5 Reasons to Buy the Samsung Galaxy S4 Instead of a Cheap Galaxy S3

The Samsung Galaxy S4 release is still weeks away, and carriers are already cutting the prices on the Samsung Galaxy S3 to clear out inventory and lock customers into two-year contracts.

While the Samsung Galaxy S3 is a good phone and continually makes our Best Phone of the Month list on most major carriers, it is soon to be replaced by the Samsung Galaxy S4.

As the release date approaches, carriers and retailers are already offering the Samsung Galaxy S3 for as little as $10. This is a great price for a phone, but it’s one that many users should skip considering the two-year contract and relatively cheap price to upgrade to the Samsung Galaxy S4.

Read: Samsung Galaxy S3 vs. Samsung Galaxy S4

The Galaxy S3 is thought to be getting Galaxy S4 features. But will U.S. carriers oblige?

The Galaxy S3 is thought to be getting Galaxy S4 features. But will U.S. carriers oblige?

$190 to $150 isn’t cheap for most people, but compared to the overall cost of a cell phone contract over two years, it is a drop in the bucket. Even if it means waiting out one or two more months to get the Samsung Galaxy S4, we think it’s worth the wait and the price.

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5 Reasons to Skip Cheap Samsung Galaxy S3 Deals

While some of the Samsung Galaxy S4 software features may come to the Samsung Galaxy S3 in a future update, there are a number of reasons to skip these deals and buy a Samsung Galaxy S4.

Bigger, Better 1080P Screen

The Samsung Galaxy S4 offers a much improved display, one that is slightly larger than the Samsung Galaxy S3, and with a much higher resolution. The Galaxy S4 features a 1080P HD resolution on a 5-inch display. This is the same resolution as most HDTVs, but in a smaller package.

The Samsung Galaxy S4 features a bigger, better display with a 1080P HD resolution.

The Samsung Galaxy S4 features a bigger, better display with a 1080P HD resolution.

In addition to allowing users to watch HD movies at full resolution this high-res screen delivers sharp-looking text and photos that look as good, if not better than the iPhone 5’s Retina Display. Check out this Samsung Galaxy S4 vs. Galaxy S3 vs. iPhone 5 screen showdown to see how the two compare.

In short, the Samsung Galaxy S4 screen is bigger and better than the Samsung Galaxy S3, and there are other features that help set the two phones apart, covered under sensors and software.

Better Design and Build

The Samsung Galaxy S4 features a plastic design, similar to the Galaxy S3, but Samsung improved the build quality and materials to make the Galaxy S4 stronger. The plastic also feels less like a low-end plastic and the overall design is more solid without the typical weak spots a plastic back cover can come with.

Despite the larger screen size, the Samsung Galaxy S4 is about the same size as the Galaxy S3, which means users don’t need to worry about carrying a larger phone around to get the benefits of a larger screen.

More Sensors and Software Features

Samsung includes a number of sensors in the Samsung Galaxy S4 that offer up features not found in the Galaxy S3, and features that software updates can’t add. One of the most impressive is Air View, which allows users to hover their finger over the phone to see a message or larger preview of and image. This is similar to the Galaxy Note 2, but doesn’t require the S Pen.

Users can also use the built-in IR support to control an HDTV with Samsung TV software, something that cannot come to the Galaxy S3.

Samsung offers up new software features like Smart Scroll, which lets users combine eye-tracking technology and motion to scroll without touching the screen and an auto pause feature that will pause a video when it detects the user looked away.

Samsung also includes Multi-View, a way to use two Android apps at once on the screen. This is another Galaxy Note 2 feature, one we expected to arrive on the Galaxy S3 earlier this year, but it remains missing in action.

Faster and Longer Software Support

Some Galaxy S4 features will come to the Samsung Galaxy S3, and there are rumors of Android 5.0 for the Galaxy S3, but the Samsung Galaxy S4 is destined for faster, longer lasting software support.

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The Galaxy S3 will likely be much slower to Android 5.0.

 

As we saw with the Samsung Galaxy S3 Android 4.1.2 update, U.S. versions of the device did not get the Premium Suite, which means no Multi-View support and a lack of other popular Samsung features.

In addition, the Galaxy S4 will likely see a faster update to Android 5 and comes with a better chance of getting future Android versions that may not arrive on older hardware.

Battery Life and Wireless Charging

The Samsung Galaxy S4 ships with a larger battery and what should be a more efficient battery than the Galaxy S3, which should translate into better overall battery life for the Samsung Galaxy S4. The early Samsung Galaxy S4 battery life tests show promise of good overall battery life.

In addition to the bigger battery users should see Samsung Galaxy S4 wireless charging support at or near launch with a replacement back and Qi compatible charger. The kit is thought to cost around $50, making it an affordable way to upgrade the Galaxy S4.

The Galaxy S4 will come with a removable back to handle wireless charging.

The Galaxy S4 will come with a removable back to handle wireless charging.

The Samsung Galaxy S4 is headed to AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, Sprint and U.S. Cellular. AT&T starts Galaxy S4 pre-orders on April 16th and T-Mobile is planning for a Galaxy S4 release date on May 1st. U.S. Cellular is also taking Galaxy S4 pre-orders on April 16th, with no official release date yet. The Sprint and Verizon Galaxy S4 release and pre-order details are still up in the air.

