Sony Xperia Z vs. Samsung Galaxy S3 – Fight!

by Jerry D on January 8, 2013

Imagine a Sony Xperia Z vs Samsung Galaxy S3 battle? Which phone would win? We could give one a box set of the superb serial killer show Dexter, the other a season pass to every episode of Homeland, sit back, and let them argue over which one is the finest TV drama. Or we could let the specs decide over 10 tech rounds?

XXXX versus graphic Sony Xperia Z vs. Samsung Galaxy S3   Fight! XXXX

Round #1 – Connectivity

Let’s consider the wireless options first. The waterproof Xperia Z boasts NFC, 3G/HSDPA, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP. As for 4G, you get that too. In comparison, the Galaxy S3 features NFC, 3G/HSDPA, 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi And Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP and EDR. It also supports 4G. Spot the differences? No, there’s almost nothing in it.

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

Round #2 – Size & Weight

The spec sheets make interesting reading. The Xperia Z and the mighty Galaxy S3 measure 139.0 x 71.0 x 7.9mm and 136.6 x 70.6 x 8.6mm respectively. Overall the Xperia Z is the bigger phone. Weighing 133g, the Galaxy S3 is 13g lighter than the Xperia Z, which weighs 146g. Of course, the Xperia Z is also IP57 certified, dust/water resistant and waterproof to a depth of 1 metre. But the beautiful Galaxy S3 still grabs the point in this round.

Score: +1 to Galaxy S3 (1-2)


Round #3 – Cameras

The Xperia Z’s built-in camera has a resolution of 13.0 MP, plus features that include: autofocus, an LED flash, face/smile detection, touch focus, image stabilization and 1080p video recording. Oh and there’s also a 2.2MP camera on the front for making video calls.

The Galaxy S3, meanwhile, has a lower-spec camera, albeit a classy 8.0 Megapixel model. It has a max resolution of 3264 x 2448 pixels, plus autofocus, LED flash, geo-tagging, touch focus, face/smile detection, image stabilization and 1080p video recording functionality. It too has a front camera (rated at 1.9 Megapixels) for video calls.

Score: +1 to Xperia Z (2-2)

Round #4 – Screen/keyboard

The Xperia Z features a huge 5.0-inch touch-sensitive Reality Display with a resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels. The screen has 2073600 pixels in total, giving it an eye-catching PPI rating of 440.6 pixels per inch – a stunning number.

At 4.8 inches, the Galaxy S3′s touch-sensitive Super AMOLED screen has slightly less room. Its 720 x 1280 pixel resolution loses out to the Xperia Z’s display. With 921600 pixels onscreen, the pixel density is only a decent 306.042 pixels per inch.

Score: +1 to Xperia Z (3-2)

Round #5 – Processor

Speed matters and the Xperia Z’s engine is a 1.5GHz quad core Qualcomm APQ8064 chip; the Galaxy S3 relies on a quad core Exynos 4412, rated at 1.4GHz. We’ll have to wait for benchmarks to get a better idea of which is faster. But on paper, the Xperia Z takes this round and edges into a surprising lead…

Score: +1 to Xperia Z (4-2)

Round #6 – Software

The Xperia Z launches with Android 4.1.2, while the Galaxy S3 launched with Android 4.0.4. Obviously the points are shared in this round.

Score: +1 to both phones (5-3)

Round #7 – Applications

Which OS has the biggest number of apps? In this case, both phones have access to over 675000 apps on Google Play, so this round is another tie and the Sony Xperia Z retains its overall lead.

Score: +1 to both phones (6-4)

Round #8 – Storage

Now it’s storage vs storage. We start with the Sony Xperia Z, which comes with a single storage option – 16GB. Samsung’s approach is more flexible. The Galaxy S3 offers 16, 32 or 64GB versions to suit different price points.

Obviously, if we compare the top-end phones, the Galaxy S3 can boast 64GB compared to the default 16GB capacity of the Xperia Z. Yes, you might say. But doesn’t the Xperia Z also include a microSD card slot to ramp up the memory to 48GB? You’re right. But the 64GB storage capacity on Samsung’s flagship phone can be expanded to a whopping 128GB via its built-in microSD slot.

Score: +1 to Galaxy S3 (6-5)

Round #9 – Battery life

As for staying power… Sony claims 14.0 hours of talktime for the Xperia Z, compared to 12.0 hours for the Galaxy S3. Standby times are 530 hours and 790 hours respectively. Neither of our two fighting phones finishes last here.

Score: +1 to both phones (7-6)


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

Going into this final round, the Xperia Z looks like it has the battle won. It also includes GPS/A-GPS, NFC, an accelerometer, gyroscope, digital compass, stereo FM radio, TV-out, Sony Mobile BRAVIA Engine 2, DLNA and Wi-Fi hotspot functionality. It’s also waterproof.

In comparison, the Galaxy S3 features GPS/A-GPS, NFC, an accelerometer, gyroscope, digital compass, barometer, stereo FM radio with RDS, S-Voice, TV-out and Smart Stay eye-tracking.

Score: +1 to Xperia Z (8-6)

BPF Verdict: The Sony Xperia Z wins!

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

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