Nice Size Screen, Snappy ICS 4.0, Great Phone - US Version 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! :)
Wow what a phone! September 6, 2012
Reviewer: Aramis Figueroa (Miami, FL) -
First I want to start by saying that I have had an iphone since launch date of 2007, I always loved my iphone and I have bought every generation of it including the iphone 4s. Slowly I have been getting bored with the iPhone, when I saw what was coming with iOS 6 I was disappointed since I thought they where going to introduce really cool things that the OS would do. I then saw the keynote from Samsung about the Galaxy S3 and I was blown away. I thought this is what the iphone 5 should be.
I ended up selling my iPhones and bought a galaxy for me, my wife and my son. We love the phone. We have had the phone for over 1 month now and its amazing. The screen is awesome, the battery life is very good for me, it last me almost all day. The fact that I can swap out the battery is great. I have used other android phones in the past and they suck, this one with ice cream sandwich just works. If you are looking for a change than this is it.
After looking at the photos of what the iphone 5 is going to be like I feel I made the right choice. I don't want a phone that is just longer it needs to be wider, apple should have made it at least a 4.3 screen.
The only complaint I have about this phone is that when I put it a holster it starts getting hot. Most android phones do that and I think its because since it has real multitasking the apps stay running all the time unlike the iPhone where the apps are paused.
I can tell you that I can do things on this phone that the iphone does not allow. That alone was getting me on the fence. Lastly this model has 16gb onboard and I was able to buy a microsd card with 64GB, now I have 80gb. I love that the storage is expandable.
No Joke - One of the best smartphones right now! September 3, 2012
Reviewer: Charlie (MI, USA) -
Samsung Galaxy S3 16GB White, Verizon
I upgraded from a Motorola Droid 2 to the S3 and am completely satisfied with the S3. The large 4.8 inch AMOLED screen is beautiful and it fits perfectly in my palm. The resolution is exceptional, words cannot describe it.
I can use one hand/thumb to do most tasks and feel that the S3 could have been even larger without compromising convenience. I'd say a 5.5 inch screen would be the highest I'd go. The problem arises when using a holster. As a guy, I have a hard time just putting a phone in my pocket because I use my pockets for keys, pens, and my wallet, which can easily scratch/damage the phone when moving around. I don't always have a backpack or pack on hand, so that leaves me with a holster as the only logical method of carrying a phone. The Otterbox Defender has been by far the best case/holster I've found for the S3. Unfortunately, with the Defender, the S3 feels like I am hauling around a Texas Instruments graphing calculator on my belt. When calling someone, it's like I am calling in an airstrike. However, it is never uncomfortable to use. Even for such a large phone, I find myself not getting fatigued when making long phone calls. The audio quality during calls is exceptional and there are multiple equalizer/sound settings to improve the audio quality.
The T9 dialing is perfect - I never understood why my Droid 2 did not have this feature, but T9 is a time saver. The predictive text and swiping keyboard takes some getting used to at first, but it works fairly well for a built-in feature. The voice-to-text input isn't bad but there are some odd mistakes from time to time.
S-Voice is essentially Samsung's version of Siri, although Siri started off as an independent app designed for the iPhone and Android before Apple took them over and squashed the Android project. S-Voice is tied into Wolfram Alpha, and I find that although it is innovative, it is more of a gimmick. I can find the weather info a lot faster using the browser/weather app and the 4G LTE network than waiting for "Galaxy" to answer my question.
S-beam is interesting at first, but a co-worker (who also bought a S3) and I played around with this and we both agree it is essentially a local peer-to-peer network not unlike Bluetooth or a WiFi-based LAN. It is definitely innovative, but I don't feel it is essential.
The battery life could be better from the rather large 2.1 Ah battery. I was able to get 3.5 days (3 days, 12 hours and change) out of 1 charge. My daily usage pattern is auto brightness, 4G LTE, and airplane mode at night, with occasional surfing/usage during the day.
The mechanical Home button feels antiquated and out of place. I never understood why Apple used this, and I don't understand its place on the S3. It should have been a capacitive soft key like the menu and back keys on the S3. However, Samsung decided to make the soft keys "disappear" when not backlit, which is annoying. I am used to the Droid 2 where the soft keys were all etched into the display. The LED indicator on the S3 is also subdued and is only visible when it is illuminated. When fully charged, the LED will glow green but it is not strong enough to bother me when I am sleeping. It's a soft and subdued glow. When there is new email or a new text message, it flashes blue. When it is charging, it glows red.
The front and rear camera quality is exceptional. The front is a 1.9 MP camera that produces beautiful video during video conferences. The rear camera is the same camera they used on the iPhone 4S, and has burst mode and truly has zero lag. The flash is extremely bright and has a white color (close to 6000K or so) unlike my Droid 2 which was more yellow (about 3000K-4000K). The picture quality is really good, especially for a smartphone.
