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(Pocket-lint) - The Samsung Galaxy Alpha has been officially unveiled as Sammy's first smartphone to be built with a metal frame. Yes the same sort Apple has been building its iPhones with for years. And yes this is a direct attack ahead of the iPhone 6 launch.

While we don't know the official specs of the iPhone 6 yet we can compare the Galaxy Alpha to its current apple competition in the iPhone 5S.


This is the most major similarity between the two. Both feature a metal frame which should offer great drop protection.

The Galaxy Alpha features a plastic rear plate. This give the iPhone 5S a strength in terms of quality with that metal back but also means the Alpha has access to the battery for changing.


The iPhone 5S was impressive at launch because it came with a fingerprint reader built into the home button. This is becoming more common now with the fingerprint reader appearing in many Samsung handsets.

The Samsung Galaxy Alpha features a fingerprint reader, the type that requires a swipe, not the iPhone press sort.

The Galaxy Alpha also has a heart rate sensor built into the rear of the device. While the iPhone 6 is expected to have more sensors the iPhone 5S doesn't have this yet.

What the iPhone 5S does have is the M4 processor which, Apple claims, makes its accelerometer more accurate than the competition.


The iPhone 5S features Apple's largest ever screen at 4-inches, and a resolution of 326ppi. The Samsung Galaxy Alpha dwarfs it with a 4.7-inch screen but sports a 1280 x 720 resolution, giving it the weaker resolution of 312ppi.

The Sammy screen is, of course, a Super AMOLED meaning bright and rich colours. But the iPhone 5S panel does offer well balanced tones and sharp imagery. This may come down to preference.


While the iPhone 5S packs the latest 64-bit dual-core A7 chip, Sammy's Alpha is sporting either a 2.5GHz quad-core or a 1.8GHz octa-core processor, depending on your region. This is backed by 2GB of RAM where the iPhone 5S has just 1GB.

Of course comparing the power of Android and iOS devices isn't just about numbers as the operating systems run differently. While the Galaxy Alpha is newer than the iPhone 5S that iOS environment will run smoothly even as this phone gets old.


The Samsung Galaxy Alpha comes with a 12-megapixel rear camera and a 2.1-megapixel front-facing selfie camera. The main rear snapper comes with live HDR meaning the user can see dark and light balancing live on the screen before taking a photo. It is also capable of shooting 30fps video in 4K.

The iPhone 5S comes with better optics than previous models and is capable of recording video in slow motion. It can't manage 4K video but will shoot photos at 8-megapixels with 1.5µ pixels and ƒ/2.2 aperture. Plus the True Tone flash should offer balanced skin tones in photos and video.

Battery life

Apple's iPhone 5S can, according to Apple, manage 250 hours of stand-by time and 10 hours of 3G talk time.

Samsung claims the Galaxy Alpha will last for 24 hours on just 10 per cent battery thanks to its Ultra Power Saving Mode.

READ: Metal Samsung Galaxy Alpha official: HR sensor, fingerprint reader, 300Mbps 4G LTE

Writing by Luke Edwards.