As you likely know, the S III packs an 8-MP camera with HD 1080p video capture displayed on a 4.8-inch super AMOLED touchscreen. Inside you’ll get 16 GB memory + microSD expansion, Wireless-N Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth 4.0, all running on a 1.5 GHz dual-core Snapdragon processor. The Samsung Galaxy S III deal on Amazon through Virgin and Boost Mobile has received a 4.5+ star rating out of 5.
Virgin Mobile: Samsung Galaxy S III: $260 (Reg. $400) Boost Mobile: Samsung Galaxy S III: $260 (Reg. $400)
AT&T announced today that it will begin selling the Samsung Galaxy S III mini, which was first released in November of last year, as a smaller entry level version of Samsung’s flagship at the time, the Galaxy S III. It might be a last generation device– Samsung unveiled the S4 mini at its event back in June— but that’s why AT&T will sell it for 99 cents on contract when it becomes available on September 27.
As a reminder, the S III mini includes a 4-inch Super AMOLED display, comes with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean out of the box, and packs in a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, and a 5 megapixel main camera. You’ll also of course get Samsung’s TouchWiz UI on top of with S Beam, S Voice, Group Play, and other Samsung goodies.
Sprint has made a few announcements today for new devices and services coming to its customers on its Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile USA prepaid brands. The company announced today that the Samsung Galaxy S III will be landing on both Boost and Virgin beginning in June. Both devices will be available on the two carriers’ no contract plans but Sprint didn’t make any details available for pricing on the device yet.
The app allows users to load cash into their wallet at Boost Mobile stores, send money to 135 countries, and Sprint will also be giving out reloadable Visa prepaid cards for ATM access: Expand Expanding Close
With Mother’s Day just around the corner on Sunday, May 12, Sprint today announced it is launching a special promotion that will allow you to get the Galaxy S III in Amethyst Purple for $99 on the usual two-year contract, upgrade, or new line. The savings come via a $50 mail-in rebate, and Sprint also noted that it is also offering a “16GB Galaxy S III FREE with an additional $100 instant savings through a port in credit” for a limited time only for customers that switch their number from another carrier.
A story today from Fortune writer Michal Lev-Ram titled “Samsung’s road to global domination” tells an interesting anecdote about the company’s ad team on iPhone 5 launch day. The team, led by chief marketing officer Todd Pendleton with help from ad agency 72andSunny, sat in a Los Angeles restaurant following real-time updates from Tim Cook’s iPhone 5 unveiling.
They huddled around tables mounted with laptops and TV screens, carefully tracking each new feature and monitoring the gush of online comments on the new device via blogs and social media sites. As the data flowed in, writers from the company’s advertising agency, who were also camped out in the restaurant turned war room, scrambled to craft a response…
Two hours later, when Cook stepped off the stage, the Samsung group was already drafting a series of print, digital, and TV ads. The following week — as the iPhone 5 went on sale — the company aired a TV ad mocking Apple “fanboys” queuing up for the new phone. (“The headphone jack is going to be on the bottom!”) The 90-second commercial went on to become the most popular tech ad of 2012, garnering more than 70 million views online. More important, in the weeks following the launch of Apple’s iPhone 5, Samsung sold a record-breaking number of its own signature smartphone, the Galaxy S III.
Samsung announced today in a press release that it will release a new Galaxy S III variant at the end of the month that packs in NFC capabilities. Customers in the United Kingdom will be able to purchase the device through all major U.K. carriers and select retailers beginning at the end of January. The full press release (via AndroidCentral) is below:
SAMSUNG ANNOUNCES AVAILABILITY OF GALAXY S III MINI WITH NFC New NFC variant set to hit shops at end of January
21st January 2013, London, UK – Samsung Mobile UK today announced that an NFC-enabled version of the Galaxy S III Mini smartphone will be available to buy in the UK from the end of January.
Owners of the new Galaxy S III Mini will be able to share content, such as photos, videos and music, much faster and more easily. Its S Beam feature allows a 10MB music file to be shared in just two seconds by simply tapping on another S Beam-enabled device, such as the Galaxy S III or Galaxy Note II, even without a Wi-Fi or cellular signal. By combining NFC and Wi-Fi Direct, S Beam is capable of sending larger files between phones, such as images, videos and music tracks.
