Following the enormous success of the Samsung Galaxy S2, the phone giant has outdone themselves with their third-generation Galaxy S3, which so far has received huge reviews not to mention sales. In fact, according to financials, the Galaxy S III alone has catapulted Samsung into the largest mobile phone manufacturer in the world. While analysts had doubts that Samsung would come out with a phone that would be a huge update to the S II, the third-generation Galaxy SIII did not disappoint. In fact, the company out-did itself.
With innovation as a focal driving force to the S3′s design and function, you’ll find a smorgasbord of new features and functions that simply revolutionize the smartphone as we know it. At first glance, the size is outstanding….yes big in height and width, but wafer-thin. It fits in a jean’s pocket, and almost gets lost in a purse. You’ll be surprised at how this large 4.8-inch high-resolution Super AMOLED phone feels so light and compact.
With its 4.8in display, it’s a big sucker. But as mentioned, the slimness makes it much more manageable to carry and use than you think. Its thickness measures in at 8.6mm…thinner than the iPhone 4S, the Motorla RAZR Maxx and the HTC One X. It’s 70.6mm across, 136.6mm long and weighs in at 133g. It actually weighs less than HP’s miniature Veer.
High-Resolution Super AMOLED Screen
The screen is beautiful. It sports a 4.8-inch high-resolution Super AMOLED screen, which really showcases its bright colors and contrasting “blacks”. Video is stunning as well because of the screen size. The Galaxy S III falls just short of being a “phablet” like it’s larger cousin, the Samsung Note. Having said that, 4.8-inches is large enough to get a true and delightful video/movie/youtube experience. The S3′s screen resolution is identical to the HTC One X, but the Samsung has better brightness and color.
Android 4.0.3 Ice Cream Sandwich on Board
The latest Android, 4.0.3 Ice Cream Sandwich OS is on-board the Galaxy S III, which is hands-down the best OS version Google has created to date. It’s much cleaner, and uses more virtual icons and less hard buttons. There is, however, a physical home button, which turns out to be quite useful when you want to return to the home screen. Two virtual capacitive buttons reside on the side, and in between the home button are two virtual Back and Menu buttons. A long press on the home button brings up the Recent Apps screen, so anything that is currently open in the background will appear as a large thumbnail. Pressing any of those thumbnails will allow you to revisit that app quickly.
Ice Cream Sandwich is actually a completely new interface from its Gingerbread predecessor. It’s been redesigned throughout, and offers very robust utilities like “Face Unlock”, which matches you to a previously taken photo to launch the phone, and the ability to take a screen shot by wiping your hand across the screen. Why you would need to take a picture of a screen is beyond me, but with the S3, you can do it. Could prove useful if you’re recommending a particular app to a co-worker or friend, and want to forward them a shot of what exactly that app looks like.
Utility and Features
The Galaxy S III is rich in new features. S Voice, which is a voice recognition service similar to iPhone’s Siri app and designed by Vlingo, is a fairly good utility. It will recognize direct commands, and works to make your hands-free life a little easier. Smart Stay, which uses the front-facing camera to recognize a pair of eyes looking at it, will turn the screen on. Smart Call will dial a contact’s number by raising the phone to your ear from the contact details screen.
Social Tag uses facial recognition to match faces in photographs with the profile photos in your contacts. The phone shows a contact’s latest status update and makes it easy to call or message them. Finally, there’s the NFC technology, which allows you to transfer contacts between compatible Android handsets. It’s S Beam app partner adds WiFi Direct to the wireless transfer connection so you can beam video files quickly between two Galaxy S IIIs. You can also transfer content from the phone to a suitably equipped TV. Soon, you’ll be able to use Google Pay to purchase merchandise right from your SIII. Smart Alert notifies you of missed calls or messages by gently vibrating or whistling.
Music, Video and Game Hubs
Samsung’s Game Hub currently has some good titles, and Samsung promises many more to come. While some are free of charge, others premium apps require a small fee. Some of these titles can be previewed before you have to pay for them.
The Music Hub, version 3.0 HD, runs around $15/month, but gives you a huge selection of tunes, around 17 million tracks, as well as unlimited streaming. You can also upload tracks from your personal music collection. Music Hub’s UI is neat and very intuitive.
The Video Hub offers fee-based movies, is laid out pretty well, and contains recommendations from staff picks to best-selling.
Still and Video Camera
The Galaxy S3′s 8MP camera is the same camera the S2 had. Still, it’s a stellar sensor, which delivers very bright, high-resolution stills, as well as full HD 1080p video. The front camera sports a 1.9MP sensor and can capture 720p video, while simultaneously taking a still picture. Pretty cool.
The advantage of the S3′s size is the fact that it can house a larger, flat battery. If you’ve had some frustration with Android devices and their poor battery life, you’re in for a very different experience with the S3′s battery life. It goes forever. Additionally, it’s removable, so you can swap out an additional charged-battery should your power usage require it.
The Galaxy S III is lightening fast with it’s dual-core 1.5 GHz processor. Not only does it handle high-definition video and robust apps, but its RAM memory allows you to keep a ton of apps open without sacrificing performance or speed. It also has 2-microphones, which lend to outstanding call quality and great signal strength.
If you love Android, the Samsung Galaxy S3 is the best out there, even beating the HTC One X. Its new innovative software, hardware and features really drive home the work Samsung put into this puppy. If you’re looking for a laptop in your hand with power to boot, the Samsung will suit a lot of PC-like functions, but with extremely smaller portablility.
Check out the Samsung Galaxy S III TV Commercial…