41 of 48 people found the following review helpful
on July 16, 2012
Long review so skip to the section you're most interested in if you don't feel like reading the whole thing.
I thought the size of the phone would bother me since it's approaching Galaxy Note size, but I've been pleasantly surprised by how easy it is to handle in my hand. Granted I'm a big guy with big hands, but since I bought one for the wife as well I can tell you that she has not had a single complaint about the size. The screen size is fantastic. Even side to side next to a 4.3" phone the difference while watching a video is pretty significant. I don't feel like I have to squint anymore to catch fine details. I kept hearing about the weight being an issue from the perspective of it being so light that it seemed insubstantial, but to me the size/weight ratio seems just right. The wife and I both have the "marble white" color and I must admit the contrast of the polycarbonate white shell ringed in silver is, visually, very appealing.
The biggest complaint I have in this section are the buttons. For one, the home button at the bottom center is slightly raised (as opposed to all i-devices which have them sunken). This means that in some cases if you have the phone in your pocket and a piece of fabric or something else rubs up against the button it could wake the phone up while in your pocket. It will eventually sleep again, but if this happens multiple times it can affect battery life. A couple of times I've reached for it in my pocket only to discover the screen was already lit up as I took it out. My other problem is the arrangement of the power/volume buttons. I get that the "Galaxy" line has the volume buttons on the left side of the phone, but every other smartphone I've had from HTC to Motorola to Apple has had the volume buttons on the right so you kinda get use to that. One of the biggest annoyances about this is that if you're watching a video in landscape mode you tend to have your index finger and thumb "framing" the phone on top/bottom (a.k.a. left/right in landscape mode) and there is a tendency to raise or lower the volume by mistake.
Which brings me to my next peeve with the buttons. A possible solution to my volume problem while watching a video is just to flip the phone 180 degrees thereby having the volume buttons on the top (while in landscape) instead of on the bottom. The problem with this is that they have decided to put the power button on the right side top part of the phone (also a Galaxy trait I believe), but then you can wind up putting the phone to sleep by inadvertently pressing it while in landscape mode.
I was a little upset when I found out we weren't getting the Exynos quad-core in favor of the Qualcomm dual-core. Although I haven't handled a quad-core at this point I can tell you that this dual core is VERY responsive. I haven't tasked it with much in the way of mathematical computations or heavy gaming yet, but it's handled everything I've thrown at it on a day-to-day basis without a hiccup. I've since consoled myself with the fact that while it's a dual-core, it comes with 2GB RAM while the international Exynos-chipped version comes with 1GB. I'm not sure at what point the bottle-neck of 1GB RAM gives the advantage to the slower CPU with more memory, but from what I've read the differences are not staggering.
For all the rave about "Ice-Cream-Sandwich" (Android 4.04) I don't see the "earth-shattering" differences. There are improvements, no doubt, but I really only enjoy a couple of things that I didn't have before on Android 2.3.4. NFC is one. I can beam pictures to my wife's phone, but Google Wallet is useless unless you are on Sprint. I definitely like the data-usage metric, but I use to have an app for that on my previous phone, so...no biggie. I like Smart-Stay (where it watches your eyes to see if you're looking somewhere else while standing in front of the phone and turns off the screen if you're not paying attention). But this seems more like a gimmick because sometimes it doesn't detect your face and winds up shutting off the screen. As for S-Voice (the siri competitor). It's been pretty helpful for composing messages or setting calendar appointments while driving, but it doesn't know how to compose emails and it's buggy. Sometimes it understands you and sometimes it thinks your asking about stuff that's not even close to what you said. I've used siri quite a bit on several iPhones and it's not only more responsive, but has a better "bedside manner" when it doesn't know what the hell you're talking about.
One of the things that was highly touted about Android 4.0 on the SIII (or was it the Samsung GUI that sits on top?) is that if you are texting someone, get tired of texting and want to call them instead you can just put the phone up to your ear while their text is on the screen and it will call them. I've only been able to get it to do this for me when I'm on that person's "contact page". I can't get it to do it while reading one of their texts.
