Mobile Technology

Samsung Galaxy S5 vs. iPhone 5s

Samsung Galaxy S5 vs. iPhone 5...
Gizmag compares the features and specs of the Samsung Galaxy S5 and iPhone 5s
Gizmag compares the features and specs of the Samsung Galaxy S5 and iPhone 5s
View 22 Images
The Galaxy S5 can record 4K video, at 30 fps
1/22
The Galaxy S5 can record 4K video, at 30 fps
The GS5's battery holds quite a bit more juice, but we'll have to wait before jumping to conclusions about uptimes
2/22
The GS5's battery holds quite a bit more juice, but we'll have to wait before jumping to conclusions about uptimes
It's anodized aluminum vs. ... dimpled pleather??
3/22
It's anodized aluminum vs. ... dimpled pleather??
The GS5's camera wins on pixels, but that's far from a guarantee it will produce better pictures
4/22
The GS5's camera wins on pixels, but that's far from a guarantee it will produce better pictures
Four color options for the GS5, three for the iPhone
5/22
Four color options for the GS5, three for the iPhone
The GS5 is 15 percent longer and 24 percent wider
6/22
The GS5 is 15 percent longer and 24 percent wider
The GS5 gives you much more screen real estate — and many more pixels
7/22
The GS5 gives you much more screen real estate — and many more pixels
Both phones have fingerprint sensors in tow
8/22
Both phones have fingerprint sensors in tow
The GS5 has a heart rate monitor living below its rear camera
9/22
The GS5 has a heart rate monitor living below its rear camera
Gizmag compares the features and specs of the Samsung Galaxy S5 and iPhone 5s
10/22
Gizmag compares the features and specs of the Samsung Galaxy S5 and iPhone 5s
We don't yet know what the GS5's pricing will look like
11/22
We don't yet know what the GS5's pricing will look like
The GS5 doubles the iPhone's 1 GB of RAM
12/22
The GS5 doubles the iPhone's 1 GB of RAM
One of the GS5's camera features lets you choose the area of focus for a shot — after you've taken it
13/22
One of the GS5's camera features lets you choose the area of focus for a shot — after you've taken it
Release dates for both phones
14/22
Release dates for both phones
Both handsets let you capture slow-motion video at 120 fps
15/22
Both handsets let you capture slow-motion video at 120 fps
Samsung's TouchWiz didn't add quite as many wacky new features this time around
16/22
Samsung's TouchWiz didn't add quite as many wacky new features this time around
Storage options for both phones
17/22
Storage options for both phones
Ultra Power Saving Mode is a GS5 feature that turns the screen black & white and kills some background processes to stretch out that last bit of battery life
18/22
Ultra Power Saving Mode is a GS5 feature that turns the screen black & white and kills some background processes to stretch out that last bit of battery life
The Galaxy S5 has a dust and water resistance rating of IP67
19/22
The Galaxy S5 has a dust and water resistance rating of IP67
The GS5 is 29 percent heavier
20/22
The GS5 is 29 percent heavier
The GS5, like its predecessor, the Galaxy S4, has an infrared blaster inside
21/22
The GS5, like its predecessor, the Galaxy S4, has an infrared blaster inside
Processors for each handset
22/22
Processors for each handset
View gallery - 22 images

Until Apple takes the stage to unveil the iPhone 6, this is probably going to be the biggest rivalry in smartphones: the iPhone 5s vs. the Samsung Galaxy S5. Torn between the two? Join Gizmag, as we compare the features and specs of Apple's and Samsung's latest flagships.

Update: We've published our hands-on look at these two phones.

Size

The GS5 is 15 percent longer and 24 percent wider
The GS5 is 15 percent longer and 24 percent wider

These days, the iPhone is by far the smallest high-profile flagship phone around. The Galaxy S5 is 15 percent longer, 24 percent wider, and seven percent thicker than the 5s.

Weight

The GS5 is 29 percent heavier
The GS5 is 29 percent heavier

Smaller phones tend to be lighter, and the iPhone is no exception. It's 23 percent lighter than the GS5.

Build

It's anodized aluminum vs. ... dimpled pleather??
It's anodized aluminum vs. ... dimpled pleather??

The iPhone 5s is made of aluminum, and not pretending to be anything but. The GS5, meanwhile, has a faux leather finish – complete with dimples. An interesting choice by Samsung, to say the least.

Colors

Four color options for the GS5, three for the iPhone
Four color options for the GS5, three for the iPhone

These are your four color options for the GS5, and three hues for the iPhone. Just know that your carrier might not sell all four versions of the GS5.