The Samsung S3 does not come with a micro SDHC card, so I purchased a Sandisk 32GB Class 10 micro SDHC card. Android 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich) operates differently from Gingerbread with the respect that all apps are stored on the phone's internal memory. That means all of the apps are run off the 16GB "SDcard" and not your external SD card. When I inserted the 32GB Sandisk micro SD card, a new folder popped up "ExtSDCard" which points to the actual external SD card. Luckily, the camera app will notice this and ask to store all photos/videos on the external SD card. The apps and associated files remain on the 16GB internal memory.
I ran the AnTuTu benchmark and got a score of 6885, which was run without power saver and the dual-core CPU was at 1512 MHz. When I activated Power Saver, my score was 5221 with a CPU speed of 1026 MHz. As one can see, the score with Power Saver is still very respectable. The external SD card read speed was greater than 50 MB/s, while the write speed was about 29.7 MB/s max. The S3 has a lot of processing power and it is putting my Core 2 Duo laptop to shame when accessing YouTube videos and opening files. The S3 menu interface just glides seamlessly with zero hiccups or delays.
Verizon's network is the main reason why I stayed with Verizon instead of hopping to Sprint. Even though Sprint offers unlimited data (until they throttle you above 2.5 GB if you do this consistently), their network coverage is poor and their network speeds are abysmally slow. Verizon's coverage is the best in the US, and I can still get a signal 16 nautical miles off the shore of South Carolina. Verizon's 4G LTE coverage is also very good in my area, with my download speeds ranging in the 20 Mbps, and upload speeds in the 14-16 Mbps range. I get these speeds consistently using Speed Test, which means that the 4G LTE network in my area is competing against my Comcast cable internet connection. My biggest complaint about Verizon is how they forced me off the Unlimited Data plan - the alternative was to pay $600 for a new phone to keep the plan. However, from a business perspective, I understand and agree with Verizon's decision. Bandwidth is expensive and with cable internet speeds in the palm of your hand on a machine that rivals laptops, data usage goes quickly out of hand.
My friend at work had some issues with her S3, but she purchased her S3 the day it came out on Verizon based on my recommendation because her Droid 2 was really messed up. She experienced random ghost calls with the S3, and the data network kept switching between 3G and 4G LTE. I don't recall her experiencing the "No Sim card" issue that others saw with their S3. I've been using my S3 for almost 2 weeks and have not experienced any of the above problems. I solved the constant WiFi notification by deleting my known WiFi networks on the phone. The negative aspect is that I cannot use WiFi to save on my data consumption with this method. I've heard theories about the No Sim error and the ghost calls, some of them recommend pulling out the battery and Sim card, but others have recommended using Airplane mode. Since I use Airplane mode on a nightly basis, this might be the method of resolving some of the network problems.
UPDATE: 16 NOV 2012, there was a firmware update released over-the-air for the S3 about 1-2 months ago that appeared to resolve the WiFi Notification problem. I am happy to report that I can use WiFi at home to save on data consumption without any problems. There are infrequent problems where the WiFi somehow shuts itself off, or if you are shopping in an area with secured WiFi connections - it will refuse to automatically log into your secured Wifi network once you arrive home. I still stick with my original 5/5 star recommendation.
Overall: 5/5 stars. I purchased the S3 because I hate iTunes with a passion. The verdict from the Apple/Samsung case also affirmed my feelings about how Apple conducts business. I really like my S3 phone and like the Android operating system. Samsung really knows how to design their products which includes televisions, refrigerators, and other devices.
After using my S3 for almost 3 months, and my friend using her S3 for 4 months, we both still agree that it is a really good smartphone. There are 3 other people at work that have recently upgraded to the S3 as well and they're all in agreement.
Great change from iPhone 4 October 19, 2012
Reviewer: M. Nichols (Iowa, USA) -
My first smartphone was a pink blackberry pearl back in the day when only 30% of cell phone users had smartphones. Then I upgraded to the iPhone 4. I had an iPod touch and really wanted an iPhone and when Verizon finally was able to have the iPhone 4, I preordered it. After using the iPhone 4 for nearly 2 years, and after seeing the new iPhone 5, I was really disappointed. It looked pretty much the same, just longer and with a smaller port. It was faster than 4 or 4s, but I still wasn't impressed. I decided to go for the S3 after reading reviews and playing with it in the store. I'm glad I did. Here's why:
*The screen is a fantastic size. It dwarfs the iPhone 4/4s and makes the 5 look silly. It's a great size for viewing web content, emails, videos, photos, etc. It's not too big that it feels awkward in your hand. I have pretty small hands and I can do most things with just my thumb, though typing is difficult. But I wasn't even able to type using my thumb on my iPhone, so no big deal.
