Spec standoff: Samsung Galaxy Note 3 vs Sony Xperia Z Ultra

When smartphone leader Samsung Electronics introduced the original Galaxy Note, it didn’t have much competition, but since then interest for smartphones with 5.5-inch screens—and larger—has grown. So, the new Note 3 faces plenty of competitors, including the Xperia Z Ultra from Sony.

Here’s a look at how the Z Ultra, launched earlier this year, measures up to the Galaxy Note 3, announced on Wednesday at the IFA tech conference in Berlin, based on the basic specifications from each company.

Screens

How big can a smartphone become is a question both Sony and Samsung must have been asking themselves while developing their respective products. Sony decided to go with a 6.4-inch screen, while Samsung decided to be a bit more cautious at 5.7 inches. Both screens have a screen resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels.

Size and weight

The bigger screen on the Z Ultra comes at a cost; the device weighs 7.4 ounces, while the Note 3 is lighter at just under 6 ounces. The Note 3 is also smaller: 5.9 by 3.1 by 0.32 inches compared to the Ultra’s 7 by 3.6 by 0.25 inches.

Processors

Like many new high-end smartphones, both the Note 3 and the Z Ultra have quad-core processors running at 2.3GHz and 2.2GHz, respectively. A 3G version of the Note 3 will be powered by Samsung’s own Exynos 5 Octa processor, which has four ARM Cortex-A15 processors running at 1.9GHz and four additional Cortex-A7 cores at 1.3 GHz.

Storage and RAM

Buyers of the Note 3 can choose between 32GB or 64GB of integrated storage; there is also a MicroSD card slot for additional storage. That compares to the Z Ultra, which has 16GB of integrated storage plus a MicroSD card slot for additional storage. The Note 3 also has more RAM—3GB versus 2GB.

Camera

Smartphone vendors have recently given the cameras on their smartphones more attention in an effort to differentiate their products. The Note 3 can record 4K or Ultra HD videos at 30 frames per second (fps) using its 13-megapixel camera, which could be useful, as long as you are one of the few who can afford a 4K TV set.

The Z Ultra has a more traditional 8-megapixel camera that records video in 1080p.

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