iPhone 5 vs. Galaxy S3 vs. Lumia 920: spec by spec rundown

By on September 12, 2012, 2:30 PM

Apple's latest and greatest phone is finally out of the cage. The iPhone 5 went throught millimetric scrutiny the weeks and months ahead its release and as it turns out, most of the late rumors we'd heard about a larger 4-inch screen, thinner body, LTE support, among others proved to be exactly true.

Most Apple fans won't look past the iPhone 5, after all it is a faster, more polished device and undoubtedly the best phone that has ever come out from Cupertino. However, sticking to the facts, the iPhone 5 is met today with a formidable pack of competitors that include but is not limited to the Samsung Galaxy S III, HTC One X, LG Optimus 4X HD, and the upcoming Nokia Lumia 920.

Check out the table below for a spec by spec rundown of what we consider are the best smartphones on the market today:

  Apple iPhone 5 Samsung
Galaxy S III
Nokia Lumia 920 HTC One X LG Optimus 4X HD
Price
(on contract)
$200 $100 N/A $90 $460
(unlocked)
Availability September 21 Now Q4 2012 Now Now
Metascore   89   87 82
Review More info Review More info Review Review
 
Processor Apple A6
1Ghz dual-core
Snapdragon S4
1.4GHz quad-core
Snapdragon S4
1.5GHz dual-core
Snapdragon S4
1.5GHz dual-core
Nvidia Tegra 3
1.5GHz quad-core
Display 4-inch
IPS
4.8-inch
Super AMOLED
4.5-inch
IPS LCD
4.7-inch
S-LCD 2
4.7-inch
IPS LCD
Resolution
(PPI)
640 x 1136
(326)
720 x 1280
(306)
768 x 1280
(332)
720 x 1280
(312)
720 x 1280
(312)
RAM 1GB 1GB 1.3GB 1GB 1GB
Front camera 1MP 1.9MP 2MP 1.3MP 1.3MP
Rear camera 8MP 8MP 8.7MP 8MP 8MP
Storage 16/32/64GB 16/32/64GB 32GB 16GB 12GB
USB No Yes Yes Yes Yes
microSD No Yes No No Yes
 
Cellular HSPA+ / LTE HSPA+21 / LTE HSPA+ / LTE HSPA+ / LTE HSPA+
Wireless Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0 Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0 Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 3.1 Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0 Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0
NFC No Yes Yes Yes Yes
 
Operating System iOS 6 Android 4.0 Windows Phone 8 Android 4.0 Android 4.0
App Marketplace iTunes Google Play Windows Marketplace Google Play Google Play
Weight 112g 133g 185g 129g 141g
Other Airplay HDMI out
via microUSB
Wireless charging HDMI out
via microUSB
HDMI out
via microUSB

OS and ecosystems draw the most evident divide between phones running Android, iOS and Windows Phone. You may already have a favorite, but it's a very dynamic environment out there.

Stay tuned as we get our hands on the Apple iPhone 5 for a full review soon.




User Comments: 63

Got something to say? Post a comment
Guest said:

Just realized, my One X International has not only quad core, but also 32gb storage. No wonder it comes second to the S3...

Guest said:

So let the battle begin

Uvindu said:

This maybe a dumb question but besides the App-Store, why would anyone choose the iPhone 5 over the Lumia 920? I personally think that not only does the Lumia 920 have better specs, but it definitely looks much better than the iPhone. I mean, the overall look of the iPhone has hardly changed it was first released...

mojorisin23 mojorisin23 said:

This maybe a dumb question but besides the App-Store, why would anyone choose the iPhone 5 over the Lumia 920? I personally think that not only does the Lumia 920 have better specs, but it definitely looks much better than the iPhone. I mean, the overall look of the iPhone has hardly changed it was first released...

The specs don't look better on the Lumia. it had .7 MP more on the camera and sllightly (unnoticable) more PPI of 6. but its .5 in bigger (which for me is a negative. I liked the 3.5in iphone better than a 4" , weighs 50% more, runs on windows (huge negative for me). and for me the biggest issue is that both don't have a micro SD. thats the biggest crime here...