*Speed: The processor is incredibly fast. I can run multiple applications at once and switch between them seamlessly. And the 4G/LTE is AMAZING. When a friend switched from a 3G phone to a 4G phone, she said she couldn't tell much of a difference. Maybe it's the LTE, I don't know. All I know is that when I've downloaded apps on the go, they download just as fast - maybe even faster - than when my phone is connected to my N-router. On my iPhone with 3G, sometimes it took FOREVER to download apps or web content and it was frustrating.
*Battery and MicroSD card: The battery life is decent. I think my iPhone 4 had better battery life in the beginning, but definitely not towards the end. I was lucky if it would last the day. The S3 usually has 30-35% left at the end of the day and I play with it a lot. I also like that the battery can be switched out if it goes bad and a mircoSD card can be used to expand storage. With many phones, one must either send the phone in to have the battery switched out (if under warranty, otherwise it'll cost you) or learn to deal with the failing battery life. And with iPhones (and iPads and iPods), one isn't able to expand storage. Note that if you buy the battery with more charge, you'll have to have a different back cover and your case (if you've purchased one) will no longer fit. A friend of mine purchased the extra capacity battery and it's a little bigger so it came with an extra back cover. Her case (an expensive otterbox) would no longer fit. Just FYI.
*Weight: The phone is REALLY light for how large it seems in comparison to the iPhone 4. It weighs a lot less than a friend's Thunderbolt and I think it weighs less than my iPhone did. It doesn't weigh my pants or my purse down at all.
*S-Voice vs. Siri: Essentially, they're the same thing. I jailbroke my iPhone 4 and was able to add Siri. Siri has a nicer voice - it's less robotic sounding. However, neither Siri nor S-Voice are perfect. They both make weird mistakes at times. Using the voice-to-text on the S3 seems more responsive than with the iPhone though. For me, neither S-voice or Siri are essential. I have used it at work before to set a reminder (iPhone) or task (S3) when I don't have the time to type it in. The S-voice is faster with processing this as well. However, remember that I was using Siri on a JB iPhone 4, which it was never meant to be used on - the iPhone 4 processor is slower than the 4s so Siri wasn't working at full capacity on my phone.
*Personalization: If you've never used Android before, you will be pleasantly surprised. I was able to personalize every inch of my phone easily and within minutes of first turning it on. Granted, I downloaded an app (GO Launcher EX) to help with this - but the iPhone only allows the user to change the wallpaper. On the S3, all I have to do to change an icon is to download a theme (which will automatically change certain icons, depending on the theme) and then long hold an icon and click "replace" and select from a list of available icons. With an iPhone, you must jailbreak it to change the icons. And if there's icons that didn't automatically change, you have to connect the iPhone to the computer and SHSH into the phone to change them. PITA.
My only gripe is that Verizon won't allow users to use Google Wallet. I think this is absolutely stupid, especially since users on other networks were able to sign up for Google Wallet and get a $10 bonus. I'm hoping that the wallet app that Verizon is supporting, Isis, gives new users a bonus as well.
All-in-all, I'm very satisfied with this phone. I wouldn't switch back to the iPhone 4 if someone paid me. The best part? I found a website that was willing to buy my used iPhone for $30 more than what I spent on my S3! As for all the errors others have experienced, I've never had those problems. No network issues, no sim card errors. I've had this phone since 10-07-12.
To the Samsung Galaxy S3 from Iphone 4S September 15, 2012
This is an incredible phone. It has exceeded my expectations! Its zippy, has a beautiful screen and is a perfect size. At first, when you look at it, it seems too big but after you use it a few times you realize the screen size is perfect. It fits in my pocket easily and is very light. I actually purchased the extended battery and cover from hyperion which help give it some weight. I actually prefer that extra weight on it and the new hyperion battery now lasts double the time. I have not had any issues about the "error with sim card". That really sounds like a Verizon wireless problem and I hope they resolve the issue quickly so that more people can enjoy this great phone. I had sold my iphone 4S and was going to purchase the Iphone 5 but unfortunately for Apple I picked this beautiful phone up and never looked back. I highly recommend it as it is very customizable and a joy to use. With its big screen, I can now enjoy watching a movie or a T.V. show while I'm on the go. Get it! You won't regret it after you learn android OS. By the way, the S3 will be receiving the updated Android OS "Jelly Bean" in October. I'm sure it will make this great phone even better once the update rolls out.
Edit*** Verizon rolled out an update today September 17, 2012 that fixes the sim card error reported in some of the reviews here.
Love This Phone! July 30, 2012
Reviewer: TMWeir (LUBBOCK, TX, US) -
FIRST, PLEASE NOTE: I am not a professional with the smart phone. In fact, my 9 year old granddaughter could probably show me more about my phone than I could ever figure out. So if you are looking for a professional review... skip this one.
I am a Samsung girl through and through. My past phone was a Samsung Captivate and I loved this phone. Then... when it was time for an update, I decided to go for the Samsung Galaxy S3. WOW!