I've never been much of a photographer so for me the pictures most smartphones take are "good enough". To those people who are looking for all the controls and adjustments that the phone has to make them "crisp and clear" I say: If the pictures that you take on a daily basis are THAT important to you, you need a good $600+ Digital SLR (Nikon D5100 or Canon EOS T3 come to mind). In the case of smartphone pictures my biggest problem has always been shutter speed. I could never take a shot of my son doing something funny before he went on to something else. With the SIII though, the shutter REALLY is that fast. It is instantaneous and with the burst shot (20 pictures in quick succession) I haven't missed a shot yet. this aspect of the SIII is awesome. I especially like the "Best Shot" feature. During family cookouts now I don't have to ask 12 people to just stand there and smile for 45 seconds while I take a picture and check it to make sure everyone's eyes were open before I let them all go their separate ways. I can just press the button, the phone takes 8 pictures in rapid succession, analyzes them and offers me the best shot where everyone is smiling and looking this way. I can disband the "Fellowship-of-the-ring" before I look to see if I got a good shot, because I usually will get at least one out of the 8.
Hands down I think my favorite feature on the SIII is the facial recognition security. I like to secure my phone, but I hate jumping through the "enter pin" or "connect the dots" hoops to unlock it. The facial recognition just works (in good light) and I set the pin method as a backup in case it can't see me or doesn't recognize me. I love it.
I do hate, however, the music player that comes with the phone. It's very simplistic and I prefer the sweeping carousel of cover art prevalent on i-devices. Although the speaker volume is loud enough to play music without earphones, unlike on my first-gen iPhone.
Data/Call quality (Carrier: T-mobile):
The T-mobile version seems to be the red-headed stepchild of the different versions because it's the only one that will not support LTE 4G when it does roll out on T-mobile. The up-front costs are also a little higher. The reason I chose it was because I did some research on Root Metrics ([...]) and found that although T-Mobile is the smallest of the nationwide carriers (by subscribers) they have been quietly upgrading their data network. It's HSPA+ so it's not truly "4G", but frankly, what I care about is data throughput, and 4G data doesn't carry a special badge that says it's 4G so who cares what network it's on, as long as it's fast. Thus far, I average between 8-15Mbps downstream and between 1.2 and 3.3Mbps upstream on 4G in most areas around Miami. That's on the order of several times faster than the DSL I had coming into my home till a few weeks ago when I switched to Comcast. The fact that T-mobile is last among the major carriers means that they offer great prices. I know Verizon is considered the fastest in data, but at the end of the day, how much better quality can an HD video get from watching it on 15Mbps connection than on a 22Mbps connection? 1080p requires between 8-10Mbps so it's like shooting a chicken with a bazooka. As for the phone not supporting LTE...The way I figure it by the time LTE is as ubiquitous as 3G is today this phone will be obsolete and I'll be on to the next greatest thing...so who cares that I won't be able to use it with the technology of 5 years from now? If Google glass is any indication by that time we'll be wearing our wireless devices instead of carrying them around in our pockets.
Lastly, T-mobile's data plan is 2GB of 4G data per device versus Verizon's "share everything among all your devices" plan. And you don't incur overages because once you go over your 2GB limit they slow you down, but you still get data and no additional fees. Oh and call quality is quite good also...but who uses phones to make calls now-a-days anymore? Pfft!
43 of 51 people found the following review helpful
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! :)
39 of 47 people found the following review helpful
on July 2, 2012
I've had this phone for a week now and played around with virtually all the options. My main concerns were call quality, app speed and battery life. The Galaxy S III excels at all three. As far as features, the phone has more than you need. I personally like the face recognition and NFC functionality. The screen is also outstanding. Clear as day in any lighting situation. The only function that has room for improvement is probably the S Voice which is a Siri-like voice command center. It's a novelty feature that I didn't use much on the iPhone 4 and will get the same usage on my GS3.
The backing does feel a little "plastic" but I plan to get the OEM flip cover which will remedy the issue. Other than that, great phone and highly recommended.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
I had upgraded from a Palm Centro, which I was using after my Palm Pre had an "accident", so the Galaxy SIII was a HUGE improvement. My mom has an Infuse and I liked that, but I'm much more tech savvy and knew I wanted the S3 the first time I saw a commercial. (Incidentally, the S3 is about the same size as the Samsung Infuse.)
