much.

Winner – Samsung Galaxy S4

Display

The Galaxy S3 has a sizeable 4.8-inch Super AMOLED capacitive multitouch display with a decent 1280x720 pixel resolution. This gives a pixel density of 306 pixels-per-inch (ppi), although because it’s a PenTile display the effective sharpness is significantly lower.

Still it’s an above average picture quality with good colour, contrast and brightness even if it’s not quite as clear as some competing models.

With the Galaxy S4, leaked specs suggest it’ll form part of a new wave of 5-inch handsets with a 1920x1080 pixel HD resolution at 440ppi.

It’s also been said the S4 might be one of the first devices to hit the market sporting an ‘ultra thin’ flexible OLED display rather than the conventionally rigid reinforced Gorilla Glass.

This should mean it’ll be more durable, but it’s not known whether there’ll be any compromise on picture quality. Somehow we doubt it, so we expect the Galaxy S4 to provide one of Samsung’s sharpest and best touchscreens to date.

Winner – Samsung Galaxy S4

Storage

Typically Samsung is rather generous with storage space, particularly on its Android devices.

The Galaxy S3 is no exception and includes the full range of 16GB, 32GB and 64GB onboard storage variants, each with MicroSDXC capability for cards up to 64GB.

However, recently the company revealed it would abandon the 64GB model due to lack of demand.

Currently, rumours point to the Galaxy S4 providing 16GB of internal capacity. It’s not clear whether Samsung has abandoned the two higher-capacity variants or if this is simply the base model. We suspect we’ll see a 32GB variant too.

There’s been no mention of MicroSD capability but, unlike many other manufacturers, Samsung seems rather attached to expandable storage and particularly the high-capacity SDXC variety – we don’t see this changing, especially if onboard space is indeed shrinking.

Winner – Draw

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