Let’s settle the argument between the Note 20 Ultra vs iPhone 12 Pro Max. Last year, we saw a good number of amazing smartphones from brands across the world. For a very long time, we had lots of interesting phones that tickled our fancy.
Among the many brands that released multiple devices, Apple and Samsung did stand out as their products hugged the headlines while trending on social media.
Today, we take a close comparison between the best flagship phones of both brands: Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra and iPhone 12 Pro Max. For the previous year, these were the two most outstanding devices in the smartphone market.
But how well do they perform against each other? Let’s find out together!
Specs Comparison between iPhone 12 Pro Max and Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra
|iPhone 12 Pro Max||Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra|
|Camera||Triple 12MP primary; 12MP secondary||108MP, 12MP, 12MP + 10MP Selfie|
|Display||6.7-inch Super Retina OLED||6.9-inch Dynamic Amoled FHD|
|Battery||3687mAh Li-ion, non-removable||4300mAh Li-ion, non-removable|
|Storage/Memory||6GB RAM; 128GB, 256GB, 512GB ROM||12GB RAM; 128GB, 256GB, 512GB ROM|
|Software||iOS 14.1 upgradable to iOS 14.2||Android 10 upgradable to Android 11|
|CPU/GPU||A14 Bionic/Apple GPU||Exynos 990/Mali-G77|
|Connectivity||WiFi, Bluetooth, NFC, GPS,||WiFi, Bluetooth, NFC, GPU, DEX|
|Network||2G, 3G, 4G, 5G||2G, 3G, 4G, 5G|
|Color||Silver, Graphite, Gold, Pacific Blue||Mystic Bronze, Mystic White, Mystic Black|
H2H Review: iPhone 12 Pro Max Vs Samsung Note 20 Ultra
Note 20 Ultra vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Camera
Obviously two of the best smartphone cameras currently. The iPhone takes the outstanding camera that came with its predecessor and makes it much better. The Note 20 Ultra, on the other hand, beats every Android device in 2020 to the camera throne.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max camera outshines the Note 20 Ultra based on close shots and portraits. The iPhone 12 Pro Max however gets a little bit noisy when zoomed in or during night shots. Note 20 Ultra’s 108MP camera gives it an edge in terms of night photography.
Both cameras also get the job done in the video department. Both support 4K video recording but the 12 Pro Max edge the Note 20 Ultra slightly here with its sensor-shift stabilization mechanism.
These are two great cameras with outstanding
Note 20 Ultra vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Design
A very sketchy area say when it comes to design. Beauty is relative. What I consider a great design may be quite different from what you choose. Either way, the Note 20 Ultra, and the 12 Pro Max don’t just come with great internals, they look beautiful to the eyes as well.
Samsung retained its recent design from the S20 series. It spots an all-glass design with a metal frame. Starting from the front, we have a huge 6.9-inch display with a hole-punch camera. Flipping to the back we get the camera arrays and the Samsung branding at the bottom. You get the usual I/O ports and of course, the much-improved S-pen.
Design-wise, the iPhone 12 Pro Max has a lot of good things said about it during its launch. Apple took the premium-looking iPhone 11 Pro Max, took the boxy design of the iPhone 5, made a few hardware and software changes, and produced one of the most beautiful-looking smartphones out there.
Sadly, we still have the notch that houses the Face ID scanner – which is very good. Apple still hasn’t figured out how to fit in an optical Touch ID. These aside, Apple nailed it with the design of the iPhone 12 Pro Max.
Note 20 Ultra vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Display
Both Apple and Samsung have been heralded for their good display quality. This time around, both didn’t disappoint. Both phones come with a Full HD display which makes colors look very vibrant.
The Note 20 Ultra is a much bigger 6.9-inch display. It’s an edge display but with a reduced radius. You’ll get accidental touches along the edges if you hold the device with the screen turned on.
Apple gives you a 6.7-inch Super Retina OLED panel. Sadly, the notch takes a few inches off the display, unlike the Note 20 Ultra where you have a better screen real estate. Apple did a good job this year with the screen-to-body ratio. The bezels are much thinner with a much smaller chin.
