iPhone camera gets destroyed by Samsung in viral Instagram post

Images of Elton John at Glastonbury Festival taken on a Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra and an iPhone 14 Pro Max
(Image credit: Apple / Samsung / @thetechchap on Instagram / Future)

The battle of the camera phones is pretty intense, with the iPhone Pro and the Samsung Galaxy S Ultra the two biggest heavyweights fighting it out. Each brand's flagship camera phones excel in different areas, but an intriguing direct comparison in a very specific situation has lit up social media. 

Tom 'the tech chap' put the Galaxy S23 Ultra vs iPhone 14 Pro Max to the test in the mass photo shoot (formerly known as a music festival) that is Glastonbury festival. He took snaps of Elton John on stage from in the crowd, and the difference in the results is quite stunning (see our guide to the best camera phones for our own take).

Tom Honeyands says that for his Glastonbury Zoom Challenge he took shots about 30 seconds apart as the sun went down on Elton's final UK performance. He used the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra's 30x zoom and the iPhone 14 Pro Max's maximum 15x zoom cropped to 30x. No editing or filters were applied.

On the face of it, the Samsung's 30x zoom gets a much clearer shot with the singer and stage set up clearly recognisable, while the iPhone's image is barely a blur of abstract colours. Has Samsung broken iPhone owners' hearts. Well, perhaps surprisingly when Honeyands asked followers on Instagram which image they preferred, some are insisting the iPhone image is better since it's "more realistic" or "more artistic" ("love the watercolour shot," one person joked).

Honeyands himself says he always carries always both an iPhone and Samsung S23 Ultra because "they both have advantages and neither is perfect". He believes that this shot shows that when it comes down to very long-range zoom specifically, the S23 Ultra can’t be beaten (see our own Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra review for more details on the device or see the best current prices below.

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Joseph Foley

Joe is a regular freelance journalist and editor at Creative Bloq. He writes news and features, updates buying guides and keeps track of the best equipment for creatives, from monitors to accessories and office supplies. A writer and translator, he also works as a project manager at London and Buenos Aires-based design and branding agency Hermana Creatives, where he manages a team of designers, photographers and video editors who specialise in producing photography, video content, graphic design and collaterals for the hospitality sector. He enjoys photography, particularly nature photography, wellness and he dances Argentine tango.