It’s here. The Galaxy S3, Samsung’s flagship phone for the 2012/2013 smartphone battle, has just been unveiled at the official launch in London. We’re here, and we’ve had a chance to get hands-on and close-up with what could well be your next phone. What’s the big deal? Read on to find out.
So, this is the Samsung Galaxy S3. After more rumour, speculation and hype than a Samsung launch has ever been involved in before, we’ve had the privilege of being personally introduced to it. The verdict? It’s an absolute stonker.
The phone has a huge 4.8-inch HD Super-AMOLED display, which really, really shines. Samsung says the resolution is HD – 1280 x 720. In real life terms, that means it’s amazing, but to your eyes there’s nothing between it and the iPhone 4S’ Retina Display, albeit the monstrous size.
Inside there’s the Exynos 4412 1.4GHz quad-core processor, which we’ve known about for a while. On paper it’s insanely powerful, but it’s hard in such a small amount of time to get a feel for what that can really do. We’ll tell you this: you can’t break its brain.
We’ve flicked around from screen to screen, app to app, with no problems whatsoever. Want something that puts it through its paces? How about Pop-up Play? If you’re watching a video, you can press an icon in the bottom right and a small version of it appears on the home screen, or whatever app you open. You can reposition it to allow you to watch Sky Go while checking Facebook, for instance. That’s really powerful stuff.
The version of the TouchWiz UI Samsung’s using here is brand new and totally tricked out with loads of other new features, like S Voice, a smart voice assistant that you can wake up simply by saying “Hi Galaxy!” We had mixed results with this, but we’ll put it down to the noise at tonight’s event. Smart Stay is another very clever feature, which keeps the screen on as long as you’re looking at it. Meanwhile, Direct Call will ring the person you’re texting if you bring it up to your ear.
In terms of build, the Galaxy S3 is a looker, not dissimilar at all to the Galaxy Nexus. It’s designed around nature, with a ‘Hyperglaze’ mold. It’s very hard to avoid using stupid phrases when describing how a phone feels, but this has a destinctive airiness about it. Of course, screen size is still a dividing issue, and this is far bigger than the competition from Apple. Still, despite the 4.8-inch size, Samsung’s made a good job of fitting it in your hand, thanks to a thinner bezel than the Galaxy S2 had.
Of course, you knew all of that. You’re here for the pictures, right? Have a look at the gallery above to see the Galaxy S3 in all its glory. We’ll bring you a more in-depth review as soon as we can. Are you in love? Let us know if you think Samsung’s just pulled a winner out of the bag.