1 person liked this | cwc9001 cwc9001 said:

I was already planning on getting the Lumia 920 this comparison just reinforced my decision

Guest said:

In the world of cars, did you know Hyundai has A TON of better specs then Lexus?

Moral of this story: don't judge on specs alone, you will be disappointed. The whole package counts.

Guest said:

Lumia 920 has better lcd better touch sensetivity and camera lens beside it is more attractive galaxy s3 is good phone also..

Uvindu said:

This maybe a dumb question but besides the App-Store, why would anyone choose the iPhone 5 over the Lumia 920? I personally think that not only does the Lumia 920 have better specs, but it definitely looks much better than the iPhone. I mean, the overall look of the iPhone has hardly changed it was first released...

The specs don't look better on the Lumia. it had .7 MP more on the camera and sllightly (unnoticable) more PPI of 6. but its .5 in bigger (which for me is a negative. I liked the 3.5in iphone better than a 4" , weighs 50% more, runs on windows (huge negative for me). and for me the biggest issue is that both don't have a micro SD. thats the biggest crime here...

Okay, I see you point and as always it always boils down to personal preferance... I guess I'm probably a Microsoft & Nokia Fanboy...

I like the Windows Phone OS, especially coz I know VB.Net and Windows phone is the only platform, of the 3, I can easily code for and make apps. Also I like the Lumia's design and I personally am bored with apples design... I also love the AMOLed display on the Lumia, and it's a great big positive for me. As for size, it is not a negative for me, and I don't mind the screen size or the weight, becoz despite it being heavier, it won't be a brick... but again that's personal preference in the end. I do agree that the lack of Micro SD slot is a major weakness in both... (sigh)

ReederOnTheRun ReederOnTheRun said:

In the world of cars, did you know Hyundai has A TON of better specs then Lexus?

Moral of this story: don't judge on specs alone, you will be disappointed. The whole package counts.

Sounds like someone just realized the iphone is lagging in the smartphone race!

For real though, I think given those specs the iphone should have a much better battery life. That being said, I don't know about the other phones, but the galaxy s3's battery lasts all day on automatic brightness. Besides that it's an awesome phone in general. After using it the iphone's 4" would just be inadequate for me. Conclusion: I'd stick with the galaxy s3 even if it weren't half the price of the iphone.

I am interested to see how the Lumia is though.

2 people like this | slh28 slh28, TechSpot Paladin, said:

The specs don't look better on the Lumia. it had .7 MP more on the camera and sllightly (unnoticable) more PPI of 6. but its .5 in bigger (which for me is a negative. I liked the 3.5in iphone better than a 4"

Have you actually used a larger phone for any length of time? When I switched from the iPhone 4 to the SGS3 it took a couple of days to get used to the change from a 3.5 to 4.8 inch screen, especially trying to use the phone with one hand but once you do get used to it, 3.5 inch screens just seem way too small.

Guest said:

Was thinking of getting the s3 but the lumia is tempting, iphone wouldnt even think of getting one....

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Interesting. Looks like iPhone is not necessarily the big boy on the block any longer from just a specs standpoint. The only other criteria you'd really need to look at is amount of apps available. Which I believe goes to the iPhone, but Android is catching up fast.

And I had no idea Metacritic rated phones....

1 person liked this | darkzelda said:

Nokia is going to get my money this time! I'm coming from a Samsung Galaxy Ace and the change it's going to be awesome, Nokia's phone looks simply amazing in both specs and design.

mario mario, Ex-TS Developer, said:

iPhone's 'other' box: Airplay

Puiu Puiu said:

Everybody says lumia lumia lumia, but they forgot that windows phone 8 is still it's infancy and it will probably be another year or two before it will even come close to what u can do on IOS6 or Android (at least 2 years for the important apps to be ported). Updates galore for win8.

I also want a good windows phone but I'll probably wait at least another generation to see how things look and I'll have a much better understanding of the differences between the 3 platforms.

scorpian007 said:

The specs don't look better on the Lumia. it had .7 MP more on the camera and sllightly (unnoticable) more PPI of 6. but its .5 in bigger (which for me is a negative. I liked the 3.5in iphone better than a 4"

Have you actually used a larger phone for any length of time? When I switched from the iPhone 4 to the SGS3 it took a couple of days to get used to the change from a 3.5 to 4.8 inch screen, especially trying to use the phone with one hand but once you do get used to it, 3.5 inch screens just seem way too small.

I agree, I also went from the iPhone 4 to the SGS3 and it took me about a week to get used to the bigger size but now any other phone feels tiny in comparison. I can't wait for the Lumia 920

Guest said:

The S3 wins this by a mile...No SD card slot for any other phone ? Bluetooth 3.1 on the Lumia, really ? Btw if Apple is bragging about their phone is like your being happy for doing something second !

Chazz said:

Everybody says lumia lumia lumia, but they forgot that windows phone 8 is still it's infancy and it will probably be another year or two before it will even come close to what u can do on IOS6 or Android (at least 2 years for the important apps to be ported). Updates galore for win8.

I also want a good windows phone but I'll probably wait at least another generation to see how things look and I'll have a much better understanding of the differences between the 3 platforms.

I don't think you have a true understanding of what WP7 can do, let alone WP8. Your statement is far off. You should read up on the OS's a little bit more before you say something like that. App count is the only major advantage iOS has over windows os, still WOS has most of iphone's top apps.

Guest said:

Though I've always hated Apple, I've secretly thought the Iphone was a better product than any Android phone...until the S3 came out. I thought the new Iphone 5 would once again put iOS in front of Android... I'm relieved, that for once, I don't think it will. I'm thoroughly underwhelmed by the new iPhone

Guest said:

Now what if Apple wins and the Samsung Galaxy S III does get banned in the US. hmmmm

Guest said:

I want the Xiaomi Mi2 with a 4.3" IPS screen @1280x720, a 1.5GHz Quad Core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, 2GB of RAM, a 8MP Camera, and running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean! Plus it is gorgeous, just need to update the ROM at the miuiandroid website, and this phone destroys all the competition. Not to mention it is cheaper than the competition too. Although it's only launching in October (definitely going to sell out) and having to order from China means it may only be the middle of November when I receive it. :/

1 person liked this | p51d007 said:

That is what Apple counts on. Now, they have a gravy train...all NEW accessories, new docks, new cords, new everything. Win win for Apple. Until the rabid fans wake up and see what is going on, Apple will continue to milk that cow.

"Most Apple fans won't look past the iPhone 5"

H3llion H3llion, TechSpot Paladin, said:

The Lumia has nice specs. The only great advantage of the iPhone is the App Store and the OS which is really an opinion since it depends if you like iOS or not.

Butch said:

I'm going with the Lumia 920 I think. Have a 900 now and love it. Come on Nokia/Microsoft, release it already!

Xclusiveitalian Xclusiveitalian said:

I didn't see a single reason to get an iphone honestly...

Guest said:

iOS. Say no more. iPhone = great hardware, best OS, most software.

Good luck with your Android updates. You will be out-dated and lining up for a new phone in no time. So much for the money you thought you saved.

1 person liked this | Guest said:

Sriously? are you dumb or what? We all know appl sucks... I even give away my ipad 2, end up buying galaxy tab plus... and im loving it....

Guest said:

Everybody says lumia lumia lumia, but they forgot that windows phone 8 is still it's infancy and it will probably be another year or two before it will even come close to what u can do on IOS6 or Android (at least 2 years for the important apps to be ported). Updates galore for win8.

It is like you are saying that iOS6 and Ice Cream Sandwich are in their infancy. Have you heard about the WP7 and WP7.5 mango before?

1 person liked this | hellopeach said:

This maybe a dumb question but besides the App-Store, why would anyone choose the iPhone 5 over the Lumia 920? I personally think that not only does the Lumia 920 have better specs, but it definitely looks much better than the iPhone. I mean, the overall look of the iPhone has hardly changed it was first released...

