If you judge the stylish Sony Xperia SP against the old-but-still-capable Samsung Galaxy S3, which one is technically the superior phone? Does the 4.6-inch display on the Xperia SP, outshine the Galaxy S3’s 4.8-inch screen? Does the Xperia SP feature more storage space? Or a faster processor? Compare the two phones for yourself in the table and review that follows.
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3: stat-fight
Here’s how the two phones compare. If you you want more information on any of the technologies that you see mentioned, click on a highlighted term to find out more about it. Or view our FAQs.
|Sony Xperia SP||VS||Samsung Galaxy S3|
|Display||4.6-inch LCD||4.8-inch Super AMOLED|
|Resolution||720 x 1280 pixels
|720 x 1280 pixels
|Processor||1.7GHz dual core Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8960T||1.4GHz quad core Exynos 4412|
|Software||Android 4.1||Android 4.0.4|
|Storage||8GB internal, microSD cards up to 32GB||16, 32 or 64GB internal, microSD cards up to 64GB|
|8.0 Megapixels with autofocus, touch focus, LED flash, geo-tagging, face/smile detection, image stabilization, HDR, panorama mode and 1080p video recording||8.0 Megapixels with autofocus, LED flash, geo-tagging, touch focus, face/smile detection, image stabilization and 1080p video recording|
|Yes, 0.3MP||Yes, 1.9MP|
|Bluetooth||4.0 with A2DP||4.0 with A2DP and EDR|
|Size||67.1 x 130.6 x 10.0mm||70.6 x 136.6 x 8.6mm|
|Talktime||19.0 hours||12.0 hours|
|Standby||734 hours||790 hours|
|Extras||GPS/A-GPS, NFC, accelerometer, digital compass, stereo FM radio, DLNA, Wi-Fi Hotspot functionality and a TV-out||GPS/A-GPS, NFC, accelerometer, gyroscope, digital compass, barometer, stereo FM radio with RDS, S-Voice, TV-out and Smart Stay eye-tracking|
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 analysis
You’ve seen the specs for the two phones above. But that doesn’t immediately tell you which one is technically superior. Here’s how this Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 fight plays out…
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 – Connectivity
The Xperia SP is equipped with a 3G/HSDPA chipset, along with NFC, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP. It also gets a speed boost with 4G connectivity. Samsung’s Galaxy S3 comes with NFC, 3G/HSDPA, 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP and EDR as standard. It also enjoys a 4G speed boost.
— It’s a tie, a point to each phone (1-1)
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 – Size/Weight
Neither of these phones is what you’d call a brick, although they are large due to their 4.6- and 4.8-inch screen sizes respectively. As you’d expect, there’s not much of a size gap between the two – the Xperia SP is 130.6 x 67.1 x 10.0mm; Samsung’s phone is 136.6 x 70.6 x 8.6mm. Overall, the Galaxy S3 is smaller. In terms of weight, the Sony Xperia SP weighs 155g, while the Galaxy S3 is 133g. See the graph below…
— The Galaxy S3 wins (1-2)
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 – Camera/Video
Sony has squeezed an 8.0 Megapixel camera into its SP model, which boasts autofocus, touch focus, LED flash, geo-tagging, face/smile detection, image stabilization, HDR, panorama mode and 1080p video recording. It supports a max resolution of 3264 x 2448 pixels. There’s also a front-facing 0.3MP camera for video calls.
The two phones match each other for raw megapixels – the Galaxy S3 also packs an 8.0 Megapixel camera with autofocus, LED flash, geo-tagging, touch focus, face/smile detection, image stabilization and 1080p video recording. A higher resolution 1.9 Megapixel camera located on the front is ideal for video calls.
— The Galaxy S3 wins (1-3)
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 – Display
The display on the Sony Xperia SP is a smart 4.6-incher, featuring touch-sensitive LCD technology and a resolution of 720 x 1280 pixels. By cramming 921600 pixels into its 4.6-inch screen, the Xperia SP has pixel density of 319.348 pixels per inch (PPI). Not bad for a phone that isn’t a top-end model.
|The Sony Xperia SP features a 4.6-inch LCD display with a quoted resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels. Its Pixels Per Inch (PPI) rating is 319.348.|
At 4.8 inches, Galaxy S3′s touch-sensitive Super AMOLED screen has more room than its rival and arguably uses a better technology. The 720 x 1280 pixel resolution is the same, but the PPI rating is a little lower. In comparison, there are 921600 pixels onscreen, giving the Galaxy S3 pixel density of 306.042 pixels per inch.
— The Galaxy S3 wins (1-4)
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 – Processor
In terms of processing oomph, the Galaxy S3 uses a quad core Exynos 4412, rated at 1.4GHz. The Xperia SP’s processor is a 1.7GHz dual core Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8960T chip.
— The Galaxy S3 wins (1-5)
Half-time: Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3
At the end of round #5, let’s take a look at the scores. The Galaxy S3 leads the Xperia SP by a massive margin of 5-1. Of course, the Xperia SP isn’t beaten yet. There are still more points to be won, starting with round #6, software…
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 – Software
Neither phone wins this Android 4.1 vs. Android 4.0.4 battle. So…
— It’s a tie, each phone gets a point (2-6)
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 – Applications
It’s Google Play vs. Google Play and there’s no winner here. Which means… The Galaxy S3 still leads. No matter what happens in the next three rounds, the Galaxy S3 has already won.
— The two phones share the points (3-7)
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 – Storage
We start with the Sony Xperia SP, which comes with 8GB of built-in storage. Samsung’s approach is more flexible. The Galaxy S3 offers 16, 32 or 64GB versions to suit different price points. While the Xperia SP only boasts 8GB, the Galaxy S3 comes with a better top-end 64GB capacity. Plug a 32GB memory card into the Xperia SP’s microSD expansion slot and the maximum capacity rises to 40GB. The Galaxy S3′s overall capacity can also be increased to a maximum of 128GB via its microSD memory card slot.
— The Galaxy S3 wins (3-8)
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 – Battery Life
With a good overnight charge, the Xperia SP boasts 19.0 hours of talktime according to Sony, while the Galaxy S3 is rated at 12.0 hours. Standby time is rated at 734 hours and 790 hours respectively. So the Galaxy S3 loses this one. But it’s too little too late for the Xperia SP in this fight.
— The Xperia SP wins (4-8)
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.
Sony Xperia SP vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 – Extras
Finally, the Xperia SP also includes GPS/A-GPS, NFC, accelerometer, digital compass, stereo FM radio, DLNA, Wi-Fi Hotspot functionality and a TV-out. In comparison, the Galaxy S3 is packed with GPS/A-GPS, NFC, accelerometer, gyroscope, digital compass, barometer, stereo FM radio with RDS, S-Voice, TV-out and Smart Stay eye-tracking.
— It’s a tie, one point each (5-9)
BPF Verdict: The Samsung Galaxy S3 wins! (5-9)
The Samsung Galaxy S3 wins this match-up. It beats the Sony Xperia SP, taking 5 of the 10 rounds available, drawing 4 and losing 1. Here’s a summary of where this fight was won and lost:
The best connectivity: Comparable
The best size/weight: Yes
The best camera/video: Yes
The best display: Yes
The best processor: Yes
The best software: Comparable
The most applications: Comparable
The most storage: Yes
The best battery life: No
The best extras: Comparable
See if these two phones make our Top 20 Best Smartphones list…