When it comes to Smartphones, the battle has come to be almost a two pronged one, with the customers either going towards Android Samsung or sticking with the glamorous iPhone. When Google introduced the platform a few years ago, it brought in a whole new dimension to how phones could be used. And Samsung has emerged as the king of the Android phone market, with the huge success of its Galaxy series.
It has enjoyed the attention and success like no one else, and also has come with devices that has swept over the competition. Its Galaxy S 3 was probably the most successful handset in the Android space.
However, with the turn of the year, it seems to be facing sudden competition from large as well as smaller players, who seem to be entering the market with a better proposition than Samsung’s products be it features or even price depending on what segment we are referring to. For example, in the mid range segment, Samsung introduced the Grand which has already been challenged by Micromax A 116, which offers a comparable and in some aspects better features at a much lesser price!
Similarly with the flagship device Galaxy S 4, which is to be unveiled this month, Samsung has received a huge jolt in the form of Xperia Z from the Japanese Giant Sony. In addition, Samsung’s Taiwanese counterpart HTC also seems to be looming in the shadows with HTC One and can bite off a big portion of the pie quite easily.
This is not only a rude shock for Samsung but more likely to be a warning for it to wake up and start putting its act together before the launch of S4 or have a dent in its market share with customers shifting from its good old Galaxy towards the trendy, yet sturdy Xperia Z. At a closer element by element comparison between Sony Xperia Z and the current Galaxy S 3, one finds there are more than a couple of areas that Samsung must put more efforts in to get ahead of Sony.
Let’s look at the comparison between these two devices in the following aspects.
Dimensions & Build
At a glance the two devices seem to have almost identical dimensions, though Sony Xperia is slightly taller and thinner. In terms of weight Sony’s handset is a little heavy as it is made mostly of glass as opposed to Galaxy SIII, which is mostly plastic. The design preference would depend purely on personal choice as neither design has any practical drawbacks. Overall the Sony handset looks more sleek and sturdy. Therefore on this front Samsung will have to come up with a better build quality in its S4, to overcome this challenge.
Screen & Display
Though S3 has one of the biggest Screens in SmartPhones so far, Sony has come up with a more technologically advanced full 5” (against Galaxy’s 4.8”) HD “Reality Display” screen with 1080 X 1920 (against Galaxy’s 720 X 1280) resolution with a density of 441 ppi (Galaxy SIII has 360 ppi), making images and text look a lot clearer. Sony has already scored higher here too, and its colors are also warmer than Galaxy’s. However, Galaxy overall has more vibrancy when it comes to the screen.
Galaxy S3’s battery (7.8 Wh) seems to last a couple of days’ normal usage while Xperia has a larger (8.6 Wh) non-removable battery, which may give it the strength to outrun Samsung, but to what extent (if at all), only time will tell.
Processor, Memory and Storage
While Samsung uses an own-brand 1.4 GHz Exynos 4 Quad processor and 1 GB RAM, the Xperia uses 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro along with 2 GB RAM. While the Xperia Z is available in a 16 GB model only, Samsung does offer much more flexibility with options available in 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB models. Similarly it also supports up to 64 GB expansion against Sony’s 32 GB expansion option. Samsung definitely has got an edge here.
Galaxy S3’s camera at 8 MP looks dwarfish in front of the Xperia Z’s 13MP. Both can record video in full HD; however Sony’s Exmor RS sensor seems to offer better results. Sony has a better front facing camera too. Samsung really needs to work on this if there is a chance for it to better Sony at its own game.
As Galaxy S3 and Samsung are both Android devices, hence use Google’s 4.1 Jelly Bean versions, though Xperia should have the latest version, unlike S3. We do hope the S4 has a more updated variant of Jelly Beam, and the same is more readily updated.
Overall, there seems to be a struggle from all fronts which need to be addressed and Samsung definitely needs to improve its marketing and the product development aspects tremendously to avoid losing its customers to the likes of HTC One, and Xperia Z and continue to be Numero Uno in terms of the Android Kingdom. Galaxy S4 will undoubtedly be one of the biggest Samsung mobiles to launch this year, however, only time will tell whether it continues to be as strong a contender as other Galaxy devices before it.