All the reviews, the hands-on and the obsessive posts on Samsung’s latest smartphone are in and it is no wonder that the Samsung Galaxy S III has blown everyone away, save for the arrogant Apple fanboys who will scream “iPhone” at anything. Forget about those, here are my two cents on this device and the specifications. The phone which Samsung says is “designed for humans and inspired by nature” attracted a lot of attention many days before its official launch on Thursday evening at the Unpacked Event in London. If I can remember clearly this type of hype preceding a product launch is only witnessed prior to the launch of Apple products like the iPhone and the iPad. This time around there was a different player who was getting all the attention, Samsung. The device bringing all the attention that any marketer looks forward to before unveiling a product is the Samsung I9300, codenamed Samsung Galaxy S III.
Why all the hype on this particular phone? Well it should not be lost on anyone that recently Samsung dethroned troubled Finnish mobile devices’ maker Nokia as the leading mobile phone manufacturer worldwide. As if that is not enough, Samsung once again beat Apple as the leading maker of smartphones (forget about the patent wars). Yes this is a giant that is why it is getting all the attention. The Samsung Galaxy S III is also getting massive attention because of the incredible sales of its predecessor, the Samsung Galaxy S II. Since Samsung is currently at the top of the game and the only device maker that has shown that it can take Cupertino giant Apple head on. There is no doubt that Samsung’s recent range of smartphones, more so those from the Galaxy family have enjoyed immeasurable success. Add to that list the pioneer of the most recent Android operating system, Ice Cream Sandwich, the Galaxy Nexus, and you have a complete industry player.
What is so unique about the Samsung Galaxy S III? Plenty. Plenty of stuff. The specs are impressive. The Samsung Galaxy comes with the prized Exynos 4 Quad chipset and a super-fast 1.4 GHz ARM Cortex A9 CPU with a Mali-400MP GPU. It has 1 Gb of RAM and packs a massive internal storage of between 16 and 32 Gb. A 64 Gb internal storage model is coming soon too. We are not yet done. There is Bluetooth 4.0 and HSPA+ support with speeds of up to 21 Mbps. A 4G model is also in the works and will be released for the markets in North America, Japan and South Korea.
The device is measures 136.6 x 70.6 x 8.6mm being only 8.6mm thick, it spots a rear camera of 8.0 megapixels and a front facing camera with 1.9 megapixels. One important thing to note here is that both cameras have zero shutter lag meaning that photos are taken in an instance and there is no that lag that has come to be associated with most Android devices. It does have NFC (near-field communication) support and has a high throughput of 40 MHz 802.11g/n Wi-Fi. It has a GPS with GLONASS reception and spots a massive 4.8 inch PenTile Super AMOLED HD display. The screen has a resolution of 1280 x 720. Note that this screen is bigger than that of its predecessor, the S II, by 22% and dwarfs that of the iPhone 4S (3.5 inches). It has Gorilla Glass 2.
The one thing that is surely to be an attractive feature is its long life battery, the 2100 mAh standard Li-Ion removable battery is simply impressive bearing in mind that smartphones are known to consume large amounts of power.
Other Key Features
The Samsung Galaxy S III will ship with the latest Android version, 4.0.4 crowned with the latest version of Samsung’s famed customized user interface, TouchWiz 4.0.
Samsung has gone to great lengths to take care of the user in the apps department. The rumoured cloud service, s-cloud or sCloud did not see the light of the day but instead users get a free 50 Gb Dropbox account for two years. Guess what? There is Flipboard for Android that is exclusive with this device. We all know how popular Flipboard is with the proud members of the iOS family.
It also comes with several hubs whose availability on the device will be dependent on location. These hubs include: the Game Hub, the Video Hub and the Music Hub. Current Samsung smartphone users know of the handy Social Hub. These new hubs will serve a similar functionality related to their area of specialization for instance the Music Hub will provide users with a personal music streaming service whereas the Game Hub will offer access to social games and for the reel guys, the Video Hub will take care of high quality TV shows and movies.
The Deal Breakers
These are the features that make the Samsung Galaxy s III stand out.
Smart stay: The front-facing 1.9 megapixel camera has a face detection feature that monitors your eyes and keeps the screen from locking or dimming if you are looking at it.
S-Voice: The natural language user interface brings in a Siri-like voice recognition system that a user will tell commands and the device executes them for instance increasing the volume, unlocking the phone or even snapping photos. Be aware that this will require an active data connection.
S-Beam: Beam is the enhanced version of Android beam and will allow users to send large files using Wi-Fi Direct at speeds of up to 300 Mbps. That’s incredibly fast huh? Imagine a 1 Gigabyte file sent in 3 minutes. Files are transferred in instant between devices by touching them together.
Buddy Photo Share: The device can automatically identify the faces of people you have taken a photo with and share it with them. It will directly display their social media profiles on the photos
All Share Cast: Content on the Samsung Galaxy S III can easily be displayed on other compatible displays e.g. a TV (Samsung TV?). Under this there is Group Cast which simply allows one to share their screen in real time with other users when they are all connected to the same network. What’s more? The other users can even add comments.
Pop Up Play: Well with the Samsung Galaxy S III you will be able to play a video file while using any other app in its own dedicated window.
Select Your Best Shot: The device automatically suggests the best image from you based on a few factors like smile detection and facial recognition.
Direct Call: have you ever tapped a contact in order to send them a text message then all of a sudden changed your mind and decided to call them instead? This is taken care of here. The Samsung Galaxy S III will simply start calling a contact when you are on the contact details page and you bring your phone closer to your ear.
Wireless Charging: This is more of a hardware capability but it is worth taking note of. This is a first. The phone will have optional accessories to facilitate wireless charging for interested users. This is where tech becomes interesting.
If you have left the Samsung Galaxy S III lying idle on any surface for some time, when you pick it up for use, it will vibrate to notify you of new messages and missed calls, if any.
You can snap a photo while video recording
The device comes in two colours: marble white and pebble blue. there is promise to add more colours in the near future though I think the two colours are just fine.
I have loved every feature of this device though I have not had a hands-on (I would madly want to have a hands-on) with it but I have just one quarrel with Samsung’s Mobile division. Why did it have to be a plastic back case? Seriously this is a top-of-the-range smartphone and the plastic back case does it no good. Plus, Apple and other competitors in the smartphone market like HTC (with its One X) have devices with strong back cases, not plastic.
The Samsung Galaxy S III is expected to premiere in the Kenyan market from as early as late this month. It should be in major outlets by the second week of June. European countries will be the first to get this new device with a UK debut set for May 30th while much of continental Europe joins the Galaxy party from 29th May.
Love it or hate it, the Samsung Galaxy S III is the best phone in the market right now. I mean exactly that. It is not only the best Android device but the best smartphone, yes smartphone you iPhone 4S diehard.
Phone specifications as published on GSMArena.com
Images courtesy: recombu.com, canicashopping.com
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