Saturday, 30 March 2013

TECH HEAD REVIEW: Samsung Galaxy S4 v Nokia Lumia 920

We look at the Samsung Galaxy S4 v Nokia Lumia 920 and call a winner.

The Nokia Lumia 920 isn’t just the best smartphone handset that Nokia has ever made but arguably also the best Windows Phone 8 handset. Its reveal and then release last year attracted levels of excitement usually reserved for an Apple or Samsung launch. It reviewed well too, achieving an impressive 4 stars here.

The Samsung Galaxy S4 meanwhile needs no introduction. The Galaxy brand has become an iPhone like phenomenon and its momentum is only going to increase with the launch of this latest handset. The question is, can the Nokia Lumia 920 stay relevant in a post S4 world or will it be left in the dust?

Samsung Galaxy S4 v Nokia Lumia 920 – Build quality and durability
Windows Phone handsets- and Nokia ones in particular seem to have really embraced colours. It makes sense, after all there are hundreds of phones on the market and they’re all just glass fronted rectangles which can make it very hard to stand out, so bold, bright colours are a simple and elegant solution that help differentiate Windows Phone devices from everything else. You can get the Nokia Lumia 920 in a bunch of striking shades, but while it stands out visually it doesn’t feel as premium as it could thanks to the decision to clad it in plastic.

The Samsung Galaxy S4 is similarly plastic-clad, though it does have a hint of the premium in a brushed metal band that runs the length of its edges. That band is also its main design flourish, differentiating it from other Android handsets and indeed from the Galaxy S3, which is otherwise a pretty similar looking phone.

Both handsets are well built and we’re really struggling to choose a favourite from a design perspective, so it’s a draw.

Samsung Galaxy S4 v Nokia Lumia 920 – Which has the better display?
The 4.5 inch Nokia Lumia 920 has a 768 x 1280 IPS LCD display with 332 pixels per inch. That’s bolstered by ‘PureMotionHD+’ – a technology of Nokia’s own invention that does its utmost to keep the screen readable in direct sunlight.

The Galaxy S4 meanwhile has a somewhat bigger 5 inch Super AMOLED screen, with a resolution of 1080 x 1920, giving it 441 pixels per inch. That means it’s not just bigger but also substantially sharper. It might not have any fancy ‘PureMotionHD+’ tech under the hood, but by sheer force of specs it does enough to win this category.

Samsung Galaxy S4 v Nokia Lumia 920 – Which is the most powerful?
There’s no question as to which handset is the most powerful, it’s the Samsung Galaxy S4 hands down. The Nokia Lumia 920 with its 1.5 GHz dual-core processor and 1 GB of RAM just can’t compete with the 1.9 GHz quad-core power of the Samsung Galaxy S4. The Galaxy S4 even has 2GB of RAM- double that of the Lumia 920.

Samsung Galaxy S4 v Nokia Lumia 920 – Which has the best camera?
When it launched not all that many months ago, the camera on the Nokia Lumia 920 was something to get excited about. Its 8.7 megapixel sensor was a bump (however slight) over most over handsets, the Carl Zeiss lens promised quality and craftsmanship usually reserved for dedicated cameras and Nokia’s ‘PureView’ technology enabled the handset to capture far more light than other phones, leading to better pictures.

It still stands up well now, but the Galaxy S4 is a juggernaut and its camera is one of the many impressive things about it. With 13 megapixels to play with it can manage some fantastic shots and as with so many other things the sheer specs here dwarf those of the Nokia Lumia 920.

Samsung Galaxy S4 v Nokia Lumia 920 – Battery life, memory and connectivity

One area that the Nokia Lumia 920 really impresses in is its battery life. A 2000 mAh battery may not sound like all that much, but it can muster up to 17 hours of talk time, 67 hours of music or 400 hours on standby, enough in other words to get you at least a couple of days between charges.

The Samsung Galaxy S4 has a much bigger 2600 mAh battery, but with a bigger screen and so much more power driving it we’re not convinced that it will match the Lumia 920. Unfortunately Samsung haven’t released any stats for the battery’s lifespan and we haven’t had the chance to really put it through its paces yet, but for now we’re giving the win to the Lumia 920.

The Nokia Lumia 920 doesn’t fare quite so well for storage however. Shipping with 32GB of onboard memory you get a substantial amount out of the box, however there’s no micro SD card slot to expand it and for those who’d rather pay less and get a 16GB version there’s no opportunity to do that either, with 32GB being the only available size.

The Samsung Galaxy S4 can be purchased with a choice of 16 GB, 32 GB or 64 GB of onboard memory and you can get even more by adding a micro SD card to the mix, so that’s a clear win for the S4.

Connectivity options are almost identical, both handsets have dual-band Wi-Fi, 3G, 4G (on applicable networks), GPS, Bluetooth and NFC; however the Galaxy S4 also has an infrared port- edging the win.

Samsung Galaxy S4 v Nokia Lumia 920 - Conclusion
The Nokia Lumia 920 delivers a respectable performance, matching the Samsung Galaxy S4 for build quality and providing a better battery life. It even puts up a solid fight against the Galaxy S4’s display and camera, but it ultimately comes out second on both fronts and in every other way - particularly power, an area in which the Galaxy S4 is in a whole other league. They’re both great handsets, arguably the best of their respective operating systems, but there can only be one winner and it’s not the Nokia Lumia 920.

1 comment:

  1. hi..Im student from Informatics engineering, this article is very informative, thanks for sharing :)