Samsung Galaxy S III official, will start shipping in late May [updated]

  • Email Print

The new Samsung Galaxy S III (Credit: Aloysius Low/CNET Asia)

LONDON, UK–Behold, the Samsung Galaxy S III. If the iPhone is the manna of Apple lovers, then Samsung’s flagship handset is the equivalent for Android lovers. The numbers speak for themselves: The electronics giant has broken Nokia’s grip on the mobile market, and with 44.5 million smartphones shipped in Q1 2012 alone, the company is now the number one global smartphone maker.

At its launch event in London, Samsung finally took the wraps off its smartphone, while also finally confirming that the handset–frequently referred to in the company’s marketing materials as the “next Galaxy smartphone”–would be called the Samsung Galaxy S III.

Lee Jui Siang, director of Samsung Asia’s regional mobile business, told CNET Asia in an earlier interview that there was no “deliberate intent to change the name of the handset”.

He was also very confident about the S III doing well in the Southeast Asian markets thanks to the company’s earlier success with its previous flagship models–the Samsung Galaxy S and S II.

“The Galaxy S III will be a big hit in all our markets in Southeast Asia,” Lee said. “I believe it will be a big winner in the market.”

The S III boasts of a quad-core Exynos processor, a 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED 720p display, an 8-megapixel camera, 1GB RAM as well as up to 64GB of onboard storage. The handset will run Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0) with the company’s TouchWiz UI which has been upgraded with new features such as a “Pop up Play” video function as well as a beefed up Android Beam called S Beam.

The handset is expected to ship sometime between late may and early June to Europe first, with Asia following after. We asked, but Samsung could not confirm an expected launch date for the US and Australia markets.

Apart from the handset, accessories meant for the S III also made an appearance–we’ll update this article with more information once the event is over. In the meantime, don’t forget to check out our hands-on article and photo gallery of the S III for more information.

Update (May 4, 1300 GMT+8): Samsung also introduced a whole range of accessories, including covers, cases, docks, a wireless charger as well as a new S Pebble MP3 player.

If the new music player appears to be familiar, you may have seen them years ago when they were first introduced as the Samsung S2 Pebble. The new model gets the “Hyperglaze” coating and some tweaks, but otherwise appears to share the same form factor as the original.

The new S Pebble is really tiny and light. it comes with a clip for attaching it to your clothing while you go exercising. (Credit: Aloysius Low/CNET Asia)