As a college student, this phone has been so much more useful then I would have guessed. I have saved PDF files to it so I can read them if I'm waiting somewhere, I have apps to keep track of my assignments and schedule, I even can view MS office documents on the go (was completely impressed when I discovered I could also view PowerPoint slides). Occasionally I will check and post to Facebook, but I use my S3 more for useful things than social networking.
Battery life is better than I expected. I don't talk on the phone a lot, but I do use it quite a bit. I usually spend 30-45 minutes between my first two classes playing a game or using my e-reader app on my S3 to pass the time. When at college I leave my phone on, I just silence it so I can check it between classes, and by the end of the day on Mondays, my longest day (8 hours), I still have 50%-65% battery life left. I leave my Wi-Fi, GPS, and Sync on all the time, and usually have Mobile Data turned on so I can use data outside a Wi-Fi area (which I love that option, just in case I'm getting close to my data limit). Rarely have I needed to charge it before I'm ready for bed (I think there were only two nights in a row I had to charge it early when an app went funny and drained the battery). If you are going to be a heavy user, I'd suggest picking up an extra battery or carrying a charger around everywhere - it is a smartphone after all, and we all know by now smartphone battery life is not the greatest, even if this one does have a better battery life than others.
While the phone is wonderful, I have to say it isn't quite perfect. The back is very slick, so without a case it can be hard to grip, and even would slide its way out of my pocket a little bit when I sat down. I bought a Ballistic SG case, which also isn't perfect, but it has a wonderful grip and solves my pocket-sliding problem. The S3 is rather large - something wonderful for the display, but not so wonderful if you carry your phone in your pocket. It does fit in mine, but sometimes just feels bulky. I have had the S3 freeze to the point where I had to restart it at least twice in the two months I've had it, but nowhere near the number of times my mom has had her Infuse freeze. S Voice is a nice feature, but is far from perfect. The recognition is inaccurate and hardly saves time. She did tell me she was sorry I felt she sucked, which was at least worth a laugh.
That said, I would definitely recommend the Galaxy SIII. No phone will ever perfect (regardless of what Apple fans might think), but the S3 is close enough. Sometimes I get the "oooo" gasp when I pull my phone out at school, but by now most people have seen it. Even my math professor was impressed just because of the screen size when I was using the calculator on my S3, and he's an Apple guy. My neighbor was jealous, but now her husband has one. My one brother asked to use my phone when he visited because he wanted to watch a video on YouTube. I asked him what was wrong with his iPhone (4), to which he replied "your screen is bigger." He might be slowly seeing the light after realizing how free the Android OS is compared to Apple's restrictiveness, and he was impressed with my S3. If S Voice was more accurate, he maybe could have been swayed from the dark side and joined the rest of the family (we all have Samsung phones: my S3, mom's Infuse, and my other brother's Solstice 2). I've already told my mom her next smartphone should be a red Galaxy SIII, but she has a long wait until she's eligible for an upgrade.
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
I loved my Galaxy S I, but it went nuts in the course of the last year--it would do the most bizarre random things, like freeze, change the ringtone or the contact pictures for people...so needless to say I was gunshy about staying in the Samsung Galaxy. Earlier this year I slipped off to Evo-land and had a great experience with the HTC Evo One X, but at the end of the day, AT&T's version of the One X was too limited: no added storage, sealed battery, too much pre-loaded junk, too much data-gobbling. I wasn't ready to live that much in the cloud.
Thus far, the Galaxy S III has been the answer to all of my problems. It has none of the senility of my Galaxy I, it is far snappier than the Galaxy II I played with, and the Android 4.0 OS has me giddy with its response time and smooth transition from one program to another. Yes, the Galaxy S III really can multi-task, and is happy to do so. Best of all, I slipped in my 32GB SD Card and we were ready to go. The HTC One X consumed just over 6GB of its built-in 16GB; out of the box, the Galaxy S III takes up a little over 4, but will allow you to slot in an SD card of up to 64GB in size for even more room. If the battery stops holding a charge one day, I'll just open the case, pop it out, and put in a new one--how handy!
