It’s time for year-end inventory again. Foreign media NewAtlas summarized the popular flagships in 2020, and selected 10 popular models to compare the specifications of the horizontal parameters.These include Apple’s four flagships (iPhone 12 Mini/12/12 Pro/12 Pro Max), Google’s three flagships (Pixel 4a/4a 5G/5) and Samsung’s three flagships (Galaxy S20/S20+/S20 Ultra ).
The iPhone 12 Mini, as the name implies, is the smallest of all eight devices. Next are the Pixel 4a and Pixel 5 devices, followed by the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro, followed by the Pixel 4a 5G, which is 2mm taller and 5mm wide.
Basically, the length of the high-end models is above 160 mm. iPhone 12 Pro is the widest mobile phone, exceeding 78mm, while the real “big guy” is Galaxy S20 Ultra, measuring 66.9 x 76 x 8.8 mm.
Among all 10 mobile phones, the weight difference is nearly 100g, which is equivalent to the weight of 20 cents. Although weight is not an important factor when shopping, you can choose a lighter phone if you want to be more portable.
Generally speaking, due to material problems, the iPhone will be heavier in the same size. Pixel 4a and Pixel 4a 5G are much lighter due to the plastic back cover. The 5G versions of the Galaxy S20+ and S20 Ultra are 2 grams heavier than the standard model.
Most devices provide rich colors for users to choose from. In addition to the basic black and white colors, iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Mini also offer red, green and blue options. On the high-end iPhone, Apple offers two colors of gold and silver, as well as dark graphite and navy blue.
The Pixel product line offers the fewest colors, among which Pixel 4a has only black. The Pixel 4a 5G adds a white version, and Pixel 5 offers an olive green that Google calls Sorta Sage.
Samsung tried to modify the colors with cool-sounding adjectives-the black and gray models are “Cosmic”, while the light blue and pink are “Cloud” colors.
Google started to take the people-friendly route this year, which means that Pixel 4a and Pixel 4a 5G are equipped with cheaper plastic materials. The aluminum back of the Pixel 5 is resin-coated.
All other mobile phones use front and rear glass and metal middle frame design, but the Galaxy series, iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Mini use aluminum alloy, while iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max use stainless steel.
Apple has now added the Ceramic Shield ceramic nano protective layer to all four iPhones, which is said to increase the screen’s ability to break and scratch when dropped by four times. In addition, the back of the fuselage is also equipped with a magnetic MagSafe function, which can use accessories including wallets, protective cases, and chargers.
The average screen size of these 10 mobile phones has reached 6 inches, and it is also showing an expanding trend. The iPhone 12 Mini has the smallest body size, 5.4 inches, while the Pixel 4a is 5.8 inches. Next is the 6-inch Pixel 5, the 6.1-inch iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro, and the Pixel 4a 5G and Galaxy S20 are both 6.2 inches.
The gap between iPhone 12 Pro Max and Galaxy S20+ is only 0.5 inches. The screen size of S20 Ultra is 6.9 inches, which is again ahead of similar products.
Another factor in the purchase of smartphones is the front screen-to-body ratio. All models have a screen-to-body ratio of over 80%. The Galaxy series has the highest screen-to-body ratio. All three screens have thin bezels, and there is a small “punch hole” on the camera housing, so the display covers 90% of their faces.
The iPhone is second only to the Galaxy series, with a screen-to-body ratio of 85% to 87.4%. Pixel has the lowest screen-to-body ratio. Although it uses a perforated design, the screen frame is still thick. The screen-to-body ratio is between 83% and 86%.
All 10 mobile phones exceed Full HD, and some models provide 4K resolution. The resolution of the iPhone 12 Mini and the three Pixel series is the same, 2340 x 1080, slightly higher than the Full HD of 1080P. Due to the smaller screen, the pixel density of the iPhone 12 mini is higher, reaching 476 pixels per inch (ppi).
Next are the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro, equipped with a resolution of 2532 x 1170 and a pixel density of 460 ppi. The iPhone 12 Pro max has a resolution of 2778 x 1284 and a pixel density of 458 ppi.
The Galaxy series has the best screen with a resolution of 3200*1440 and a pixel density of over 500 ppi.
Although both OLED and LCD screens have advantages and disadvantages, the entire industry seems to be developing towards the former. Apple is one of the latest batch of major manufacturers to use OLED trains, and now all series have standard OLED screens. Generally speaking, OLED (and its AMOLED variants) have brighter colors and deeper blacks.