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The Samsung Galaxy S4 should start at $199 on contract, but like many Samsung smartphones we could see price cuts on third-party sites like Amazon or Radio Shack within weeks of the release, dropping the price down $50 or more.

Comments

    • Vaughan Elphick says

      Really hope Sony at least picks up its game, (was never a fan of apple) but Sony made some REALLY nice phones, I STILL have my K800i and it lasts days before needing a charge and is a great phone with zero issues. I’m MOSTLY concerned if others do not pick up their game it means no competition for Samsung which means the price of their phones skyrocket, competition is a GOOD thing so other manufacturers need to get their a$$ into gear and get a move on and get in the game. The only one that I would consider is remotely in the game currently are Samsung, Apple and Google and to a lesser extent HTC with their latest phone (seems really good quality even if features are lacking a little it makes up for it in other ways)

      • honkj says

        bwahh haha…. Samsung… price…. skyrocket…??? the reason Samsung sells so many phones is because it makes cheap *** phones out of plastic and puts them on sale for $29 after a few weeks there is a reason Apple makes 10 times the profit… and it aint because of two for one for 1 cent sales….

  1. Nick says

    You forgot the 13 mega pixel camera and the 8 core processor. This is gana b one n lethal weapon

    • fetak11 says

      8 cores seriously? how practical is that? I need 8 cores to make a phone call and play a few apps? I don’t even have that many cores on my gaming PC. They should focus on making the phone last longer than a few days and not 8 cores. dual camera? how gay. air-view. sorta cool. Had an siii and was disappointed.

      • Sam says

        It’s not a standard 8 core processor. It does have a total of 8 cores, but they will not all be used simultaneously. The way the big. LITTLE architecture works is by using two dual core processors together to balance power with battery life. One of the processors can handle very taxing tasks with ease while the other uses far less battery power. The cores can be mixed and matched depending on processing needs. Think of it as having an A15 processor that, when not executing resource-intensive tasks, has the power consumption of an A7. Between that and a 2600 mAh battery, it should have plenty of processing power AND battery time. One may argue that one doesn’t need that much power because most apps aren’t made to use it. However, apps aren’t made for such powerful processors BECAUSE phones don’t have the hardware. This opens new possibilities. Considering how popular this phone is likely to be, there will probably be plenty if apps developed that will take full advantage of its processing power.

      • Lola Rose says

        8 cores is required for majority of the things on the phone but you are really hard to please. The S4 is bonza and you just have to pick out unnessasary details. 8 cores isnt practical. Air view is not sortta kl. Its really kl. Dual camera is amazing. The battery lasting for a few days is a miracle as it doesnt need everyday charging like mine. If you have an S3 you should be grateful as loads of other people wish they’de have 1 but they can’t. If i have offended and upseted you, i am sorry.

  2. Michle says

    Very Very Nice article to explain the main point of the phone.

    Friends the Samsung plastic body is great am fine with that. My S3 has felt badly on tiles many times still its in perfect condition. Samsung rocks and with the new killing features of the S4 it will be a big success. Also removable battery and 13mp camera is already enough for me without features. Also not to mention the 5″ screen bigger than the s3 screen but phone size is nearly the same even little bit tinny small than s3. Its a big achievement and using the galaxy s2 and S3 I know the value of Samsung Galaxy S4.

    Your this article is all about the body looks. Whats the point of a nice look of HTC with out the brains. Anyway S4 ROCKS a great and solid phone.

  3. Eric says

    The S4 is going to be great, largely because it’s 90% an S3 and that new 10% is a nice bonus. But the features highlighted in this article are mostly a joke, and it looks like it was written by someone paid by Samsung to try and convince people to spend money on an S4, when an S3 will more than suffice for 99% of the population if they’re on a budget. The only argument from this list that has any chance of geting me to pay $200+ to upgrade to the S4 vs. less than $50 for the S3 is the screen, and that’s simply not not enough of a difference between the S4 vs. S3 to make it worth it for me. You’ll never be able to tell the difference between a HQ 720p movie and a 1080p movie on a screen the size of your palm. VERY few people can tell the difference between a HQ 720p and 1080p movie when it’s on a 40″ LCD! There may be other visual improvements in the S4’s screen, but the resolution is hardly the deal breaker.

    The processor on the other hand, which WASN’T mentioned in this article, coupled with the screen size and resolution, puts me on the fence when I throw in all of the other mostly insignificant advantages. But, I won’t buy an S4 until I see good tests that compare that battery life on this new 8-core processor against the quad core S3. What good does 8 cores do you vs. 4 cores if your phone is shut off before you can even get through the day because the battery is dead?

