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Samsung Galaxy S3 – Have Android Smartphones Become Boring?

Have Android Smartphones Become Boring?

No, because –

Compact camera convergence is getting closer

Once upon a time, people would often complain about the lack of optical zooms in cameras. We did too at times. But then folk started to realise that there were bigger problems – autofocus speed, features and low-light performance. Oh and that having a great big lens sticking out the back of your phone was never going to be a good look.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 offers a bunch of neat features that bring it closer to a dedicated camera feel. Its snapper is extremely brisk to focus and initiate, can shoot upto 20 shots in quick succession and offers group tagging and a best shot mode. The latter shoots a bunch of images and automatically selects the one it thinks is the best. Its sensor may only have eight megapixels to its name – phones of this spec have been around since 2008 – but it should turn out to be a little special.

It may be the best mobile media player, ever

Samsung packs more video skills into its phones than just about any other major manufacturer. And it’s no different here. The Galaxy S3 supports a wide array of codecs, and with a powerful quad-core processor it should be able to hack 1080p video files without any fuss. Codecs in on the action include DivX, WMV 7/8 and Sorensen Spark. We imagine it’ll be able to handle MKV and Xvid too.

Perhaps even more impressive is its dedication to audio fans. On top of the standard Android music types, it can play OGG and FLAC, and also supports the apt-X Bluetooth codec. Matched with expandable memory, the Galaxy S3 should make one of the best music players, ever.

Samsung Galaxy S3

It takes NFC a step further

NFC, or Near Field Communication is one of the key mobile features that could change the way people behave over the next few years. The Samsung Galaxy S3 tries pretty hard to use the NFC chip built into the phone. S Beam is a development of the NFC file transfer feature seen in the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, making it all the more useful. You can transfer a movie to another phone within about three minute – much, much faster than it’d take to download it with most broadband connections.

In similar fashion, the Samsung Galaxy S3 features an optimised Siri-style voice recognition app called S Voice. The jury’s out on quite how effective it is, though. We’ll be back with the verdict in our full review.

So, boring or brilliant?

Just a few hours after the phone has been unveiled, we have to admit we haven’t been bowled over by the Samsung Galaxy S3. Without any dazzling stand-out features, it is – to use a commonly-cited saying – an evolution rather than a revolution. But it’s one we’d love to live with thanks to its dazzling, class-leading video and audio abilities.

MonkeyAxman

May 4, 2012, 4:51 pm

You have a point. But can't the same be said of all Smart phones? They have done the usual technology thing of break-neck innovation without pausing for breath until the great ideas dry up and they have to evolve, refine and perfect the product.

I think the same is true of the iPhone4S, that was very much an evolution rather than a revolution. The same is true of the new iPad really, as good as that screen is it is an evolution of the original retina display rather than something trully new.

I have a HTC Sensation, which was last years flagship and can't really see how you can improve on the experience any more. Its a great point we have reached in that way.

What do other people think?

schriss

May 4, 2012, 5:39 pm

Strange article. I need to go back and see what this website had to say about iPhone 4S launch, if it did mention it was dull and boring too because it brought even fewer features.

Andrew_TR

May 4, 2012, 5:42 pm

I think many people had a similar reaction at the iPhone 4S launch - not sure if we did an exact feature on it, but that vibe seemed to be there.

Andrew_TR

May 4, 2012, 5:44 pm

That was meant to be the over-arching point of the article really - it just doesn't feel quite as exciting as when, say, the HTC Desire launched back in the day. We'd be very interested to hear other people's views, though.

Kashif Bhatti

May 4, 2012, 8:03 pm

I think the article is going in the right direction - I would argue it is the operating systems that are boring. After 4 years of icon-based phones, I am very bored of apps, icons, scrolling etc. I miss my old Nokias... There is too little competition, too similar OSs, and no real software innovation/revolution.

stulibious

May 4, 2012, 11:33 pm

that was the most fair opinion I've ever heard about S III, everything you said is true not just a bunch of fan friendly words. you rock man!

WestHej

May 6, 2012, 3:37 pm

Am I right in thinking that the build quality is the main gripe with the new Samsung Galaxy S 3 and that is mainly to do with the back cover feeling (and being) like cheap and thin plastic?

Also, the back cover is replaceable right?

A high quality 3rd party back cover should do the trick then!

Dutch Paterson

April 3, 2013, 2:59 am

i fully agree!!!!

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