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Galaxy Note 2 vs. Nexus 4 vs. iPhone 5 Size Comparison



The Samsung Galaxy Note 2, LG Nexus 4 and the iPhone 5 are some of the most popular smartphones available, and between the three consumers can choose between a range of sizes, displays, features and carriers. We have all three of these devices in hand and offer a look at how some of the best smartphones of 2012 compare side-by-side.

From a 4-inch display up to a 5.5-inch display, shoppers can choose a smartphone that fits their needs and their hands, and thanks to smaller bezels and ergonomic design, even the 4.7-inch display on the Nexus 4 is in a device compact enough to use with one hand.

Read on to find out how the Galaxy note 2, LG Nexus 4 and Apple iPhone 5 compare in key areas.

Display Size

One of the biggest, and most noticeable comparisons is the size of the display. Larger displays prove better for watching videos and for multitasking on the Galaxy Note 2, but there’s something to a smaller 4-inch display.

Galaxy Note 2 vs iPhone 5 vs Nexus 4 - 01

The Galaxy Note 2’s display dominates, and offers added features.

 Here’s how three of the best smartphone displays compare.
  • Galaxy Note 2 – 5.5-inch, 1280 x 720, 265 ppi
  • LG Nexus 4 – 4.7-inch, 1280 x 768, 320 ppi
  • iPhone 5 – 4-inch, 1136 x 640, 326 ppi

In terms of display quality these smartphones offer a very good display quality. The Galaxy Note 2 allows users to open multiple apps at once, and pop up a browser or video player to allow owners to work and play. The LG Nexus 4 and iPhone 5 do not offer similar multi-tasking abilities.

Galaxy Note 2 vs iPhone 5 vs Nexus 4 - 09

The S Pen works with special Samsung apps.

Another added feature for the Galaxy Note 2 is the S Pen, a small stylus housed in the bottom of the phone that allows users to control the phone and take notes with a pressure sensitive tip. This is no ordinary stylus, like users can buy for the Nexus 4 or the iPhone 5, it communicates with the Note 2. This allows for hover controls and other features, shown in the video below.

Design and Size

It’s no surprise that the Galaxy Note 2 is larger than the other smartphones in this roundup, but the size of the iPhone 5 and Nexus 4 may surprise some users. Despite the larger display on the Nexus 4, it’s are very close in size to the iPhone 5.

Galaxy Note 2 vs iPhone 5 vs Nexus 4 - 03

Three sizes, three distinct looks.

The glass back of the Nexus 4 is known to crack under stress, and the iPhone 5’s back scratches without a case for some users. The plastic back on the Note 2 seems more durable, and is easy to replace.

The three phones measure as follows.

  • Galaxy Note 2 – 5.94 x 3.17 x 0.37 inches (6.42 ounces)
  • LG Nexus 4 – 5.27 x 2.70 x 0.36 inches (4.9 ounces)
  • iPhone 5 – 4.87 x 2.31 0.30 inches (3.95 ounces)

The iPhone 5 is the thinnest and lightest phone, but the difference in thickness is negligible. The difference in weight is not noticeable between the iPhone 5 and the Nexus 4. The Note 2 is heavier, but not so much that it inhibits use.

Galaxy Note 2 vs iPhone 5 vs Nexus 4 - 07

The difference in thickness is minor.

Users may want to go to a store to hold the Galaxy Note 2 in hand before ordering as it is taller and wider than most smartphones. One handed operation is not impossible for most users, but some tasks are easier with two hands, especially for users with smaller hands.

Galaxy Note 2 vs iPhone 5 vs Nexus 4 - 11

The Note 2 allows access to a MicroSD card slot and the battery.

The LG Nexus 4 and Apple iPhone 5 designs focus on a great build quality at the cost of storage and battery access. The Galaxy Note 2 is the only phone in this roundup that allows users to remove the back to add a MicroSD card and a replacement battery. The iPhone 5 and Nexus 4 both feel more solid than the Note 2, but the Note 2 features less of the plasticky feel than the Galaxy S III.

Users looking for the best smartphone in 2012 should consider the LG Nexus 4, Samsung Galaxy Note 2 and the iPhone 5. In addition to offering a range of sizes and features, these phones are available for several carriers. The iPhone 5 and Galaxy Note 2 are available on AT&T, Sprint and Verizon, and the Neuxs 4 is available on AT&T and T-Mobile, as well as a number of pre-paid carriers that use those networks.

Galaxy Note 2 vs. Nexus 4 vs. iPhone 5 Gallery




  1. ech

    12/06/2012 at 1:27 pm

    Switch to the Nexus 4 I use it along with the GN and iPhone, not the Note. But the N4 is superior. Pure Goolge/Android rocks

  2. Matthew

    12/06/2012 at 2:43 pm

    I dont understand if the guy who did this is just out of touch with phones or consumers… but he compared a 700$ phone a 650 $ phone and a 309 dollar phone. how idiotic is that?

    • jerry

      02/02/2013 at 7:10 pm

      he was comparing screen size

  3. kurt love

    12/06/2012 at 7:41 pm

    I promise you galaxy note 2 is the best out of these phones im on mine now and I fell inlove with it size is prefect I hope they go bigger

  4. Pete

    12/06/2012 at 10:29 pm

    Had the Galaxy nexus and the new one seems almost the same. So bought the Galaxy note 2 and its the best phone I’ve ever owned. iPhone or the nexus 4 CANNOT be compared to the GN2. Jelly bean, multi-window, s-pen, huge beautiful screen, 2g of ram that can handle anything thrown at, is what separates the GN2 from the this two phones. Only phone that comes close to the GN2 is the HTC DNA but is still inferior and lacks the features I mentioned.

    • Mason Manjares

      12/31/2012 at 2:36 pm

      I’ll agree the IPhone 5 can’t stack up to the GN2, but the Nexus 4 is an entirely different story. The Nexus has a newer flavor of jellybean than the Galaxy Note 2 and every other device not bearing the Nexus name. It has the same 2gb of RAM as well as the quad-core snapdragon S4 processor. The DNA is pretty sexy, but that tiny battery trying to power such a beast of a phone pumping out the same SoC as the nexus 4 in addition to a 1080p Super LCD 3 screen is like trying to run a Bugatti on a potato. In other words, you can compare these phones. But it’s more like Nexus 4 for value and vanilla Jellybean vs. the giant that is the Galaxy Note 2. Oh and hey let’s toss the iPhone into the mix so all the iphanboys won’t cry about it.

    • D

      01/24/2013 at 11:07 am

      Nexus 4 has 2 GB RAM.

  5. Wingsy

    12/28/2012 at 4:53 am

    Don’t you feel silly holding that humongous thing up to your ear? I saw someone using it the other day and it made me laugh.

  6. John

    01/10/2013 at 7:16 am

    Note 2 is by far the superior phone. I’ve had both, and while pure Android is great, the battery life is terrible and ruins the experience on N4.

    iPhone just plain old sucks.

    Note 2 has the bigger screen, more options and most importantly the better battery. So you dont have to strip down your android phone by disabling syncing options like I had to on the N4. After all, whats the point of having Android if you cant sync???

  7. justin

    03/29/2013 at 8:10 am

    N4 from what a lot of iPhone user are telling me is that they want to switch to the N4. I phone users don’t like having to pay for all their app when N4 gets all their music and apps for free. This is probably the best phone I have had. Just wait until Google glasses come out. Google is on top of their game. Sorry iPhone and note users. Googles got it on the lock down. I know its hard to face the music. But its the truth and it can be uncomfortable to know. Thanks Google for such a great phone. I hope I’m one of the first buyers when Google glasses hit the market.

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