Display

The GS5 gives you much more screen real estate — and many more pixels
The GS5 gives you much more screen real estate — and many more pixels

The Galaxy S5 has a much bigger and sharper screen. It gives you 62 percent more real estate and 185 percent more pixels than the iPhone. We don't want to get too carried away with pixel counts, as the iPhone's Retina Display, while much lower-res, still looks pretty damn sharp. But its 4-in size is another matter: it's looking very small next to just about every other high-end phone out there.

Fingerprint sensor/scanner

Both phones have fingerprint sensors in tow
Both phones have fingerprint sensors in tow

Samsung is aiming straight at the iPhone 5s' killer feature, the Touch ID fingerprint sensor, with a fingerprint scanner of its own. One big difference is that, on the iPhone, you can unlock your phone by simply resting your finger on the home button for a moment (usually less than a second). On the GS5 you have to swipe your finger from the bottom of the screen down to the home button.

One thing the GS5's scanner has going for it is a Samsung partnership with PayPal. You can use your print to authorize payments associated with the popular service. The iPhone's fingerprint payment options are limited, for the time being, to the iTunes and App Stores.

Heart rate monitor

The GS5 has a heart rate monitor living below its rear camera
The GS5 has a heart rate monitor living below its rear camera

Samsung is throwing more chips into its S Health pot this year. Not only is it launching its first dedicated fitness tracker, the Gear Fit, but the GS5 has its own heart rate monitor on board. The sensor lives just below the phone's rear camera.

Processor

Processors for each handset
Processors for each handset

If you live in a region that has LTE, then you'll likely get a GS5 that has Qualcomm's new Snapdragon 801 inside. Other areas will, as with previous Galaxy flagships, find some Exynos octa-core silicon inside.

RAM

The GS5 doubles the iPhone's 1 GB of RAM
The GS5 doubles the iPhone's 1 GB of RAM

The GS5 doubles the iPhone's 1 GB of RAM.

Storage

Storage options for both phones
Storage options for both phones

The iPhone has an extra storage tier on the high end, but the Galaxy S5 supports microSD cards – including SanDisk's new 128 GB card.

Battery

The GS5's battery holds quite a bit more juice, but we'll have to wait before jumping to conclusions about uptimes
The GS5's battery holds quite a bit more juice, but we'll have to wait before jumping to conclusions about uptimes

Samsung's phone holds quite a bit more juice, but it's also powering a display with many more pixels. Consider this one an incomplete until we put the GS5 through some extended testing.

Ultra Power Saving Mode

Ultra Power Saving Mode is a GS5 feature that turns the screen black & white and kills some background processes to stretch out that last bit of battery life
Ultra Power Saving Mode is a GS5 feature that turns the screen black & white and kills some background processes to stretch out that last bit of battery life

One of the most eyebrow-raising new features in the GS5 is called Ultra Power Saving Mode. You can set the phone so that, if it reaches a critical level, it shifts to a black & white display and severely limits background processes. Samsung says that UPS mode can squeeze an extra 24 hours of uptime out of a mere 10 percent charge. If that claim is legit, this could be a big-time innovation.

Camera

The GS5's camera wins on pixels, but that's far from a guarantee it will produce better pictures
The GS5's camera wins on pixels, but that's far from a guarantee it will produce better pictures

The GS5's camera easily wins on megapixel count, though its camera-based features might have more of an effect on your shots ...

Post-shot refocusing

One of the GS5's camera features lets you choose the area of focus for a shot — after you've taken it
One of the GS5's camera features lets you choose the area of focus for a shot — after you've taken it

That includes Samsung's Selective Focus feature, which lets you choose what part of a shot to focus after you've already snapped the shutter.

4K video recording

The Galaxy S5 can record 4K video, at 30 fps
The Galaxy S5 can record 4K video, at 30 fps

Samsung also gave the GS5 4K video recording capabilities. That might not be a huge selling point right now, considering how few of us own any screens capable of displaying 4K content. But at least you'll know that your phone is future-proofed, in case you do eventually throw down for an Ultra HD TV.

Slow-motion video

Both handsets let you capture slow-motion video at 120 fps
Both handsets let you capture slow-motion video at 120 fps

Like the iPhone 5s, the Galaxy S5 also has the ability to record video in slow motion, at 120 frames per second.

Infrared

The GS5, like its predecessor, the Galaxy S4, has an infrared blaster inside
The GS5, like its predecessor, the Galaxy S4, has an infrared blaster inside

If you fancy turning your phone into a TV remote control, then the GS5 delivers.