    As far as the camera goes, (which wasn’t mentioned in this article, but is one of the features touted by most S4 vs. S3 spec. comparisons) I’ve worked professionally in the graphics field for 18 years, and it never ceases to amaze me how just about the only feature touted by any new phone or camera is the number of pixels (usually measured in megapixels). Unless someone is looking to print a poster sized photo of whatever they’re going to take a picture of, the S4’s 13mp capability is completely and totally irrelevant, as is 8mp for 99% of the population. 5mp will MORE than suffice for printing a perfect 8×10 photo of whatever you shoot, which means from a MP standpoint you’re totally set with a good old S2. Once you get up to 5MP, almost every other feature of the camera is more important, and I would trade a 13MP camera for a 5MP camera every day of the week if it takes a photo faster, sharper and clearer, particularly in low light and high contrast situations. The major problem with most smartphone cameras is how long it takes to snap the photo, which translates into blurry pics. I won’t go into a long diatribe about smartphone cameras and all of their shortcomings, but don’t for one second think a camera is better for your needs because of a largely insignificant number like how many megapixels it can capture.

    • Buck says

      Well-stated, all around. I wish more people realized that more megapixels does not equal better. If they did, the manufacturers would stop cranking up the # of megapixels (which only makes each sensor that much smaller) and actually work to improve the other aspects of the cameras.

      You’re spot-on about the 1080p display. 1080 vs 720 is barely noticeable on a 32″ screen, much less a 5″ screen. Once you hit about 250-300 ppi, the human brain can’t recognize the improvements. So a 450 ppi screen is just another gimmick.

      With that said, the market is currently “innovate or die,” and so you get all these overhyped features. Otherwise, you get where Apple is, torn between staying with the consistent product that has made them tons of money or making a significant leap that could risk all the advertising they’ve put on the line over the years. I played around with a coworker’s iPhone 5 alongside of my 4, and there isn’t enough of a difference for me to even want the 5. So, I’m going with the Galaxy S4 this time around.

    • Sam says

      I agree with your point about pixels being mostly irrelevant. Although there is some benefit to having more pixels, as you said it has nothing to do with quality, only size. Aside from enlarging photos, the other benefit having more pixels offers is that photos can be cropped more, and the cropped area can be enlarged to a viewable size later, without noticeable quality loss. To address the delay, the S III has the zero shutter lag, which I would assume would be carried over to the S IV. Of course, it’s not perfect; I notice on the S III that the lack of delay sometimes results in the photo not being properly focused. In this case, photos are not blurry because they are being taken slowly, but sometimes are blurry because the camera simply hasn’t had sufficient time to focus prior to snapping the shot (though if the photographer focuses manually by tapping the screen prior to snapping the shot, it allows them to then take the shot very quickly when ready, and works very well)

      The focus of the 8 core processor is more on balancing processing power and battery life than just giving the phone immense processing power (see my post above). The more resource intensive cores only kick in when needed, and the power-saving cores run the rest of the time. It is not meant to run all cores at once. And it has a 2600 mAh battery over the S III’s 2100 mAh battery, so battery life should be decent to say the least.

      I also agree that the points mentioned in this article are some of the less significant changes from the S III to S IV. Particularly build quality. Why do people concern themselves with this so much? Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to have a tough and pretty phone, but (for me at least) that is certainly not a selling point; more of a nice bonus. I am concerned more about what the phone is capable of than what it is made of. It is more important to me that a phone can excel at running my favorite apps than excel at being dropped on the ground. The first is something I plan to do, the latter is not, and even if my phone is made of diamond I am getting insurance on it. Furthermore, there is some benefit to plastic, which gets an unduly bad reputation. If you drop a metal phone, the outside will be fine, while the inside may get significantly jarred. In a plastic phone, you may damage the exterior, but that plastic absorbs a lot of the impact, protecting the internal components

      I do think that the S IV looks to be a promising phone, but it seems like many consumers concern themselves too much with things that will make no noticeable difference to them on a daily basis, while overlooking some of the more important features and functionality.

  4. American says

    quality is cheap Korean plastic, design, charger, style copied from iPhone, they cry about speed but at actual use this phone has a lag, holding this phone feels like you are holding someone’s d…, not even near the upper crest apple quality…. truly this is a predecessor of a CHEAP galaxy S3

    • smartass says

      maybe it does not have a premium and expensive feel to it but cumon man its software & hardware people care about anyways it will have a case(apple) and as we all know samsung doesnt keed a dam case its almost invincble compared to other phones(execpt Xperia Z) sp be it i like apple i have some freinds too who know iphone 5 is no competition to other phones not even lumia 920 but they wanna stick to it caz they cant catch up to that level of specs and cant get rid of that simple OS which even a baby can operate and most oof all its brag about a costly phone and the brand which used to make the best phones (once upon a time) APPLE… thats it so STFU….!!! and use your dam toy lol…

    • Buck says

      Let me address a number of points:

      1) If you’re such a huge Apple fan that you can’t even recognize that another phone might have one or two superior features, why are you reading articles about the S4?

      2) Polycarbonate is incredibly hard. They use it to make impact-resistant safety glasses and face shields, for instance. It’s removable, can be cheaply replaced (if scratched or damaged), and typically gets covered by a phone protector, anyway. Glass shatters. Aluminum dents. No material is perfect, but polycarbonate is an awesome material.

      3) This phone is not at all like the iPhone. Patent wars only hold back innovation by companies who don’t want to innovate. Time to get a new message.

