In the past, we’ve done quite a few comparisons, comparing iPhone 5S against the HTC One M8, as well as the Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8. It’s a competitive market out there, and you must consider all available options before you decide to spend your hard earned cash on a high-end device.
It’s not just the Android handsets, Apple’s flagship device has come up against all odds in many situations, so we’re going to put it up against the two best flagship Android devices and see where it stands. Let’s just see what’s so different between these three flagship devices.
This is one of the most differentiating factor between the iPhone 5S and other Android flagships available in the market. With time, the devices are getting bigger and bigger, but Apple decided to use the same 4-inch retina display 1136 x 640 pixels with a 326 ppi density for its iPhone 5S when it debuted in September last year. As for the Samsung and HTC, they slightly increased the screen size of their flagship device. HTC One M8 was bumped to 5-inch boasting a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels with 441 ppi pixel density, compared to 4.7-inch screen in its predecessor. As far as the Samsung Galaxy S5 is concerned, it was a minor increase and boasted a 5.1-inch Super AMOLED 1080p display.
iPhone definitely lags behind compared to both devices as it comes with a lower resolution. The high 1080p display on the Samsung Galaxy S5 is fantastic, so is HTC One M8. The high resolutions makes it better if you are watching videos on the device, or even for general day-to-day usage.
This might be a challenging one. Apple uses its own A7 64-bit processor in the iPhone 5S, while Samsung and HTC decided to go with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 801 SoC. On paper, iPhone 5S looks less powerful since it comes with a dual-core processor, compared to the quad-core Snapdragon 801 SoC on both the Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8. Both devices also feature 2GB of RAM compared to 1GB in the iPhone 5S.
However don’t let this thing fool you. iPhone 5S provides comparable processing power as the other two Android devices. It’s not just because of iOS as its operating system, but because it comes with a 64-bit architecture. On the other hand, Android isn’t compatible with 64-bit processors and the Snapdragon 801 is a 32-bit processor. Things might change with the next big Android update, but for now, it’s 32-bit.
This is where Apple and HTC have surpassed Samsung. HTC One M8 comes with a beautiful aluminium design, so is the iPhone 5S. Both devices gives a premium look when held in hand, while Samsung decided to go with plastic again. It’s not the same one as found in the Samsung Galaxy S4, but it still is plastic.
Samsung Galaxy S5 measures 142 x 72.5 x 8.1 mm while the HTC One M8 is 146.4 x 70.6 x 9.4 mm dimensions. As for the iPhone 5S, it is thinner than the two and measures 123.8 x 58.6 x 7.6 mm. It’s successor, the iPhone 6, is expected to be thinner than the iPhone 5S, and is reportedly coming with a larger display.
Samsung Galaxy S5 is IP67 certified, making the handset dust and water-resistant up to a certain extent, while the feature is not present in iPhone 5S or the HTC One M8. I’m not sure how useful it can be to make a person go for the Samsung Galaxy S5 just because it’s water resistant.
This is where iPhone 5S is behind the two flagship Android devices. Apple iPhone 5S comes with three 16/32/64GB storage options without any expandable storage. On the other hand, Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8 features 16GB of storage which can be expanded via a microSD card. Additionally, you also get free cloud storage with the latter two — Galaxy S5 comes with 50GB of Dropbox storage for two years while the HTC One M8 comes with 50GB Google Drive storage for the same amount of time.
Apple iPhone 5S comes with an 8MP rear camera with 1.5µ pixels and an f/2.2 aperture, as a tru tone flash. On the other hand, Samsung Galaxy S5 comes with a 16MP ISOCELL camera with 1.12 µm pixel size and 1/2.6” sensor size. As for the HTC One M8, it comes with Duo cameras on the back consisting of 4MP UltraPixel as well as a depth sensor with UFocus to let you focus on a single element in the picture while blurring the remaining image.
The camera on the Samsung Galaxy is also capable of recording 4K videos, while the remaining two devices are stuck with 1080p. I don’t think it’s a big factor at the moment, since there aren’t too many 4K displays in households, but it’s good if you want to get a future proof device.
Apple introduced a Touch ID sensor in its iPhone 5S back in September, which made other OEMs think about the technology. HTC was pretty quick, and introduced a sensor on the back of their gigantic HTC One Max, but it was no where to be found in the latest flagship device, the HTC One M8. As for Samsung, it also features a fingerprint scanner, but it doesn’t work in a similar fashion as the iPhone 5S.
Samsung Galaxy S5 comes with a swipe sensor, meaning you have to swipe your finger on the device for it to work. On the other hand, the Touch ID sensor appears to be smarter, all you have to do is place your finger on the home button and let it handle the rest, no swiping or anything.
This is an important factor for a majority of smartphones owners, the battery life. It’s not possible at times to carry the charging cable or even a portable charger all the time. Samsung Galaxy S5 comes with a 2,800 mAh batter, while the HTC One M8 and iPhone 5S comes with 2,600 mAh and 1,560 mAh, respectively.
The battery of the iPhone 5S is smaller then the flagship Android devices, but as they say, a bigger phone needs a bigger battery. HTC One M8 and Samsung Galaxy S5 components are more demanding, the large 1080p display, etc. But, most of the normal users will be able to get all three of them throughout the day without battery saving measures.
Samsung and HTC also introduced extreme battery saving technologies in their flagship devices, which can extend the battery life of both devices tremendously. Additionally, the battery conservation features added by Qualcomm in the latest Snapdragon 800 and 801 also play an important role in providing a decent battery time.
This is another important aspect which plays an important role in the performance of the device. Samsung Galaxy S5 comes with Android 4.4.2 with Samsung’s bloated TouchWiz UI. On the other hand, HTC One M8 also features the same Android version, but it comes with its own Sense 6.0 UI. Both devices offers a different user interface, and comes with custom OEM apps, which may cause a dent on the performance of the devices — stock Android is faster since it’s free from customizations. Among the two, HTC’s Sense 6.0 UI is still better in many areas when compared to TouchWiz in my opinion.
On the other hand, iPhone 5S comes with Apple’s very own iOS UI, which is also a differentiating factor among the devices. Many casual users will find iOS easier to user because it’s not as customizable as the Android 4.4.2 found in Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8. I find the HTC One M8 UI to be as user-friendly as iOS, but it also comes down to personal preferences.
As for the number of apps, both operating systems comes with almost the same number in the app stores. However, apps in the iOS App store are of better quality compared to the ones found in the Google Play Store as well.
There you go folks. I hope it’s enough to help you make up your mind about the devices. If you ask me, I’d go for the HTC One M8, and I’ve shared my reasons why I prefer it over the iPhone 5S. I’m not saying iPhone 5S isn’t good, it’s a great device, iPhone is one of those devices which I used for the longest period — 3 years to be exact — before I switched to a Samsung Galaxy S4. It’s a good device too, but I’m not a big fan of the extensive customizations and bloated TouchWiz UI.
I’m also waiting for Apple to launch the successor of the iPhone 5S as rumors hint at a possibly larger 4.7-inch display. There’s no confirmation from Apple, but it’s expected to see the light of the day this fall.
Hammad is a full time writer who worked for many popular websites in the past. He loves to write about smartphones and gadgets. When he is not writing, he can be found playing Clash of Clans on his iPhone or looking for a good place to eat.