iPhone X Vs Galaxy S9: Which One Should You Buy?

Updated July 29, 2018 ● Dan Anderson

The iPhone X and Samsung Galaxy S9 are the two of the best selling smartphones of 2018. Each of these devices have speedy processors, sharp screens, powerful cameras and sophisticated operating systems. So deciding which of these devices can be a challenge. Which one should you buy? Here is a breakdown comparison of what each of these devices has to offer.

Design

iPhone X Design

iPhone X / Photo: Apple

iPhone X / Photo: Apple

On the 10th anniversary of the iPhone, Apple radically redesigned its flagship smartphone with the introduction of the iPhone X. The iPhone X has a larger display, a facial recognition system, a high-tech camera and crystal clear sound.

The iPhone X has a much smaller bezel on the front of the device than the Galaxy S9, but it has a unique notch at the top, which houses the front-facing camera with facial recognition support known as Face ID.

The screen of the iPhone X is flat and it has a glass back and aluminum frame to facilitate the wireless charging feature.

One of the disadvantages of the iPhone X is the lack of a 3.5mm headphone jack. This does not come as a surprise because Apple removed the headphone jack in the iPhone 7 in order to make the device waterproof. However, the iPhone X ships with a Lightning to 3.5 mm Headphone Jack Adapter so you can still connect your wired headphones or auxiliary cables to the device. And it also comes with Apple’s headphones (EarPods) with a Lightning connector.

Galaxy S9 Design

Galaxy S9 / Photo: Samsung

Galaxy S9 / Photo: Samsung

The Galaxy S9 was designed with a glass back and a metal frame with a curved screen and curved edges just like its predecessor. You will notice that the Galaxy S9 has small bezels on top of and below the display. 

By having small bezels at the top, the Galaxy S9 does not need to have a notch that cuts into the display. In its ad campaigns, Samsung had actually mocked Apple for the notch in its design. However, a number of other Android manufacturers have followed suit such as LG for the G7 and OnePlus for the OnePlus 6.

Unlike the iPhone X, the Galaxy S9 does have a 3.5mm jack included in its design. So you can still use your wired 3.5mm headphones for the device.

Size And Weight Comparison

The iPhone X size and weight are 5.65 inches (143.6mm) in height, 2.79 inches (70.9mm) in width, 0.30 inch (7.3mm) in depth and 6.14 ounces (174 grams) in weight.

And the Galaxy S9 is 5.8 inches (147.7mm) in height, 2.7 inches (68.7mm) in width, 0.33 inch (8.5mm) in depth and 5.75 ounces (163 grams) in weight.

Colors

In terms of colors, the Galaxy S9 is available in Midnight Black, Coral Blue, Lilac Purple and Titanium Gray. And the iPhone X is available in Space Gray and Silver.

Performance

Inside of the Galaxy S9 is an octa-core Snapdragon 845 with 4GB of RAM for several markets. Another variant has an octa-core Exynos 9810 chipset with 4GB of RAM.

The A11 Bionic chipset in the iPhone X has six cores at with two 2.35GHz cores and four slower efficiency cores. The iPhone X also has an embedded M11 motion coprocessor and 3GB of RAM.

In speed tests, the iPhone and Galaxy S9 booted up in about the same time. However, the Galaxy S9 was able to load up the stock apps and social media apps slightly faster. But the iPhone X opened up games and edited videos slightly faster than the Galaxy S9.

In terms of storage, the iPhone X and Galaxy S9 has different options. The Galaxy S9 comes in 64GB, 128GB and 256 options, but you can set up additional storage through the use of a microSD card. And the iPhone X is available in either 64GB or 256GB.

The iPhone X ships with iOS 11 and the Galaxy S9 ships with Android Oreo layered with Samsung’s own user interface.

Display

Both the Apple iPhone X and the Samsung Galaxy S9 have 5.8-inch Super AMOLED displays, which makes the colors much more vibrant and increases power efficiency. 

iPhone X size / Photo: Apple

iPhone X size / Photo: Apple

In terms of the aspect ratio, the Galaxy S9 is 18.5:9 and the iPhone X is 19.5:9. The Galaxy S9 has a higher screen resolution at 2960 x 1440 compared to 2436 x 1125 (570 ppi) for the iPhone X (458 ppi).

Galaxy S9 size / Photo: Samsung

Galaxy S9 size / Photo: Samsung

 

The display of the iPhone X and the Galaxy S9 both have haptic feedback. This feature activates certain actions depending on the level of pressure that is applied to the display. The haptic feedback for the iPhone is known as 3D Touch.

Camera

Both the iPhone X and the Galaxy S9 have some of the best built-in cameras ever integrated into a smartphone.

iPhone X Camera

iPhone X - Portrait Camera / Photo: Apple

iPhone X – Portrait Camera / Photo: Apple

The iPhone X has a dual lens camera. One lens is f/1.8 and the other is f/2.4. And both of the rear iPhone X cameras have optical image stabilization. The Portrait Mode feature on the iPhone X makes the subject of the photo look very sharp while blurring the background. And the iPhone X records videos in 4K at 24 fps, 30 fps or 60 fps.