INTERFACE AND SETTINGS
With the Galaxy S III's interface, there are a LOT of options that let you customize your phone to be just as you want it: it's as if the makers of both the Galaxy III and the Droid OS decided to bend over backwards and hand you the keys to pretty much every feature you can think of. For example, if you hate eating data when someone e-mails you an attachment, you can set the phone to only pull down attachments when on Wi-Fi, or not at all. Check for new messages anywhere from 'continuous' to 'daily' to 'never' (which means 'manually'). Hotmail works much better now that Exchange is supported--my Galaxy I would take forever, drop out, freeze, or give me nagging, 'Too many requests' messages.
Getting around is smooth swiping with the Gorilla Glass on the Galaxy S III's face, but I'm still going to grab a Steinheil screen protector. SWYPEing is easier, too: not only is the onscreen keyboard huge, with the keys generously spaced wherever possible, but the SWYPE interface draws your swipe line cleanly and it is easy to see what word you are SWYPEing. Word suggest is still annoying--tap out the word "text" and get "Texas" inserted--but once I turned this off, everything else worked well. If there's one disadvantage to the Galaxy S III, it's that both the phone and the screen are a real fingerprint magnet: the Evo X picks up stains and smudges, but was just a bit better about not getting as much smeariness on the glass. Still, with either device the problem is solved by a quick swipe across your shirt.
APPS AND WIDGETS
Android phones now use the Google Play Store instead of the Droid Market and it works fairly well: enter your Google account info and you're ready to go. AT&T customers still get CRapplications they can't remove, but your own third-party apps can also be side-loaded after changing one setting in the options. You can't root the phone (yet, anyway), but I'm not seeing the horrible performance drag of all that AT&T stuff like I used to. I'm especially fond of the side-loaded Amazon App Store, which nimbly pushed all my apps down with no complaints, security warnings, or performance drops (take that, ol' Galaxy I!)
Applications now come in two form factors: Apps and Widgets. When you tap the 'Applications' button from the home screen, the resulting screens are tabbed between a list of Applications and a list of Widgets. Think of an 'App' as meaning "An icon I tap to launch a program" and a 'Widget' as "A thing I may launch, or may just interact with at the screen and never need to open separately" (like the Weather, the media player, or the flashlight). When you swipe from one home screen to another, adding Widgets now gets a Windows Phone like twist: some widgets are double-wide like a Windows Phone 7 tile, and some (like the media player or the clock/weather on the main home screen) take up half the screen--the variety of sizes also resembles the coming Windows 8 Metro interface. Instead of feeling crowded, it reminds me of how much fun it was to play with my first desktop gadgets in Windows Vista.
NETWORKING AND DATA
Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are very responsive: connecting to various networks or pairing is quick. If you connect to the type of network that requires you to open a browser and agree to something/provide a user ID before you can connect, the Galaxy S III will prompt you accordingly and automatically open the page you need. There is also a button right on the pull-down menu to turn off packet data so you can conserve your data plan--I like that feature VERY much.
Multimedia playback is excellent: while my Galaxy I would take quite a while to open and respond to me, the Media Player Widget makes my music quickly accessible. True to form, I get album art, artist/title/album searches, and a very good quality of playback over the included earbuds.
The Galaxy S III has two cameras: one in the front and a much better one in the back. Both are for taking photos and shooting video. The camera on the back is for the serious picture-taking and has a very high-output flash for such a tiny LED. Picture-taking is so fast I find myself accidentally snapping multiple shots! The gallery of my Galaxy S I might take a while to show me newly-snapped photos, but with the S III they are not only instantly available, I can go straight into the Gallery from the Camera and not have to step out to the home screen. Flash can be adjusted on and off, switching cameras is as easy as tapping one icon, and there are a variety of easy-to-access options, from three focus modes (Auto, Macro, Face detection) to generic 'shooting mode' settings: Single shot, burst, HDR, "Smile Shot", Beauty, Panorama, Share Shot, and Buddy photo share. Settings includes the ability to adjust the exposure value, and what's more there are scene modes for sports, night, party/indoor, etc.