      4) Learn grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure.

      5) A “predecessor” is something that came before something else.

      6) You’re looking for “upper crust.” Besides, unless you work for a tech company, you have never held this phone and aren’t in a position to comment on how it feels when held. And I doubt you work for a tech company because you seem to lack the intelligence, based on the quality of your post.

      7) Why would anybody “cry” about speed? As for lag, see above regarding actually holding a working version of this phone.

      8) I’m going to reiterate point #1. If you’re already so sold on your iPhone 5, why are you on this page? Most of us are here because we’re excited by new technology. When Apple produces an innovative new feature, I’m right there celebrating along with the other technophiles, not finding reasons why my last-year’s phone is just as good or better.

        • Sam says

          That is very true, everyone is entitled to an opinion. However, by posting that opinion publicly they are opening themselves up to opposing opinions. The response may have been a little harsh, but one could argue that the original post was harsh as well. (“holding someone’s d…”? Really?) So I feel that in this case the response suits the post it is responding to, and makes some very solid points in the process.

      • Kunal says

        Awesome punch Buck __________ i am going to have on soon!! Today we got it launched in India!! I am going to buy it as soon as it will appear in stores. :)

    • Edward says

      I’ll give it to apple on overall build and appearance but that said the phone is not “cheap” the actual cost of the s3 is more than the iphone 5 from what I’ve read. This is before shipping and only encompasses the guts and assembly.

  5. rendog says

    Lol apple suck period htcs phone is much better looking features n specs in the end who cares about build quility when all three is going to have a rubber case on it that 4 and 4s had more breaksand shattered screens than any the 5 was coming out the box with scuff marks apples mid level truthfully good for ipods n gaming music but not on the upper levels of these android phones out! Deal with it.

  6. irishgreen says

    S4 is garbage! The HTC ONE is the phone of 2013. Guarantee 98% of these commenters havent even held either phone but yet act like it’s the best because they follow masses like trolls!! I’ve used both, n the HTC one will be in my pocket not that samjunk!!

    • smartass says

      your choice.. but when your freinds are goin to get 5.0 much faster and better UI on their S4 dont go back home and curse your Htc and lagg behind with all those features bigger screen and yea 4.2 instead of htc’s 4.1 and not forgeting their individual benchmark scores if you know what that even means… good luck lol..

    • Buck says

      Friend, the HTC One is a very tempting phone. But after my HTC Thunderbolt, I’m never getting another HTC phone again. Here’s hoping you get quick updates and no software glitches, but I will say that was not at all my experience. I’m getting the S4.

    • Nick says

      Except for the looks and the materials, there not ONE reason why i would buy the HTC one over the s4. I haven’t had the s4 in my hands but i have a friend who has the HTC one. i was waiting for the s4 release before making a decision. and i’m going with the s4.

  7. mike says

    thehtc one doesn’t hold a candle to the s4. big deal so it’s aluminum. that’s the only spec that is supposedly better than the s4. but with that you lose memory storage. and if you drop or break your htc you are screwed. there is no repairability. You break it you replace it. and that goes for everything. the screen especially and with old gorilla glass 2 good luck. the s4 has gorilla 3 and on top of that ddr3 memory which is twice as fast and uses half the power. and your blink feed is junk. nice rip off of flipboard and Windows tiles which sucks. is there anything on the one that is good. uh not one. No pun intended haha! And the 4 ultra pixels for low light is a gimmick as every review says it’s not what they claim. it’s no better in low light and its only equal to an 8 mp camera. so 13 mp is better. oh and faster processor and the screen ppi versus htc is identical but htc id smaller so ppi is higher. that’s the only reason. if the s4 was 4.7 inches the ppi would be the same. all the other s4 specs like airview and dual apps at the same time and air gestures and video game capabilities etc etc etc are all way better than htc one. it’s just a plain old phone with a metal body. it has nothing to better the s4. and battery life in every test is on average 20 hours better on the s4. so I’ll stick to the s4 even though it’s such crappy plastic-NOT! omg the s3 was plastic and sold 50 million.

  8. Buck says

    What is going on here? Holy shit, this site attracts the worst writers on Earth! Didn’t you folks go through public school?

  9. Richard says

    Had a thunderbolt and I also will never buy htc stuff again. My g3 is a great phone and I have no desire to upgrade to the g4 for quite some time. But I’m sure the g4 will be a great phone. Iphones are great phones but it all boils down to personal taste. Apple’s and oranges(droids) folks.

  10. Apathy says

    Bullshit.. just got my S3 not long ago mind u on a 2 yr contract and these guys come out with a new phone before even a year is over and they release an article sayn why u should buy there new product .. and say why theb.S3 is garbage .. I say this article ssung r shit

    • Steakknife Cyrus says

      Same here. But look at it frm a business standpoint, they jst HUSTLIN’ !!!
      gotta respect the game!
      Besides, if you have a s3, “you are in the building”.

  11. Olivia says

    Who really needs all of this phone!? You guys are all following these companies around like little puppy dogs because they’ve tricked you into believing you need these awesome phones.
    I know only a FEW people who need these phones and use them to their fullest potential, most of you are just wanting the name and most updated things to be cool and up to date.