Of course, I checked out the reviews and one of the cons I kept reading about was the "plasticky case". I love the phone appearance, weight, feel. I see absolutely nothing wrong with the case and it has a great, sleek design. Feels good in my hand.
The screen is wonderful and I like the nature sounds and backgrounds. Of course, I added my own touch to everything. The huge screen and beautiful graphics are a plus!
The apps are easy to use and I am easily becoming attached to the S Voice.
The speed is wonderful! Uploading and downloading are really fast! Much more so than with my old Captivate.
Went to a HS Reunion and used the phone for video. Great movies! Great quality! Much more so than the former phone. Has flash for photos. Love that I can have face to face time with my grands in another state! Great quality!
My daughter has the Samsung Galaxy S2 and as we sit side by side, she is more and more impressed by the extras on my phone.
Call quality is superb! No dropped calls. No probs with having to move around and hold the phone just right so I can be heard on other end.
The one thing that I do not like about this phone is that it gets hot at the bottom of the phone because of the antenna location and battery. If I turn off my Wi-Fi and GPS when not in use, it helps to keep the battery cool if carrying in my jeans pocket.
The battery life is pretty decent! I can use it all day and come home and place on charger before I go to bed.
Loving this phone and hopefully this will help others in selecting their future android!
"No SIM" errors August 8, 2012
Reviewer: NoK (NY) -
The phone is great, battery life, display, form factor are all fantastic. I would have given a 5 star review if it weren't for the bugs. Drive mode doesn't work for me at all. Tried everything I could to get it to work, even load my contact information on to my phone instead of syncing from google. Still a no go.
But my biggest gripe with the phone is when I send text messages. My messages fail to send and shortly after kicks me off the network and "no SIM" message pops up on the taskbar. It's an issue that seems to be plaguing a decent amount of users. Verizon claims Samsung is working on a update since it's a new phone, and with new phones, bugs are common. Whatever the case may be, it's an issue that needs to be resolved.
I did not buy the phone from Amazon, so it's not a review on the service, but on the device itself.
great phone August 28, 2012
Reviewer: persnickety shopper (USA) -
I've had this phone for a week so far, and I have a long way to go in learning all of its features. So far, I've really only used the basic stuff. But I do have some comments, so I wanted to do this while they were fresh. I'll try to remember to come back and update.
Generally, I love it. For all the reasons you already know, I'm sure. But I do have a notable frustration. While all the things it *does* are great, the physical design of the phone is poor, and I can't believe it got through all the testing to make it to market like this. First, it's hard to hold on to. It's so light and slim and curvy, it wants to slip out of my hand. So when I try to grip it, I find myself grabbing the lock/unlock button and the volume button at the same time. They are directly across from each other, and at exactly the spot that one naturally picks up the phone. Also, it's nearly impossible to squeeze the unlock button without also depressing the volume button on the other side and changing the setting. Finally, while holding the phone to view the screen, I tend to put my thumb on the bottom edge of the phone, which is where the menu button is. Argh. I can't find a place to put my fingers on this phone that's not pushing a button and doing something I don't want to do! It's a real aggravation. I keep telling myself that I'll eventually adapt and find ways to contort my fingers so that I don't continually change various settings, but I'm not really convinced. I'm now in the process of buying a case, in the hopes that the case will impede the button operation enough to keep me from doing things I don't intend to do.
I hope I do find a way around this aggravation, or a way to just stop being so frustrated by it, because it really is a great phone.
Love this device! September 25, 2012
Reviewer: S. BAKER (Michigan) -
I am completely in love with this phone. I preordered mine through Verizon before the new plans kicked in so I was able to keep my unlimited plan! (Thank goodness!) I upgraded from the Droid 1, to the Droid 3, and onto the S3, and while I was nervous to leave Motorola (because of their stronger antennas, and the keyboard)I am so happy I did! This phone is just amazing. I did have a couple problems with my first one, but Verizon overnighted me a new one and it was all set.
I definitely reccommend Verizon when having purchasing this phone. (As it is also available on Sprint and AT&T) The best thing about Verizon is their network. Not only do I get coverage EVERYWHERE but I also get 4G in my area! Going from around 2Gb speeds on my Droid 3, to about 30Gb speeds was just ridiculous. My videos load faster, and webpages come up sooner.
If you are a big camera person, this has an 8MP camera with all kinds of fun options. My favorites are Smile Shot (automatically snaps the photo when the subject smiles), Panorama and burst mode. It takes photos super fast so you will almost always get the photo you want. The front facing camera works great too. It's a 1.9MP so it's better than most others. (Around 1.2-1.3)
Texting is a breeze. You can use speech-to-text, the on-screen keyboard, or even swype. I'm not the biggest swype fan, but it's just because I don't ever use it. One of my favorite features is the direct calling. In the settings there is an option for it, and what it's used for is when someone texts you, and you are driving or busy, you can just hold the phone up to your ear and it will automatically call that person. Best setting ever.