The feel of the Contacts and Phone Dialing interface haven't changed much, but the look certainly has: icons, contact pictures, and menus are larger on the Galaxy III's generous screen. I found myself making fewer mistakes trying to nudge and poke my way through the touchscreen when I needed to look up a contact or merge their information. Call quality is excellent, and answering the phone is easy. As with all new phones, there are many ringtones, alarms, and message sounds to choose from: I was very pleased with the variety of options this time around--the many sounds you can choose from for your calls range from soothing and tranquil to jarring and noisy.
If you're looking for a new Android Smartphone, the Galaxy S III is a fantastic choice. Its screen is bright, colorful and generous, the OS runs smooth and fast and the screen is very responsive to touch. The number of features at times seems endless, but more importantly, Samsung have executed those features well: this is indeed a great phone.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on November 19, 2012
I purchased this phone on the Sprint carrier. I was previously an iPhone user, however after familiarizing myself with the Android operating system and the Google Play Store, I was ready to take the leap "to the dark side".
Hardware: This phone is BLAZING fast. ULTRA responsive. You click to open an app, and BAM! the app is open, without hesitation. I _LOVE_ the screen. Sorry, I have read and read reviews on this phone and its competitors, but I, as your average 30-something year old female user, find it to be brightly lit, easy to read, crisp, LARGE, detailed, , and with a pixel count that is gratifying. I _LOVE_ the huge display. Netflix, with some ear buds in sucks me right in! I am in lurve :).
Software: Honestly, I don't know enough about the different Andriod OS's to say that this particular OS is any better or worse than the most recent (Ice Cream Sandwich) or earlier variations of it. I will say that the apps that I have installed on it are very responsive and snap right open, without _any_ delay. I won't mention the differences between the iOS and the Android OS (I'm not familiar with the Windows mobile OS), as it's apples and oranges.
Camera: It has both front and back cams. Toddlers LOVE this lol. Hand them your phone to check themselves out in and it's almost as entertaining as Netflix! At 8 Megapixels on the outward facing camera, and the fact that it has a flash, 5x7 prints won't look like that on your average phone! The video is _slightly_ jumpy, however, it's clear in both image and sound quality.
Speaker: This sucker can get LOUD! Which is awesome! Does it sound like a little speaker on a phone (that slightly distorted phone speaker sound)? Yeah, some. How does it compare with the other Androids that I've heard? It's louder, and less distorted.
Battery life: This is my ONLY _very minor_ complaint about this phone. Not that it goes through the battery quickly, but the charging time. Actually, it takes quit a bit of hard processor work to get this battery worn out, but once you do, the battery takes a good bit to charge. This seems to be a common theme with Android phones, though. So it's not really a surprise, nor a disappointment.
Would I recommend this phone if someone was considering an Android phone. Yes! A LOT! It'll fit into your back pocket, but barely. It's NOT a compact phone, but it's a slim, lightweight phone considering the size of it. I am a small woman (5'2") with small hands and I don't find that it hinders me at all. Between the speed, the large screen size, the camera, the WiFi hotspot (ROCK!), and the speed of it, I don't know how you couldn't like it. Not to mention, with Androids, as opposed to iOS operated phones, you can upgrade the memory (relatively cheaply) and you can purchase extra batteries if you need them.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on September 13, 2012
Best phone I've owned. Great combination of size and weight, plus delivers on usability and functionality for things I actually use! Very easy to work in and change settings, find files, transfer music, video, etc. Really happy with this phone and would highly recommend to everyone.
I've had Blackberry devices, iPhone 3G and 4, 4S, and this Galaxy S3 beats them all. I was new to Android, but it has been fine and the learning curve is more one of familiarity than anything else. Within a day of using this device, it felt like I had been using it for years. The widgets are awesome...that's something I didn't really think about or thought I would use/need, until I used them...great, handy things to have. The entire home screen(s) is customizable so you can have what you want where you want it. I don't like a lot of screens to move through, so I cut it down to two main screens, but every app is just a couple of clicks away if/when I need it.
The display on this phone is the best. Some say it is a little dim, and that is true on darker scenes, but overall I don't like an overly bright display and usually turn mine down to help conserve battery anyway. The colors are rich and it's very sharp. The HD is amazing.