    • Sam says

      I can honestly say that I use every single feature on my phone quite extensively. Taking high resolution snapshots, recording HD video, Burst Mode, Best Shot, Photo Sphere, MHL out, removable storage, USB transfer, WiFi, Bluetooth, Voice search, Wireless hotspot, NFC/Android Beam, SIP dialing, Google Now, GPS, the music player, the video player, messaging, email, browsing, plenty of apps, very thorough customization to including build widgets with UCCW and making mini applications with Tasker, and lots more. I am not saying that everyone does, but I think it would reasonable to say that most of the people who get excited about having a plethora of new features and advanced hardware are pretty into this kind of thing. That may not make up the majority, but it certainly adds appeal for the “techie” demographic while not detracting in appeal from other potential buyers. Also, you may not use every feature, but the more features there are, the more people they will appeal to.

      Here is a rather obscure example, and feel free to skip it if you are not in the mood for an algebraic comparison.

      Consider a phone that has features A, B, C, D, E and F, one that has features A, C and E and another that has B, D and F. Now, if there is a customer that wants only features A and B, another that wants only features C and D, and another that wants only features E and F, they would all have to buy the first phone because it is the only one that has all the features they need, even if it has some that they don’t. See the benefit?

      But either way, having a feature that is seldom used is certainly not a disadvantage, unless it significantly impacts the battery life in a negative way or drives up your monthly cost, which most features will not do if you do not use them. Since most high end phones are around the same price, it would make sense to get a high-specification, feature-packed phone if it has any features that you may one day use.

      Better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.

      • Tim says

        And better to have a phone made by a company that you know those features will work when needed, Samsung! Good post @Sam.

  12. sammy salami says

    IPhone sheep don’t understand the concept ‘think different’ they’ve been using the same un-customizable button layout since 2007.

  13. mos0ne says

    Um… Wireless charging, cotton candy, and roller coasters were promised on the gs3 as well(just like every Samsung launch) ..more Samsung vapor, how soon we forget. If its not available at launch(in the U.S. at least) don’t count on it. Been burned on it before. (Read, galaxy nexus pogo accessories… Wireless gs3 charging)… The fact that U.S. variants get crippled shouldn’t be a reason to by a newer model so you don’t get ripped off quite so soon…it should be a reason to stay away ENTIRELY. But that’s just my two cents… Now, back to your regularly scheduled Samsung funded kool-aid blog.

    • Tim says

      The reason samsung could not add all the addons is because of apple’s lawsuits! I also got the s2 international before I got the international s3. The s2 was suppose to have nfc, but jealousy lawsuits with apple held that up. If you ever want see the galaxy s phones unleashed buy them international and unlocked! People still rave about my s2 which gave to my brother. When he got it activated at tmobile the reps had seen nothing like it!

  14. Al says

    Had my hands on a S4 today. A samsung rep let me take a quick peak at the S4 wow all I gotta say is nice!!!! Very light weight and a nice design I’m sold!

    • Sam says

      You’re sold because it is lightweight and has a nice design? Or were those two separate points? If the first is true, please consider the hardware, software and features before purchasing a phone. I think that you will probably still end up making the same decision, because, at least on paper, the S IV looks like it will excel very well in all of those areas, but it would not be a good idea to buy a phone just because it looks and feels nice. There are so many more important qualities to consider, especially when spending a large amount of money.

      • TheDaves says

        “You’re sold because it is lightweight and has a nice design?” —Why not? Apple users do it all the time.

        • Sam says

          That is very true. As a result, they end up with a “pretty” piece of overrated hardware that is severely limiting and proprietary because of how it looks and because that’s what all their friends have. If everyone is superficial, and bases electronics purchases purely on aesthetics, then everyone will have iPhones, and that’s not a world I want to live in.

  15. Jackson Rock says

    Think about innovation the all round innovation is made by samsung only and s4 ez the latest innovation other brand go by a single style or verse but samung makes many thing in a phone which are 1st and unique of its kind.I had galaxy s,s2,s3 and going 2 hav s4 also so iknow what samsung has done great for users
    and pont to be noted if u don’t like samsung then plz stay out of these pages dont comment them badly

  16. Tim says

    I got the S3 international I9305 unlocked, so I have all bells and whistles the carriers are wondering if they should add. Plus, I have the 50 bucks monthly plan so I am not in any long contracts. I may not have the better materials or extra sensors but I will have the latest version of android meaning I will have a new phone and outterbox or any good case will keep my phone safe. This phone will still be state of art and better than anything out there. I will just keep my eye out for better battery tech plus I can buy wireless changing for this phone right now. I think I will wait on S5 because I have options and why Samsung kicks ass!

    • Sam says

      Hardware-wise, (correct me if I’m wrong) the differences between models of the S III are that the US version has 2 gigs of RAM and a dual core processor, while the international version has 1 gig of ram and a quad core processor. However, on the software end you can accomplish all of that by rooting the phone, which is much easier than people assume it would be. There are plenty of thorough guides on XDA. I agree that using the carrier’s “improved” version of Android is horrible. Since rooting my phone I have installed some great custom ROMs and added apps that would have otherwise been blocked by the carrier. I would recommend rooting to anyone who wants more out of their phone, as long as they are tech-savvy and they understand the risks.

