Since the iPhone's announcement back at the Macworld Expo in January this year, there have been a number of following announcements from various manufacturers of their own iPhones, thereafter labeled as "iPhone Killers" by the media. It's always flattering for Apple to have its own products listed as the standard for that area of the market, but is it necessarily true? In the case of the iPod it certainly is, as it's currently the single most popular MP3 player in the world, dominating the music scene with its partner in crime, iTunes. But the iPod has been out for 6 years and the facts and figures are there to prove its dominance and title of "the one to beat," so how can a phone not yet given an exact release date be given the same title? A number of manufacturers that have submitted their own entries into the iPhone-killing-market include Samsung, with its F700 touch screen SmartPhone, LG and its KE850 Prada mobile phone (also touch-screen), and the Neonode's N2.
However, one phone that has caught my attention out of all of the ones announced is the Meizu M8 MiniOne, which certainly gives the iPhone a run for its money. Today I'm going to compare the two phones and show you how the iPhone is given a beating by the M8, but isn't quite knocked out just yet?here's to hoping Steve Jobs can convince enough people that Apple's phone is more worthwhile than the Chinese company's M8. The Look One thing many people will notice upon first glancing at the M8 is the similarity to the iPhone, both in terms of hardware and software aesthetics. In terms of hardware, apart from the 0.3 megapixel camera on the front of the M8, both phones have a similar style with a neat little slot for the headphone at the top and a single "home" button at the bottom of the face of the phone.
Although the M8 is slightly smaller in height than the iPhone, and thus has a smaller screen, the overall widths and depths are virtually identical, with the M8 coming in at 105 (h) x 57 (w) x 11.5 (d) mm to the iPhone's 115 (h) x 61 (w) x 11.6 (d) mm. As far as software is concerned it's a little hard to compare right now, as neither phone has actually been released for testing, but with the screenshots below you'll see that the layouts are rather similar, despite Windows CE 6.0 running on the M8 where the iPhone is running the almighty OS X.
Dimensions: iPhone = 115 (h) x 61 (w) x 11.6 (d) mm M8 = 105 (h) x 57 (w) x 11.5 (d) mm Screen Size: iPhone = 3.
5 inches M8 = 3.3 inches Screen Resolution: iPhone = 320 x 480 M8 = 720 x 480 Input Method: iPhone = Apple patented Multi-touch M8 = Standard touchscreen Storage: iPhone = 2 models at 4GB and 8GB non-removable flash memory M8 = 2 models at 4GB and 8GB non-removable flash memory Camera: iPhone = 2.0 megapixels M8 = 3.0 megapixels plus one 0.3-mega pixels on front for video calling GSM: iPhone = Quad-band 2.
5G M8 = Unknown but 3G capable Wireless Data: iPhone = Wi-Fi (802.11b/g), EDGE, Bluetooth 2.0 M8 = Bluetooth 2.
0 + TV-Out Operating System: iPhone = Mac OS X Mobile M8 = Windows CE 6.0 At this point it's unfair to compare battery life as we don't know for sure what type of battery is being used on the M8 and how long it will last during normal use, but we do know that the iPhone has a pretty poor battery life of 5 hours talk time (compared to a basic 7 hours on most other phones) and up to 16 hours audio playback (or a combination of the two). The iPhone does, however, contain a few more features (listed below) that clearly beat the M8, but some of the features available (sensors) aren't 100% necessary, unless the battery life on the iPhone really is that bad, in which case they are.
One thing that does bother me about the iPhone is its poor camera. Okay, as one user had commented on AM earlier this week, anyone serious about photography wouldn't be using a mobile phone to take pictures, but by the time Apple gets around to releasing the iPhone the 2 megapixel camera will already be out of date. As far as its 2.5G standard, I honestly don't see this selling well in Europe, where any top of the range phone without 3G is not heard.
Video calling, high speed internet, and fast MMS is what it's all about over here and 2.5G standards just aren't good enough. Apple should seriously consider giving the iPhone 3G standards before releasing it over in Europe. The Price and Options While you can take the above specs "war" with a pinch or two of salt, the pricing and options available for each phone are pretty eye-opening, considering what you're being given.
I think it's also important to say at this point that the iPhone's higher price tag can be somewhat justified given the iPod integration (better speakers), motion and proximity sensors, and the fact that we're being given a tried, tested, and reliable operating system to use. The iPhone comes in two versions, one with 4GB of memory and one with 8GB of memory, the price coming in at $499 and $599 respectively. However, the M8 has four options available. As with the iPhone there are two memory models available at 4GB and 8GB, with those prices coming in considerably cheaper than the iPhone at $307 and $398 respectively, but there are also two other versions available without a built-in camera, knocking the price down even further. The 4GB model here comes in at $193 and $284 for the 8GB version. As you can see, price- and options-wise there is one clear winner here.
Summary All in all in the phones are pretty similar, but while the iPhone raises an eyebrow or two with its fancy spec sheet, the same can be said for its rather high price tag. The M8 is almost a "Windows" clone of the iPhone that comes in at a much cheaper cost, also giving you more options (camera or not) allowing you to adjust the cost accordingly. If you're after the iPhone but just can't afford it, the M8 appears to be there to clean up.
If it's music you're after the iPhone is clearly the better option, but with a higher resolution screen and better camera, videos and photos will be more suited to the M8, so perhaps that is something to take into consideration before making a purchase of either. Once again, details are still unclear on the M8 so it's probably not fair to compare the software side of things right now, but I have no doubt Apple Matters will bring them to you the moment they arrive. So what do the readers of AM think? Is the M8 virtually a cheaper but equally competent version of the iPhone, or is it literally a cheap ripoff? For those that seriously considered buying the iPhone, could you now see yourself changing your mind and opting for the M8 instead? Stay tuned to iPhone Matters and Apple Matters for further updates on the iPhone and its competitors, including the M8.
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