I downloaded the gingerbread keyboard and youmail for voicemail, and both are fantastic. I had issues with the AT&T messaging app not showing me new text messages, so went back to the standard messaging and grabbed youmail, and am very happy with both.
The size of the device was shockingly large when I opened it, especially because I was coming from the iPhone 4S...that went away in about a minute. Now I can't imagine using the smaller phones. It fits in my pocket, and it's so light, it doesn't feel as large as it is. My wife just switched from her iPhone to the Galaxy Note...now that's a big phone! Compared to that one, this S3 looks tiny! The Note is really large, but even that was much more usable and functional than I expected (but that's for my wife to review in more detail!).
I have had no issues with the phone, I tweaked the settings after the first few days to help maximize battery life, and it now lasts more than a day. I watch videos on it every day and play music on my commutes, in addition to moderate texting and a call or two each day. The LTE is very fast and you can now use firefox on it so syncing across desktop and mobile use is really nice.
Camera and video are amazing. Best I've used on a smartphone, hands down. Expandable memory is a huge plus...16GB on the device and 32GB on a card is great. The NFC is still more a gadget but it's cool...using with the tectiles is nice, but still fairly limited for now.
So many features I haven't played with them all yet. One nice thing I stumbled across was changing the font size of messages in SMS by using the volume rocker...ingenious idea and great for my old eyes!
Won't be going back to Apple as long as this phone and its successors continue to deliver the way this one has.
15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on May 19, 2013
Not happy. The actual samsung Phone box was taped shut with packing tape wrapped tightly around box. Phone appears used. It had lint and dirt on back and front of phone. Also accessory items were loose in box. No phone manual in box. I'd also like to point out that you activated my new phone prior to shipping and in turn, it shut my old phone off so I was without cell until new one arrived. Extremely aggravating as I use my phone for work. Also no packing slip or order information included.
This appears to be a used phone. I did not use my upgrade and spend extra $ to buy used. I'd like a replacement asap.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on May 21, 2013
The process of upgrading my phone was super easy! My time for a upgrade through AT&T was up so I looked on the At&T store online but at the time they didn't have the galaxy3 in stock so I checked on amazon and sure enough they had it and was cheaper than the store! The phone arrived quickly no problems setting it up. I Love the size and quality of the phone! I need a bigger screen and this is it! Easy to navigate through and it has video help through the phone to help with whatever you need. Bright and so many features i'm completely happy with it. Easy to hold and talk on it. Battery life isn't the greatest but it's not too bad I mean it is a smart phone and with apps it does tend to drain some of the battery but that doesn't bug me at all.Great phone!
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on May 11, 2013
I've read other reviews on here about the Samsung Galaxy S3 being "fragile" "cheap" "hard to use". Let me clarify some things. I used my wifes Iphone 3 GS, and liked it. Shortly after I got my 1st Smart Phone the Samsung Captivate, aka Galasy S. I liked the bigger screen, and the Andriod OS. About 18months later I killed my Captivate, and replaced it with the S3. My wife has an Infuse, aka Galaxy S2, and likes it. The S3... wow.
This is NOT fragile! I have a case that guards the battery cover on the back, and a screen protector( thin plastic film). I've dropped the phone numerous times, dropped stuff on it, fell out of my pocket at about 15mph, and it has survived it all! Yes it has nicks in the phoned, but the screen is perfect. It's also very bright unlike someone elses post, unless you dim the screen via the drop down bar, and you can adjust screen brightness in less than 3 seconds from the home screen.
The phone is not difficult to use, unless you have no patience what so ever to do a little navigating, and learn the phones OS. At first I was thinking "Oh wow I'm in trouble.", and within a day I had everything figured out.
My ONLY complaint about the phone is the LED indicator light for Aps when U have a msg, email, game update, and so on. You turn the indicator off, and some Aps it stays on. That falls on the App IMO, not the phone.
The S3 is an awsome phone. I would GLADLY own another. Would I recomend the Galaxsy S1, no. The S3? Gods yes! Nice 4.8 screen, tough as nails, good battery life, easy to learn with minimal patience. I would know beings as I've had it since Nov '12. Not a few days or a week. Enjoy!