Apple iPhone 4S vs. Samsung Galaxy S2 – Fight!

by Jerry D on October 4, 2011

The Samsung Galaxy S2 is one of the best Android phones we’ve ever seen. The iPhone 4S is the best iOS-powered handset we’ve ever seen. These are the tech-titans of the smartphone world. But which one is worth your hard-earned cash? Time for the biggest of big phone fights…

XXXX versus graphic Apple iPhone 4S vs. Samsung Galaxy S2   Fight! XXXX

Round #1 – Connectivity:
The core connectivity options on the new iPhone 4S include 3G/HSDPA (14.4Mbps), 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP. The 4S is also a ‘world phone’, featuring GSM and CDMA connectivity for go-anywhere roaming. As for the Galaxy S2, Samsung has specified 3G/HSDPA/HSPA+ (21Mbps), Bluetooth 3.0+HS and 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi as standard.

Score: +1 to iPhone 4S (32GB) (1-0)

Round #2 – Size & Weight:
As far as pocketability is concerned, the iPhone 4S and the Galaxy S2 are 115.2 x 58.6 x 9.3mm and 125.3 x 66.1 x 8.49mm respectively. Overall the Galaxy S2 is the slimmer phone. Drop the two handsets on the scales and the Apple iPhone 4S weighs 140g, while the Galaxy S2 is 116g.

Score: +1 to Galaxy S2 (32GB) (1-1)


Round #3 – Camera:
Apple has opted for an improved 8.0 Megapixel camera in its newest smartphone, which boasts tap to focus, an LED flash, geo-tagging and 1080p HD video recording with video image stabilization. The lens supports a max resolution of 3264 x 2448 pixels and a new IR filter. For video calls and self portraits, there’s also a front-facing camera. VGA only.

The Samsung Galaxy S2 matches its opponent with a 8.0 Megapixel camera of its own with an array of features including: autofocus, an LED flash, geo-tagging, touch focus functionality, face/smile detection, image stabilization and 1080p video capture. Another camera located on the front is ideal for video calls.

Score: +1 to both phones (2-2)

Round #4 – Screen/keyboard:
Display size is key and the iPhone 4S features a 3.5-inch (640 x 960) touch-sensitive Retina display. The resulting pixel density of this handset is sky-high at 329.714 pixels per inch. Few phones can match it.

rez comparison1 Apple iPhone 4S vs. Samsung Galaxy S2   Fight!

The Galaxy S2′s touch-sensitive Super AMOLED Plus display (with tough-as-old-boots Gorilla Glass) is bigger, measuring 4.27 inches. That said, its 480 x 800 pixel resolution loses out to the iPhone 4S’s display. Do the math again and the pixels per inch (PPI) rating of this screen is 218.501. Poor.

Score: +1 to both phones (3-3)

Round #5 – Processor:
On the inside, the iPhone 4S is powered by a 1GHz dual-core Apple A5 chip; while the Galaxy S2 relies on a dual-core Exynos processor, also rated at 1GHz.

Score: +1 to both phones (4-4)

Round #6 – Software:
In the battle of the OSes, the iPhone 4S launches with iOS 5, while the Galaxy S2 uses Google’s Android 2.3 software with Samsung’s TouchWiz UI overlay and Swype text input.

Score: +1 to both phones (5-5)

Round #7 – Applications:
In this round, we compare the number of apps available for each phone. In this case, if you want the smartphone with the biggest choice of apps, choose the iPhone 4S over the Galaxy S2. See below.

Score: +1 to iPhone 4S (6-5)

Round #8 – Storage (comparing 32GB models):
Storage-wise, the two phones come with 32GB of memory built-in. Without an expansion slot on the iPhone 4S, however, 32GB is the maximum amount of storage you can get (although there is a roomier 64GB model). The inclusion of a microSD expansion slot on the Galaxy S2 allows you to bump up the capacity to 64GB without buying a more expensive phone.

Score: +1 to Galaxy S2 (32GB) (6-6)

Round #9 – Battery life:
Measuring battery life isn’t an exact science. But Apple says that its iPhone 4S can deliver 8.0 hours of talktime, while the Galaxy S2 (32GB) is rated at 8.5 hours. Meanwhile, standby time is quoted as 300 hours and 610 hours respectively A gold star for the Galaxy S2 in this penultimate round.

Score: +1 to Galaxy S2 (32GB) (6-7)


Note: The Standby time specification is an industry standard that is only intended to allow comparison of different mobile phones under the same circumstances. Power consumption in a standby state is strongly dependent on factors including: network, settings, location, movement, signal strength and cell traffic.

Round #10 – Extras:
The iPhone 4S also includes GPS/A-GPS, digital compass, 3-axis gyroscope, dual GSM/CDMA connectivity and the Siri voice assistant. In comparison, the Galaxy S2 features GPS/A-GPS, DLNA content sharing, Wi-Fi direct, stereo FM radio (with RDS), optional NFC support, a digital compass, gyroscope and an HDMI port.

Score: +1 to both phones (7-8)

BPF Verdict: The Samsung Galaxy S2 (32GB) wins!

Good as the iPhone 4S is, the Samsung Galaxy S2 offers a roomier screen (even though the resolution isn’t as good) and a slimmer, lighter design.

See if these two phones make our Top 20 Best Smartphones list…

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