Galaxy S4 vs iPhone 5 – Display Technology Shoot-Out
In this fast-moving smartphone industry, it’s fair to say that both Apple and vendors of Android devices move in similar ways. If one device contains a certain feature, it’s almost certain that a rivaling model will look to bring something similar with the next generation, but one area in which Android and iOS handsets have always differed is the display. Apple has stuck faithfully with LCD, while the likes of Samsung have placed their faith in OLED, but according to DisplayMate, the new 1080p Super AMOLED panel of the Galaxy S4 more than holds its own against the iPhone 5’s Retina LCD display.
With OLED still being an emerging technology, there’s no question that it’s playing catch-up with LCD, but having put the all-new Samsung Galaxy S4 through its paces, DisplayMate suggests that OLED is slowly but surely beginning to "challenge the best performance of the best LCDs."
The S4 offers a 441ppi density, but since it uses a pentile arrangement, it’s hard to take that figure and make a direct comparison with the res of the iPhone 5’s LCD. In layman’s terms, pentile arrangement in OLED display refers to the fact that two ‘sub-pixels’ are present within each pixel, and with LCD boasting the RGB trio of three sub-pixels, you would traditionally yield a brighter overall performance on an iPhone than a Galaxy.
Despite the limitations, however, DisplayMate notes that the S4 offers “excellent visual sharpness across the board,” and with a better calibrated and brighter panel than the preceding Galaxy S III, the Korean company’s forthcoming flagship easily packs the best all-round display of any of its mobile devices. However, the iPhone 5 still offers a brighter display with superior color calibration is not as accurate, and despite the fact the Galaxy S4 offers a bigger, higher resolution display, DisplayMate calls it a tie between the two titans.
The lack of power efficiency with OLED is still a thorn in the side of this fledgling technology, and work still needs to be done to improve overall performance. Apple CEO Tim Cook still thinks LCD, or specifically, that of the iPhone 5, is the best in the business, and with he and his company still holding off on a larger display until certain "tradeoffs" have been addressed, don’t expect to see an iPhone with a 5-inch+ Super AMOLED any time soon.