The specs don't look better on the Lumia. it had .7 MP more on the camera and sllightly (unnoticable) more PPI of 6. but its .5 in bigger (which for me is a negative. I liked the 3.5in iphone better than a 4"), weighs 50% more, runs on windows (huge negative for me). and for me the biggest issue is that both don't have a micro SD. thats the biggest crime here...

It should not be just a table comparing numbers, there are many specs not in the numbers.

1) Camera : Lumia 920 has flash, has OIS, has larger sensor size, so even if the pixel count is the same, it will produce much better images than iPhone 5 in non-ideal lighting conditions.

2) Screen : Lumia 920 has much higher refresh rate, so animations will look better on it. It also has a super-sensitive touch technology where you can wear gloves or use fingernails to operate it, whereas you can't for iPhone 5. The curved surface is also more comfortable for touch-operations.

3) Others : Battery time, NFC, wireless charging.

iPhone 5 wins in iOS apps, and size and weight, albeit some may consider an overly thin and light phone a bad point.

ReederOnTheRun ReederOnTheRun said:

Now what if Apple wins and the Samsung Galaxy S III does get banned in the US. hmmmm

I'm thinking (hoping) that those claims for the S3 to get banned are just a long shot by Apple to keep their phone dominance. Anybody who has seen and used the S3 know it is nothing like the iphone. If it was banned though, I'd imagine everyone involved would get a lot of flak for it since it is the best phone on the market to date.

Guest said:

From the specs, it seems to be already outdated... the S3 has been out there for a while and still dominates the specs by a big margin.

Wont make any sense to go for a iphone 5.

1 person liked this | Guest said:

At the end of the day, it's each to their own.

Myself, I like Apple. I like the ease of use. I like the smoothness of the scrolling (others I've used have been choppy and unresponsive, although before everyone slags me off, I haven't used them all!)

I like the clean, crisp interface.

I like the build quality. Although I have to admit, I think I prefer the look of the iPhone 4 to the 5. I prefer the glass to the ally. The 5, even with the ally back, is still miles better than plastic (Sammy and Nokia im refering to. I dont care about the others) As for the Nokia, who the hell wants a yellow plastic phone?!

The 4 inch screen on the 5 is a welcome update, but I do think the Sammy screen is too big. To put it in perspective, it's almost half the size of the iPad!!!

As for OS', I like iOS. I have tried android and just couldn't get on with it. It seemed unorganised. But that's just me.

At the end of the day, people will vote with their wallets. I like Apple, so will get the 5. Others don't like it so will get the S3 or the Nokia. Nokia, I think, are on their last legs and will be desperate for the Lumia to do well as they're on a very slippery slope ATM. Nokia's shares slumped after the press release of it. I think Apple's only real competition ATM is Samsung. I don't have anything against Samsung. I have loads of Sammy products. I just don't like the phones. Only time will tell though when they're all released.

1 person liked this | Lurker101 said:

But how do they stack up against the Goophone?

Guest said:

There will always be hardcore Apple fans and there will also be a hardcore of Microsoft and Windows haters. End result, get an Android!

Jim$ter said:

Yup me and my friends all have iPhones. Specs don't mean anything if everyone has different things. I love being able to tell when my friends have received or read my text message (iMessage). Android doesn't have that does it...or what about Facetime. Nope. Sure you can download apps...but its not native. The only eco system I would think of switching to is Windows8 when it comes out.

Guest said:

I'm totally unimpressed with the new iPhone. I had already been interested in the Lumia 920 but seeing the iPhone 5 presentation really made me sure I was heading in the right direction. Totally boring presentation about a phone that really just isn't much different than the last 2 versions. Nokia here I come!!!

Guest said:

Are you seriously considering that iOS6 is better than Android 4.x?

It barely has the multitasking capabilities that Android 2.2 had back in 2010, has not had any UI improvement ideas besides those pilferred from Android (*cough* pull down notifications *cough* maps *cough*) or Windows, and cloisters users in a patriarchal software and media ecosystem.