The entire iPhone 12 series is equipped with the latest A14 Bionic processor. This is the first processor in the mobile phone market that uses the 5nm production process, most of which are still using the 7nm process. Apple boasts that it is the fastest smartphone ever.
All other mobile phones use Qualcomm Snapdragon processors. The three Galaxy series run the Snapdragon 865 processor, while the Pixel runs the mid-range Snapdragon 700 series processor, which allows them to reduce prices while still providing reasonably fast chips. In addition, 765G has built-in 5G connectivity, allowing Pixel 4a 5G and 5 to take advantage of this new network service.
As always, the iPhone series have the least amount of memory. iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Mini only have 4GB, while iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max have 6GB.
Pixel 5, Galaxy S20 and S20+ contain 8 GB of RAM, while the latter two also offer 12 GB options. Finally, the Galaxy S20 Ultra has a starting capacity of 12 GB and a maximum of 16 GB. To be honest, this is almost too large for a mobile phone.
The front camera of the Pixel series has the lowest specifications, with an 8-megapixel selfie camera and f/2.0 aperture. Galaxy S20 and S20+ are 10 million pixels and provide a larger aperture.
The iPhone 12 series is 12 million pixels, and it provides a TrueDepth 3D camera that can provide Face ID facial recognition.
Galaxy S20 Ultra provides a 4 million pixel front camera.
Multiple cameras have become standard. Except for the Pixel 4a, there are two to three cameras on every phone. All three Google phones provide a 12.2-megapixel main camera, while 4a, 5G and 5 add an ultra-wide-angle lens with 16 million pixels.
The iPhone 12 series provides a wide-angle and ultra-wide-angle lens, each with 12 million pixels. The iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max also added a 12 million telephoto lens and LiDAR depth sensor, similar to the technology used to help self-driving cars navigate.
Galaxy S20 and S20+ have similar arrays, but their telephoto lens is 64 million. The S20 Ultra weighed some extra telephoto details and provided it to the 108 million wide-angle lens. S20+ and Ultra are also equipped with a depth-sensing camera on the back. They do not take pictures themselves, but are used to enhance photo functions such as bokeh and augmented reality (AR).
These phones all have similar camera modes, but some phones are better than others in handling certain tasks. All 10 mobile phones can take photos with high dynamic range (HDR) to capture darker and brighter areas with higher accuracy. They can all stitch multiple photos together to create a big panorama. They all have some form of night mode, which can collect more light in a darker scene through a longer exposure time.
They all have a bokeh function (usually in a so-called portrait mode) that allows the photographer to subtly blur the background to make the subject pop out. After taking a photo, Samsung’s Live Focus function can be adjusted later.
All 10 mobile phones have AR function, which can overlay digital characters and objects on real images through the camera. As mentioned earlier, the LIDAR on the iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max and the depth sensor on the Galaxy S20+ and S20 Ultra should improve both effects.
Now introduce the unique mode. The iPhone 12 series has a feature called “deep fusion”, which can capture several consecutive exposures to improve the details of different depths and stitch them together to form a clearer image.
Pixel has a dual exposure control function, allowing users to adjust the highlights and shadows in the photo separately. The features of the Pixel series and Galaxy series can improve the photos of moving objects by capturing short videos and extracting the best still images from them. Pixel calls it Top Shot, while galaxies call it Single Take.
Samsung’s “Scene Optimizer” mode can recognize the photos you want to take (whether it’s a face, food, animals, scenery or sunset) and automatically adjust settings such as exposure, contrast, and white balance as needed.
Galaxy S20+ and S20 Ultra also have a clever new mode called DepthVision, which uses a 3D camera to measure the height, width, area and volume of the object you scan. It can also create digital 3D renderings of objects, which can be saved, sent to friends, and even added to photos and videos.
The last is zoom. The Pixel series only has digital zoom. Google calls it Super Res, but it does not specify the zoom range. With the help of ultra-wide-angle lenses, iPhone 12 and 12 mini have 5x digital zoom and 2x optical zoom. iPhone 12 Pro increases the digital zoom to 10 times. Pro Max can provide up to 12x digital, 2.5x optical input and 2x optical output.
Galaxy S20 and S20+ can perform 3x optical zoom and 30x digital zoom, while S20 Ultra has 10x optical zoom and powerful 100x digital zoom.
All 10 mobile phones support Full HD and 4K UHD video recording, and the maximum is 60 fps. Galaxy series are the first phones to support 8K video shooting.
All mobile phones support slow motion shooting. The iPhone 12 series can perform slow motion with Full HD resolution at 120 fps or 240 fps, while the Pixel series has a 720P screen at 240 fps. The Galaxy series can provide 960 fps video shooting.
