It turns out the smartphone heir apparent is Samsung, as the global leading smartphone maker received quite the blessing from Consumer Reports:
“The Samsung Galaxy S 4, one of the most advanced Android smart phones ever, is our new top-rated smart phone. The S4 delivered top-notch performance in the most critical areas of our tests, including the camera. It dethrones the LG Optimus G, which occupied the top spot in our Ratings for several months.”
The Optimus G is now ranked No. 2, followed by the HTC One, the Samsung Galaxy S3 and the Apple iPhone 5. The ranking is yet another blow to Apple's diminishing confidence and a boost to Samsung, as the two smartphone providers have been at each other's throats for a while. Samsung's latest ad was only the most recent in a long line of mud-slinging spots targeting the once dominant company.
Samsung is also challenging Apple’s sought-after Retina display dominance with its own 13.3-inch display with a besting resolution of 3200x1800, in contrast to Apple's 2560x1600 resolution on its 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro.
“Samsung resolution amounts to an astounding 276 pixels per inch compared to 227 pixels per inch for a comparable Retina display,” notes Forbes. “More astounding is Samsung’s claim that the new display will consume only 70 percent of the power that existing displays consume. Samsung claims to be achieving this feat by increasing efficiency of backlighting and reducing the number of driver circuits.”
Apple has lost its edge among investors, according to the latest Bloomberg Global Poll, and iPhone sales increased just 7 percent last quarter, the smallest gain since its launch in 2007.
Seizing its leaderboard moment, Samsung is hosting a "Smart App Challenge" incentivizing developers to create apps that use the brand’s peer-to-peer software interface, Samsung Chord SDK, which connects nearby devices for real-time sharing. The contest, the second of its nature, will select 10 winners who will collect $800,000 in cash and prizes—and the possibility of an investment from Samsung's Venture group.