Google’s Pixel 5 and Samsung’s Galaxy S20 FE have great cameras, though the the Pixel 5 lacks telephoto. Here’s where else these two phones differ.
At the recent Google event, a new Pixel 5 was announced, and this was quite soon after Samsung’s recent launch of the Galaxy S20 FE. The new Pixel 5 comes with the very intelligent Google Assistant, as well as the sophisticated and versatile Google Camera app that the Pixel line is renowned for. Sharing the same price of $699, these two powerful phones can now be compared to find out which offers the best value?
Google’s Launch Night In event began with a cozy scene of a TV and a fun Easter egg, which was hinted at with a suggestion below the TV to type and listen to music while waiting. The surprise was that hitting any key on a keyboard would begin playing jazzy notes timed with each key tap. It was a clever and fun way to start the show. Two new Pixel phones were mentioned, but Google kicked off the event with its new Chromecast which now comes with a remote control, and an updated smart speaker called Nest Audio. It was a brief but good presentation of the new products featuring some internet celebrities and personal stories to liven things up.
Google always has some advanced software to show off when a new phone is released and this year saw several improvements in the camera app, as well as intelligent help with the phone and more. The Pixel 5 is first to get new Android features and has a few exclusives that never arrive on other manufacturer devices. Samsung’s Galaxy S20 FE is a great phone, built on the powerful Galaxy S20 design, but made available at a lower price. FE stands for fan edition and Samsung has added some exclusive software to its phones as well. Which of them are most useful is largely subjective, but Google’s Assistant is generally recognized as the most advanced currently available on mobile devices. Most would agree that Google wins on software and apps, but what about hardware? This is where a head to head comparison is easy, but may miss some of the finer points.
Pixel 5 Vs. Galaxy S20 FE: Specs
Both phones have an all-screen design now. However, Samsung adds a half-inch in diagonal display size. The larger 6.5-inch display is nice, but makes one-handed use more difficult. The Galaxy S20 FE offers 120Hz refresh rate, while the Pixel 5 has 90Hz refresh. It isn’t clear how noticeable the difference will be in smooth scrolling, since both are faster than older phones. Samsung offers more colors, a mini-rainbow with 6 to choose from versus Google’s black and green. Google scores a win on build quality featuring an aluminum body, while the Galaxy S20 FE uses plastic.
When it comes to cameras, both manufacturers are heavy hitters. Samsung typically pushes the limit with specifications, while Google focuses on solid performance and outstanding quality. This will be a personal choice, but Google clearly has an edge when it comes to computational photography. Each smartphone has wide and ultra-wide rear cameras, but Samsung adds a third option. A three times telephoto is part of its array of three cameras which are aligned vertically. Google’s Super Res Zoom is recognized as a very good digital zoom, but it won’t be able to match Samsung’s dedicated telephoto lens for long shots.
On battery life, the Pixel 5 scores again, considering Google announced a new Extreme Battery Saver feature that is claimed to extend battery life to an incredible 48 hours. How well this works outside the lab remains to be seen, but any extra beyond a day is going to be worth it. The new Samsung phone has a similarly large battery, over 4000 mAh, but expects the battery to last all day, which usually implies waking hours only. The Galaxy S20 FE balances the scales with its faster CPU as it comes powered by the top-rated processor from Qualcomm, the Snapdragon 865 5G. In contrast, the Pixel 5 comes with the less powerful 765G. Both of these allow 5G, so the phones will be ready as 5G becomes more widespread.
Overall, both are excellent smartphones with the features shoppers want, and at an attractive price. The choice between Google and Samsung is largely one of familiarity and neither will disappoint, as long as the consumer knows what is most important to them and matches that with not only the specs but the experience. Samsung usually wins on specs, but Google often provides a better experience.
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