I have tried S Beam, but I don't really use it because the other person needs to have an S3. I also never use S Voice, I tried it for a couple days when I first received the phone but it either didn't understand me or would just send me to google. I have tried it again since then and it seems to work a little better, just a little gimmicky and I don't see a need for it.
The screen is just beautiful on this phone. The 4.8 inch screen is perfect, it fits in the hand perfectly, and it has a stunning display. I have bought a few cases for it, and I really prefer Elago slim fits on it. I get the snap on glossy ones and they are amazing.
The durability of this phone is incredible. I have dropped it multiple times. Before I had the case I dropped it and it left tiny dents in the plastic siding, but nothing noticible (Love the silver edges). The plastic is super light, and much more durable than the metal Droid's I've had.
While the battery is a problem with most smartphones, this is no exception. I am a fairly heavy data user (Netflix, games, and streaming) and I do charge it on average twice a day. There are things you can do to help, such as turning the battery saver mode on, and dimming the screen but I just like the brightness too much. I never use battery saver, and my brightness is always on max. I like enjoying the phone, not worrying about it. It's to easy to keep a charger where you're using it.
If you are debating between devices this is the best on the market. Some will compare it to the Iphone, but it's so much better in my opinion. Google has way more features, and you can't beat this size and color display.
3 Days and still Wowed! July 30, 2012
Reviewer: Alta Cannaday
The new Samsung Galaxy III has blown me away. I have been a Sprint subscriber for 13 years and used only Samsung phones initially. Due to work related requirements, I switched to the Blackberry for the past four years. Well, the BB died on Friday and now resides where dead BBs go.
I feel as if I have been hurled into the 22nd Century! I do not have ample words to describe my joy and pleasure with my new Sam Gal III! I am in love with this new device. Granted, I am still learning, however, I am absolutely smitten by the ease of use and sheer simplicity of the phone. So far the calls are great and everything is humming along smoothly.
My single complaint and is not about the phone, I don't think. When the tech at Radio Shack transfered my contacts, many are now showing two and up to four times. By the way, the phone has a great "join" feature that is helpful. I can only wonder if they were already in the BB in multiples.
I will be back in about a month after the honeymoon to let you know if we are still a happy couple. In the meantime, I rate this puppy 5 stars!
Awesome phone! Does everything and more! October 18, 2012
Reviewer: Joe Somebody "Don't be a fool" (Atlanta, GA) -
I am really enjoying the Galaxy S3, the screen is beautiful and the phone is light and thin.
good battery life for a 4G LTE phone, very good
great call quality
no signal issues
2GB of RAM means the phone is "future-proof"
EXCELLENT camera, fast photos with high quality and fun settings
video is also great at 1080 HD
very thin, so I don't mind using a case
more colors are being released
S-Beam feature is great for sharing photos with my wife and friends who have a GS3
Android software is smooth and much more intuitive than past versions
Will be upgraded to "Jellybean" software
none. seriously, this phone is excellent
Minor annoyances (nothing is perfect):
I wish they had put the bottom row of buttons up closer to the screen. They sit kinda low.
Screen size isn't for everyone. And it will scratch without a screen protector (like all phones)
Not sure if I like the physical home button or not.
All things considered, I think this is the best phone ever made. Not perfect, but as good as it gets, unless you have a ton of Apple devices. Then you'd be better off with an iPhone that will sync all of your stuff together. I really love the camera, it actually captures my toddlers with the burst mode, and it's fast to take a shot.
Neat mini-laptop! Weird lock-up issue, bloatware. Updates. September 14, 2012
Reviewer: Craig Hartley "hotdog" (Houston, TX USA) -
I upgraded from a Droid Incredible a few weeks ago. I love the Galaxy S3 for its larger screen, snappy operation and slim form factor. I use it as a GPS, MP3 player, e-book reader, movie player, e-mail, web research, alarm clock--oh yeah, occasionally as a phone. Typically I have 40-50% battery power left after 16 hours with the stock battery. It contains a decent camera with the capability of motoring off a string of photos by holding down the shutter release. Also, you can shoot amazing panoramas in moments. Nice!
I'm using Verizon so, of course, there is the usual loathsome crapware Verizon loads on everything. This junk cannot be uninstalled. Also, Samsung felt free to load its own steaming pile of junk on top of the Verizon stuff. And watch out for the Google+ app. Its default setting uploads your photos into the cloud, which can be disastrous away from WiFi on a limited data plan.
Neat phone, though, with some spiffy advanced features. Many are of marginal use (to me), but I quite like the feature that keeps the screen active as long as it "sees" your face with the front camera. Also, the NFC sensor is cool. I bought a five-pack of Samsung's TecTiles and downloaded the free "NFC Task Launcher" to program the tiles to perform various tedious tasks--like turn off WiFi and turn on Bluetooth when getting into the car. The new iPhone 5 doesn't have NFC--neener-neener!