The Galaxy S III Mini is powered by Android™ 4.1 (Jelly Bean) and packed with many of the same features available on the Galaxy S III, including S Voice which people can use to tell the phone to wake up, answer an incoming call, or even take a photo, and Direct Call which allows customers to automatically call someone they’ve just received a text by simply lifting the phone to their ear.
Simon Stanford, Vice President, Telecommunications & Networks, Samsung UK and Ireland said:
“NFC technology and the digital wallet started to gain significant traction in 2012, particularly in the run up to the Olympics. It’s an exciting time in the mobile market watching the next phase of its evolution take shape, so we’re happy to announce that we are bringing these new experiences to our customers through our growing number of NFC-enabled devices.”
The Galaxy S III Mini will be available to buy in the UK across all major networks, key high street and out of town electrical retailers and online retailers from the end of January.
There were hints a couple of days ago, but Samsung officially confirmed on its website this morning that it surpassed 30 million global sales of the Galaxy S III since it first launched five months ago in May. Samsung noted that’s 20 million more devices than the 10 million Galaxy S II units sold in its first 150 days. Samsung also announced last week that it sold 3 million units of its new Galaxy Note II in just 37 days of being on sale.
MetroPCS, the carrier that will soon merge with T-Mobile, announced today that it would offer its customers Samsung’s Galaxy S III starting Oct. 22. However, the carrier said in its press release (below) that select retail stores would have stock of the device starting this weekend. It is going to cost $499 on one of the carrier’s monthly no annual contract plans. That is a bit more than the usual two-year agreement from other carriers. According to MetroPCS, its $55 LTE plan can save you $1,200 over two years:
Together, the Samsung Galaxy S III and MetroPCS’ 4GLTE service plans deliver an unmatched value to consumers unwilling to compromise on handset or service. Priced at $499 plus tax, the Galaxy S III is available on any of MetroPCS’ affordable 4GLTE service plans, which range from $30 – $70 per month, including the limited-time promotional plans of 4G LTE for $30 or unlimited talk, text and 4GLTE data for $55 per month (taxes and regulatory fees included). When comparing total costs of both the smartphone and rate plans with other 4G LTE operators, consumers can save approximately $1,200 or more over the course of two years (based on MetroPCS’ current $55 4GLTE rate plan).
The full specs for the dual-core LTE Galaxy S III variant with the press release from MetroPCS are below: Expand Expanding Close
While we heard previously that Samsung was beginning to roll out Galaxy S III Jelly Bean updates in Poland, the carrier confirmed today users in the United States would see the update in the “coming months.” We still do not know exactly when to expect it, but Samsung said Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint, and U.S. Cellular will announce specific timing for the over-the-air updates separately. We will of course notify you when they do. Samsung’s full press release is below.
The Jelly Bean-powered handset features many of the same specs as the original Galaxy S, but the most noteworthy include a 4-inch WVGA Super AMOLED display, dual core 1GHz chipset, support for Wi-Fi, NFC, and Bluetooth 4.0, and a 1,500 mAh battery. It also features a 5-megapixel VGA front-facing camera with LED flash, 720p video recording and playback, 8GB RAM, and MicroSD up to 32 GB.
The S III mini essentially packs the S III experience into a 4-inch screen at a presumably more pocket-friendly cost; however, Samsung did not announce details on pricing and availability. Check out the presser and gallery below for more information on this practical smartphone.
There were rumors earlier this month that Samsung had a mini, 4-inch version of its flagship Galaxy S III device in the works when the press received invitations to an event including the words “something small will be really big.” According to a report from Engadget, citing a translated Korean news story, Samsung’s Mobile chief JK Shin has confirmed a 4-inch S III is to be unveiled tomorrow in Frankfurt, Germany. Engadget later confirmed with Samsung PR, and the image above comes from MobileGeeks.de (which also provided the specs below). According to Samsung PR, it sounds like the device will indeed have the “Mini” branding:
Samsung just released its latest ad mocking iPhone line sitters, right on time for the release of the iPhone 5 this week. The ad is quite similar to its old “The Next Big Thing” Galaxy ads bashing iPhone customers waiting in line at the Apple Store, but this time the commercial is of course for its latest device, the Galaxy S III.
