Now that the Galaxy S9 is out of the wild, there naturally is widespread speculation as to how the device will likely stack up against the best from the Apple camp, namely the iPhone X.
Presented here is a detailed comparison between the two so that buyers have a clear idea as to which one suits them the best.
Design: The Galaxy S9 does not break any new ground with its design given that it largely continues with the same design language that the S8 first introduced. Of course, those have been refined a bit so that the S9 does look fresh and new, but there is nothing too special with the device from the looks perspective.
The iPhone X, on the other hand, started off a trend of sorts with its edge-to-edge display, with a tiny notch at the top holding the front facing cam and all other sensors. Needless to say, the effect is stunning, so much that it even started a trend with many other manufacturers copying the same in their future releases.
Worth mentioning, the S8 too had gone on to influence most other Android handsets, something that continues to this day. However, the S9 does cover the shortcomings of its predecessor, which includes the placement of the fingerprint sensor. The same is now placed at the real center, just below the rear cam cluster.
Display: The S9 offers a 5.8-inch screen while the bigger S9+ has a larger 6.2-inch display. Both, however, have the same resolution of 2,960 x 1,440 pixels which not only betters that of the iPhone X but is also the highest among the competition currently available.
For comparison’s sake, the iPhone X too comes with a 5.8-inch screen but is lit up by 2,436 X 1,125 pixels. That makes for a pixel density of 458ppi compared to 570ppi and 529ppi for the S9 and S9+ respectively.
Also, its OLED at play here for the three handsets though the iPhone X boasts of True Tone tech that takes the ambient light into consideration to offer more realistic color temperature.
Camera: This happens to be the biggest advantage with the S9. And much of that has to do with the adjustable aperture technology that the S9’s camera benefits from. It allows the aperture to vary from f1.5 and f2.4 depending on external light conditions.
This way, the aperture opens up precisely to allow for the right amount of light to filter in, enough to make picture grain-free even in dim-lit conditions. In fact, the variable aperture technology can well be considered the best thing to have happened to smartphone cameras so far and is a game changer of sorts.
It otherwise is a 12-megapixel camera that the S9 comes with while the S9+ has dual 12-megapixel sensors at the rear. For the S9+, it happens to be a combination of telephoto and wide angle lens, something that allows for the blurring effect as well.
Another unique aspect with the S9 series is the new super slo-mo feature. This allows the phone to capture videos at 960 fps in HD. That apart, the S9 duo also offers the more conventional slow motion capturing speed of 240 fps at 1080p.
The iPhone X too offers a dual rear cam setup comprising of two 12-megapixel sensors. The camera, however, has a fixed aperture of ƒ/1.8 and can capture slow-motion videos at 240 fps in full HD.
So far as the selfie cam is concerned, the S9 makes do with an 8-megapixel ƒ/1.7 aperture unit. The same on the iPhone X comprises of a 7-megapixel unit having a ƒ/2.2 aperture.
Performance: Its flagship stuff here all the way with the phones performing amazingly even under the most trying conditions. The S9 range comes powered by the SD 845/Exynos 9810 chip coupled to 4 and 6 GB of RAM on the S9 and S9+ respectively. On-board storage range from 64, 128 and 256 GB though there is another up to 400 GB of external storage options.
The iPhone X, in turn, is powered by the A11 Bionic chip coupled to a 3 GB of RAM. However, there is some confusion as to the exact amount of memory as Apple is usually reluctant to reveal that. It otherwise offers 64 GB and 256 GB of storage but offers no options to add more external memory.
Other comparison points include a 3,000 and 3,500 mAh battery pack for the S9 and the S9+ respectively while the same for the iPhone X stands at 2,716 mAh. Both offer wireless charging along with fast charging options though.
However, the S9 is more robust in that it offers IP68 levels of water and dust protection compared to IP67 for the iPhone X. On the software front, the S9 duo runs Android Oreo right of the gates while the iPhone X runs iOS 11.
Standout features: Animoji and AR emoji – This also happens to be the best-kept secret about the S9 that no one predicted about. The feature – AR animoji is however mighty interesting as this allows the users to create an entire emoji replica of themselves. Plus, they get to customize the same as well with different hair styles, skin tone, and different wardrobe and so on.