      • Tim says

        Actually the international version I have has 2 gig of ram and is quad core. I have had no need to root my device because I have found all the best software for it. Things to do backups, S voice app that’s on the S4, and it came preinstalled with the total OS packages. Main multi window and custom page. Rooting this device is easy but I don’t see the need to.

        It does all I want it to do and more.

        • Sam says

          I stand corrected. I believe I was thinking of the I9300 (also international), but I do see that yours has both a quad core processor and 2 gigs of RAM. The best of both worlds! And yes, that is the beauty of Android, you can do most things without needing it to be rooted. I initially rooted mine because my carrier is Verizon, and being the monopolistic parasites they are, they blocked Google Wallet in favor of their own ISIS. Since rooting, I have enjoyed many custom ROMs that add some really nice features to the operating system, which included having Jelly Bean months Verizon released it (but again that of course does not require root with your version of the phone).

          Is the S IV version of S-Voice any good? I use Google Now on my S III because in my opinion it absolutely blows S-Voice out of the water. But I would be willing to give it another try if they have made some significant improvements.

          • Tim says

            The thing with me is that I enjoy having the options of having some of the new apps, not that I actually use them. So to be honest I really could not tell you. I installed S-voice 2, played with it a few times and have not used it since. I am just glad to know it’s there waiting if needed.

            But, from what I will tell you is that it work great to me, you can actually download the new app yourself just do a search for it. I got it off a legit site using the app drippler which tells me about all the new great things coming out and that can be used for the S3 only, but it does make apps versions for just about every phone out. I gave my IGS2 to my brother and he uses S-Voice on that phone more than I ever did when I owned it. I have the I9305, and the only gripe I have is that you can’t use the app2Sd app to move apps to the SD card yet, but I hope Samsung see the error of their ways. Well, not unless it’s rooted of course.

            I really want to try the S-translate which is a real way to talk between two people in supported language in real time I think and without network support, if I read the article right. If Samsung gets this right, I think it’s a wrap for most other gimmick out there of any kind.

            The reason I like Samsung is that even though they are in the business of improvement and will release a new phone a few months latter just like the other guys, the one big difference is that you get a working phone that can be upgraded and not a test phone like many companies are doing today. I have the HD2 by HTC just setting in my home with it’s problems, and the Meizu M8 which should have never been allowed to be put on the market at all because it is a true “Test Phone” to the public at finished working phone prices!

            Samsung actually cares about it’s product first, then the customer which are hand and hand. I have never had the ones I own over heat, not work in general, and even though I like hacking stuff it’s something that says why mess up a good thing!

          • Tim says

            Also, Google Wallet won’t work with my device yet but a new version is being developed for it. The nfc thing will change the world! Apple robbed me with it’s lawsuits about it’s crappy product when I owned my IGS2. Carbon is the best backup software for GS3 un-rooted, period! Followed by Safebackup.

  17. Laurence says

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    • Sam says

      3 weeks ago, I basically made the small fortune of $5628 by spamming forums with links to my online scam so I could screw people over and make money off of it.

      Seriously though, “Laurence”, do me a favor and hit Ctrl + F and then type “Benjamin”. Any hits other than your post? No? If you are going to post a canned spam message on a forum at least try to use a name that is somewhere on the page. It’ll take 2 seconds.

      Admin, please remove this idiot’s post as it is so obviously spam. And “Laurence”, see if you can find a creative orifice on your body in which a cactus can be inserted. Thanks bro.

  18. Samcopy says

    there’s no “wow factor,” because the features will simply go to waste. Since there is not much of a physical change to the device, it is the features that are the selling point. If the buyer is not going to use these features then the Galaxy S4 may prove to be an old product in new wrapping.

    • Sam says

      Why do you say they will go to waste? I am not necessarily disagreeing, I would just like to know why you feel that some of the features in question will not be put to use.

  19. Riley says

    There are plenty of reasons to get the S4 over the S3, and you’ve made some excellent points. I have to say that I’m looking forward to trying out the 1080p display the most out of all the features. I’ve heard a lot of good coming from it. It would be useful for me though, because I like to watch my live and recorded shows on my phone while I’m on my way to and from work at DISH, considering that it takes a bit of time to get there. The DISH Anywhere app is my app I choose for streaming, and I think it’ll work well on the Galaxy S4.

    • Danno says

      My wife and I have noticed that around 16 to 22 months(we live 22 miles west of Chicago and have Verizon) after a phone’s realse that the actule phone call quality starts tanking probably due to the ever changing network system. For that reason alone I am going for an S4 over the much cheaper and just about as funtional S3. We need reliable phone and Internet service much more then we need all the new features. Currently haxe a Razr that is starting to have some minor issues .We will never buy phones that have been out for more then a couple months or that have been discounted as you tend to pay for it as you are stuck with it for 20 months unless you pay full price for a replacement. Our original Motorola Droids were the only phone we have had in the last 20 years that were still ok after 2 years of use.