Water resistance

The Galaxy S5 has a dust and water resistance rating of IP67
The Galaxy S5 has a dust and water resistance rating of IP67

Like last year's Galaxy S4 Active (as well as most recent Sony Xperia flagships) the Galaxy S5 is water and dust resistant, with a rating of IP67.

Software

Samsung's TouchWiz didn't add quite as many wacky new features this time around
Samsung's TouchWiz didn't add quite as many wacky new features this time around

The GS5 launches with Android 4.4 KitKat, and a thick layer of TouchWiz smeared on top. This time around, though, the company appears to have resisted the urge to add a bajillion new features to the custom skin.

Release cycle

Release dates for both phones
Release dates for both phones

The GS5 drops on April 11, though some regions and carriers are sure to see the flagship rolling out a little later. The iPhone 5s has been around since September, meaning we're probably about halfway towards its sequel ... that is, if Apple sticks with the same release slot this year.

Starting price (off-contract)

We don't yet know what the GS5's pricing will look like
We don't yet know what the GS5's pricing will look like

No word yet on pricing for the GS5, though the same launch prices as the Galaxy S4 are probably a pretty safe bet.

For more on these two phones, you can check out our review from back in September and our Galaxy S5 review.

View gallery - 22 images
16 comments
DaveBG
Clearly S5 is better on hardware. And has the better OS too.
Derek Howe
This phone is a beast. I would love to own the S5, I currently own the S4. It's been a great phone, but I have to wait a while before I can upgrade.
The only feature that I think is dumb on the S5, is the heart rate monitor. I think its smart on the new fitness wrist thing they are launching...but on a phone...no thanks.
Apple is going to have to dig deep for their iphone 6, otherwise the S5 is going to dominate the market.
jumphk
This is just an useless and severely biased article which I don't understand why will appear on Gizmag. It only selectively list some basic facts, which most ordinary readers can easily find in any major technology websites, and the facts are clearly biased towards S5: Post-shot focusing? What about Pano-shooting that S5 doesn't have. Heart-rate monitor? What about M7 process that S5 doesn't have. Clearly S5 wins on mere specs, but does S5 give you better picture with double pixel counts as Apple? Although having larger battery, does S5 actually have longer talking time/stand-by time, etc? With quad-core processor, is user experience smoother? Or apps launch faster? I am just so disappointed that such an article appears on Gizmag. Why not just give the links of Apple/Samsung websites. They actually contain more useful information
Richard Widman
Bigger is not better. First and foremost we must remember it is a portable communication device that must fit in pockets or belt holders, not get in the way of seat belts or be uncomfortable while sitting at a table or desk.
Nairda
All Apple will have to do is release the iPhone 6x in 5.5" and bump it to 2048 x whatever. Increase camera capability to 0 Lux with IR assist, and the masses will flock.
They may even throw in inductive charging and IP67 to really corner the outdoor market.
That package in itself would totally wipe out its competition, even at $1000 retail
Question Everything
@ Richard Widman Bigger IS better. I have used an iphone for over 2 years, and hated every moment of it. It was a company issue phone, and they wouldn't hear that there were any problems with the phone. My problem with the phone is primarily with my eyes. I've been legally blind since I was 5 years old (I'm now 56) and couldn't make out the info on the small screen. There were other problems as well, like the tiny keyboard while typing. Finally, after refusing to use this phone (with a letter to management), I was given a Samsung Galaxy Note II. WHAT A DIFFERENCE! I can actually use vnc on this device when needed! I can now be anywhere and get some work done (which isn't always ideal :-> ), but I can now use my phone and actually enjoy the experience! Interesting to note is that within my company, which was at one time 100% iphone, we are now currently 40% Android, because of screen size! Roger
Derek Howe
@ Nairda- Apple fanboy much? You basically said is Apple made the S5 everyone would flock to it any pay a ridiculous premium just because it's apple. Those days are dwindling. As for the inductive charging...I don't know why more phones don't have that built in. My S4 didn't have it either, but I bought a thing of ebay that changed that for about 30 bucks, well worth it, I love just setting it down instead of plugging it in.
mvp
Can't wait to purchase the S5! (currently have the S3) Who would ever want to view the infinitesimal text, images, pics on the iPhone? It's so nice to be able to see the Galaxy screens w/o having to wear glasses or have lasik surgery. I like the Note 3 but it's too wide for my hand, causing cramping.
Rann Xeroxx
Would go with a Nexus 5 for about half the price of either of these.
Cam Macduff
These are not the droids you're looking for. Move on.