Samsung’s long-awaited Galaxy S III officially launched worldwide today in 28 countries. The Galaxy S III unveiled earlier this month as a successor to the popular Galaxy S II. The smartphone features top-of-the-line specs, including a 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED (1,280-by-720 pixel) display, 8-megapixel rear-camera, 1.9-megapixel front-camera, 1.4 GHz Exynos processor, and Android 4.0. While it may not be as exciting as the HTC One X and others, the Galaxy S III is definitely destined to be a hot-seller. The 28 countries include most of Europe and the Middle East; however, there is still no word on a U.S. release date, which is most likely coming soon. Samsung said the Galaxy S III should make its way to at least 145 countries by July. Who is picking up this Exynos beast?
Apple’s Retina Display featured on both the iPhone and iPad is one of the hottest displays on a handset to date, and it is one of the key selling points for both the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S. Originally manufactured by LG, the display features a 326 PPI pixel density on a 3.5-inch display with an 800:1 contrast ratio. The eye cannot even make out the individual pixels, but the Retina Display is now being trumped. LG has announced a new 5-inch smartphone screen featuring a full 1080p HD resolution, a 440 PPI pixel density, and a 16:9 aspect ratio. Can you imagine HD movies on this display?
Such a high quality display is causing a few red flags to be thrown up. The first is battery life. This display has to drain that sucker fast by requiring a lot of power for so many pixels. Second is the need for a GPU that can power something that high. Do not be mistaken, though. This has to look amazing.
According to LG, the display will be available by Q3 and should be ready to ship in phones shortly after—ideally before the holidays. We are excited to get our eyes on this bad boy to check it out. You can peruse the full press release (via Engadget) after the break for all the juicy details.
According to a blog post by Cisco’s TelePresence Technology Group OJ Winge (via NetworkWorld), Cisco announced it is shutting down its Android-based Cius business tablet project. The roughly $1,000 tablet solution started shipping less than a year ago and clearly is not doing too well. The reason for killing off the 7-inch Cius tab? Winge noted 95 percent of organizations Cisco surveyed now allow employees to bring their own device, which he said underscores “a major shift in the way people are working, in the office, at home and on-the-go.”
There is no denying that iOS devices and cheaper Android solutions are taking the place of Cius. Recent studies show Apple with 97 percent of tablets in the enterprise, while 94 percent of the Fortune 500 is currently testing or deploying the iPad. The result is no further investment in the Cius tablet line and only limited support for what is currently available. The company will instead “double down” on Jabber and WebEx:
Over the last year, Cisco has demonstrated a commitment to delivering innovative software like Cisco Jabber and Cisco WebEx across a wide spectrum of operating systems, tablets and Smart Phones. We’re seeing tremendous interest in these software offerings. Customers see the value in how these offerings enable employees to work on their terms in the Post-PC era, while still having access to collaboration experiences… Based on these market transitions, Cisco will no longer invest in the Cisco Cius tablet form factor, and no further enhancements will be made to the current Cius endpoint beyond what’s available today. However, as we evaluate the market further, we will continue to offer Cius in a limited fashion to customers with specific needs or use cases.
Virgin Mobile’s LG Optimus V, which usually retails for $150 and at some retailers such as Amazon for around $100, is currently being offered for just $28 through LetsTalk (at bottom). That is under $30—with no contract—to get a device that competes with most of the $150 Android competitors on the market. It is unclear whether this is for the retailer’s Memorial Day weekend sale currently taking place, but it is a great deal for a more than decent smartphone either way. You will of course have to grab at least a month of Virgin prepaid service starting at $35, which means you still walk away at $63— less than half the original suggested retail price.
There are tons of cheap Android devices on the market, but the Optimus V packs a 3.2megapixel camera, 2GB onboard memory, a 600 MHz TI OMAP 3610 processor, and 3.2-inch touchscreen. Even if does not replace your main device, this is a great deal for a backup phone, car GPS, media player, etc., at just $30. The deal is currently backordered, but the price will be honored when more stock becomes available.
Note: You will have to buy the first month of service with this phone, pushing the cost to $63 with one-month of service. Still, not bad!
The Verge’s Vlad Savov just completed an extensive breakdown of the Samsung Galaxy S III that unveiled in London earlier this month. The review is fully-equipped with video, imagery, and hordes of information. One such video is above, while a snippet of its wrap-up and a grading chart are below:
[...] the Galaxy S III is a technological triumph. Not at first sight, perhaps, but Samsung has done the overwhelming majority of things right. The camera is easily the best I’ve used on an Android device, the processor claims the title of benchmarking champion, and the customizations layered on top of Ice Cream Sandwich are mostly unobtrusive and sometimes even helpful. They never really gel into one coherent user experience, meaning you’ll have to learn what each new feature does individually rather than intuiting it from the phone’s general behavior, however that’s a trifling complaint when compared to our usual disappointments with Android OEM skins. TouchWiz may still have its illogicalities, but it’s been cleaned up and streamlined sufficiently to make it an adequate alternative to Google’s stock experience. While neither the display nor the construction materials on the Galaxy S III are the best possible, both represent acceptable compromises that help Samsung balance out the rest of its class-leading spec sheet.
The extra-large size of this phone, even with its great ergonomics, may prove to be a stumbling block for those who can’t comfortably fit a 4.8-inch handset into their daily routine. Still, the popularity of the Galaxy Note has shown that phone buyers are willing to look to more exotic form factors in their pursuit of novelty and extra functionality — and the Galaxy S III suffers no shortage of either.
Links to 9to5Google’s coverage of the S III launch event are after the break.