Galaxy S4 vs iPhone 5 display battle: S4 now on par with the iPhone in many areas

by: Adam KoueiderApril 26, 2013

samsung galaxy s4 7 aa 645px

Here’s a quick description of the Samsung Galaxy S4 screen for you: it’s a big, vibrant, Full HD 5-inch Super AMOLED display. Which means it has vivid colours that you either love or absolutely hate (kind of like that plastic body). Another detail worth noting, is that the Galaxy S4 has a PenTile display, but that should not make a difference due to the very high 441 PPI.

DisplayMate, the well known display configuration company, conducted tests on the new Samsung Galaxy S4, comparing it with its predecessor, the Galaxy S3, and the iPhone 5, in a high-res screen battle royale.

After a lengthy stay under the microscope, DisplayMate concluded that the Galaxy S4 is a major improvement over the Galaxy S3 and is neck and neck with the iPhone 5. The S4 has a higher maximum brightness than the S3 and color reproduction in “Movie” mode is excellent. Light reflection was also improved and is as good or better than the iPhone 5.

The Galaxy S4 also managed to reduce the color gamut, coming in at 132% in standard mode and 122% in movie mode. The iPhone 5 has the best accurate gamut at 104%, but the Galaxy S4’s improvement over the S3 continues here as well.

Screen purist should also be happy to know that the annoying white-blue tint on the Galaxy S3 is almost non apparent on the Galaxy S4.


Source: Displaymate Technologies

The final, but still very noteworthy improvement of the Galaxy S4’s screen is the improved power efficiency of the screen (compared at the same screen size). The Galaxy S4’s average power efficiency is 0.70W, an improvement over the Galaxy S3 and very close to the iPhone 5’s 0.66W power efficiency.

The overall conclusion is that the Galaxy S4 is the best OLED screen in the world, worthy of being put alongside the iPhone 5’s excellent screen.

Screen purists should note that the S4 consistently performs better in these tests in “Movie”, so if you are looking for the most accurate colors possible, you should use this setting.

For the record, DisplayMate compared the Galaxy S3 to the iPhone 5 last year and found the Apple device superior in most areas.

For all the statistics hit the source link below.

  • Bone

    So much for not bright enough, very impressive results by Displamate.

    • kascollet

      Yes, 475 nits (in Auto-mode only) is now quite great for an OLED screen.
      I guess next generation will achieve LCD level.

  • MasterMuffin

    Those guys who were arguing that s4 should use LCD (before it was launched), HA HA :P

    • kascollet

      Yes, clearly Samsung has put much effort in improving the OLED technology. Achieving such qualities (color accuracy, brightness, reflectance) with this kind of extreme resolution is remarquable.
      And OLED allows for some unique abilities too (like the mini-screen when the new perforated cover is closed).

    • amine ELouakil

      Congratz to Samsung for beating a screen tech from 2009 :)

      I still believe led to be the future, but not the near future it’s still have a long way to be there, and we never know what’s the next innovation in screen technology would be

      • simpleas

        and samsung also makes the best lcds… which iphones use…. smh

  • amine ELouakil

    …. not to mention the iPhone retina displays uses a 2009 technology from LG (sure the iPhone 5 screen is more refined but it doesn’t take advantages from the advanced of technology you could find in the One X screen or the One (even if both are called superLCD 2 and 3 the One screen is better than the One X Screen but not in everysingle category for example brightness )

    • Adam Koueider

      Nope, iPhone 5 has a different technology to it licensed from sharp its not IGZO but its the generation before it. (In-cell touch) Colour saturation is 44% greater than the iPhone 4/4S. Biggest difference I’ve seen between Super LCD 2 and 3 is the efficiency. Super LCD 3 seems very efficient as well as more accurate

      • amine ELouakil

        You are confusing touch screen technology and the screen it self, the in cell touch is to integrated the touch ability to the screen it self rather than having an extra layer for touch. and yes that give an advantage in terms of color accuracy and saturations, but on the other hand has a couple of drawbacks, one of them is when you drop your phone on it screen…..

        • Adam Koueider

          But hey its gotta be better than having thicker glass on both sides of the device like the iPhone 4. (Drops phone: Checks screen “Yes no crack” Turns it around, the back is shredded “Oh man” #lifewithaniPhone4

          • amine ELouakil

            lol true the iPhone 4 was very fragile,but on the other replacing a touch panel or the back is much cheaper than switching the whole screen

    • kascollet

      What’s the point of the age of the technology if the iPhone’s LCD screen is the benchmark in screen quality ? Don’t be fooled by fancy commercial names (which Apple never uses).

      • amine ELouakil

        “Don’t be fooled by fancy commercial names (which Apple never uses)”
        are you being sarcastic?the whole Retina bullshit is what?

        No the iPhone screen is LG LCD IPS (first gen screen) sure it’s high quality product, and the screen uses other innovation such as in cell touch instead of a touch pannel on top but it’s still an old screen.

        The iPhone is used as a benchmark for two reasons :
        1-iPhone popularity.
        2-Color accuracy and calibration.

        • kascollet

          What does popularity have to do with Displaymate’s review ?
          BTW :
          “Sharp is one of the three suppliers of the iPhone 5′ screens, the others being Japan Display Inc. and South Korea’s LG Display Co.”

          • amine ELouakil

            “What does popularity have to do with Displaymate’s review ?”
            weren’t you talking about the iPhone screen being a benchmark in general and that’s the proper answer.
            There are different supplier for the iPhone screen and internals but the screen tech is LCD IPS.

  • IncCo

    sounds pretty awesome

  • freedomspopular

    I’m curious to see how much of an issue burn-in and pixel degradation will be with this newer screen.

  • The Galaxy S4 have bigger screens, way more features than that ishit could ever have. The only thing that the icrap have is the retina. Wow woop dee do.

  • Aaditya Aggarwal

    Hey AndroidAuthority, I hope you would let me share this with you.
    This is a video made by me. It is a spoof on galaxy s4 vs iphone 6 war
    If you would watch it, thank you :)