Set to report earnings its Q2 earnings on July 27, Samsung in a typical fashion has released estimates for quarterly earnings. This quarter, the South Korean-based electronics company estimated a $5.9 billion operating profit, which is a record for the company. Samsung said strong sales of its Galaxy line are leading to so much profit. Samsung already said it expects to sell 10 million Galaxy S III units during the month of July—which is certainly impressive. We will have to wait until the end of the month for the full story. But, at any rate, Samsung does not look like it will lose its title as the technology company with the highest profit. (via Reuters)
After beginning to accept preorders for the device in early June, Verizon Wireless confirmed today that Samsung’s Galaxy S III would officially launch on July 10 at $199 for the 16GB model and $249 for the 32GB model with both on the usual two-year contract. Verizon’s full press release is below.
BASKING RIDGE, NJ and DALLAS — Verizon Wireless and Samsung Telecommunications America (Samsung Mobile) today announced that the 4G LTE-powered Samsung Galaxy S® III will be available in Verizon Wireless Communications Stores and online at www.verizonwireless.com/galaxys3 starting July 10. Galaxy S III customers will have access to the Verizon Wireless 4G LTE network which is available in 304 markets across the United States. Verizon Wireless 4G LTE will be in 400 markets covering 260 million people by the end of this year.
Customers can take advantage of 4G LTE-optimized apps like Color to share live video broadcasts of life’s special moments with their Facebook® friends. Sharing live video with audio is an exclusive feature of the Color app on Verizon Wireless’ 4G LTE network. Customers can broadcast real-time footage of a newborn’s first step with family members who are miles away or share a beautiful view of a vacation spot to make friends at home jealous. Combining America’s largest 4G LTE network with the Galaxy S III’s 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED™ display creates the perfect duo to watch movies, television shows and other video content with apps like viewdini. Viewdini brings the power of Verizon Wireless’ 4G LTE network to the screen by streamlining access to videos from a wide range of content providers, including cable operators, websites and other popular video sources. The viewdini app can be downloaded from Verizon Apps and Google Play.
Android™ 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
Mobile Hotspot – Share a 4G LTE connection with up to 10 Wi-Fi-enabled devices
1.5 GHz dual-core processor and 2 GB RAM
Share Shot – Create a temporary photo sharing network with a group of friends who are nearby at the same party or event; photos can be taken by any member of the group and shared with the entire group
S Beam – Share pictures, videos, documents and more by simply touching two Galaxy S III devices’ backs together
S Voice™ – Featuring natural language recognition, you can control the apps and services used most with words instead of touch
Pop Up Play – Videos can be played in a small window while customers use the rest of the display to complete other tasks such as typing emails, organizing calendars and updating their social networks
Evolved camera capabilities – Burst Shot mode instantly captures 20 continuous shots and Best Photo feature selects the best shot to display
Enhanced camera – 8-megapixel rear camera with zero-lag shutter speed and a 1.9-megapixel front camera so customers can capture pictures and videos of themselves or video chat with family and friends
microSD™ card slot for expandable memory
The Samsung Galaxy S III is available in 16 GB and 32 GB models for $199.99 and $249.99 respectively with a new two-year customer agreement. The 16 GB model will be available in stores and online starting July 10 and the 32 GB model will be available online starting July 10 and will be in stores in the coming weeks. Customers will also have the choice of the Galaxy S III in two colors: Marble White or Pebble Blue. Customers can visit www.verizonwireless.com/galaxys3 for more information on the Samsung Galaxy S III for Verizon Wireless
Sprint offers the base model of the Galaxy Nexus successor on its website for $199.99, but it previously revealed that “overwhelming demand and limited supply” could cause the smartphone to ship late.
Meanwhile, T-Mobile sells its version for more bread than the main carriers: the 16GB model costs $279.99 after a $50 rebate. AT&T and Verizon Wireless now list pre-order prices for the 16GB Samsung Galaxy S III at $199.99.