That said, I had a very weird problem with my original Galaxy S3, then a replacement Galaxy S3. They both locked up--hard!--then started seriously overheating when I turned the phone off, then on. When it happened the first time, I thought it was a bad phone, so I replaced it. The same thing happened again with the new phone after I loaded standard apps if I shut the phone off, then on. It would go into a constant reboot sequence and lock the screen. Battery would drain 10-15% in an hour and the case would get HOT! Issue would NOT resolve itself even if I pulled the battery!
I didn't load any weird apps, just my usual stuff from the Google Play Store. One week I had to do a factory reset FIVE times! Now I am terrified to turn my phone off. Everything works fine so long as I ALWAYS leave it on. Searching the web, this peculiar problem seems very unusual.
***I would love to hear from anyone who could offer insight into this weird issue!***
UPDATE--I suspect it is an issue with that lame Facebook app. I loaded Facebook and the phone experienced severe battery drain and overheating. Removed Facebook, problem disappeared. Hmmm.
UPDATE 2--I've owned the Samsung Galaxy S III for several months now and it works perfectly. There have been two software/firmware upgrades for the Galaxy S III, and Facebook finally fixed its buggy app.
Great device. April 10, 2013
Caught this phone on sale for $10 on March 31, 2013 and I've got to say, it's a fantastic phone. I was really nervous about switching from a no-contract phone (HTC Evo 3D on Virgin Mobile) to being locked into a 2-year contract, but so far it's not so bad. Verizon has the best service I've ever seen, and the 4G speeds continuously blow my face off.
I'll list a few personal likes and dislikes.
-It's fast. Real fast. From off to fully booted in about a minute, which is a far cry from the 5 minutes it took my Evo 3D to fully load.
-Plenty of storage. I was concerned about the fact that the S3 doesn't allow storage of apps on the SD card, especially with the limited space (16GB onboard), which effectively makes my 16GB SD card an endless supply of photo storage. I use Spotify as my main source of music, so I was disappointed that the S3 forces the offline storage onto the onboard emulated "SD card". However, it didn't turn out to be too bad of a letdown. I've got about 4GB of space left to play around with on the phone itself, and the SD card is pretty much untouched.
-The camera. My God, the camera! It's honestly the best one I've ever had on a phone. My Evo had a dual 5MP camera (hence the 3D) and it was decent, but what a difference 3MP makes! The auto-focus is excellent, and the low-light function is fantastic. I was surprised at how much light this device can capture in low-light settings! Shooting video is also a pleasure. There's a certain realistic effect to each video that makes me never want to go back to anything lesser.
-The size. At first I thought it might be a little to big to handle. Compared to my Evo's 4.3in display, this dude's a monster. But it's a nice change, I have to admit! It's still comfortable to hold, and in fact it's thinner than my old device which adds to the experience. I very much appreciate the power button's location on the right side of the device. So much easier to access than if it were on the top.
-The notification LED! This is more of a silly novelty, but you'd be surprised how many people actually consider it a dealbreaker if a phone doesn't have an LED notification. It doesn't quite display every color imaginable, but it does more than just blink red and green. Certain apps have their own default color built into them (Facebook blinks blue, Yahoo mail blinks pink/fuchsia, etc.) It's a nice plus. Just DO NOT GET LIGHTFLOW if you want more control over the LED. For some reason it drains the battery at ludicrous speed, and causes certain features on the phone to act wonky. Wait until they update the app.
-The Battery. This is probably the biggest selling point for me. My old phone would last about 5 hours on even medium or low-medium use, and that's pretty sad. The S3 does much better than that. Heavy usage still sucks battery life, but the usage-to-battery-life ratio is much more comfortable than anything I've owned. I can usually get through an entire day and still have about 40% before bed, and that's after 4G, wifi, screen and surfing. I really appreciate the capacity this phone has.
-The headset!!! My God, the headset. The headphones that came with the phone are quite possibly the best headphones I've ever owned. They're the in-ear type so they cancel out most sound, ensuring a rich hearing experience. Coupled with Spotify Mobile's new Equalizer feature, I can't help but keep them in my ears all day. It's like hearing my music for the first time again!
-S Voice is OK. I'm not foaming at the mouth over it, but it's a nice addition to the OS. I use it to set alarms and tasks, and ask about the weather. Google Now can also do these things and then some.
Now to the other stuff...
-Screen quality. I'm not a fan of the screen type Samsung and Motorola use in their devices. There's always this blue-green tint to everything, sometimes it's not very noticeable, but on lighter backgrounds (such as on Facebook) you'll notice it. I'll get used to it, but I much prefer HTC's pure-white, no-tint look with their screens.
