iPhone 11 Pro Max beat by Galaxy Note 10+ in real-world speed test

What you need to know

  • A real-world speed test between the iPhone 11 Pro Max and Galaxy Note 10+ revealed an unlikely winner.
  • The iPhone 11 Pro Max pulled ahead early on, but the Galaxy Note 10+ caught up and won the test at the end.
  • The reasons seems to be the disparity between RAM: 4GB vs. 12GB.

Since the release of the iPhone 11 Pro Max, people have naturally been comparing it to Samsung's top of the line flagship, the Galaxy Note 10+. YouTube channel PhoneBuff joined the fray and pitted the two in a real-world speed test and Samsung's flagship came out on top.

PhoneBuff's speed test uses a machine to enact the same exact test on each device without human error. There are two parts: the first involves going through a slate of apps and the second part involves re-opening the apps and seeing which device does a better job at keeping them loaded.


The iPhone 11 Pro Max quickly took the lead by opening apps like Starbucks, Adobe Rush, Snapseed and Microsoft Excel easily with a time of 1 minute and 48 seconds compared to 1 minute and 58 seconds. When the test got to the second part, the iPhone lost its lead and ultimate lost. The Galaxy Note 10+ finished the test with a time of 2 minutes and 31 seconds while the iPhone trailed at 2 minutes and 37 seconds.

We should get the obvious out of the way. This isn't how normal people use their phones. Most won't even notice slight hiccups like the ones shown in the test because people use one app at a time. The first part of the test is likely the experience users will see on an everyday basis, which by that logic should make the iPhone 11 Pro Max the winner.

However, what it does show is that while the iPhone 11 Pro Max packs the ultra-powerful A13 Bionic processor, it is somewhat hindered by the 4GB of RAM. The Galaxy Note 10+ packs a gaudy 12GB of RAM, so it shouldn't be too surprising it does a better job at keeping multiple apps loaded at the same time.

The conclusion you should come away with is that both phones are blazing fast. You can check out the video above to see the entire test.

Danny Zepeda
  • Well done Samsung, I noticed part of this involved loading one app after another in quick succession, which the 12GB of RAM in the Note 10+ is really going to help with, although not something that would be done in real-world usage. As the article says, both phones are literally blazing fast, it's great to see how far smartphones have come.
  • This is done all the time I real world. I look at my mom's phone and she routinely has 10 apps in the switcher. The Note 10 would handle this far better than an iPhone. Normal people use the home button and move on. They aren't closing apps all the time, so this actually is quite a realistic use case - just in fast forward.
  • I mean it's not done as quickly as this, of course people multitask with apps (if you know how), I do it all the time. Doing it that quickly would be pushing the phone to add and remove things from RAM really quickly which puts a lot of stress on the phone which you wouldn't have with normal app switching. Plus you're usually switching on apps that have already been opened, whereas this test is constantly opening new apps that are not in memory