Another third-party retailer, Amazon, offers the 16 GB Ice Cream Sandwich-powered smartphone for $189.99 to new AT&T customers, where as those eligible to upgrade only need to cough up $149.99. The deal comes with free two-day shipping.
Samsung let New Yorkers experience the all-new Galaxy S III today at a release event in Manhattan, while the company reiterated its goal to “win over” the competition’s user base (ahem, iPhone 4S users) with this latest Android offering.
Chief Marketing Officer Tom Pendleton and Chief Product Officer Kevin Packingham were on stage this afternoon to celebrate the S III’s launch on all the major U.S. carriers. They also unveiled their marketing strategy, with a few numbers on mobile sales. The executives revealed that Samsung sold 61 million devices in the United States—just add another 80 million for the worldwide sales. They further pinpointed the S III as the fastest-selling pre-order smartphone in the company’s stateside history.
The Galaxy-branded smartphone boasts many impressive features, such as Ice Cream Sandwich OS, but the South Korea-based manufacturer focused on the S III’s uniqueness, 2100 mAh battery, 4.65-inch high-definition screen, 2 GB of RAM, LTE capability, and integrated sharing options.
“We want to show you five things no other phone can do,” added Packingham, while touting the S III’s bevy of highlights.
The chief explained how the Galaxy Nexus successor packs an “All Share Group Cast” feature for sharing documents and media anytime or anywhere. Meanwhile, the “Share Shot” tech specifically—and automatically—streams photographs to friends, but “S Beam” is available for those who want to send large video files or even contacts with just one tap. Next up is the “Smart Stay” feature, which maintains screen brightness, so users are never again interrupted by a dimming display. The last showcased feature is the “Pop-up Play” that allows S III owners to do multitask such as watching video and texting simultaneously.
Last time we checked in on the ongoing U.S. patent-related court cases between Apple and Samsung, Apple’s lawyers were requesting to add the Galaxy S III to its previous motion for a preliminary injunction against the Galaxy Nexus line of products from February.
Apple was hoping the courts would agree to withhold sales of the S III until a ruling on the preliminary injunction was made. Samsung recommended the judge dismiss Apple’s request and file a new motion, but Apple attorney Josh Krevitt threatened Samsung at a hearing on Thursday that Apple could file a temporary restraining order as early as today to stop sales of the S III before it launches June 21. Bloomberg reported:
Josh Krevitt, a lawyer for Cupertino, California-based Apple, told Koh he was considering filing a request for a temporary restraining order in the interest of blocking sales of the Galaxy S III before its scheduled release in the U.S. this month… Krevitt said a court order temporarily barring Galaxy S III sales in the U.S. will create “a mechanism to allow the court to decide this issue before the launch.”
First Samsung will have to prove in court today that the Galaxy S III includes a “different combination of features” from the Nexus in order to prevent Apple from adding the device to the previously requested preliminary injunction. According to Bloomberg, Samsung lawyer Bill Price claimed: “Apple’s urgency stems from its inability to “compete against the new features” of the Galaxy S III, and the company is trying to “prevent a phone from getting to the public that is better than Apple’s in many, many respects.”
Reuters noted that several Google attorneys attended Thursday’s hearing. If Apple files for a temporary restraining order, the scheduled July 30 trial date would likely be delayed. Apple is also trying its best to kill HTC.
Apple put forward a second California litigation against South Korea-based Samsung earlier this week when it sought the court’s consent to add the Android-powered Galaxy S III smartphone to its motion for a preliminary injunction against the Galaxy Nexus.
Apple made this move approximately 20 hours after I wrote about the Galaxy S III being “the obvious next target”. In my blog post I speculated that Apple might bring a preliminary injunction motion against it, possibly after awaiting tomorrow’s preliminary injunction hearing. Apple decided to forge ahead now. Apple is on the offensive against Android. Earlier this week it filed an ITC complaint requesting an immediate import ban of 29 allegedly-infringing HTC devices. There’s an important overlap: the “data tapping” patent that Apple is seeking to enforce against HTC’s current generation of products is one of two patents Apple is using against the S III.
Apple purchased the S III in the United Kingdom, where Samsung launched it on May 29. The U.S. launch date is June 21 — precisely two weeks after the preliminary injunction hearing.
