Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S4 mini review
Samsung has finally unveiled the Galaxy S4 mini, the smartphone we all knew would arrive eventually. But is it simply a smaller version of the flagship Galaxy S4? We'll compare the two smartphones in-depth to answer this question.
It's clear that the Galaxy S4 mini is a downgraded version of the Galaxy S4. Therefore, we're not going to be calling a winner for each section or overall like usual. The idea is to highlight the differences between these two handsets so you can choose which one is right for you.
Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S4 mini: Price
The Galaxy S4 sells for around £550 in VAT on a SIM-free basis. The price seems almost reasonable compared to the original price tag of £629.
Unfortunately there's no price for the Galaxy S4 mini yet so we can't make a full comparison here. However, we expect it will retail for around £300-350, also on a SIM-free basis.
We know price is likely to be an important factor for you so we'll update this as soon as we get pricing information for the mini. See also: Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S3 comparison review
Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S4 mini: Dimensions
There're no prizes for guessing that the Galaxy S4 mini is smaller in size compared to the S4. The clue is in the name. It measures in at 61 x 125mm compared to 70 x 137mm. However, it's not as thin as the S4's 7.9mm chassis, but is a very respectable 8.9mm.
It comes as no surprise that the S4 mini is a lighter smartphone. It weighs 108g compared to 130g.
See also: Group test: What's the best smartphone?
Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S4 mini: Screen
As we've mentioned, and you can probably work out, the Galaxy S4 mini has a smaller screen than the S4. It's a key point between the two Samsung smartphones.
At 4.3in it's debatable whether the screen on the S4 mini really qualifies it for the mini name. But it is smaller than most smartphones these days and a reasonable amount smaller than the 5in display found on the full-size Galaxy S4.
Both displays uses Samsung's favoured Super AMOLED technology, but there is an inevitable difference when it comes to resolution.
The Galaxy S4 has a Full HD (1080x1920) resolution while the S4 mini uses a qHD (540x960). This means the respective pixel densities come out at 256ppi and 441ppi.
Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S4 mini: Processor and memory
The UK model of the Galaxy S4 uses a 1.9GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 quad-core processor instead of the Exynos 5 octa-core chip. Meanwhile, the Galaxy S4 mini uses a 1.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 dual-core processor.
The pair is more similar when it comes to RAM with 2GB on-board the Galaxy S4 and 1.5GB on the Galaxy S4 mini.
Once we've benchmarked the Galaxy S4 mini we'll post the results here alongside those of the Galaxy S4.
Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S4 mini: Storage
The Galaxy S4 comes in three storage options, 16GB, 32GB and 64GB, matching the iPhone 5 – although the 16GB seems to be the only one available at the moment. Only an 8GB of the Galaxy S4 mini has been announced.
Each phone offers expansion via a microSD card slot – both accepting 64GB cards. Be aware that a fair chunk of the internal storage is taken up before you even get the device out of the box.
Our 16GB model of the Galaxy S4 has almost half the storage taken up and Samsung points out that only 5GB of the Galaxy S4 mini's storage will be available to the user.
Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S4 mini: Cameras
While the Galaxy S4 has a 13Mp rear facing camera, the Galaxy S4 mini sports an 8Mp snapper. Both have an LED flash, features like HDR and the ability to shoot video footage in Full HD 1080p quality.
The front cameras appear to be pretty much identical at 2Mp and 1.9Mp respectively and, once again, Full HD video.
The difference is this area is much less than the Galaxy S3 compared to the Galaxy S3 Mini.
Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S4 mini: Connectivity
Samsung has fitted the Galaxy S4 and Galaxy S4 mini will similar connectivity. Both have Wi-Fi (the S4 offering 11ac), Bluetooth 4.0, GPS, microUSB, NFC and an infrared transmitter.
It's worth noting that the Galaxy S4 mini will come in a number of different models including 4G LTE (the only one with NFC), 3G HSPA+ and a 3G dual-SIM. We're not sure which will be coming to the UK yet, possibly just the first of the three.
Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S4 mini: Software
Each of these smartphones comes with Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and Samsung's TouchWiz interface. However, the software feature list isn't identical.
While the Galaxy S4 mini has things like S Voice, S Translator, Group Play and Screen Mirroring, headline features of the S4 like Smart Scroll, Smart Pause, Dual Shot and Air Gesture are not listed for the mini.
Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S4 mini: Battery
Samsung's Galaxy S4 offers good battery life from the 9.8Wh (2600mAh) removable battery. The Galaxy S4 mini has a smaller capacity 7Wh (1900mAh) battery. Considering its less demanding specifications we expect it will offer a similar battery life.
Provided the Galaxy S4 mini doesn't offer poor performance (we'll let you know as soon as we benchmark it), then the main reasons to opt for it over the full-size S4 are that you want a physically smaller smartphone or you can't afford the flagship.