on July 15, 2012
The US version of the phone differs as it has a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Processor with 1.5 GHz Dual-Core CPUs, while the the rest of the hardware specs are the same as the international version.
I switched from an HTC EVO 4G to get this phone and so far it's been great! Here are the things I like about the phone:
* The phone is a nice size, it's lighter than my HTC EVO 4G.
* The processor is one of the fastest US released Android phone, and it comes with 2 GB of RAM.
* I played around with the camera and video camera and the quality is great in my opinion. (I'll post some pics or a video later.)
* The ICS 4.0 is really snappy and it opens up applications quickly.
* It comes with Google Wallet. I signed up and got a free $10 to use. (I'm going to McDonald's to test it out!)
* I've only use the S Voice application a few times, but it seems to be just like Siri on my wife's iPhone 4S.
* It comes with a micro SD slot in case more space is needed to save pictures, videos, etc.
* You can change out the battery if needed.
* Battery life last twice as long compared to my HTC EVO 4G.
Now for some cons:
* This is carrier related and not the phone itself, but the 4G LTE is not all in all areas so be sure to check your carrier if internet speeds is a deciding factor in purchasing this phone. If not you'll be stuck with 3G speeds.
* The phone is so nice, that I baby it all the time!
I was on the fence about getting this phone or the HTC EVO 4G LTE aka HTC One X. The main things that I like over the the Samsung Galaxy 3 over the HTC EVO 4G LTE is that it comes with the Micro SD slot and also the battery can be changed if it ever goes bad.
I love this phone! :)
on October 10, 2012
I just upgraded from an original Droid X running Android 2.3.4 (Gingerbread) to this beast -- it's a big step up. I loved my Droid X -- it was very well made, it had great call quality as a phone, and I really like Android, the Droid X being my first Android phone (I was a die-hard Palm user from the old days). Over time, I had figured out how to make my Droid X mimic the functionality of a PDA, but the old girl was starting to show her age. The single core processor was having a tough time keeping up with the stuff I was doing. I rarely have time to play games -- the phone to me is my electronic briefcase while I'm on the road away from my laptop. At first, I thought the GS3 was too big, but on subsequent trips to the stores it started to grow on me. ICS is really nice compared to Gingerbread -- lots of bugs fixed, lots of added niceties, and a much smoother and logical UI. The phone is more than capable of running whatever you throw at it without so much as a hiccup -- the processor is very fast, it has a lot of memory, the screen is possibly better than the Apple's, and the battery life is pretty good when using the power saving features that Sammy supplies. I've been using the phone for about a week, and I'm still impressed every time I pick it up and use it. The build quality isn't as high as the Motorola, but that's not to say that the phone isn't well made. I purchased a Seidio Convert case for the phone, which is excellent, and really compliments the whole package. The 4G screams compared with 3G, and the call quality is excellent, although the volume isn't as loud as the Droid X. Moving my data from the Droid involved a number of steps, but everything worked fine (non-root user here). The contacts were pulled directly from Google, my apps were restored using My Backup Pro from my SD card, as was the app data. It took me about 2 days to get the phone setup to the point where I felt comfortable using it on a daily basis. The battery life is pretty good, and I do see a big difference in power consumption when on WiFi (home, work) as opposed to 4G. Using it moderately on predominantly WiFi, the phone will still have 50 - 60% of a charge left in the evening. With the same use on 4G the phone will be down to 30 - 40% by evening. Considering the processing power, that's pretty close to what I would get from my Droid X at less than half the speed. All in all, a great package that should serve well for quite a few years. The phone reeks of the sweat that went into creating this monster, and it's a pleasure to use. Recommended.
** 10/13/2012 Update **
The battery life is better than I originally thought. The Samsung power saving feature really squeezes every last bit out of the stock battery. At home, on WiFi all day, with the phone on from 7am until 11pm, the battery has a 60 - 70% charge left. Out and about using 4G, the battery will have 50 - 60% charge by evening. Using it very heavily during the first week of ownership, the lowest the battery ever reached was 35%, and that was after 2 hours of constant WiFi transmission while I was backing up my phone apps + data to my main rig at home. The stock battery performance blows away the high output battery of my old Droid X (1750 mAh), which I have routinely killed before getting home -- and I'm not a heavy user on a regular basis. I'm impressed.