The front-facing camera on the iPhone X, known as the TrueDepth Camera, is 7 megapixels with a f/2.2 aperture. And it also supports Portrait Mode and Portrait Mode Lighting (beta).

With the front-facing camera, you can use the Animoji feature, which is an animated emoji feature that uses augmented reality to add filters to your face as you record audio and video. And with iOS 12, you will be able to customize the Animoji so that it resembles your appearance — which is a feature known as Memoji.

Galaxy S9 Camera

Galaxy S9 Camera / Photo: Samsung

Galaxy S9 Camera / Photo: Samsung

The Galaxy S9 has a 12-megapixel camera with a single lens that can switch between two apertures. It can switch from a f/2.4 aperture (better for daylight conditions) to f/1.5 (better for low light conditions). And the f/1.5 aperture is the highest for a smartphone ever seen. Plus the Galaxy S9 camera has optical image stabilization to prevent photos from becoming blurry.

Camera reviewers have said that the Galaxy S9 is able to take better photos in low light conditions compared to the iPhone X. That is because low light photos taken with the iPhone X tend to have more noise and appeared darker.

Another highlight of the Galaxy S9 is the slow motion feature. With this feature, you can shoot at 960fps compared to the 240fps on the iPhone X. The Galaxy S9 also shoots video at 4K.

The front-facing camera on the Galaxy S9 is 8 megapixels and has a f/1.7 aperture. It also has a feature that is similar to Apple’s Animoji called AR Emoji.

IP Rating

iPhone X water resistant / Photo: Apple

iPhone X water resistant / Photo: Apple

The Galaxy S9 is IP68 certified. This means it can be submerged in up to 1.5 meters of water for up to 30 minutes. And the iPhone X has an IP67 rating so it can be submerged in water at 1.5 meters deep for up to 30 minutes.

Battery

The Galaxy S9 has a 3,000 mAh battery capacity and touts a talk time of up to 31 hours and video playback of up to 17 hours. This is slightly better than the 2,716 mAh battery capacity of the iPhone X — which has a talk time of up to 21 hours and video playback of up to 13 hours.

iPhone X wireless charging / Photo: Apple

iPhone X wireless charging / Photo: Apple

Both the Galaxy S9 and the iPhone X support wireless charging. The Galaxy S9 wireless charging feature is compatible with WPC and PMA. And the iPhone X is compatible with the Qi standard. Another advantage that the Galaxy S9 has is that it supports Fast Charging on wired and wireless.

Security

The Galaxy S9 has multiple ways to unlock the device whereas the iPhone X uses facial recognition or a passcode. For example, the Galaxy S9 has a fingerprint sensor, facial recognition, an iris scanner, and passcodes.

iPhone X - Face ID / Photo: Apple

iPhone X – Face ID / Photo: Apple

Apple said that the Face ID facial recognition system built for the iPhone X uses a depth-sensing camera on the front to map out your face in 3D using infrared dots. And Apple claims that this technology is much more secure than the Touch ID fingerprint sensor it has on other devices.

The Galaxy S9 Intelligent Scan feature uses a combination of the iris scanner and facial recognition to unlock the device. However, security experts said that this method is easier to dupe than Apple’s Face ID.

Sound

iPhone X Sound / Photo: Apple

iPhone X Sound / Photo: Apple

The iPhone X provides stereo sound from the bottom of the device and the earpiece. And the S9 line of devices is Samsung’s first Galaxy devices to have stereo speakers.

What makes the Galaxy S9 stereo speakers sound superior is that AKG’s sound technology and the Dolby Atmos codec is integrated. Plus you can make adjustments to the sound in the settings of the S9.

Audio reviewers have favored the stereo speakers on the iPhone X over the Galaxy S9. However, the Galaxy S9 sound is definitely much more superior compared to its predecessors.

Retail Price

The iPhone X shipped with a premium price when it became available on November 3, 2017.At the full price, the iPhone X costs $999 for the 64GB variant and $1,149 for 256GB.

The Galaxy S9 was released about four months after the iPhone X. And the full price of the Galaxy S9 is $719.99 for 64GB, $769.99 for 128GB and $839.99 for 256GB.

Which One Should You Buy

One of the biggest factors you should consider in purchasing either the iPhone X or the Galaxy S9 is whether you prefer the iOS or the Android ecosystem. But if you want to consider each of the specifications discussed in this comparison, here is the device I believe won in each of the discussed categories:

Design: Tie

Performance: iPhone X Wins

Display: Tie

Camera: Tie

IP Rating: Galaxy S9 Wins

Battery: Galaxy S9 Wins

Security: iPhone X Wins

Sound: iPhone X Wins

Retail Price: Galaxy S9 Wins

If you are on a budget, prefer using the Android ecosystem, and want a superior camera, then you should definitely get the Galaxy S9 over the iPhone X. However, if you are willing to pay a premium for the iOS ecosystem, a better gaming performance, and superior sound, then you should consider getting the iPhone X instead.

Read More On Pulse 2.0

– iPhone X: Pros And Cons

– 5 Of The Best iPhone X Accessories