Samsung Galaxy S III vs Samsung Galaxy Nexus
In this comparison, we're using the international version of the Samsung Galaxy S III, which comes with a quad-core Exynos CPU and 1GB of RAM. The U.S. versions come with a dual-core Snapdragon S4 CPU and 2GB of RAM, as well as LTE, except for T-Mobile's, which lacks LTE.


The Samsung Galaxy Nexus has been one of our favorite Android phones, as it ushered us in the new era of Ice Cream Sandwich – the Android OS version that reinvented the platform and aspired it to a whole new level. Of course, almost all new Android phones nowadays come out with ICS, and the Galaxy S III is probably the brightest example at the moment.

Being the successor of last year's hit Galaxy S II, the Galaxy S III has yet to prove that it is the ultimate Android phone, and for this to happen, one of the numerous opponents that have to go down is the Galaxy Nexus. Let's see if the S III is capable enough to win a fight against the ICS pioneer!


Shape-wise, the Samsung Galaxy S III and Nexus are pretty close – they are about the same size and have rounded corners. Apparently, the S III is much closer to the Nexus than it is to the S II, when it comes to physical appearance. Personally, we prefer the cleaner looks of the Nexus, but whether you'll prefer the one or the other will obviously depend on your own taste. One thing regarding the design that actually doesn't depend on anyone's taste is the fact that the Galaxy S III uses capacitive buttons under the display, which are fairly easy to press accidentally, whereas this problem isn't present with the Nexus's on-screen keys.

As we said, the two device have almost the same dimensions, so they will feel equally bulky in your hand. They are both made of plastic (though the GS III is said to be polycarbonate), but the Galaxy S III has that glossy “Hyperglaze” finish, while the Nexus uses a matte “Hyperskin” finish. Both feel equally good to the touch, though we guess it depends on the person.


Even though both handsets are about the same size, the Galaxy S III manages to pack just a little more screen, measuring at 4.8 inches. Meanwhile, the Nexus isn't really short on screen as well, coming with a sizable 4.65” panel. Both devices use the HD Super AMOLED technology, which means that they both come with a resolution of 720x1280 pixels. Due to the slightly smaller display size of the Nexus, it has the slightly better pixel density, but the difference is more than negligible.

Colors are ultra-saturated on both, which is typical for AMOLED screens, however, there are some notable differences between the image quality of the Galaxy S III and Galaxy Nexus. On one hand, the Galaxy S III is a bit brighter, but on the other, the colors of the Nexus's display are closer to reality, due to them being warmer. Thankfully, on the Galaxy S III you can change that to a certain level, using the different screen modes in the settings.

The GS III and Galaxy Nexus use the PenTile matrix in their screens, which means that there's some slight pixelization when you look really closely, but thanks to the very high resolution, these unpleasant effects are reduced to a minimum.

Samsung Galaxy S III 360-degrees View:

Samsung Galaxy Nexus 360-degrees View:



1. Yummy

Posts: 117; Member since: Mar 28, 2012

I think the galaxy s3 is more up to date I guess? But both are really nice phones.

2. bucky

Posts: 3797; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

This should be a beat down. The nexus loses to the s2 never mind the s3

6. NexusKoolaid

Posts: 493; Member since: Oct 24, 2011

True, but the (GSM) Nexus will be munching on Jelly Beans sooner than either of those phones will.


Posts: 82; Member since: Dec 12, 2011

jelly bean is not for android phones its the new version for android tablets

56. NexFan

Posts: 1; Member since: Jul 03, 2012

Not true...your TechTeam needs an update. Jelly Bean is already available on GNex phones bought thru the GooglePlay store and OTA updates being pushed mid-July to existing GNex and Nexus S phones.

9. Non_Sequitur

Posts: 1111; Member since: Mar 16, 2012

Well, it does have stock ICS, which is pretty badass. The only thing that the S2 beats it in is camera and possibly battery life. I'd say the GNex is just a little better.

24. bucky

Posts: 3797; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

I'd have to add screen(though debatable), processor, sd card, speaker volume and video codec support.

3. KingKurogiii

Posts: 5713; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

the only Galaxy S III showdowns that'll be interesting are the ones versus the Droid Razr MAXX HD and the iPhone 5.

11. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

no, the best show down is going to be SGS3 vs SGS3. exynos quad vs S4 on the same phone for a processor vs processor super gun down. There is no way to cry about this spec or that when everything else is equal. :) Then we will laugh at the puny S4.. and then cry as we remember the american versions are S4 only.. :(

13. Sangeet

Posts: 232; Member since: Apr 21, 2012

thumbed up accidently.. you don't even know that how powerful is the snapdragon s4, you are the kind of person who brags about the specs which is written on sheet not on the real life performance.. The snapragon s4 kicked the tegra 3 out of the competition in benchmarks and i am sure that it would be more or less the same as the Samsung galaxy s3 hardware is as SG3 is only a little better in terms of hardware when compared to the HTC one X and yeah oyu don't deserve that thumbs up, just gave it to you accidently

18. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

you should go do some research before commenting. it makes you look less foolish. i , since they did a pretty in depth chip comparison and phone comparison. come back when you see just how far ahead the exynos is compared to the S4 and T3.

35. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

Tegra 2 couldnt really match up to the dual core Exynos. Both had their wins n losses in benchmarks and technology. Its no surprise the same thing is happening with Tegra 3 vs the quad core Exynos. Tegra 3's biggest thing will probably be battery life, while the Exynos will probably be pure performance. Anandtech really is a good place to get really in depth tech info.

20. KingKurogiii

Posts: 5713; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

that's true, tally that on to my list. o:

4. JDCohen722

Posts: 39; Member since: May 18, 2011

I was interested in the showdown between the S3 and the One X, but that was a huge disappointment, I definitely think the S3 isn't superior to the One X, unlike how it clearly is superior to the Nexus. Both are Quad Core with very similar power, if anything the S3 has the slight upper hand in power, both have nearly equal battery life, whereas the One X wins in design and build, the S3 wins in Software Functionality and features. The Cameras are arguably equal. Then with the screen One X's is better (Besides Blacks) but the S3's is a bit bigger making it nicer for watching movies or playing games, especially without that annoying virtual menu button. If anything they are virtually equally matched with mostly personal preferences deciding the winner. The SIII and the One X are both the 2 Android Kings, I felt it unfair for PhoneArena to decide that the S III is superior to the One X. GSMarena rated them equal powerhouses with the winner being your own personal preference. But I guess thats just what I think.

51. letgomyeggroll

Posts: 139; Member since: Jun 13, 2012

Lets make it clear, it is not a quad core, the processor is by Quadcomm! there is no smart phone out with quad core, there is no need for the time being. They just add more RAMs to the phone versus speeding up the processor

53. Ezzy77

Posts: 4; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

You have to be trolling. There are LOADS of quad core phones around. The manufacturer of Snapdragon SoC's is QUALcomm, not QUADcomm. Manufacturers haven't added more RAM into their flagship devices in over a year, they all have 1GB (SOME specific regional models of SGS3 and a phone by LG have 2Gigs of RAM IIRC).

54. letgomyeggroll

Posts: 139; Member since: Jun 13, 2012

Im maybe wrong, but tell me which phones that has Quad in them that operates in the U.S.? Cuz I havent seen any of heard of one. Maybe cuz there is no advantage of the quad core except to dream your battery 10x faster. As chips get smaller to into cellphones, they will add more RAMS. Dual cores are more than enough to run a smartphone smoothly with the correct amount of RAMs. With the RAMs, quad core will be running like a single core but take up more power. THIS IS WHY most laptops dont have quad core!!!!! So EZZY again what country are do you reside in to think this?

57. Ezzy77

Posts: 4; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

Yes, you are wrong. You have no idea what you're talking about. In most markets, HTC One X has a quad core SoC as does Samsung Galaxy S3, Asus Transformer Prime tablet, LG Optimus 4X HD etc. Some US phones, on some operators, have a LTE radio, so Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core SoC is in some devices instead of Nvidia's Tegra 3, but it's just as fast due to different architechture. But that doesn't mean there aren't ANY quad-core phones around. The power of phones isn't for the phone GUI to be fast, but for games and other multimedia, browsing etc. to be smoother. And adding more cores makes the battery last longer. RAM is memory, Android runs perfectly smoothly with 1GB and there will be phones this year that have 2GB in selected markets (as I mentioned earlier). It won't make a huge difference as Android has a good mamory management system already. And as for laptops, most Intel Core i5 and i7 processors (sandy bridge and ivy bridge) have 4 cores in them and I'd say most laptops are already running on those platforms (like the new Macbooks etc. Ultrabooks). My native country has nothing to do with these FACTS. Please look up some facts before you post stuff online.