  20. [email protected] says

    Thats really a great phone. But Galaxy s3 is also a good phone unfortunately when note 2 came the gs3 price was dipped and now GS4 also came. Thats why its price is low now! gs3 is a good phone and But gs4 has got more features and more over its octa core so its a giant processor anyway. So go for GS4!

    • Sam says

      I think people are getting the wrong idea about the octo-core processor. At it’s full capacity it is the equivalent of an A15 quad core processor. The point is not to give it insane processing power, it is to balance processing power and battery life. It has two quad core processors, one of which handles resource intensive-tasks and one that saves battery life while handling simple tasks. You will never have 8 cores working simultaneously, but you will be alternating between power-saving and higher-processing cores as needed to give you the best of both worlds. It is still a great addition to the phone, but one that is commonly misunderstood.

      Also, it will only be available in certain regions, while in other regions the S IV will come with a quad core processor.

  21. Thomas says

    I’m also loving it, the new galaxy s4 has been made for people to have fun and amusement with AND of course to still keep in touch obviously via calling and messaging each other as in the old good days :)

    • hakim alasaadi says

      ich kann nicht leugnen dass ich samaung furher geliebt habe.aber jetzt ist sehr besonders mit galaxy s 4 ich mag sich sehr.

  22. Oscar says

    Why argue about smartphones ? Most smartphones nowadays offer incredible amount of features.

    IOS / Android / WM
    All have pros and cons.

    The problem is not the smartphones but the contract system. What’s the point on having the latest device if you will be stuck with 2 years contract and have to deal with frequent mistaken or overcharged monthly bills? Still give you a headache, right?

    Well unless you are a wealthy person who still happy while your pocket being sucked by the contract system.

    *
    (Iphone 4S & Samsung Note 2 owner who bought them without contract, and fully enjoy the devices with prepaid simcard).

    • Tim says

      I have had Tmobile for over 10 years and have never had a contract! I have Galaxy S3 and love the option they have given me over the years. All my phones have be unlocked direct company purchases and international version of that phone preferably in the last number model.

    • Sam N says

      T-Mobile currently has the best plan you can get. You can get a phone for the on-contract price without having to sign a contract; instead you pay it off as part of your monthly fee. $70 bucks a month for a smartphone with unlimited 4G data, which also includes unlimited calling/texting and all the standard features. Again, that is WITHOUT a contract. Some services may offer similar prices, but you would have to sign one of those nasty two year commitments.

      As far as coverage and speed, I don’t have any experience with T-Mobile (though I am thinking of switching to them myself), and you may want to read the fine print, as I don’t know about speed throttling; but since there is no contract, if you’re not happy you can switch back to whatever you have now.

      Perhaps that can help you break the chains from those evil carriers.

      • Tim says

        T-Mobile has always done right by me and I like the choices they give you with your phone options with no contract. You can’t beat what they offer.

        • Jai says

          I just have questions regarding the unlocked version and t-Mobile plan since I really can’t stand these 2 years commitment with any US carrier and I just bought the S3 from Sprint, but I can return it since it is still within the 14 day return policy. Is it worth returning it and buy the unlocked version? Can you direct me to where I should buy it from and could you help me with it once I get it? Will it work in on the Tmobile network in St. Louis, MO? Excuse me for asking a lot of questions! I just want to get the best out of a new smartphone and a cheap carrier plan.

          • Tim says

            It’s up to you. Personally, I don’t like being tied down with a contract since most employers can pretty much decide to let you go today from your job for any bogus reason they see fit. With the plan from T-mobile I can remember being laid off for about a year a switching my contract to Pay as you go. Because I did not want a extra bill with no money. I just put a certain amount on monthly with whatever money I made which allowed me to keep my phone, because most recruiters will call your cell before your home phone. I got my unlocked S3 From Amazon. I would usually get stuff like this from ebay, and you can also price compare there too, but paypal has been treating it’s loyal customers kind of bad over the past few years so I have been doing a lot of my purchases by means of Amazon. Plus, Amazon makes it simple to make a purchase as opposed to Ebay and Paypal sometimes. Once you do get your new phone, you won’t need any help at all, Just contact T-mobile by means of the web or by phone and just request a micro sim card. That’s it. Once your phone arrives it will be straight from the factory with no ones creative hands on it but yours and folks at Samsung! The most problems you will have out of the box is selecting the language because most will ship in a language other then English be that too is easy. Just look at the phone you have now and remember the place where the language setting are and send it back. Next, change your language to English, put your sim card in and contact T-mobile for activation and the plan you want. On the real, the whole process took less then a min and a half. I don’t get all the negative customer service complaints from T-mobile customer service because they are, and have always been very nice and good at their jobs. I guess you have some people who don’t get the tech they have and take it out on the company instead of themselves for not wanting to understand how to use their high tech purchase. Purchase the I905 or above just do a Google search for the lastest S3 numbers. And get that one. It will be closer to the S4, and will make your future upgrades a breeze, software/firmware that is. Oh, and every unlocked phone I have ever got has worked in the U.S. even the crappy Meizu M8, if the Chinese would have put better time in development that phone would be a serious contender. But it was just another test phone sold as a finished product like the HD2, thunder bolt, and others. leave me a reply on whatever you decide. But as I told my brother you never see what a phone can do unless it’s unlocked. If a phone is any good you will never have the need to root it. I know how to write apps but sometimes you just want to enjoy your stuff and not always have to fix or make it better. You know, just trust the guy who made it. I gave my brother my unlocked S2 which he tells me weekly that he has never had a phone that can do the things it does. Samsung believes in Software before hardware, that’s why it’s older phones become new again with every update. One other good this is with an international phone you get all the updates first.

