Nokia Lumia Icon vs Samsung Galaxy S4
Nearly a year has gone by, and it’s hard to believe that the Samsung Galaxy S4 is still in contention – its heart still beating profusely in light of the heavy competition around. Over on Verizon’s lineup, the Nokia Lumia Icon is giving the carrier a contemporary Windows Phone that customers have been craving, which is a refreshing addition taking into account the rarity of Windows Phones in general.
One new smartphone, another widely regarded as aged, both are no doubt going to compete against one another to earn loyalty amongst Big Red’s customer base. Right off the bat, it’s looking mighty favorable for the Lumia Icon because it’s brand spanking new, but don’t count out Sammy’s flagship from giving it a good run for its money.
There’s a distinctive styling attached to Nokia’s line of Lumia smartphones that make them oh-so appealing from a design standpoint. Of course, the Icon follows all of those design principles to give it the slightly favorable design over the Galaxy S4. For starters, the Icon’s construction, which consists of a polycarbonate body sandwiched together by a metallic frame, radiates a significant amount of sturdiness over the Galaxy S4’s slippery polished polycarbonate casing.
Looking at them at a glance, it’s almost difficult to say which of the two has the smaller frame, but on paper, it’s actually Sammy’s product that’s thinner, lighter, and more compact – though, it isn’t all that much. Taking them both into our hands, we surely appreciate the rounded edges of the Galaxy S4’s sides, as the metallic bezel of the Icon is rather sharp to the touch, which causes it to feel uncomfortable to grasp with a single hand. Even though it has some design elements we’ve seen with previous Lumias, the Icon’s design continues to be more appealing over Sammy’s offering.
Sure, we’re able to access their respective power buttons and volume controls with little fluff, but we like how the set on the Icon are more pronounced to the touch – plus, it’s helpful that it has a dedicated shutter key. They both feature microUSB ports for charging and data connectivity, but it’s only the Galaxy S4 that gives us video-out functionality as well with the aid of an adapter. Finally, we should point out that Sammy’s flagship packs along an IR blaster that allows it to double as a universal remote.
To see the phones in real size or compare them with other models, visit our Visual Phone Size Comparison page.
Interestingly enough, they share very similarly spec’d displays that rely on OLED technology. To elaborate more on that, it’s a 5-inch 1080p ClearBlack AMOLED display in the Lumia Icon, and a 5-inch 1080p Super AMOLED display with the Galaxy S4. Knowing that they have the same screen sizes and resolutions, they produce the same level of detail – giving even the most miniscule of text an effective amount of clarity to allow us to make them out in a zoomed out view in their web browsers.
Furthermore, their saturated color productions, in combination with the stellar viewing angles, allow for minimal distortion at various angles. When bright and vivid colors are in abundance, you know for sure that these two displays have the wow factor to keep our eyes affixed to them. Neither are actually great with outdoor visibility, as the two displays barely get close to the 300 nits brightness level.
As we’ve seen, the two displays match one another in several areas, but there’s more tech involved with the Galaxy S4’s display. Specifically, it’s able to track our finger as we’re hovering over it, which works in tandem with the handset’s various Air View functions. Throwing that aside as we look at the big picture, there’s not one display that we greatly prefer over the other.