Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3

Vs Paul Briden 16:45, 11 Apr 2013

We pitch the Samsung Galaxy S4 flagship against Samsung's latest device, the Galaxy Mega 6.3

The Samsung Galaxy S4 is the Korean manufacturer’s most recent flagship device and sports a 5-inch Full HD display, 4G connectivity, a rapid quad-core Qualcomm processor and some neat camera tricks.

The Galaxy Mega 6.3 is the first in the company’s new line of more affordable large form-factor devices which attempt to offer a similar experience at a lower price point. It has a comprehensive set of software features, a bigger display and a well-tailored dual-core processor.

Samsung Galaxy S4: Key specs and features

The main pull of the Galaxy S4 is its massive 5-inch Super AMOLED display, not only is its size great for viewing films and websites and for playing games, but the sharpness and picture quality is also extremely good. It has a 1920x1080 pixel Full HD resolution and delivers a pixel density of 440 pixels-per-inch (ppi). Contrast, brightness and colour depth are all excellent and the overall experience means that this is a great media consumption device.

The phone is loaded with Google’s Android platform, version 4.2.2 Jelly Bean, which also has Samsung’s TouchWiz interface overlaid on top. Android Jelly Bean is stable and well-optimised, while latency tweaks ensure everything is very smooth to navigate round. Some of the built-in features, such as Google Now, are very useful too.

TouchWiz adds some extra functionality, such as Air View, allowing you to control some interface elements simply by hovering your finger over the display. Some of these capabilities are more useful than others, but as a general Android phone with a custom skin the phone still fares well enough that it stands on its own, whether you use the added extras or not. We have a feeling most users will probably use a handful at most, but this is no bad thing if they enrich the experience.

Some of the best added features centre on the camera. The camera itself has been upgraded from the Galaxy S3’s 8-megapixels to a 13-megapixel back-illuminated sensor (BSI) with LED flash, while the front-facing secondary is a 2-megapixel setup. Existing features from the Galaxy S3 have been brought across, including multishot, some very good stabilisation and simultaneous 1080 HD video and still shot capture.

These have been expanded upon further. The multishot can now capture up to 100 images in a few seconds and not only does it retain the best-picture-picker but also includes a ‘Drama Shot’ mode to produce a time-lapse snapshot. Simultaneous capture has been improved too: a dual-shot mode can capture footage from both the front and rear cameras at the same time, while the built-in editing suite allows a range of options, several of which allow you to merge front and rear camera footage together. You can also layer captured audio over still images.

The Galaxy S4’s processor setup is pretty fearsome. It uses a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 chip with an Adreno 320 graphics processing unit (GPU) and 2GB of RAM. This is one of the fastest chips on the market at the moment and should be easily capable of running all of the Galaxy S4’s fancy tricks, as well as coping with intensive multimedia and a boatload of multitasking too.

There are some other noteworthy features of the phone, including its infrared remote control setup, MHL TV-out, wireless charging, a sizeable 2,600mAh battery pack, NFC and a generous array of storage options for 16GB, 32GB and 64GB along with microSD for cards up to 64GB.

Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3: Key specs and features

If the Galaxy S4’s display is massive then the Galaxy Mega’s is colossal. It’s a 6.3-inch LCD with a 1280x720 pixel resolution at 233ppi. That’s much lower than the Galaxy S4’s, of course, but still sharp enough to be decent.

Processing power is very impressive indeed because Samsung’s gone an opted for something reasonably capable with its Exynos 5250 dual-core chip. That’s the same one found in the Nexus 10 tablet, which is based on ARM’s latest Cortex-A15 architecture and means it’s a good deal quicker and more efficient than many of its Cortex-A9 counterparts. It’s clocked at 1.7GHz, which is again very good, and has a none-too-shabby 1.5GB of RAM along with a Mali-T604 GPU. It’s all great stuff and while it might not have the top-end clout of the Galaxy S4’s Qualcomm 600 it’s still going to make short work of pretty much anything you can currently do on Android.

The Galaxy Mega shares the same Android 4.2 operating system as the Galaxy S4 and, of course, TouchWiz on top. It’s got all the same innate advantages and qualities of Android Jelly Bean and a smattering of the same functionality from Samsung’s Galaxy S4 extras.

The infrared capability is present and correct, along with Drama Shot, Multishot, S Translator, Air View, Multiscreen, Pop Up Play video and group play music for streaming the same track between phones.

Storage options are 8GB and 16GB onboard with microSD up to 64GB. Again, connectivity is similar to the Galaxy S4 with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC and MHL. Meanwhile, the battery is a substantially larger 3,200mAh unit.

The camera isn’t as highly rated as the Galaxy S4’s at 8-megapixels but if it’s anything like the Galaxy S3’s it should still be reasonably capable. The front-facing secondary is 1.9-megapixels.

Direct spec comparison: Shootout

Device Samsung Galaxy S4
Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3
Dimensions 136.6x69.8x7.9mm, 130g 167.6x88x8.0mm, 199g 
Display 5-inch Super AMOLED,1920x1080 pixels,440ppi 6.3-inch LCD,1280x720 pixels,233ppi 
Camera 13-megapixel,LED flash,1080p video 8-megapixel,LED flash,1080p video
Storage 16GB/32GB/64GB,microSD up to 64GB 8GB/16GB,microSD up to 64GB
Processor, RAM, Graphics 1.9GHz quad-core Qualcomm 600,2GB RAM, Adreno 320 GPU 1.7GHz dual-core Exynos 5250 (Cortex-A15),1.5GB RAM,Mali-T604 GPU
Operating System, Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean
UI  TouchWiz TouchWiz
Connectivity microUSB,Bluetooth,NFC,Wi-Fi,Wi-Fi Direct,Wi-Fi Hotspot,DLNA,4G,GPS,MHL microUSB,Bluetooth,NFC,Wi-Fi,Wi-Fi Direct,Wi-Fi Hotspot,DLNA,4G,GPS,MHL
Battery 2,600mAh 3,200mAh

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