iPhone 3G S Is Even Faster than Apple Said

Benchmark tests show quite some performance on behalf of Apple’s latest iPhone model

By Filip Truta on June 25th, 2009 13:43 GMT
The people at Medialets decided that similarities between the way the iPhone, the G1, the Palm Pre and desktop computers browsed the web could be put to good use. The Internet veterans put the handsets to the test to reveal that Apple was more than right about its new iPhone’s speed, and more.

“The common thread between these three OS’s is JavaScript execution in WebKit—the open source project that, in varying degrees, powers web browsing technology for these three disparate operating systems,” Medialets said.

“With the exception of certain browser plugins (e.g., Flash), web rendering technology installed on today’s premiere mobile devices makes almost all—and in some cases even more—features of their ubiquitous desktop web browser counterparts available. Therefore, given the global commonality of JavaScript and WebKit-based web browsers, it becomes possible to compare the performance of these ‘pocket computers that make phone calls’ to the performance of desktop machines,” the company that claims that “No one knows the iPhone platform better than we do,” added.

To test the speed of each platform, as far as web browsing was concerned, Medialets ran the SunSpider test suite in the following environments:

– Safari 4.0.1 on a 2.0 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo White MacBook.
– The MacBook results were used as a baseline for relative comparisons.
– Mobile Safari on the iPhone 3G with iPhone OS v2.2.1.
– Mobile Safari on the iPhone 3G with iPhone OS v3.0.
– Mobile Safari on the iPhone 3GS with iPhone OS v3.0.
– The “Browser” app on the T-Mobile G1 with Android OS v1.5 (Cupcake).
– The “Web” app on the Palm Pre with Web OS v1.0.2.


Some of the results were surprising, while others weren’t. For instance, iPhone-based tests alone were, as Medialets said, “rather astonishing and seem to indicate that many of Apple’s claims about the performance gains of their 3.0 OS and the iPhone 3GS may hold some water.”

The reason for these claims was that, “Using OS 3.0 on the same iPhone 3G yields nearly 3X the JavaScript performance in Mobile Safari vs. using iPhone OS 2.2.1,” the testers found. The iPhone 3GS brought JavaScript performance to just 12x that of a full-powered desktop computer. The T-Mobile G1 proved to be about a third faster than the iPhone 3G running Apple’s previous OS (2.2.1). As for the Pre, Palm’s handset closely rivaled the iPhone 3G, Medialets pinpointed.
Medialets Sunspider Benchmark Tests 2009
   Medialets Sunspider Benchmark Tests 2009
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