On the contrary, iPhone and Galaxy series can also speed up the time to make time-lapse videos. All 10 mobile phones have optical and electronic image stabilization (OIS / EIS) functions. The Galaxy series can also shoot HDR10+ videos.
One of Apple’s most impressive techniques is the introduction of Dolby Vision technology. Normally this is a post-processing step, but this is the first time that real-time processing has been implemented.
All iPhones are only unlocked with Face ID, and the Pixel series is still the traditional physical fingerprint method, with the sensor located on the back of the fuselage.
In the Galaxy S, the front camera can be quickly unlocked, and an ultrasonic fingerprint sensor is used on the screen.
Four iPhones, three Galaxy and Pixel 5 all reached IP68 water resistance. This means that they should be able to withstand immersion in 1.5 m (4.9 ft) of water for up to 30 minutes. Apple is one step closer, claiming that the iPhone can be lowered to a depth of 6 meters to work normally.
Of course, we do not recommend that you actually test these claims, but at least you are relieved that these phones will not cause any major problems when they fall into the water. But please pay special attention to Pixel 4a and 4a 5G, because they have no ratings at all, so there is no way to tell them how they perform.
All 10 mobile phones offer 128GB storage specifications, and Pixel and Galaxy S20 are the only options. The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Mini are available in 64GB and 256GB versions, and the Galaxy S20+ and Galaxy S20 Ultra are also available in 256GB and 512GB storage versions.
But it is important to note that storage space is directly related to price, so for each model, the larger the storage space you choose, the more expensive the price.
MicroSD card expansion
For the iPhone series and Pixel series, neither of them supports expansion of storage space. But the Galaxy series supports storage space expansion up to 1TB.
Normally, the battery capacity of the iPhone 12 series is the smallest. Nowadays, it is difficult to find an Android phone with a capacity of less than 3,000 mAh, but three of the four iPhones are below this capacity. The battery capacity of iPhone 12 Pro Max is 3687 mAh, while the battery capacity of Galaxy S20 Ultra is up to 5000 mAh.
The Pixel 4a has the smallest battery capacity, and the Pixel 5 and Galaxy S20 and S20+ have more than 4,000 mAh. But the battery capacity does not represent the actual endurance performance, but it can at least allow users to use it for 1 day.
All 10 mobile phones support fast charging, but it should be noted that the iPhone does not include a charger, and users need to purchase it separately. The price of Apple’s official website is $19.
In addition to Pixel 4a and 4a 5G, the other eight mobile phones can be wirelessly charged. However, they do not come with a charger, so no matter which camp you belong to, you need to buy them separately.
Galaxy and Pixel 5 still support charging other Qi-compliant devices, which Samsung calls PowerShare, and Google calls it Reverse Charging.
With the exception of Pixel 4a, all of these phones provide a faster 5G network connection, which has been promoted globally.
For some reason, all phones have cancelled the 3.5mm headphone port, and now they can only be found on low-end models. Therefore, only Pixel 4a and 4a 5G have them. For all other headsets, you will need to use Bluetooth headsets, headsets with appropriate connectors or adapters.
The iPhone has Apple’s own Lightning port, which can be used to charge or plug in headphones-although there is no longer anything in the box. All six Android phones have a USB-C port that can be used to charge the phone, and for the Galaxy, it can be plugged into the accompanying headset.
All four iPhones run iOS 14 system. Both Pixel 4a 5G and Pixel 5 run Android 11 system. Pixel 4a is still pre-installed with Android 10 system, but it can be updated immediately. The Galaxy series should follow up immediately, and Samsung is currently launching a beta version to certain regions.
On the iPhone 12 series, it is Apple’s own Siri. On Pixel devices, it’s Google Assistant, and on Galaxy devices, Samsung’s own Bixby.
All 10 models were released in 2020, the Galaxy S series was released in March this year, and the Pixel 4a was released in August. Pixel 5, iPhone 12, and iPhone 12 Pro were released in October, and Pixel 4a 5G, Pixel 5, iPhone 12 Mini and iPhone 12 Pro Max were released in November.
Price (United States)
Apple and Samsung are exploring the upper limit of mobile phones. The price of the 512 GB iPhone 12 Pro Max is as high as $1,399, while the price of the 512 GB Galaxy S20 Ultra is as high as $1,599.
Google does not seem to want to compete with Samsung and Apple in the high-end market, focusing on the entry-level market. Pixel 4a is priced at US$349, while 4a 5G is priced at US$499, which is pretty good.Even the higher performance Pixel 5, its spacious 128 GB price is quite reasonable, at $699