58. letgomyeggroll

Posts: 139; Member since: Jun 13, 2012

It sounds you have done any research!!! You could not answer any of my questions? Becauuse there is no quad core phones in the USA. I never mention anything about laptops. Its a totally different device. The more core doesnt mean it save more battery power. Izzy, I will stop here, because none of what yiu post ate facts!!!! I built computers since AMD started, and deal with phones since Air Touch started, plus Im system tech. So enough knowledge base.

59. Ezzy77

Posts: 4; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

You never mentioned anything about laptops? You said "THIS IS WHY most laptops dont have quad core!!!!!" in your previous post, which is absolutely not true. I'll just stop there. There is no point in continuing this discussion if you don't even read what you write. As a side note: The reason why the T-Mobile version of SGS3 isnt quad-core, is that Exynos 4212 SoC's radio doesn't support HSPA+ "42Mbps" speeds. That's why it has the Snapdragon S4 SoC. The original test, to which you are commenting, uses the international version of SGS3 - which has the quad-core Exynos SoC - hence your first reply is obsolete. There was no mention about the US models of these devices in the comment before you brought it up. Also, Amazon is selling the quad-core SGS3 unlocked in the States and probably One X as well. And I have the quad-core Exynos version of SGS3 right here in my hands.

61. mbck1

Posts: 1; Member since: Jul 23, 2012

Typical american."me me me i'm the centre of the world" google up quad core phones. you know...use the internet. don't just go to your local shop. in saying the above, you are right. dual cores are more than enough. but hey we've seen this argument before...i've got bigger balls/breast/p***, etc, so you go have a surgery to make them 10* bigger. It's all pride and the companies are cashing in on that my gnex can do whatever the sgs3 can. smart stay? there's an app for that. pop up video? again another app. super smooth scrolling? jelly bean more than fixed that. straight calling from a message? pffft i just click a button...not a big deal the only thing you can't change is the average camera and the lousy speaker. 700 AUD vs 300AUD (i got mine for 120 :P)

5. lzsbleach

Posts: 155; Member since: May 20, 2012

I think its bull when its Android against Android theres always a declared winner but when its Android against the iphone 4s its always a tie no matter what high end Android phone it is.

25. SonyFTW2020

Posts: 311; Member since: May 03, 2012

beause no matter HOW MUCH better android is, people dont like to admit iphone sucks and why are we still comparing high end android phones such as the S3, the Xperia S and HTC one x to the pewny iphone?? you know iphone sucks when they stop comparing iphone to android and all you get is android vs androids now lol

28. gallitoking

Posts: 4721; Member since: May 17, 2011

when comparing Android vs. other OS there could never be a clear winner as you are comparing Apples to oranges..

37. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

Please explain how its apples to oranges .....comparing the OS's.... I agree there is or never will be a clear winner. Preferences kills that with most things in life.

44. rsco6969

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 04, 2012

i have been a massive apple fan, since the release of the 2nd gen iphone. i've had no other phone except the iphone, no tablet but ipad though i recently switched to S3, and im so glad i did. though the ipad is still top in my opinion. the s3 feels faster lighter less bulky. im glad i took the plunge. now i however the iphone 5? maybe ill get i dunno apple used to rule the market with there new ideas and most importantly patents, now thats over with older (original) companies can really kick ass apples a hasbeen though they still rule the tablet

52. letgomyeggroll

Posts: 139; Member since: Jun 13, 2012

Exactly my point,people that brags and defends the Iphones neer tried Android phone. Android phones by far is more user friendly, you have more options to set ur phone how you want it, and the hardware has always been couple years ahead of Iphones. The IPhone new gadgets has been followed from the Androids. Sorry to say this but Android had the front and back cameras, voice command and among other things years before Iphone. The worst part when Iphone release a new version, its TO FIX the previous version problems.

7. ddxmms

Posts: 170; Member since: Feb 09, 2012

we wont sg3 vs htc evo 4g lte.

8. KingKurogiii

Posts: 5713; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

they did. see the GSIII vs. the One X. :P

29. ddxmms

Posts: 170; Member since: Feb 09, 2012

lol,but i honestly think that the evo 4g better than the one x.

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