In fact, users can have the same emoji for multiple uses. So the same can be made to look more official during weekdays but can be made to don funky looks during weekends or during holidays and such.
The animoji that happens to be a key feature of iPhone X is, however, a bit different in that sort of transposes the user’s face onto an existing emoji. That way, the emoji will resemble the user, but the user as a whole does not get depicted. Both AR emoji and animoji, however, rely on augmented reality for their working even though the results are markedly different.
Unlock technique: The S9 continues its reliance on the tried and tested fingerprint scanner but also includes an improved iris scanner as well this time. Samsung is calling it ‘Intelligent Scan’ and is essentially a combination of face scan and iris scanning technologies.
However, while iris scanning is secure, the face scan tech employed by Samsung is not. That is because it is based on a 2D scan of the face and does not take the depth into consideration. As such, the phone might well be tricked using an image of a person. The iris scan comes into the picture during low-light conditions, which means the Intelligent Scan technique of unlocking the S9 may not be as secure during bright lit conditions.
The iPhone X boasts of Face ID tech which does a full 3D scan of the face using depth sensing technology. That makes it a lot more secure though there too have been instances of the mother’s iPhone X having being unlocked by the son’s face and such.
Price: This can make or break many a deal, and the new S9 does have a clear advantage here. For the base, S9 comes for $720 and $840 for the S9+. The iPhone X, however, is more pricy as the base version comes for $999.
||6.2-inch, Quad HD+ sAMOLED
||5.8-inch, 2436 X 1125 pixels at 458 ppi, Super Retina HD display(OLED)
||Octa-core (4×2.7 GHz Mongoose M3 & 4×1.8 GHz Cortex-A55) – EMEA
Octa-core (4×2.7 GHz Kryo 385 Gold & 4×1.7 GHz Kryo 385 Silver) – USA & China
Exynos 9810 Octa – EMEA
Qualcomm SDM845 Snapdragon 845 – USA & China
|A11 Bionic chip with 64-bit architecture, Neural engine, Embedded M11 motion coprocessor
||Android 7.1.1 (Nougat)
||RAM Size: 6 GB, Internal Memory : 64 GB/256 GB
||64/256 GB, No information on RAM
|Micro SD support
||External Memory: MicroSD™ up to 400 GB
||158.1 x 73.8 x 8.5mm (189 g)
||143.6 x 70.9 x 7.7 mm, 174 g
||Rear: Super Speed Dual Pixel 12 MP
OIS (F1.5/F2.4) + 12 MP OIS (F2.4)
Front: 8MP AF (F1.7)
|12MP wide-angle and telephoto cameras, Wide-angle: ƒ/1.8 aperture, Telephoto: ƒ/2.4 aperture, digital zoom up to 10x Quad-LED True Tone flash, OIS in both, 7 MP, f/2.2, 32mm, face detection, HDR, panorama
||2160p@60fps, 1080p@240fps, 720p@960fps, HDR, dual-video rec.
||4K@24/30/60 fps, 1080p@30/60 fps, 720p@ 30fps, Slo‑mo video support for 1080p at 120 fps or 240 fps
||802.11 a/b/g/n/ac 2.4 G+5 GHz, VHT80 MU-MIMO
Bluetooth® v 5.0 (LE up to 2 Mbps), ANT+ , USB Type C
|802.11ac Wi‑Fi with MIMO, Bluetooth 5.0 wireless technology, NFC with reader mode
||Accelerometer, Barometer, Gyro Sensor, Compass, Hall Sensor,HR Sensor, Proximity Sensor, RGB Light Sensor, Pressure sensor, Iris scanner, Fingerprint Scanner, Face Detection
||Face ID, Barometer, Three-axis gyro, Accelerometer, Proximity sensor, Ambient light sensor
||Non-removable Li-Ion 3,500 mAh
||Non-removable Li-Ion battery, Lasts up to 2 hours longer than iPhone 7, Fast-charge capable, Wireless charging, no information on mAh
|Water and dust resistance
||IP67 certified – dust/water resistant over 1.5 meter and 30 minutes
||IP67 certified – Splash, Water, and Dust Resistant up to 1 meter and 30 minutes