Apple’s motion notes that “[a]ccording to press reports, Samsung has already sold over nine million preorders of the Galaxy S III; indeed, the Galaxy S III has been reported to be the most extensively preordered piece of consumer electronics in history.”
Apple filed the first preliminary injunction motion against the Galaxy Nexus in February over four disputed patents. The Cupertino, Calif.-based Company’s requested in its latest motion that Samsung withhold the launch of the device’s successor in the United States until the court rules on the preliminary injunction request.
Samsung replied to the motion this afternoon, contending Apple cannot continue to add to its record for the Galaxy Nexus:
“If Apple wishes to seek an injunction against the Galaxy S III, the Court should require Apple to file a new motion and allow the parties to develop a full factual record on all four factors. Accordingly, the Court should reject Apple’s motion to amend its current notice of motion for a preliminary injunction.”
AT&T just announced that its customers can begin placing preorders for the Samsung Galaxy S III on June 6 in both company-owned stores and online.
The company made sure to clarify in the official press release that only its 4G LTE-powered version is able to access “the nation’s largest 4G network.” Moreover, AT&T customers are privy to an exclusive red Galaxy S III that is due to launch this summer, where as the other U.S. carriers are limited to the standard pebble blue and white flavors.
The smartphone’s price tag starts at $199.99 for the 16 GB model after a two-year service agreement.
Corning Inc., the manufacturer behind Gorilla Glass, Gorilla Glass 2, and other display products, just announced a new ultra-slim, flexible glass called “Willow Glass“.
The Corning, N.Y.-based Company introduced its technology at the Society for Information Display’s Display Week tradeshow in Boston this morning. The main highlight is its ability to “wrap” around a device or structure. Willow Glass is specifically formulated to couple with touch sensors, and Corning is exploring further use in “lighting and flexible solar cells.” The company’s fusion process helps to make the product just 100 microns thick, which is akin to a sheet of printer paper. Willow Glass samples are shipping to customers now, but The Verge expects full production to begin later this year.
In related news, Corning confirmed late last week that Samsung’s new Galaxy S III sports Gorilla Glass 2 (via Sammy Hub):
We are pleased to offer our customers the thin elegance and refined style of the GALAXY S III using Corning Gorilla Glass 2. New Corning Gorilla Glass 2 is an ideal solution for Samsung’s high-quality smartphones, enabling a superior touch experience and a lightweight and slim design, with the damage and scratch resistance consumers have come to expect.
Qualcomm seems to have the lock on U.S. processors for high-end phones. Just like the HTC Ones before it, Samsung also uses the dual-core Qualcomm S4 processors in its U.S. versions of the Galaxy S3 phones—trading out its own Exynos quad-core processor. Qualcomm dual-core S4 processors have the LTE and 42MB HSPA+ speeds that U.S. smartphone owners expect while keeping up with quad-core processors.
There are no other real surprises in the announcement. Samsung said S3s would deliver starting at $199 later this month on Verizon, Sprint, AT&T, T-Mobile, and US Cellular. Capacities will vary between 16GB to 32GB of expandable storage, a whopping 2GB of RAM, and a 2100mAh battery. Each will also have that lovely 4.8-inch 720P Super AMOLED display.
The Verge’s Vlad Savovjust 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. Expand Expanding Close
Shortly after the new Siri-like voice assistant feature of Samsung’s new Galaxy S III, known as “S-Voice,” made its way to other Android devices via an available APK, reports claimed Samsung began to block non-S III users from accessing the service. XDA Developer community members confirmed (via TNW) that Vlingo, the company behind the voice recognition technology used in S-Voice, is now blocking users from trying to access its servers with devices other than the S III.
In December of last year, Nuance, the company currently powering speech in Apple’s Siri app on the iPhone 4S, acquired Vlingo. Samsung previously collaborated with Vlingo for the Voice Commander feature for the Galaxy S II. We expect Nuance has improved Vlingo since the acquisition, while Apple’s relationship with Nuance is not stopping Samsung from using the Vlingo technology. In an interview in October, Norman Winarsky, co-founder of Siri, told us Vlingo was originally used in Siri when it first developed, but noted it is rather easy for apps like Siri to implement new speech recognition technology if it comes along.