When Apple launched the iPhone 5C it was clearly taking aim at the Android territory with a cheaper device, but how does Apple’s colourful device stack up against the latest Google flagship – the Nexus 5?
iPhone 5C: 4″ 640 x 1136 361ppi “Retina display”
Nexus 5: 5″ 1920 x 1080 445ppi display
Apple was the company that made people really aware of the clarity of displays when they launched the Retina displays a few years ago, but here the Nexus 5 again takes the win on paper with full HD 1080P resolution. Real world tests, however, may prove slightly different with a number of tests showing Apple’s Retina displays to be notably brighter than their Android cousins despite a lower pixel count. We’ll call this for the Nexus 5, but there is a lot more to a display than the ppi (pixels per inch).
iPhone 5C: Dual-core 1.3GHz Apple A6 processor
Nexus 5: Quad-core 2.26GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor
Under the hood, the just released Nexus 5 appears to be a notably more powerful device with a quad-core processor to the iPhone’s dual-core, and nearly double the clockspeed to boot. Cores and clockspeed are not everything, as it is how the device uses this power that makes the difference to the user, but the Nexus 5 certainly takes the first round.
iPhone 5C: 8MP rear-facing camera, 1.9MP front-facing “Facetime HD” camera
Nexus 5: 8MP rear-facing camera, 1.3MP front-facing camera
The iPhone may edge the Nexus on the front-facing camera specs, but in all reality the devices are even stevens on this one.
iPhone 5C: 16GB and 32GB internal storage models
Nexus 5: 16GB and 32GB internal storage models
It is slightly strange that the standard internal storage for these high-end devices is not yet 64GB, but whatever the reason, both smartphones offer the same amount of space for storing your photos, music, and videos. That’s a draw.
iPhone 5C: iOS 7
Nexus 5: Android 4.4 “KitKat”
Android has come on leaps and bounds in the last few years and matches iOS in most respects and offers far more customisation opportunities. That said, there are certain things like latency where iOS is still outperforming Android, making music making apps just better on iOS. iTunes and the Apple ecosystem makes it far easier way to sync content with the device than the various Android offerings, so the iPhone 5C may just edge this one by a whisker.
iPhone 5C: App Store
Nexus 5: Play Store
The Android Play Store has long being playing catch up with iOS, and whilst most apps are available for both devices, apps for iOS are, on average, better looking than their Android counterparts. High profile apps also still launch first as iOS-only, so again the iPhone takes the glory here.
iPhone 5C: £469 for 16GB without a contract (free from £32 per month
Nexus 5: £299 for 16GB without a contract (free from £21 per month)
If the price is the most important factor then the Nexus 5 is notably cheaper than the iPhone 5C without a contract, but if you were looking to save money then you probably wouldn’t be looking at either of these two devices.
Conclusion: Which Should You Buy?
Both are fantastic devices and pretty good value, but the decision really depends on what you are looking for in a smartphone. If you are looking for the most powerful device with a big screen to play the latest games then the Nexus would be for you, but if you are looking for something that is easier to use, has the best and latest apps, and has a better ecosystem then the iPhone 5C is a better bet.