** Update 12/3/2012 **
Amazing phone. Learning curve was about 1 or 2 weeks, coming from Gingerbread. Plenty of processing power, beautiful display, great call quality, gorgeous design, decent battery life, great OS -- what more can one ask for. The phone is a pleasure to use. It's good to be king.
on July 26, 2012
* Large, beautiful Screen
* Very Light
* Fast response
* Great connection speeds, so far
* MicroSD expansion
* User-replaceable battery
* Radio app not included, unlike international version
* Virtual keyboard can be touchy (but probably more me than the phone)
Overall I really like the phone and plan to use it for years to come.
on October 14, 2012
I like this phone a lot. I have had Android phones and a tablet, so I am familiar. My biggest beef, I won't say problem, is the lag with touch. I hate touching something with the intent of it working, and it doesn't. So I touch it again and it opens and shuts. That seems to be a Samsung thing more than anything else. NOT a deal breaker, and any suggestions would be welcomed. The ever annoying predictive crap is easily turned off. I never found it to randomly change time like someone else said, but I did find the iPhone 5 to do this 3 to 5 times a day. I took that back, like this one better. One problem I have encountered is from the open phone keyboard when I try to select something from a list of contacts, it goes black each time I try to touch it. This has happened twice with no explanation. Then it works again. Some of the preinstalled crap I could do without, but that is also easily disabled. My biggest problem was the battery life. The first week I would charge and by 6 pm it would need to charge again. Once charged I would unplug it and it would sit till morning. With no use, by morning I lost 30% of the charge. Then it started going dead at 4 hours, and upon recharge it was down 50% in 2 hours. I did some Googling, and found many people with this problem. One person said there is a bug that won't allow it to go into a deep sleep, not sure I know what that is, and it will cause an app to remain open and drain battery. That suggestion was to reboot immediately after charging. I did so, and right now my phone has 33% remaining after 38 hours. Woohoo! Screen is beautiful! I like it. Any suggestions from anyone who's figured some of this stuff out are welcome.
on August 8, 2012
After much research and waiting impatiently for my iPhone... I switched to the Samsung Galaxy S3. I selected the 32 GB phone because I love to load up with music and apps.
The phone feels great in my hand...I do recommend a cradle for it in the car. I can easily see my screen, and do almost everything intuitively...almost like an iPhone. I am a woman with average size hands and the way this curves in my hands feels great.It does not look or feel "cheap".
It does have the Corning Gorilla Glass 2...I researched this a great deal and finally got a Verizon person to confirm this before I made my purchase. The online people at Verizon said no...but I knew I read about the Corning Glass 2 in several reviews. I even called the Corning Glass people. :)
It is fast, the calls are clear, calls are easy to make...The screen is HUGE...my father can even hear on this phone and has the chance to play with the camera and video recorder.
1. Took me a while to figure out how to turn off the T9 and just do regular keying in on the board.
(2 days...That's all...and I figured it out without going to a teen or calling in support! :)
2. In low light the photos are not good at all...maybe with some more playing with it I can figure out the proper way to solve the problem.
3. The alarms are not loud enough...I need loud alarms to wake me...and to notify me of messages.
4. The screen kept going dark after 30 seconds when first out of the box...Drove me batty but I figured it out quickly.
Would I choose this phone again? I think so, Yes, I like it better than the iPhone but I am really waiting to see what the new iPhone will be like.
I have had the phone for a week...I will come back in three weeks and do a further update.
Right now...I love this phone.
on September 29, 2012
I have owned the SIII for about three weeks and absolutely love it. I upgraded from an SII.
The size of the phone is great! It fits in all the pockets I want to put it in and fits nicely in my hand.
The screen is large a very easy to read even from a cradle on the dashboard of my car.
This phone is fast. I perceive almost no lag when switching between applications on this phone.
The GPSa receiver/software is outstanding. I'm AMAZED at how fast if finds where I am and routes me to where I want to go. I can be on the move, use the voice input to tell it where I want to go and almost instantly the phone has a route up and ready for me with the best voice turn-by-turn directions I have ever seen on a GPS and I owned an SII before so I've used very recent GPS technology. Yes, I know this is just as much Google as Samsung, but the phone still has the display up quickly and finding where I am is the hardware.
The rear camera is quite good. I own a Nikon D7000 as my real camera, but the SIII works for when I don't have my Nikon. I find all phone camera's to be lacking. As far a phone camera the SIII is the best I've seen.
The retina scanning to keep the phone's display on while you're looking at it is a great first attempt, but in low light it doesn't work very good. Samsung say's that, so I'd like the phone to revert to a timer when in low light rather than try to perceive if I'm looking at the screen.
