Google Nexus S vs Apple iPhone 4: Smartphone showdown

Which is the better phone: Google's Nexus S or Apple's iPhone 4?

Although Google's innovations on the software side of Android are impressive, the Nexus S also has some serious hardware. In particular, the 4in Super AMOLED display is one of the largest touchscreens on an Android phone, alongside the Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10 and the Samsung Galaxy S, and only just behind the 4.3in screen of the HTC Desire HD. Apple's iPhone 4 uses existing IPS technology (the same used on the iPad). Thanks to its 640x960-pixel resolution it has been described as a "retina" display, due to the human eye being unable to distinguish individual pixels.

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The Google Nexus S has an all-plastic body, which is a little disappointing given its positioning as a premium smartphone.

Unfortunately — just like the Samsung Galaxy S — the Google Nexus S has an all-plastic body, which is disappointing given it is a premium smartphone. The iPhone 4's stainless steel band (which also doubles as the phone's antenna) is certainly intriguing, and at just 9.3mm thick, the current-gen Apple handset is one of the world's thinnest smartphones. In our opinion, it feels much better built than the Nexus S.

The Google Nexus S may hold an advantage over the iPhone 4 when it comes to multimedia. Though the iPhone's iPod integration is one of its outstanding features, the Nexus S supports playback of DivX and Xvid video files, and offers the flexibility of the Android platform, which lets you can drag and drop multimedia files straight from your computer to the phone.

Like the iPhone, the Android platform was built with mobile apps firmly in mind, and these are downloadable through the Android Market Although the Android Market doesn't boast as many apps as the iPhone, it is rapidly increasing as more devices are released, and currently boasts more than 200,000 apps. This makes it the second most popular mobile app store on the market.

Unlike the iPhone, developers who create applications for Android devices have much more flexibility. An Android application can all be built to have full access to a device's capabilities; there are a number of apps in the Android Market which completely change the look and feel of the home screen, something that is not possible on the iPhone. Some current popular Android apps include Shazam, Facebook, Twitter, eBay, Skype, Angry Birds, Fruit Ninja, Paper Toss and Doodle Jump.

What do you think about the Google Nexus S and the Apple iPhone 4? Tell us in the comments below!

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Ross Catanzariti

Ross Catanzariti

PC World
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