Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Galaxy Envy

I had the opportunity to play with a Samsung Galaxy SIII at the weekend and I have to say I was very impressed.

Despite my fears that the phone would be too big it feels fine in the hand. In fact it is strikingly thin and light. Thinner than my iPhone 4. The screen is huge, especially when compared to the iPhone 4. The quality of the display is amazing, beautiful, bright and clear. Android runs smoothly and the widgets have plenty of space without taking over the page. It completely blows away my old work Sony Xperia X-10. Android on that phone was a nightmare of sluggish responses and poor applications but the Samsung Galaxy SIII shows how far the technology has progressed in a couple of years. 

The case itself is a little too plastic.I am worried about dropping my glass backed iPhone but it always feel solid. I'd be a little afraid of sitting on a Galaxy SIII and snapping it in half. No doubt it is more sturdy than I think but that was the initial impression I was left with.

The built in camera app was impressive, with a burst mode that entertained for a few minutes but did produce lots of motion blur in low light indoor situations. The S-Voice application struggled to cope with my accent when I asked longer questions but was well able to cope with short statements. I haven't used Siri and to be honest I dislike the idea of calling instructions to my phone, especially in public, but while driving it would be useful. My iPhone 4 voice control is worse than useless and trying to get it to play certain tracks rarely works. I never use it to make calls since it always dials the wrong people. S-Voice coped better so maybe there is a future that doesn't involve me shouting obscenities at my phone while in the car.

This is the first Android phone I've used that made me think "wow, that's better than my iPhone". If I was starting out now I'd probably choose the Galaxy SIII over the iPhone. I'm sucked into the Apple eco-system now so it'll take a lot to make me switch. The iPhone 4S is a two year old design and despite it's beautiful glass and metal case which far exceeds the plastic Galaxy SIII's case it is now showing it's age when it comes to size. I think Apple need to address this in the iPhone 5 and while I doubt they will produce a phone with a screen as large as the Galaxy SIII they will certainly have to go beyond the current 3.5 inches.

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