The Samsung Galaxy S3 debuted at the start of May and with it expected to take the post as Samsung’s flagship smartphone. Joining other heavyweights like the Samsung Galaxy Note, Galaxy Nexus and its predecessor, the S2, it is definitely in good company.
However unlike its predecessor which ended up winning the title of best smartphone of the year (MWC 2012), the Samsung Galaxy S3 launched to mix reactions. It was criticized for its Pentile display, questionable exterior design, high likelihood that its quad-core chip isn’t coming to US models, and TouchWiz tweaks which at this time are being considered gimmicky at best (we will need to see just how many are useful and practical to use in everyday situations).
I for one was looking forward to the Samsung Galaxy S3 and hung on to my Galaxy S2 despite temptations from the Galaxy Nexus when it hit Verizon. Lack of the rumored 12-megapixel camera, 2GB RAM, ceramic case and ‘Plus’ display has me considering the Galaxy Nexus again. It’s here and readily available, plus it is on the biggest carrier in the US at the moment (as well as on Sprint in case you want an unlimited data plan option). And let’s not forget future-proofing.
Samsung Galaxy Nexus & Android 5.0 Jellybean
The Samsung Galaxy Nexus is the only device on the market that you can be guaranteed will get the Android 5.0 Jellybean update whenever it rolls out this year. While the Samsung Galaxy S3 would be a shoe-in as well, the wait might kill many folks. Take for instance all the US Samsung Galaxy S2 variants which have yet to get the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update 7 months on.
Changing faces of Android 4.0 phones (US Samsung Galaxy S3 & HTC One X)
The HTC One X for AT&T and HTC Evo 4G LTE for Sprint are the first Android devices to face an import block at US Customs for potentially infringing an Apple patent. According to the folks over at TheVerge, HTC has gone ahead and omitted a certain feature in Android 4.0 from the US HTC One X in order to be compliant with US Customs (although it is unknown if that is enough). Given Apple and Samsung’s always ongoing battles in court, we wouldn’t be surprised if Apple’s lawyers have their sights set on the US Samsung Galaxy S3 models as well when they launch. Given that the feature that HTC is in trouble for (‘Complete Action Using’ popup screen which has been standard on most phones since Gingerbread), Apple will certainly have some ammo against the Galaxy S3 if its lawyers look deep enough. Keeping this in mind (as well as recent complaints about manufacturer UIs messing with the Android 4.0 experience – see here), the Samsung Galaxy Nexus continues to look like a good buy.
With Google I/O set to kick off next month, we’ve got our fingers crossed for some Android 5.0 Jellybean teasers.