Loses Apple to Android

Apple vs. Samsung: The agony of choice

Whether it's the first smartphone or simply a change, everyone asks at some point: Apple or Samsung. We list the advantages and disadvantages here.

The brand question is not about the kings of smartphones. Samsung is in first place among the most successful device manufacturers, but Apple "only" in fourth place, after Huawei and Xiaomi. This "rivalry" has a completely different reason. With the first generation of iPhones, Apple ensured that smartphones as we know them today could be used in salons. Samsung, on the other hand, opened the market for many manufacturers together with Google's Android operating system and has shown since 2009 that very good quality is not defined by high price alone.

In the meantime you get top flagships from both manufacturers, which outdo each other with innovative technology and many new gadgets. A decision is definitely difficult. The iPhone 12 and the Galaxy S21 are both very good smartphones, each with their own strengths and weaknesses.

The biggest difference: the operating system

The operating system is likely to be the first important decision-making factor for many. If you have absolutely nothing to do with iOS, then you are more likely not to buy an iPhone. If, on the other hand, Android is too unsafe for you, then you probably tend more towards an Apple smartphone. Because the operating systems differ not only in how they are operated.

iOS: hardware and software from a single source

With iOS, Apple has created a system that works optimally with the hardware installed in the smartphone. With an iPhone, you get a perfectly coordinated and closed system that has hardly any bugs and provides even very old devices with the latest updates.

The closed system is also the biggest point of criticism. For a long time there were no options for customizing your own smartphone. In addition, there are fewer apps available in the Apple Store compared to Google Play. This is due, among other things, to Apple's strict store policy, which makes it difficult for developers to position themselves there. Fortnite players recently noticed a certain resentment about this.

Android: more open and insecure?

In contrast to iOS is Google's Android. Here you will find an open operating system, which manufacturers and users can customize according to their own wishes. This makes it easy for the developer to make his programs available on Android devices. The result is a higher number of free apps in the Google Play Store.

But such an open system also poses a greater risk of security breaches. The apps available in the store are less strictly controlled and the possibility of malware always exists. Since Android is available as an open system for many manufacturers of smartphones, the operating system often does not harmonize well with the hardware. The performance then suffers as a result.

Design: classy and suitable for everyday use?

An Apple smartphone can be recognized by its design at least since the iPhone 12. But Samsung has also ensured a recognition effect on the Galaxy S21 with the new camera module. Therefore, the desired design may also be an argument for one or the other manufacturer.

Apple itself always relies on a classy appearance. The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 mini look very chic, even though they only have an aluminum frame. Among other things, this is ensured by the striking design with rounded corners and clear edges, as well as the glass back. The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max even have a stainless steel frame. But you still have to live with a notch on the display.

Samsung, on the other hand, does without a notch and prefers to use a punch hole, which almost makes the selfie camera disappear and gives the screen more space. Fans of the smartphone series are hoping for a camera that is installed under the screen in the future. It goes without saying that Samsung will make this leap ahead of Apple.

However, Samsung loses a bit of its shine in the processing. While the Galaxy S21 Plus and Galaxy S21 Ultra are still equipped with a beautiful glass back, the standard model is only available with plastic. This is certainly okay for a mid-range smartphone, but you should be able to expect more for almost 850 euros.

The camera: space zoom or night mode?

Even with the built-in cameras, Samsung and Apple couldn't set more different priorities. While Apple has less technical numbers and relies more on a software solution, Samsung's Space Zoom alone is a real eye-catcher. Literally.

The 108 MP camera of the Galaxy S21 Ultra offers a 100x space zoom. You can use it to take detailed pictures of the moon. Don't you think so? Then look at this photo:

Anyway, Samsung has a lot of technical numbers. 64 MP telephoto lenses for the triple cameras of the S21 and S21 Plus as well as four lenses with up to 108 MP for the S21 Ultra. There is also an optical zoom and many different filter settings for your photos.

Apple, on the other hand, relies more on good interaction between the camera and the software used. The numbers for the iPhone 12 are sobering (dual camera with 12 MP on the iPhone 12 / mini and a triple camera with 12 MP on the iPhone 12 Pro / Pro Max), but the strengths of Apple are clearly the built-in sensors.

The night mode lets absolute darkness shine on a bright day and the portrait mode recognizes contours without any problems. Pictures with a bokeh effect can be created without problems with expensive SLR cameras. Apple understands its software and uses it in combination with the built-in hardware. You can tell that the American manufacturer is looking for the best result and not the best technology.

Performance: powerful flagships

The fact that the iPhone 12 is just as much a performance monster as Samsung's Galaxy S21 should go without saying for the manufacturers and the price. Apple itself speaks of the most powerful processor ever built into an iPhone with the new A14 chipset. And Samsung's Exynos 2100 was even able to throw Qualcomm's Snapdragon 888 from the throne in the first benchmark tests. So you don't have to be afraid that your favorite game will weaken.

In terms of the built-in memory, however, Samsung has the lead. At least when it comes to transparency. The Galaxy S21 and the S21 Plus each have 8 GB of RAM, the S21 Ultra even 12 GB and 16 GB of RAM, respectively. Apple itself covers the cloak of silence about the built-in RAM in the iPhone 12, which is why there are various sources of 4 GB for the iPhone 12 and the mini-offshoot or 6 GB of RAM for the Pro models.

But you don't have to expect performance disadvantages. More memory is a very good thing, but since iOS apps do not have to be optimized for numerous different hardware configurations, but only for Apple's smartphones, programs are better tailored to the hardware and the built-in chip.

The same goes for the battery. On paper, the iPhone 12 seems to have a lower capacity than the Samsung models. But less computing work is done through efficient operation. This has a positive effect on the battery life.

Conclusion: Apple or Samsung?

We don't have a clear answer for you. This is also not possible because two of the best smartphone manufacturers are juxtaposed here. Both have their strengths and weaknesses, which they try to expand or minimize with each new generation.

But what is the point of this comparison if there is never a clear answer? Quite simply: arguments that should help you when switching and making a purchase decision. Is a stable and secure operating system more important to you than a low price? Then reach for Apple. Do you want the maximum amount of current flagship technology and a significantly higher number of apps? Then take Samsung. Or does it have to have a specific design or color? Then see which models you like.

Either way, the iPhone 12 in its four variants, as well as the Galaxy S21 models, are currently the best smartphones that you can buy on the market in terms of performance and technology. A bad buy can therefore be ruled out.