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Samsung Galaxy Note 3 juices the stats in benchmarking apps

News by Andrew Kameka on Tuesday October 01, 2013.

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After the Samsung Galaxy S 4 was released, people soon discovered that Samsung had artificially boosted its performance in some benchmark apps. The company appears to have returned to its old tricks with the newly-released Galaxy Note 3. Ars Technica noticed that the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 is remarkably faster than the LG G2, a strange occurrence considering that both devices run the Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 quad-processor clocked to just under 2.3 GHz. The website soon realized that the discrepancy was because Samsung purposely boosts its scores by activating all four cores once it realizes that a benchmark app is running.

Samsung's trickery was exposed once Ars Technica renamed a benchmark app and ran it once again. The Galaxy Note 3 went to a low-power mode because it did not recognize that it was in a known benchmarking app, so the 20 to 50 percent artificial boost was no longer included. You can read a lengthy explanation of the misleading benchmark performance with highlights of how it was discovered at Ars Technica.

What's most puzzling about this is that Samsung has been exposed for this kind of performance enhancements recently and still decided to inflate its performance scores. This is just another reminder that benchmarks have very little value. The device measurements are a way to quantify performance and establish a baseline for an opinion, but they are by no means definitive. Companies can trick benchmarks into giving devices higher scores, so the numbers should not be treated as the only thing that matters. The best way to gauge the Galaxy Note 3's performance is to use the phone on a regular basis, and based on early reviews, it appears to do well in that regard.

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Andrew Kameka
Andrew is based in Miami, Florida.

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