Why can't Samsung match the iPhone's screen quality?

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by unobtainium, Jan 20, 2013.

  1. unobtainium macrumors 68020

    Mar 27, 2011
    The thread's title says it all. There's been so much hype about the flagship Samsung devices lately, and Samsung truly seems willing to give this competition their all, but for some reason the SG3 and Droid II both still have what appear to be dim, slightly washed out displays with odd colours and bad viewing angles, IMO. This is in comparison to an iPhone 5. Who agrees? And if you agree, can anyone explain why they're like that? From all the hype I've gotten the impression that the SG3 is supposed to be more advanced than the iPhone in almost every way, yet the screen still lags behind as far as I can tell.
  2. QuarterSwede, Jan 20, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2013

    QuarterSwede macrumors G3


    Oct 1, 2005
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Personally I don't like the SGIII simply because the screen uses a Pentile Matrix (think old CRTs). Just awful for text reading, better for video though. It's funny that you say it looks washed out as most think it's display is more vibrant (the iPhone 5's screen is the closest to color accuracy of any mobile device out).

    Can't speak about the Droid II. Never liked Motorola's phones, even their Android ones. Crap hardware design in my opinion.
  3. SlCKB0Y macrumors 68040


    Feb 25, 2012
    Sydney, Australia
    And yet the screen on the gs3 has been rated extremely highly by many many people. It probably just comes down to your own personal preference between slcd and amoled technologies.

    There's also a pretty good chance that the screen in your Apple device is a Samsung panel... At least for now.
  4. dkersten macrumors 6502a

    Nov 5, 2010
    I agree. I still think my iPhone 4 screen is a better quality than my GS3. The difference isn't enough though to make me switch back to an iPhone. I am more than willing to tolerate the screen quality to continue using the GS3
  5. Beeplance macrumors 68000


    Jul 29, 2012
    The SGS3's screen may be slightly inferior in certain aspects, but I'm the kind of person that doesn't demand so much. It's not that bad, decent enough, and definitely an improvement from past Samsung models. :)
  6. blackhand1001 macrumors 68030


    Jan 6, 2009
    The galaxy s3 while pentile is still excellent and has great view angles. Not sure why you think it doesn't. Amoled doesn't color shift on an angle. Also the note IIs screen is a whole step above that. It is non pen tile and just as bright as the iPhone 5's screen. It also has much better contrast. I personally prefer amoled screens over lcd. I like the contrast and the colors.
  7. LIVEFRMNYC macrumors 604

    Oct 27, 2009
    IMO, watching videos and gaming on the GS3 looks better vs the iP5 and previous iPhone models. Not just because of the obvious screen size difference, but video and games just look more natural on the GS3. I will admit, still pictures do show on the iPhone better. The brightness level or lack of doesn't not bother me at all and seems to be only noticeable when shown against a screen with higher brightness.

    The science behind the screens does not decide my judgement, I judge with my eyes. I truly don't see how anyone can lose with any of the latest smartphone devices now a days.
  8. Beeplance macrumors 68000


    Jul 29, 2012
    Err, I said it wasn't bad??.... :confused:

    The thread-starter is the one that doesn't like the S3 screen, not me....
  9. unobtainium thread starter macrumors 68020

    Mar 27, 2011
    It is simply not as bright as the iphone 5's screen. I was just playing with one today, the difference is super obvious.

    Can anyone find the actual stats? Brightness is measured in nits I believe.

    I don't know whether it's the iPhone's IPS panel or what, but there's a huge difference to me in both brightness and colour quality.
  10. maxosx macrumors 68020

    Dec 13, 2012
    Southern California
    Well said.

    The upcoming Galaxy S4 will have a 400 ppi display that will be a really beautiful example of the latest in display technology.

    If one dislikes Android & Samsung that's fine. No brand is for everyone. It's the competition & choices that I celebrate. Personally I like iOS & Android. They each have their pros & cons.
  11. DeathChill macrumors 68000

    Jul 15, 2005
    The iPhone 5 screen is over twice as bright as the S3 screen according to Anandtech for brightness(white):

    iPhone 5 brightness: 605 nits
    S3: 277 nits
  12. maxosx macrumors 68020

    Dec 13, 2012
    Southern California
    I have an iPhone 5 and AT&T Galaxy S 3. The real world difference is far less that those specs suggest. Their are about 20 people in my circle of friends with iPhone 5's. Not one who owns an iPhone uses it set to full brightness including myself.

    There's no advantage to higher brightness that's not needed. Not to mention during testing for battery life, Apple uses a setting of 50% brightness.

    Perhaps it's insecurity that causes people to bash the S 3.

    I find both my iP5 and S3 very nice smartphones.
  13. unobtainium thread starter macrumors 68020

    Mar 27, 2011
    Perhaps it's insecurity that causes Android fans to bash the iPhone?

