Apple iPhone 5 vs. Samsung Galaxy S III: All rise

GSMArena team, 25 October 2012.
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Final words

Those hoping for an X-is-better-than-Y-period-! answer will be disappointed. The way the crowd at a boxing match will feel about a win on points instead of a knockout. Like someone running for office wins debates to lose an election.

Let's not get carried away though. It's just phones. Worse yet, they're soon to be last season's phones. Yet, we all vote for them with our hearts, minds and, ultimately, wallets. So, which one is better?

We know you look to our conclusions for buying advice and some kind of closure. We don't think you need to look any further. Just this once, go a few pages back. Each individual category was won by either the Apple iPhone 5 or the Samsung Galaxy S III.

It's up to you to go over the ones that matter to you and tally the score. And don't be swayed by popular opinion. The smartphone is probably the most personal thing you own (it knows your friends, has your photos, goes everywhere with you), so it's up to you to decide which one is best.

Before you look at the price of either phone, there's one last thing to consider - how invested you are in either ecosystem already. For example, you may have iPhone accessories worth a few hundred dollars (though the iPhone 5 pretty much wiped the slate clean on this one), or maybe various apps you've bought and don't want to lose.

That leads us to price and the difference is by no means negligible. SIM-free the iPhone 5 is probably the most expensive smartphone on the market right now, topping the Samsung Galaxy S III in Europe by almost 200 euros.

But then, resale value is another thing you might want to look at, after all it won't be long before the next Galaxy S and iPhone generation is out, tempting you to upgrade. Of course, you can easily use the Galaxy S III and iPhone 5 for a couple of years and not feel too far behind the flagship du jour.

Some would say that the most damning verdict for the iPhone 5 is that it's trading blows with a smartphone that came to the market 5 months before it, instead of wiping the floor with it. Others will point to the fact that the Galaxy S III took three months to achieve the sales numbers that the Apple flagship already has.

In the end, the iPhone 5 vs. Galaxy S III argument comes down to portability vs. screen size, LCD vs. AMOLED, closed vs. open, Apple vs. Samsung. The latter have been in and out of court for a while now but this particular dispute won't be settled in a courtroom. You'll be the judge, so the winner doesn't have to be the one with the better lawyers.

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