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Samsung Galaxy S3 beats iPhone 5 in display face-off

Apple and Samsung are facing off once again, with IHS iSuppli comparing the iPhone 5 touch-screen display with one of its biggest rivals, the Samsung Galaxy S3.

Despite Apple's efforts to slim down its new touch screen via in-cell technology, the iPhone 5 falls short of Samsung's flagship phone, according to IHS.

The new Apple offering sports a slimmer 1.5mm display (compared to the 2.1mm iPhone 4S) and a 72 per cent colour gamut (higher than the 4S's 50 per cent). The Galaxy S3's 1.1mm thickness and full 100 per cent colour gamut wins the match, but not necessarily the fight.

Having the first product with in-cell tech - or a touch panel combined with the main display - is a major achievement, according to Vinita Jakhanwal, director of IHS small and medium displays. Overall, the iPhone 5 is thinner than the Galaxy S3, and its display colour gamut is more than sufficient for most people, Jakhanwal said in a statement.

"Such improvements on the iPhone 5 are consistent with Apple's philosophy of selecting features designed to yield profitable products that deliver a superior customer experience, rather than providing technology for technology's sake," he said.

While the new technology allows more light to emit from the display and helps provide a more vibrant and crisper image, the iPhone 5 still doesn't meet the high colour gamut mark set by the Galaxy S3. But, it may not matter to most users, according to Jakhanwal. Some users have complained that the Samsung handset actually present oversaturated and unrealistic coloiring, he said.

In a recent DisplayMate smartphone shoot-out, the iPhone 5, iPhone 4, and Galaxy S3 were put to the display-quality test, which the new iDevice easily passed. According to DisplayMate, the iPhone 5 was a marked improvement from its former self in almost every category but brightness decrease and viewing angle.

The data pointed to the Samsung phone's OLED displays – different from the LCDs Apple and other smartphone makers use – and its many handicaps, including lower brightness, a distorted or lopsided color gamut, and lower power efficiency.