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Google Nexus 5 VS Samsung Galaxy S4 Comparison Review

The Google Nexus 5 and the Samsung Galaxy S4 feature Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 800 and Samsung’s own Exynos 5410 chispets respectively, which are seen as two of the most powerful mobile chipsets going around. While the Nexs 5 is pretty much a newcomer on the scene, Samsung’s Galaxy S4 has been going around for a while now. However, what gives the Nexus 5 an upper hand is the Google-subsidised price tag, making it a very attractive alternative to the Samsung counterpart. However, there are things about each device which make the other look better. Let us go ahead and speak in more detail.


Weight and Body Design

Nexus 5 dimensions: 137.9 x 69.2 x 8.6 mm, weight: 130g

Galaxy S4 dimensions: 136.6 x 69.8 x 7.9 mm, weight: 130g

The Nexus 5 is the thicker on of the two, but apart from thickness you won’t be able to feel any difference in dimensions when either device is held in your hands. Both devices aren’t too big, and based on my experience with the Galaxy S4 while keeping in mind the dimensions of the Nexus 5, I can say that the Nexus 5 would fit most hands well.

Display and Processor

Both devices come with 5 inch displays (Nexus 5 has a 4.95 inch screen, the 0.05 inch difference can be safely neglected) which pack a full HD resolution of 1920×1080 pixels. While the Galaxy S4 packs a pixel density of 441ppi, the Nexus 5 churns out a negligibly greater 445ppi thanks to the slightly smaller display. While the Nexus 5 uses IPS panels, the Galaxy S4 comes with the trademark Samsung Super AMOLED. Both technologies have their own pros and cons. While the Super AMOLED panel on the S4 will accentuate and sometimes over-saturate the picture, it’ll come with better power management. On the other hand, the IPS panel on the Nexus will provide great viewing angles.

The Nexus 5 features Qualcomm’s Snapdraon 800, featuring a quad core 2.3GHz CPU making it one among the most powerful mobile processors. Giving neck-to-neck competition to this is Samsung’s Exynos 5410, which comes with 2 sets of quad core CPUs, one clocked 1.6GHz (Cortex A15) and the other, 1.2GHz (Cortex A7). The chipset automatically switches between these sets of cores depending upon the processing power that’s required. However, neither beats the Qualcomm Snapdragon 800, which should beat the Exynos 5410 in most departments.

Camera and Memory

We haven’t physically tested the Nexus 5’s shooter yet, but are very inclined to believe in the claims made by Google about the 8MP OIS camera on the phone. In pure megapixel terms, the Galaxy S4’s 13MP sounds way better than the 8MP used on the Nexus 5. However, the Nexus 5 offers some new-age tech like OIS (Optical Image Stabilization) which promises to make the picture blur free. On the other hand, the Galaxy S4 comes with a tried and tested 13MP unit, which does neutral shots which are, upto an extent, very life-like.

The Nexus 5 comes in 16/32GB variants, while the Galaxy S4 does an additional 64GB variant. Plus, the Nexus 5, like its younger siblings, does not feature a microSD slot for expansion while the S4 does, which means the S4 is your choice if you are looking for a device with expandable storage.

Battery and Features

The S4 comes with a 2600mAh battery, while the Nexus 5 features a smaller 2300mAh unit. However, the Nexus 5 has the Snapdragon 800 chipset which boasts better power management, which should be able to bridge the gap of 300mAh between the two batteries. One full day of backup on both devices with moderate usage should be achieved by most users, which means we can’t pick one out of the two. However, the S4 will have greater standby hours.

The S4 features gesture controls which don’t come with the Nexus 5. As gimmicky as they may seem, it is our duty to make you aware of them and we did.

Key Specs

Model LG Google Nexus 5 Samsung Galaxy S4
Display 4.95 inches full HD 5 inches full HD
Processor 2.3GHz quad core 1.2GHz quad core
1.6GHz quad core
Internal Storage 16/32GB 16/32/64GB
OS Android v4.4 Android v4.3
Cameras 8MP/1.3MP 13MP/2MP
Battery 2300mAh 2600mAh
Price Starting 28,999 INR About 36,000 INR


While the S4 does very well to stay in the competition despite being the older device of the two, we have to say that the Nexus 5 will be our obvious choice. Reasons being – Snapdragon 800, direct Google support, lower cost, etc. And for the first time, the phone will be available via an official Google chain! However, you might have to do with low storage space on the phone since it does not feature a microSD card slot. Other than that, the phone is the outright winner!


Abhishek Bhatnagar

Abhishek Bhatnagar, a known technology blogger & YouTuber from India. A Software Engineer by qualification, now he works as the editor-In-Chief, Webmaster, & Managing Director at Gadgets To Use. He runs a number of other technology websites as well.