The touch screen is very sensitive. At times it seems like I barely have to wave my thumb over the screen or get close to the screen to be registered. While I list this a pro, I'll admit this took about a day to get used to.
I love that I can have a spare battery around to slap in the phone.
MicroSD slot, need I say more.
The only con on the hardware is the volume rocker. I have to say, I think I'd prefer the iPhone style buttons better.
I'm not that fond of the hardware home button. I wish Samsung would have gotten rid of that as Google spec'd, but I'm sure there are millions of people that would have complained about it going away if Samsung had removed it. I want that space used for an even bigger screen without making the unit bigger.
This is a fantastic upgrade to the SII. I liked the SII but there were a few things that annoyed me.
I like that the save buttons have moved to the top of the screen so that I don't have to first hide the keyboard before I save an update, like to a contact.
There are a thousand minor but nice upgrades to the user interface, too many to list or remember.
Here are some notable upgrades to earlier Android/Samsung software:
The voice commands on the GPS. The turn-by-turn directions on the GPS are outstanding. (yes, I know, I said this under hardware too) Very clear and easy to understand. They come at the perfect time to get you where you need to go without being intrusive and repetitive.
I like the new contacts form. I like that there is no first last name. I prefer just one name box.
I like that the Samsung widgets are combine with Googles instead of off on a separate page. Yeah, this is one of those minor items, but it just makes more sense than the SII.
Voice commands are recognized very well.
Like I said above, there are a thousand things I like better about the software over earlier Android phones, even the SII, most of them small but very nice to have.
Predictive text. My friends laughed at my texting when I used the predictive text features. They got a real kick out of the words the SIII would put in for me in my message that were not what I meant to have in my text.
Related to predictive text, is the Samsung keyboard. I miss having punctuation on the hold feature of the letters. I don't like that I have to go to the symbols keyboard just to type a "?" or "!" or ":-)".
Overall this is the first smartphone I've owned that I thought actually deserved the designation as a 'smartphone.' The SII was good and I liked it, but the SIII is great. I really enjoy this phone.
on March 26, 2013
The phone is OK. We also tried a Droid RAZR MAXX HD. By comparison, the galaxy feels much better in my hands as I found the size of the RAZR to be a bit awkward. The display is great, very vibrant. The case is incredibly flimsy - I thought I was going to break it when I tried to pry it off to insert the battery. Compared to the RAZR, this phone seems like a kids toy. We invested in some Otterbox cases which might not have been necessary with the RAZR. The camera is very good, phone is fast and the battery lasts about 1/2 - 3/4 of a day with normal use. You definitely need a back up battery or a place to plug in for a few minutes. It does quick charge very fast which helps.
I also have an issue connecting the bluetooth on this phone to my 2013 Subaru Impreza. I need to manually connect the phone to the bluetooth each time I start the car - it's really annoying.
on January 20, 2015
This phone had several flaws, which is why I finally returned it:
1. The GPS didn't initially work - I needed to tighten the screws on the back of the phone to get it working.
2. The charging time was abysmal - the stock battery (and even a 3rd Party replacement battery) took about 20 hours to charge from 30% to 95% (I was using the charger plug and cord that came with the phone).
3. The OS (Kit Kat 4.2.2) was incredibly sluggish right from the start.
I've worked in I.T. for almost 20 years, and have seen a lot of crappy products come and go, yet this phone was the worst smartphone experience I've ever had.
on August 26, 2013
I really haven't messed with it too much to learn about all of the bells & whistles. The only complaint I have is it's bigger than I'm use to. It does take awesome photos though!
on October 31, 2012
All things considered, the Samsung Galaxy S III is probably the best 'smartphone' (Android or iPhone) available. Even the best phone has some obvious drawbacks, and this has just two relatively small ones:
- Apps cannot be moved to the external memory card
- The display can be a bit too 'washed out' in direct sunlight
These are relatively small 'issues'. All your photos, videos, music, & other files can be moved to the external card. And the large display's brightness, clarity, & usability are beautiful.
The most common criticism I hear from other users of this (and every) smartphone is that they'd like its rear-facing camera to be 'better'. In my opinion, the camera is excellent - if you need higher-quality pics or video, carry a good point-and-shoot camera. Keep in mind this is a smartphone that does a plethora of things exceptionally well - it's not a camera that also does phone calls :-)