Although the tech coverage was dominated by Microsoft and Windows Phone 8 yesterday, Google also announced some significant new releases of its own, and among them was the LG-manufactured Nexus 4 smartphone. While it’s perhaps lacking in one or two key departments, it still has enough about it to qualify as high-end, and as such, what bigger test for a top-drawer smartphone than to compare it with the iPhone 5 on iOS and the Lumia 920 on Windows Phone 8?
The Nexus 4 finds a niche in offering consumers some of the features of a flagship without the sky-high price, and your inclination towards buying the device will depend largely on how important the omitted features are. The Nexus 4 is strikingly similar to the Galaxy Nexus in terms of appearance, and if you’re in the market for a new smartphone, its $299-$329 off-contract price might just reel you in.
Aside from the price, though, the Nexus 4 is actually a pretty useful handset. The 4.7-inch display packs in a screen resolution of 1280×768, and while it’s not quite as sharp as the iPhone 5’s Retina display, the 318 ppi will look undoubtedly offer great detail when playing games or watching HD movies. Meanwhile, the Lumia 920 offers a 4.5-inch PureMotionHD+ IPS TFT display with 1280 x 768 resolution at 332 ppi.
Running on Android Jelly Bean 4.2, it offers a Qualcomm Snapdragon Quad-core 1.5GHz processor, and considering the "buttery" smooth reputation of Google’s mobile OS these days, expect very smooth operation whenever you’re using your Nexus 4. The iPhone 5, as we know, runs Apple’s new A6 processor, and although iOS 6’s Maps app has left much to be desired, the general response to the updated firmware has been positive, so whether you opt for the Nexus 4 or iPhone 5, you’re going to be treated to a smooth experience. If you were to consider the Lumia 920, you’d be getting a dual-core processor, and given that the old WP7.x devices ran smoothly on a single core, it’s fair to say the Nokia’s flagship is more than adept to any task you could throw at it.
The perks of the Nexus 4 include wireless charging, 2GB of RAM (versus 1GB on the iPhone 5), a larger battery capacity, and NFC. That said, Apple’s prized asset does hold quite a few trump cards over the Google-branded offering, notably 4G LTE, more storage space, and a thinner form factor.
Ultimately, there are many factors determining which device you should choose. If you have a little disposable cash, I’d advise you opt for the iPhone 5, but if you’re looking for value for money, the Nexus 4 looks to be, well, on the money. The Lumia 920 is, in many respects, the happy median – offering essentially everything you could possibly need for a price less than the iPhone, but more than the Nexus 4.
The choice is most certainly yours, and if you’re really deliberating, here’s our extensive comparison between three of the latest entries to the smartphone market: