Google Nexus 4 vs Apple iPhone 5
In the smartphone universe, Google’s Nexus device is widely argued as the premier handset for the entire platform – especially more when it’s running the vanilla Android experience. And normally, it’s usually quite often that it’s pitted against the very best from Apple’s camp, which as we all know, should be none other than the latest model of the iPhone. Soaking that all in, we’re seeking to find out exactly how the Google Nexus 4 and Apple iPhone 5 stack up against one another. Going into this crucial holiday period, there’s no arguing that the two are highly sought commodities at the moment, but as with all comparisons, we’ll put our two cents after we compare how they perform in all categories.
Even from a cursory glance, we still can’t help be attracted to the iPhone 5’s iconic design and its premium construction. Not only is it lighter and thinner than its rival, but it’s also easier to hold in the hand because of its more form fitting size. And with its premium choice of materials, like its brushed aluminum casing and chamfered beveled trim, it adds a solid sense of sturdiness to its overall construction. Well, there are still some attractive elements with the Nexus 4, like its glass surfaces and the neat optical illusion design of its rear, but as a whole, its appearance from the front seems all too conventional. In addition, it’s super slippery and prone to such unwanted distractions like smudges and fingerprints.
Although the physical buttons around the trim of both handsets are springy in response, our fingers are better able to distinguish the iPhone 5’s set – mainly because they’re raised more. As for some of the common items the two share around their edges, they include the 3.5mm headset jack, standard mic, and noise-cancellation microphone.
charging/data connectivity – whereas the iPhone 5 relies on Apple’s new proprietary Lightning docking port. Sure, it’s just a pain trying to get video-out functionality with Nexus 4, as its SlimPort socket requires an optional adapter, but it’s nice that a wired connection is available for it. Conversely, there’s no wired option available for the iPhone 5 yet, and instead, the only way is to go the wireless route via AirPlay.
camera, versus the 1.2-megapixel one on the iPhone 5 – with both having the ability to shoot video in 720p. In the rear, however, they’re both featuring 8-megapixel auto-focus cameras with LED flashes – while being able to shoot video in good ol’ 1080p. However, it’s worth mentioning that Apple’s beauty is packing an f2.4 lens and backside illuminated sensor.
Considering these high-end smartphones we’re dealing with, it’s only natural to see them being accompanied with stunning displays. On the Nexus 4, it’s donning a larger 4.7-inch True HD IPS Plus display with WXGA 768 x 1280 resolution, which produces a high pixel density of 318 ppi. In contrast, the iPhone 5 packs a smaller 4-inch Retina Display, which is mighty large for an iPhone of course, but equally so, its 640 x 1136 resolution manages to inch out a higher pixel density of 326 ppi. Certainly, it’s the iPhone 5 getting the mark on paper for delivering the better numbers, but in practical usage, there isn’t a drastic difference between the sharpness of both – as our eyes take a liking to their detailed looks from a normal viewing distance.
Meanwhile, they share some other similar qualities, as their IPS LCD based displays deliver warmer color tones that light up our eyes with their vibrancy, strong brightness output, and superb outdoor visibility. However, we notice that viewing angles are better on the iPhone 5 at extreme angles – since there’s some noticeable distortion on the Nexus 4. Hardly a recognizable thing at the beginning, we notice that the Nexus 4 ‘s touch sensitivity isn’t as good as its rival, seeing that it requires firmer presses for it to register.
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Drag the picture or use the keyboard arrows to rotate the phone.
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4. Kuherrn (Posts: 16; Member since: 09 Nov 2012)
Why are you suprised??? A better, all-rounded phone definitely wins... and that phone is the Nexus 4.
7. MeoCao (unregistered)
I'm very impressed with iP5 camera, they managed to make one of the top camera and still kept the phone very thin.
Other than the camera, it's Nexus 4 all the way.
13. wendygarett (unregistered)
I'm very impress that you don't mention about the purple tint on the iPhone 5 camera... Thank you :)
21. MeoCao (unregistered)
LOL, I wanted to talk about that, but unfortunately N4 has it too. :((
48. nwright94 (unregistered)
Pretty much any digital camera has the chance of getting a purple flare, I even get it sometimes on my dslr.
56. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
Lens flare is not a function of a digital camera. Even film cameras suffered from lens flare. There is a reason that lens hoods are sold for lenses.
What I am wondering is why the iP5 has lens flare while the 4S does not (at least nowhere near what the iP5 has).
57. nwright94 (unregistered)
Could be the sapphire lens, since sapphire is blue it will turn glare purple easier. My iP4 had lens flare a good bit, I actually don't get much of it on my 5 unless I'm really trying. My atrix even got the flare to a point.
58. remixfa (Posts: 14255; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)
I finally got lens flare. I had to point the damn thing directly at the sun on a cloud free day to get some purple to show up. Anything other than that and its non existent.
here... isnt it a perty day out.. this was thanksgiving day
com/-al_fYMzSmf0/UK6Eh2tGLMI/AAAAAA AAWwo/QyksnvjEgMo/s1215/IMG_20 121122_141111.jpg
btw, heres that DSLR fire effect I mentioned a few days ago since im in my G+
com/-uyIaJcHs68o/UK8THHhmeRI/AAAAAA[/img] AAW0s/3lVhzoObfEY/s1215/IMG_20 121122_173549.jpg
60. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5498; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)
"I had to point the damn thing directly at the sun on a cloud free day to get some purple to show up."
In such conditions it is normal.
In iPhone 5 case you don't have to search for special conditions to get Purple Halo.
61. nwright94 (unregistered)
I have to search too. It's not as prevalent as other android fanatics would have you believe. I rarely get it, even in super sunny conditions. Non of my photos in my photo gallery has this purple flare. Enough with the blatant trolling, you don't look cool.
70. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5498; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)
"Enough with the blatant trolling, you don't look cool."
It is officially admited by Apple that there is such problem like a "Purple Halo" so keep your propositions about trolling away... (Or maybe Apple is also trolling?)
Also Google and look how much you will find complaints about Nexus 4 "Purple Halo" and how much iPhone 5 "Purple Halo" complains...
71. nwright94 (unregistered)
Yes, apple did admit the iPhone 5 was prone to the purple halo, I will give you that, but you can't assume all iPhone 5 models have that much of an issue with it just like not all nexus 4s will have the problems. You seem to excuse any issues any android phone has even if the iPhone may run into the same issue. And spare me the whole "apple fans preach about how perfect their products are" because I've heard it over and over and they're just as bad as those who make it a point to bash on Apple.
72. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5498; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)
First of all I have never praised Nexus 4 camera's quality! I just say that it is much easier to get "Purple Halo" on iPhone 5 than on Nexus 4.
77. Berzerk000 (Posts: 4170; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)
It was probably just a first shipment problem. Nearly every phone has those. The HTC One S had it with its ceramic coating chipping off, the Galaxy S3 had it with the polycarbonate cracking along the camera and sides, the iPhone 4 had antenna-gate, now the iPhone 5 has the purple halo (among other things).
I'm sure once Apple noticed there was a problem they made a change in the manufacturing process that helped reduce the purple halo effect. It's mostly early adopters that get the problem.
8. AmitMajumder (Posts: 166; Member since: 21 May 2012)
I mean, PA never lets anything other than iPhone win.
38. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 3135; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)
Then it comes to the point that N4 killed the iP5!!
Nexus 4 FTW!!
46. mas11 (Posts: 1033; Member since: 30 Mar 2012)
Well there was the Galaxy S3. It actually beat the iPhone here
43. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
I wonder how long before Apple gets a clue and updates the iOS UI?
44. gustavoace (Posts: 130; Member since: 13 Nov 2012)
I'm very impressed with the "premium quality of iphone 5", as they posted yesterday a 2 months old iphone totally scratched..
Premium quality has my Nexus S, with 2 years old and only a few scratchs.
63. appleDOESNT.com (banned) (Posts: 456; Member since: 19 Nov 2011)
PA enough with the iPone 'iconic' design mumbo jumbo. Unless by iconic you mean 3 years old, tired and the same but weirdly taller!
We get it, you like how the taller iP4 from 2010 looks, GOT IT! NOW GET OVER IT, it isn't anything special 3 years later except NOW it doesn't work with all your accessories lol
73. rusticguy (Posts: 2828; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)
Apple spends money on feeding the press to call it ICONIC (notsure if it is trademarked by apple coz it starts with "I") ...just ignore it if you donlt like. It's reviewers personal opinion and not necessarily to be used for making a buying decision :)
10. wendygarett (unregistered)
I remember you guys keep say iphone sucks because has no 4g lte... And now it's PAYBACK TIME!!! >:D
14. Kuherrn (Posts: 16; Member since: 09 Nov 2012)
And that's why we have phones like the Note 2, Droid DNA, S3, One X+ and Optimus G. It's something called choice, something that Apple is reluctant to give to consumers, and something that you will not be able to payback...
Payback all you want, but I have the comfort of knowing MOST of the people know which phone is better :)
17. wendygarett (unregistered)
Yeah your right, how can I laugh when android is so light year ahead from ios... I'm sayin this so that I hope you guy stop critics Apple for the sick of critics lol
41. FranksGT (Posts: 167; Member since: 29 Aug 2012)
To bad a Iphone 5 holds it value and will always hold its value better then any of those phones!!!!!
52. fanboy1974 (Posts: 1313; Member since: 12 Nov 2011)
Problem is iPhone 5 16gig is $650 while the Nexus 4 16gig is $350. That's a $300 difference right off the bat if your paying straight up. Your going to lose more money on iPhone 5 after 2 years. The only way iPhone 5 makes sense is if you lock into a 2 year contract at the subsidized price of $200.
Got to go. My Note 2 just showed up.
16. Lawliet (Posts: 160; Member since: 02 Jul 2012)
They said you can activate Nexus 4 LTE somewhere iirc
Doesn't matter anyway, there's no LTE where I'm living
26. SleepingOz (unregistered)
When you buy a smartphone at $700+, LTE is the minimum you'd expect.
The nexus 4, which is a better smartphone according to this review btw, is another story. I have no complaints whatsoever since it's priced at $300.
32. remixfa (Posts: 14255; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)
the Nexus4 has LTE. Its just not activated.
49. nwright94 (unregistered)
And has no amplifier and only runs on one band that only tmobiles lte in the US will have.
47. gustavoace (Posts: 130; Member since: 13 Nov 2012)
They will release a 4g version soon.. Its always like that.. dont worry, you'll be able to get your nexus on 4g =D
50. gustavoace (Posts: 130; Member since: 13 Nov 2012)
Just to make clear... Siri and Google Now is NOT equivalent. Siri is like Google Search, and Google Now has no competitor yet
68. networkdood (Posts: 6330; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)
Wendy, hate to break the news, but that little phone still 'sucks'
12. Thomas5.3 (Posts: 37; Member since: 30 Oct 2011)
Maybe because you can buy 3 nexus 4's for one iphone 5
35. -box- (Posts: 3968; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)
$300X3=900 =/= 650
You can get 2 Nexus4s and have $50 left over...
54. -box- (Posts: 3968; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)
I get two thumbs down for accurate mathematics?
23. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5498; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)
"Nexus 4 won? How is that possible?"
Misleading maneuver to create a false impression. In other words, try to make all think that there is no more bias. But just wait few weeks and bias will come back. ;)
My opinion about author and article.
27. SleepingOz (unregistered)
29. bloodline (Posts: 704; Member since: 01 Dec 2011)
Sorry but the whole article read like an iphone promotion. Claiming the iphone is easier to use with its notifications...wtf Android notifications are the best in the business.
Also what every reviewer fails to mention is that through androids deep customisation it actually becomes even easier to use than the iphone because you personalise it to meet your needs.
Design is always preference and subjective, why have a phone that is easier to chip ? why make a phone out of glass? IMO samsung builds are better because they are more durable, they may feel plastic but people need a phone for a couple of years - durable is key.
37. -box- (Posts: 3968; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)
...don't both phones have glass portions on their backs?
I concur about design being subjective; personally I find the iphones boring, toy-like, and uninspired, as well as uninviting and unpleasant to hold.
65. networkdood (Posts: 6330; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)
Personalization and cost were the factors as everything else was a 'wash'
2. SGSatlantis (Posts: 205; Member since: 20 Jul 2011)
Wait isn't the Nexus 4 two times cheaper than the iPhone 5?
3. wendygarett (unregistered)
The nexus 4 is the sexiest nexus device I had ever seen... The back looks like a bling bling diamond just like optimus g... Not to mention, LG screen always an epic for me... With that kind of spec... Nexus 4 is easily beats iPhone down lol
Oh well, feel free to thumb me down of you think I'm dishonest :p
Sent from my iPhone 5
20. JunitoNH (Posts: 1285; Member since: 15 Feb 2012)
You mean sexy, with the nice glass backing like the iPhone 4? Weren't the droidheads decrying and blasting the iPhone because of this built? But again, Nexus was the first device with glass.
39. Nikolas.Oliver (banned) (Posts: 1574; Member since: 01 Jul 2012)
the design is 11/12 compared to the gnex, but for the build quality the nexus 4 is clearly better than gnex
45. FranksGT (Posts: 167; Member since: 29 Aug 2012)
Might be a good looking device but LG has always been known for making the worst fingerprint/smudge friendly device and idk why :(
55. -box- (Posts: 3968; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)
I thumbed you down because you used a made up word (bling) and the signature.
I then un-thumbed you down because you're accurate statements about the Nexus 4.
64. wendygarett (unregistered)
Lol that's ok :)
15. Tmachaveli (Posts: 425; Member since: 01 Apr 2011)
What no more iphonearena? Pa never lets the fruit lose
18. jacobxtyler (Posts: 28; Member since: 02 Oct 2012)
to be honest, it wouldve been a tougher choice for me between the nexus 4 and iphone 5 if the iphone was cheaper, better designed, and had something new to offer as far as OS. i think the stretched out iphone 4 idea was dumb, but dang does that camera look good...
22. redmd (Posts: 1025; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)
iPhone 5 at 650? That's that's a super bargain! In some countries it costs some of your organs.
25. redmd (Posts: 1025; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)
also PA whenyou're checking for viewing angles please have the same picture displayed on the screen.
30. mydi.maus (unregistered)
none of them won,.or best.2013 is one block away thats when the best ones release,.from quad cores 2.0ghz, and all that crap everyone wants.
31. darac (Posts: 2156; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
Talk about the clear cut win.
Same time last year this comparison was debatable in terms of winner, but now only a completely clouded vision reviewer could see the iPhone as the better of the two.
Nexus 4 kicks the iPhone 5 out of the park.
36. Aeires (unregistered)
Great comparison except I have to disagree on some of the points made in the design section.
First off, the iPhone isn't that much narrower and the length is similar, how does that make the iPhone easier to hold? On both phones you cannot activate the upper corner with one hand due to the length of the phones, both require two hand use for top activated items. If it was the Note II, I'd say the iPhone was definitely easier to hold but the N4 isn't that far off from the iPhone in size.
Secondly, get over your love affair with aluminum. I got my N4 last night and can say with assurance it's a sturdy build quality, this phone feels solid on all levels of build aspects. Many Android phones get ragged on for having plastic backs, the N4 is gorilla glass and it still doesn't get the credit for great build quality. Both phones are solid. N4 is slick though, totally agree with that and will have to get used to making sure it's sitting on a level surface.
Why doesn't the iPhone get called conventional on the front face? It's the same design since 2007. If that's not conventional, I don't know what is. The screen is now 4" but the earphone is the same, and it still has the big button on the bottom. Conventional.
Other than that, I can see about everything else that is compared.
40. Nikolas.Oliver (banned) (Posts: 1574; Member since: 01 Jul 2012)
iPhone 5 = For gals
Nexus 4 = for us (i assume you all are a guy)
76. feres13 (Posts: 306; Member since: 23 Dec 2011)
IMO that sparkly ugly pattern glass back and the curvy rounded design is very GAY so...