With such a great range of high end smartphones on the market at this precise moment of time, consumers are utterly overwhelmed with high-end tech, it is near impossible to compare the top-end phones. The three heavyweight tech offerings I am looking at in this article are the Samsung Galaxy S5, the HTC One M8 and the iPhone 5s.
I could put a comparison chart here to help show the differences between the phones in terms of technicalities but the key differences are boiling down to the phones individual personalities and ability to hold their own with their unique operating systems and apps.
Operating system – So the old Android vs Apple iOS raises its head here, but there is also a battle of the Android skins. HTC with its Sense 6 and Samsung’s TouchWiz, both offering two bespoke skins for the Android framework, and both offering a unique way to interact with your phone.
The sleek interface of iOS 7 makes using the iPhone simple, but it is more restrictive in what you can do with it. Apple's iOS is best if you’re a smartphone novice, but the HTC One M8 offers you the ability to essentially make your own magazine on the home screen of your phone. Things such as news, social networks and photos can be updated to show you new content whenever you want right there on your home screen.
Cameras - Smartphones are looking to ever more colourful ways to make-up for the lack of a large physical lens on their phones. Dedicated camera lenses are built to let in as much light as possible so that every minute detail is captured, The Samsung S5′s 16 megapixel camera features the highest megapixel count and offers the largest images in terms of pixels. The HTC One (M8) camera has the UltraPixel system as seen on their previous model, but it also adds a second lens so you can choose what to focus on, The Samsung S5 also has a focus blur feature allowing you to choose what is and what isn’t in focus after the picture has been taken! The iPhone 5s uses larger pixels at 1.5 microns. This allows for the capture of more light, it also allows you to film in 120fps which is great for cool slo-mo effect videos.
Battery life – One area where the iPhone 5s struggles on is battery life. It simply doesn’t live up to either the HTC One (M8) or Galaxy S5, delivering 11 hours of call time on a full charge. The Samsung’s 2800mAh battery will give you 12 hours of HD video watching ability and the HTC One (M8) will last in standby at 100% for 2 weeks according to HTC, very handy for people that do not use their phones as heavily as others.
Design – Smartphone manufacturers are creating larger handsets in this day and age, The Galaxy S5 and HTC One (M8), as expected, have increased screen size, to meet the demands of consumers who predominately use their screen space to browse the web or watch HD video.
The iPhone 5s with its 4-inch screen is much easier to use with one hand admittedly, which can be useful when carrying anything else. The iPhone 5s looks the best out of the three phones, with its smooth metallic finish and flat glass screen providing a defined sophisticated look. The HTC One (M8) features a full brushed aluminium case on its rear and has more of a rock and roll look, with the S5 really letting the side down featuring a huge amount of plastic, since the parts that look metal are plastic. The iPhone 5s and the Galaxy S5 both have fingerprint readers, which is very James Bond, but not all that secure in all honesty, as they can be cracked by people eventually. The HTC (M8) features great sound with its built in BoomSound stereo speakers that users might find handy if they’re stuck without headphones and want to hear some music whilst out and about. A key feature to the S5's belt is that it has brilliant resistance to water and dust, so that you can use the phone in any weather without a second thought.
Final Thought - Modern day smartphones such as these I have written about, really don't vary too much from each other. With technology moving exponentially forwards at pace, we are all to aware of the limits of each phone when they get released. 4k video recording & heart rate monitors aside it's the practical features of these phones that hold the most weight; battery life and connectivity are key. The 4G network will hopefully be nationwide soon and batteries will hopefully be solar energised or wind up rechargeable, until then I feel that swiss-army-knife, Inspector-Gadget smartphones will add ever more utensils… who’s got a bottle opener?!