iPhone 5 vs Galaxy S III vs Galaxy Note II

If you are in the market for a new smartphone this fall, take a look at the top three contenders* – Apple iPhone 5, Samsung Galaxy S III, and Samsung Galaxy Note II.

First of all, I am not going to post a chart that compares the technical specifications of these phones. While the specifications do matter, they pale in comparison to the overall user experience. A phone with 2GB of RAM may not “flow” as well as a phone with 1GB of RAM. Also, comparison charts of the various phones offered this fall are all over the internet. See here, here, here, and here.

Quick rundown of the major differences:

  • The iPhone 5 uses iOS and the Samsung phones use Android
  • The iPhone 5 ships 9/21, the Galaxy S III came out in May, and the Galaxy Note II is expected to be released sometime this quarter
  • The Samsung phones have near field communication (NFC) while the iPhone 5 does not
  • All three have screens designed to be operated with fingers, but the Galaxy Note II will include a stylus
  • The iPhone 5 has a 4.0″ screen, the Galaxy S III has a 4.8″ screen, and the Galaxy Note II will have a 5.55″ screen
  • The iPhone 5 does not have a slot for external storage whereas the Samsung phones both have microSD

What is NFC?

Near field communication is a short range (mere centimeters) radio exchange. It allows you to make purchases by simply bringing your phone near a NFC capable device, transmit photos, exchange business cards, confirm your identity, download maps, pay for public transit, and many more things. The problem with NFC in the United States is that it simply isn’t widespread. You will have difficulty finding a vending machine that uses NFC. However, the possibilities are endless at NFC matures.

Which phone do you plan to buy (or already bought) this year?

  • Galaxy Note II (33%, 3 Votes)
  • iPhone 5 (22%, 2 Votes)
  • Galaxy S III (22%, 2 Votes)
  • HTC One X (11%, 1 Votes)
  • Other (comment with your answer) (11%, 1 Votes)
  • Nokia Lumia 920 (1%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 9

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*Other major releases not covered here include the HTC One X and Nokia Lumia 920