-Pixel Density. I can see pixels, which is automatically a con. It's not horrible, I'd just prefer a higher pixel density. But where there's higher pixel counts, there's need for higher battery capacity which means bigger battery size which means fatter phones. I'm okay with it for now.
To be honest, the pros outweigh the cons by a longshot.
Just A Great Phone, and I've had them all November 8, 2012
Reviewer: Derek Souder
I've owned a mobile phone with just about every OS in the smartphone era with the exception of Windows Phone 7/8 and the Galaxy S III is my favorite total package of hardware and software that I have ever owned.
I'm going to write this from the point of view of someone switching from iOS to Android because my last phone was the iPhone 4, which was very solid yet unexciting. I hate having what everyone else has but at the time it was so far and away the best phone available on Verizon that I had to get it. Prior to that I owned a Palm Pre+ (amazing OS, no apps), the original Motorola Droid(Android was too raw at that point), a Blackberry Storm (God awful, dare I say the beginning of the end) and a Palm Centro and Treo 650 (I miss Palm.)
Android has come a long way since the Droid. I hated that phone more than any I've owned and sold it before my contract was up to get the Pre, which coincidentally from a pure OS standpoint was the best. While iOS and Android may appear quite similar the customizability of Android takes the cake. One thing I really didn't like about iOS was that you could do nothing to get rid of apps I would never use. Now, don't get me wrong, Android, especially Verizon's because of all the bloatware they put on it has the same problem to an extent. However, you can at least hide the annoying apps that you will never use. I know its not a huge complaint, but it annoyed the hell out of me that I couldn't do anything with Newsstand on iOS but relegate it to a distant page. Swype texting is another plus. It works better than I anticipated and just takes a little time to get used to.
I'll spare the technical details, its fast. My only concern is how it will be in a year and a half when it is outdated. It is big and that took some getting used to, but after about a week an iPhone just feels small by comparison. I have probably above average sized hands and it is still easy to use with one hand. I do sometimes find myself hitting the back button or opening the phone app when I use it with one hand. The screen is bright and crisp, however it doesn't always adjust the brightness properly but it usually corrects itself quickly. I used to think "Who needs a screen that big on a phone?" and now I can't imagine going back, I'd even like to try out the Note II.
I was pleasantly surprised by the battery life. I am at 65% right now and it has been off the charger since about 11:00 am. However, I would consider today a relatively light day of usage. It does need to be plugged in nightly, so not quite at the level of the iPhone (4 anyway) but nowhere near as bad as many android phones.
This is a big opinion point but for myself, the apps on the Play Store are better than Apple's. I generally only use basic apps and games. Gaming on this phone is lightyears better than iOS. There are emulators for everything up to the Playstation and it is easy to connect a PS3 controller through USB or bluetooth (if rooted). Chrome is much better than Safari in my opinion. Here's where the bigger screen helps too, its just a better phone for browsing the internet or any reading. Call quality is also much better that the 4 and there aren't any reception issues. I've had multiple people tell me how much clearer I sound on this phone.
All-in-all this is a great phone, and as a former iPhone user I am more than happy with my decision to switch. I know its not totally fair to compare this to the iPhone 4 but the 5 just didn't impress me. I still wish webOS was alive because it was a great OS but this is the best hardware I've ever used. And it has a very, very good ecosystem supporting it. I'd probably give it 4.5 stars if the option were available because of a few niggles, but it definitely deserves more than 4 stars so I'm going to give it 5.
Well rounded phone, except for wifi, cellular reception January 17, 2013
Reviewer: Indian girl
I chose to use the phone for a few months before writing this review to prevent the initial excitement from biasing this honest review. I came from a Motorola Droid running CM 7.2.
* Very light
* Loud speaker
* micro SD storage
* Removable battery - not so important at home / work but a great boon out of town / on vacation. I was in Paris last summer and I was glad that my Droid let me to switch the batteries ($2 each nowadays) and keep shooting photos
* Excellent cameras - both front and back
* More than sufficient processing power - I always leave it on Power saver mode
* Vibrant screen
* Lovely 720p resolution - HD videos look great
* 4G LTE is unbelievably fast
* Easy to root and unlock bootloader + very strong Cyanogenmod, Ubuntu, support.
* VERY bad cellular and wifi radios - My office is in the basement of a building and while iPhones are able to retain 3-4 bars, I get 1 bar at most. Phone also keeps dropping wifi regularly. As a consequence, my battery drains from 100% to 40% in a 10 hour work day with minimal to no usage. I don't have this problem at home where I have decent reception for both cellular and wifi. I have read elsewhere that Samsung simply doesn't know how to make good CDMA radios and GSM versions of the phone don't share this problem.