It’s hard to pick a winner here as color reproduction on both phones looks great to the eye. The Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra gets a nod here. It gives you more room to enjoy media content. Its 1500 nits make it a much brighter device as opposed to the iPhone 12 Pro Max with 1300 nits.
Note 20 Ultra vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Performance
One would think that the 5nm+ chip on the 12 Pro Max outshines the Note 20 Ultra, but that’s not the case. The Note 20 Ultra uses the Exynos 990 chipset (Snapdragon 865+ USA only) with a 7nm+ process.
Apple has been known to produce fluid and fast smartphones but when set to 120Hz, the Note 20 proves to be much smoother. You still get those smooth animations on the iPhone which can’t be reduced but can on the Note 20 which should make it even faster.
But when it comes to the heavy lifting, we see both devices getting the job done seamlessly. Though we get 6GB RAM on the Pro Max, there is no noticeable difference with the Note 20 with 12GB. This goes for gaming and normal use. They can take up multiple apps and still reopen them thereafter.
Performance-wise, you’ll have no problem using either of these beasts. Both utilize the best SoCs available to give you a more fluid operation. The high refresh rate on the Note 20 Ultra makes it much faster but to the detriment of the battery.
We expected a higher refresh rate on the iPhones than we have on the iPads of 2020. But we have to make do with the 60Hz display which should save us more juice.
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Note 20 Ultra vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Software
Apple recently had a revamp of iOS which gives users that refreshing experience. The iPhone 12 isn’t your conventional iPhone, the all-new iOS 14 gives it that much-improved UI. With it comes lots of new and advanced features in the area of security, privacy, and even multitasking.
Samsung’s software has been the best for most Android fans. Nonetheless, Android 10 based on OneUI comes with some sweet features that are exclusive to the Galaxy series. The Note 20 should get the current Android 11 in a few weeks or months, and would also get three years of Android update due to Samsung’s new policy.
The iPhone 12 is at least expected to receive the next five versions of iOS. The bottom line, the software on both phones is great. It’s just a matter of personal preference. Those who tend to explore and tweak things here and there will fancy the Note 20 Ultra over the 12 Pro Max. But if you want to keep things simple while getting the best privacy features, the iPhone 12 Pro Max is your best option.
Note 20 Ultra vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Battery
These are not your battery champs, but for full-day usage, you should have no worries on either phone. With a much smaller capacity, the iPhone 12 Pro Max outlasts the Note 20 Ultra. A big contributor to Apple’s recent improvements in battery life is its latest chipsets.
At 3678mAh and 4500mAh, the Pro Max and Note 20 Ultra respectively should give you nothing less than 7+ hours of on-screen time. And I see nothing wrong with this. The high refresh rate on the Note 20 Ultra certainly adds to the battery drain. The iPhone 12 Pro Max will give you more hours if you care about battery life.
Note 20 Ultra vs iPhone 12 Pro Max: Exclusive Features
Having the S-pen on an iPhone will be cool, but sadly, the Note 20 Ultra gets to enjoy all the functionalities that come with the S-pen. Samsung also allows users to get a desktop experience with the wireless DEX feature that allows you to mirror your display instantly on a smart TV.
Switching to the iPhone, a much better ecosystem awaits you with the exclusive ‘I’ apps: iTunes, iMessage, and more. You also get more quality apps, especially Social Media apps which seem to work much better on iOS. Instagram and Twitter experience on an iPhone beats that of its counterpart.
Both phones support 5G and wireless reverse charging. The new MagSafe feature on the iPhone seems to be leading us into a wireless future. When will that happen? We can only anticipate!
Who is the winner between Note 20 Ultra and iPhone 12 Pro Max?
Two nicely-built smartphones from two of the top phone makers in the market, the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra and the iPhone 12 Pro Max are great devices with outstanding features. Both devices are future-proof and have reselling value.
As mentioned earlier, it’s hard to pick a winner because both smartphones are so close in performance and specification. But who do you think deserves the crown?