    This thread was created because I was legitimately curious about why the Samsung screens appear (to me) to be a step down from the iPhone's screen. I say that because everyone is constantly emphasizing how Samsung is moving ahead with newer, better technology at a faster pace than Apple, and therefore I found the screen issue genuinely confusing.

    As for whether brightness matters...it does to me. I use the phone outdoors or in bright rooms a lot, and I kind of like having the option to go full brightness. I also happen to think that the iPhone screen looks crazy vibrant and really pops when it's at full brightness, though obviously that's gonna effect battery life. If I'm trying to conserve the battery I just turn it down.
  14. surjavarman macrumors 6502a

    Nov 24, 2007
    It's funny that 2 years ago the AMOLED display of the galaxy s1 could go head to head with the iphone4. And that screen had such a low resolution plus it was pentile. Now 2 years later AMOLED screens are better than ever and suddenly they aren't good enough to compete with the iphone 4/5?

    Personally I prefer the colors of AMOLED over LCD and with 720p you don't even notice its pentile.
  15. stridemat Moderator


    Staff Member

    Apr 2, 2008


    Please keep the thread on topic with less of the name calling and general bickering.
  16. Fernandez21 macrumors 601


    Jun 16, 2010
    Samsung could match the iPhone's screen if they wanted to, I think they may actually supply some of the panels, but for some reason they like the oversaturted look. I guess it's working for them, but I hate it. Much prefer the more natural look of the One x and iPhone 5.
  17. unobtainium thread starter macrumors 68020

    Mar 27, 2011
    Oh I have no doubt that Samsung COULD match the iPhone's screen (they manufacture it after all). But they've chosen to stick with the SAMOLED technology and to my eye it looks inferior both in brightness and color.


    According to who? The difference in quality was even bigger back then.

    Keep in mind, the iPhone's screen has also improved. The 5 is definitely a step up from the 4S screen. And no I'm not talking about 0.5"
  18. surjavarman, Jan 21, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2013

    surjavarman macrumors 6502a

    Nov 24, 2007
    Engadget and just about everyone else. Check the old reviews. No one had a clear winner but if you ask people now then the iphone 4 would absolutely annihilate the galaxy s display. What has changed in the last 2 years?
  19. VulchR macrumors 68020


    Jun 8, 2009
    Perhaps it is not so much the screen but what's on the screen. I don't think stock Android does a good job of making making a phone's screen look good. IMO the Android GUI is functional, but it doesn't seem to make the screen something that is inherently pleasing to look at (unlike iOS). I'm not sure why that is for me, and no doubt this sort of thing is in the eye of the beholder.
  20. nickchallis92 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 4, 2012
    I think the Android Interface is much more attractive than iOS's. Is that just me?
  21. Fireblade macrumors 65816


    Jan 25, 2011
    No, its not just like you ;)
  22. blairh macrumors 68040


    Dec 11, 2007
    I absolutely loathe Amoled screens. Artificial colors and whites that are bluish and terrible compared to a quality LCD display. White performance is crucial to me because I frequent a lot of websites on my iPhone and white is more often the background color.

    This is a good article describing Samsung's move to Amoled. Sadly it appears they'll be sticking with this screen techonolgy for years to come. I say sadly because I actually like the Note II a great deal but I cannot use an Amoled screen. At the same time Samsung is having a lot success with the SIII and Note II so my personal preference does not reflect what the general public feels. I guess.

    The good news is that most flagship smartphones are still LCD's so in due time a phablet LCD panel will come to North America. The Lenovo K900 technically falls in said category but it doesn't have LTE and might never reach the States.
  23. matttye macrumors 601

    Mar 25, 2009
    Lincoln, England
    I'm a sucker for vibrant colours, so I loved the S3's screen. Like the i5's too though.
  24. Tinmania macrumors 68040


    Aug 8, 2011
    I absolutely prefer the amoled screen on the S3 over the iPhone 5. Ditto for the Note 2. It's gorgeous to me. And I am not only talking about the increased size: it's the vibrancy of it.

    I think it's personal taste and the OP's premise is absurd. I, and everyone I have showed my new Note 2 to, has been amazed with the screen. Every one of them but one are iPhone owners (4Ss and 5s).

    Moreover, I had accepted that it would be very bad out here in the AZ sun (well, say in the car on a sunny day). In fact it is not nearly as bad in bright light as some suggest. It's better than my Nexus 4 outside. Worst case I crank it up to 100% when I am in bright light (auto brightness almost did this but manually turning it

    The screen is what drew me to the S3 and Note 2 from first glance.

    I bought my Note 2 Saturday at a crowded (corporate) AT&T store. The Smartphone areas were attracting a lot of attention (android and windows). The iPhone display was kind of sad with only 2 phones and no one even paying them any attention. Of course it was not drawing attention: there is nothing new to see.

    I would be willing to bet that in an objective side-by-side poll of the general population--not fans with an agenda--the samsung displays would be preferred over the iPhone.

  25. blackhand1001 macrumors 68030


    Jan 6, 2009
    Especially holo. Holo is beautiful. Android 4.X's UI is amazing.

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