* Dim screen makes outdoors use a little painful
* Ugly and slow OS skin, gimmicky Samsung apps including S voice, massive amount of bloatware, annoying Verizon customizations like persistent wifi notification
* Too large - I have large hands and yet I feel that this is too much of a handful to use with a single hand. A 4.4" or 4.5" screen might be the largest one can comfortably use
* iPhone 5
* Motorola Razr HD MAXX
* HTC Droid DNA
From Motorola Droid X to Samsung Galaxy S3 October 7, 2012
Reviewer: Demetrio Amog "Gameplay4fun" (Old Bridge, NJ USA) -
The Samsung Galaxy S3 is a great phone. It takes a little bit to get used too, but I guess that's with all phones. I originally was giving to get an iPhone 5, but after they won that ridiculous lawsuit I went with my 2nd choice the S3. I was also not liking the very little changes to the iPhone 5 and the change of port on the bottom as well.
Going from the Droid X to the S3 is nice. There are pros and cons IMO as with everything. First the bad news. Note most if not all my complaints are easily fixable by using any of the many free apps in the Android Marketplace. The music player (which is why I was thinking of going iPhone 5 as I lost my iTouch a couple months ago) is kind of low. It doesn't play smoothly as there are breaks sometimes in the middle of a song. Also there is no lockscreen controls. I'm now using Amazon MP3 as my music player and although it does add lockscreen controls I still get the occasional break within a song so it seems it's the phone. The MP3s do not break on my computer.
Another complaint is the alarm. Droid X allowed me to hear the full song as an alarm, but the S3's stock alarm cuts off after about a minute probably less. Also choosing MP3s as an alarm isn't as smooth as you actually have to go through your SD cards menu instead of pulling a list up like on the Droid X.
The complaints are the volume button can get in the way when holding my phone landscape therefore changing the volume while listening to my music as I do something else on my phone. The touchscreen is extremely sensitive (yes it's bothersome to me) as sometimes my fingers holding my phone move in front of the screen and registering it as a touch even if very slightly at the farthest edges... I also do not like the stock browser as you basically have to scroll all the way up because the URL bar scrolls up with the page.
The user dictionary doesn't update when you keep a word instead of using the ssuggestions. It looks like I actually have to manually add words to my dictionary... and the clipboard isn't a true clipboard because when I try to copy a link I can repaste it in the URL or into a text, but sharing it on facebook via status isn't possible.
Now the pros. The battery life is amazing. I don't even use battery saver mode and it still lasts longer then my old Droid X did with Battery Saver mode on and all things basically turned off and my S3 also has GPS and WiFi running too! The phone is extremely light. I may actually get a case because at times I forget I'm holding it because how light and thin it is. Also, I'm guessing the S3 has better receivers as I have better call quality and 3G speeds. Unless of course Verizon erected a new tower near me on the same exact day I activated this phone which I highly doubt.
The screen is quite amazing. I've seen IPhone 4S screens (those are supposed to have Retina displays right?) and IMO this looks better much more vivid. I've heard people say theirs get really hot, but mine did only the first day. Now it's actually cooler then my Droid X with the extended battery (Oh yeah forgot about that... that's how good the battery life is.)
S Voice (Siri like personal assistant) seems quite accurate. Definitely more so then Droid X's, but can't compare to iPhone's as I've never tried it. Oh if you have the original S like my aunt it's of course much better then that. I like how you can command your phone to wake up with whatever phrase you want (I'm playing with "Obey Me!" for now), but it doesn't work with music playing which I was able to do with Droid X (not that I used it all that much because like I said Droid X's music player had lockscreen controls).
I haven't truly fully explored the S3, but as I notice comparisons I'll update this review.
Overall it's a very good phone and although the point of Android is customizability I am saddened the S3's stock features aren't up there with a 2 year old phone. Not to mention it's got the new version versus Droid X's (don't remember their tasty names).
Incredible December 6, 2012
Only good things to say about this phone. The phone is so light, the screen is huge and vivid, system is fast and customizable. Camera takes tremendous photos and HD videos. Expandable memory is a big perk. I have had no problems whatsoever with this phone and Verizon's 4G LTE network is unmatched and worth the price. Only regret is that I didn't upgrade from my BlackBerry (Satan's cell phone) sooner.
Great phone April 29, 2013
Love the screen size
Battery life very good
Nice and thin
Having trouble with the micro SD card
Voice recognition has some bugs
This is the best phone I ever had. November 30, 2012
Reviewer: lyn (CONNEAUT, OHIO, US) -
This is my 4th android smart phone & the best ever. And soon we will have the next update, hopefully in Dec., then it will be even better. I have had no problems. Every phone has a learning curve, just be patient and watch all the videos on the (guided tour) app. I learn something new about this phone each day. The movies I put on run smooth and I can even put the movie on the top of screen while answering email or texts. The internet is fast, & battery life is way better than the Thunderbolt.
Samsung Galaxy S3 16gb November 27, 2012
love the new phone. easy to use. Only thing - the back cover seems flimsy when taking it off or putting back on...
LOVED Amazon Wiresless deal on the phone and that my new line activation fee was waived with Verizon!