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Galaxy S3 vs. Galaxy Note 2 vs. iPhone 5 Size Comparison



The Galaxy Note 2, Galaxy S3 and Phone 5 are some of the most popular smartphones on the market, offering distinct screen sizes and features on all the major U.S. carriers.

While these smartphones launched in 2012, they remain excellent choices for shoppers looking for a new smartphone in 2013, even with the Galaxy S4 launch in March and a rumored iPhone 5S launch as early as June.

Here we compare the iPhone 5, Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 in terms of size and display, and cover some of the reasons why users may want to pick each phone.

For more on each phone, we suggest reading our iPhone 5 review, Galaxy S3 review and Galaxy Note 2 review, where we dive deeper into the strengths and weaknesses of each device.

Read on to see how the Galaxy Note 2, Galaxy S3 and iPhone 5 compare in key areas.

Galaxy Note 2 vs. iPhone 5 vs. Galaxy S3 Video

Display Size

Users will notices the massive display on the Galaxy Note 2, which dwarfs the Galaxy S3 and iPhone 5, but remains pocketable for many users. The Galaxy Note 2 also comes with an S Pen for writing on-screen and controlling the phone in other key ways and features a Multi-Window View that lets users use two apps at the same time. This feature is on the way to the Galaxy S3 as well, but Apple does not let users pull up two apps at once on the iPhone 5.

Samsung Galaxy Note 2 vs Galaxy S3 vs iPhone 5 - 1

The three smartphone displays compare favorably in terms of resolution and pixel-per-inch (PPI). Phones with a higher pixel-per-inch rating deliver sharper looking text and photos and it is difficult to see the individual pixels on the screen.

  • Galaxy Note 2 – 5.5-inch, 1280 x 720, 265 ppi
  • Samsung Galaxy S3 – 4.8-inch, 1280 x 720, 306 ppi
  • iPhone 5 – 4-inch, 1136 x 640, 326 ppi

Samsung Galaxy Note 2 vs Galaxy S3 vs iPhone 5 - 6

The Galaxy S3, iPhone 5 and Galaxy Note 2 offer a range of display sizes, but thankfully users don’t need to worry about display quality. All of these phones deliver a screen that it is easy to look at for extended periods. The Galaxy Note 2 and Galaxy S3 both offer a 720P HD resolution, while the iPhone relies on a less standard 1136 x 640 resolution,

Design and Size

Samsung Galaxy Note 2 vs Galaxy S3 vs iPhone 5 - 4

The Galaxy Note 2 is larger and heavier than the Galaxy S3 and iPhone 5, but still fits in a pocket and makes good use of the size.

The Galaxy S3 and the iPhone 5 are very similar in size. The iPhone 5 is slightly thinner and not as tall as the Galaxy S3, but even when held back to back, the size differences are minuscule. The Galaxy Note 2 is much larger, enough so that users should definitely check one out in person. to make sure it fits their hands, pockets and usage.

  • Galaxy Note 2 – 5.94 x 3.17 x 0.37 inches (6.42 ounces)
  • Galaxy S3 – 5.38 x 2.78 x 0.34 inches (4.69 ounces)
  • iPhone 5 – 4.87 x 2.31 0.30 inches (3.95 ounces)

The iPhone 5 is the lightest of the bunch, but again compares favorably to the Samsung Galaxy S3. The Galaxy Note 2 is noticeably heavier than the iPhone 5, but not so heavy that it rules out using the Galaxy Note 2 as a phone that users hold up to their head for a conversation.

Samsung Galaxy Note 2 vs Galaxy S3 vs iPhone 5 - 7

The iPhone 5, Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 on top of each-other, showing the thickness of each device. In the hand, the devices are similar in size.

The iPhone 5 features a solid unibody style design with aluminum and glass that helps it stand out when compared to the plastic Samsung uses on the Galaxy Note 2 and Galaxy S3. The Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 are not poorly built, but some users do not like the feel of plastic on a flagship smartphone, no matter how little it moves when held.

One upside to the plastic back of the Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 is the ability to pop it off and switch in a second or extended battery. Users can also put a Micro SD card into the Galaxy smartphones, adding 32GB of storage for as little as $20.

Samsung Galaxy Note 2 vs Galaxy S3 vs iPhone 5 - 5

The Galaxy Note 2 and Galaxy S3 feature removable backs that offer access to a battery and a expandable storage.

Users looking to lock into a two-year contract should consider these three devices. The Samsung Galaxy S3, Galaxy Note 2 and Apple iPhone 5 remain some of the best smartphones of 2013, even as their replacements are rumored.

the iPhone 5 is $199 on Verizon, Sprint and AT&T. The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 is available on AT&T, Sprint, Verizon and T-Mobile for as low as $69. The Samsung Galaxy S3 is available on AT&T, Sprint, Verizon and T-Mobile for as low as a penny.

Galaxy Note 2 vs. Galaxy S3 vs iPhone 5 Gallery



  1. Lil'Weezy

    02/25/2013 at 2:45 pm

    i’ld vote 4 d s3 galllaxy.

    • Lil'Weezy

      02/25/2013 at 2:47 pm

      its jst magnificient,splendiferous & welcoming

    • blaze

      02/28/2013 at 12:15 am

      Well I’m satisfied with my note 2. . All preference. W me its all about battery life and power far as a work horse. Never had failed me when I needed it most. And when my clients see my unit Compared to there s3 are like..I want that phone. I tell them if your not use to the size, stick w your s3. Which is good as the note.

  2. thicksaltyfart

    03/09/2013 at 2:28 pm

    my note 2 is great, really tho its about what you want, iphone is going to last a very long time as a fancy itouch long after youve changed phones, the note2 is essentially the phone version of the note 8(the tablet) and works as a phablet, s3 is a more conventional phone with much more freedom then the iphone for customization

  3. Mikey

    04/02/2013 at 7:27 pm

    I have an iPhone 4S and was considering switching to the Note 2. I played with the Note 2, and really wanted to like it. There’s a lot of good ideas invested in it. But as lame as IOS has become it still is pretty good, and I found myself considering my investment in it to date (apps, etc.) I wouldn’t have any trouble re-investing, but the Note 2 just didn’t seem – I don’t know – solid enough. And it works seamlessly with my Mac, which I don’t think Apple is going to allow any Samsung phone to do for a while.

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