There's a reason why people are finally waking up and noticing the hype and grandstanding marketing schemes Apple has used to bully its way around: iOS never got the market share they bragged about, and now the numbers can no longer be ignored, nor denied: Android sales have increased 21% since last year. iOS' growth was 0.6% for the same period. ( [link] )

Even if you factor in the "new shiny" factor, Apple has not been delivering innovation in a long time, and consumers are finally looking up and seeing they have the flexibility of choice, and they have better options out there - for a lower price.

Guest said:

Because lumia 920has an OS like this [video embed]

Guest said:

I don't think these specs are right. The iPhone 5 has a 1.2MP front camera right, same as the Lumia 920. (The 920 does not have 2MP front camera) Also the Lumia is 1GB of RAM not 1.3GB.

However with its 1280x768 RGB PureMotion (332ppi) Display, 8.7MP PureView Camera, and Qi Inductive charging it is the best smartphone of 2012.

Sweed007 Sweed007 said:

Your specs are all wrong. So many wrong I won't even begin to point them out.

I hope no one actually looks at these and thinks this is whats inside these phones.

Guest said:

Great analogy, I never thought of that. You sure don't see alot of rich people driving Hyundai, do you? Eventhough they have better specs <grin>

Guest said:

Battery life iPhone about half of that Galaxy, so you will run up recharging cycles at double the rate. The iPhone battery is not user replaceble and the Galaxy's is.

Guest said:

Looking at design: I think the Lumia 920 is very beautiful and daring. Within 5 years the lumia 920 still holds many design elements which are durable. Like a yellow Lamborgini ;). The iphone 5 has also greatly design, but it lacks excitement. In my eyes the i5 looks like a well designed traditional car, like an Audio A6. The G3 reveals no identity to me. It is just a powerhouse phone, just like a fast Subaru.

1 person liked this | JudaZ said:

Yup me and my friends all have iPhones. Specs don't mean anything if everyone has different things. I love being able to tell when my friends have received or read my text message (iMessage). Android doesn't have that does it...or what about Facetime. Nope. Sure you can download apps...but its not native. The only eco system I would think of switching to is Windows8 when it comes out.

It's called e-mail ... this feature is nothing new .. been in Exchange for years.

FaceTime ..you are joking right ? video calling via your phone... something that alomst all phones had since 2003 .. that apple only allows between one iPhone to another.. and only via WiFi .. when everyone has done it via 3G and WiFi for years..

mario mario, Ex-TS Developer, said:

Apple just confirmed HDMI and VGA adapters are on the way.

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Not a bad update, as iOS is qualitatively superior OS compared to android it will make a nice upgrade for the apple crowed.

However, I will not one of them *nerd* . After suffering lots of stability & performance issues from almost every droid (including my current SGS III) I've pretty much made up my mind and going for a WP device next time around (mostly likely Lumia 920, less likely ATIV S). I think android is like Linux which is really fun to play with (just to make it work), but after a while it isn't fun anymore. There is a reason that 22% of the android users want to jump ship .............

@Julio

As far as I know, the international version of SGS III has an Exynos 4412 quad core SoC (with Mali 400MP GPU) not the S4 quad core as mentioned in that comparison.

(after a massive ****-up I've eventually got this post to where I intended it to be, but you have to forgive me as I was at work when I made this mistake :p ).

Guest said:

Apple design is not change , Apple had sue samsung for some stupid reason and all of the design and size had been use by other company, if Apple use those design the pattern war will come. Let see who is the 1st to sue Apple first or Apple sue other......

1 person liked this | Alexmx said:

Yup me and my friends all have iPhones. Specs don't mean anything if everyone has different things. I love being able to tell when my friends have received or read my text message (iMessage). Android doesn't have that does it...or what about Facetime. Nope. Sure you can download apps...but its not native. The only eco system I would think of switching to is Windows8 when it comes out.

That's why there are multi platform apps. Or perhaps you bought your iphone to use it with the preinstalled apps only?

RajeGera RajeGera said:

Ill go back to nokia,if it suits all my needs and up to date technology..

veLa veLa said:

Does anybody feel like an The Galaxy S3 is nothing but a Galaxy S2 HD lol

Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.