          • Tim says

            If you need help just let me know, always willing to help out those who ask. Wish more people would ask for help, if this post gets lost just got to my blog at debatesthatmatter.blogspot.com and search for any post on S2 and S3 and leave a message. I can help you from there as well if you loose this sites article. That’s just another option for when you decide.

      • Tim says

        Not just the 70$ plan you can live well off the 50$ a month plan as well. But, again it’s T-mobile and you make the choices not them.

        • Jai says

          Hi! I bought the International version and a tmobile plan. However, the internet only works in ‘edge’ speed. What do I need to do now to make it a great phone that works fast and a sound investment?? Thanks!

  23. Bugfan1 says

    I love my Samsung Galaxy S-3. It’s not a cheap phone. As for megapixels in a camera or cell phone??? Too many people think the more megapixels means the better the camera. But that’s NOT the case. I’m a photographer & I’m sure there are others that will agree. But as for the Samsung. I have the 3 & I’m keeping it. I love it. Also have the I-phone 5 & I love it too. So who says you can’t like Samsung & Apple. They are both great phones. As for the Galaxy 4. It wasn’t a month ago & C-Net & many other websites were naming the reasons you would be better off keeping your Galaxy 3. The people that write some of these articles must think the people that purchase cell phones are really stupid. lmao.

    • Sam N says

      The S III is a great phone. I would have no problem keeping mine for another year, and eventually upgrading to the next Galaxy S next year, assuming there is one and that it lives up to expectations. Many of the new features are intriguing to me, but nothing I can’t live without. As it turns out, I have stumbled across an opportunity to get a Galaxy S4 for significantly less, so I am taking it, and looking forward to it very much. I will still be able to upgrade next year, so it’s no loss.

      As far as megapixels, I agree that they are not of critical importance, however I can still appreciate the increase. Although I do not print enlarged copies of my photos very often, I would be more likely to take advantage of the higher megapixel count so that I could crop my pictures to a smaller size before seeing a noticeable drop in picture clarity, or use the digital zoom without making the image appear pixelated. Digital zoom is generally frowned upon because rather than zooming it simply takes the native image and enlarges a copped portion of it, thus reducing the resolution of the new image. For example, if the native resolution is 4,808 x 2,704 for a total of 13,000,832 pixels or, to round, 13 megapixels, then zooming to a degree of 2x, which would produce a section of the original that is 1/4 the size (because each dimension is cut in half), would reduced the finished product to a size of 2,404 x 1,352, a total of 3,250,208 pixels (or 3.25 megapixels). So your 13 megapixel image is reduced to a 3.25 megapixel image. I find this to be an acceptable resolution after cropping/zooming for most things I need to do, but if I were using a lower resolution camera I would be a bit more hesitant. Of course there are not really many benefits to using a digital zoom; if I were going to use the digital zoom as opposed to cropping it later, it would be primarily so that I could see the target area better simply because it would appear larger on the screen at the time of taking the photo.

      Unfortunately, megapixels are the camera specification that is most commonly highlighted, simply because it is a number that many people who don’t know better (the majority) associate with quality. If manufacturers were to list the shutter speed, for example, consumers would have no idea how it compares to other products simply because companies don’t make a point of marketing those qualities (as far as mobile phones are concerned). For what it’s worth though, the S4 has been shown to have improved performance over the Galaxy S III in terms of general photo quality in many comparisons, so it seems the resolution was not the only upgrade the camera received. The important specifications may just be a bit harder to find. Some even say that it matches the iPhone’s camera, and although I am not an iPhone fan, I will say that up to this point the iPhone’s camera has surpassed most, if not all, of the competition.

      On your last comment, I agree that writers of many of these articles assume that the majority of readers are novices. My particular pet peeve is the fact that there are so many articles comparing build quality. While there is some benefit to having an aesthetically pleasing phone, no informed consumer would ever prioritize the way a piece of technology looks over the way it functions. And looks are the entire focus of “build quality” articles; they talk about how a phone looks and feels “premium”. They don’t discuss how flexible materials like plastic are more likely to absorb impact so, while the outside may get a bit banged up, the internals are better protected than if they were in a harder exterior. Reading those kind of articles really makes me think that the world is full of superficial people.

      Wow, I really went off on a couple of tangents there. That’s what happens when I drink too much coffee…

  24. martha simmons says

    ok. I am brand new into this type technology, but I decide to get the s4. In a particulary application that use for some of my work. The font size 24 (the largest font) In the s3 phone shows much larger than the s4. I called varizon, sansumg and my company and no one seems to help me they do not know why. It must be a solution, please if someone knows what I am talking about please help.

    • Sam N says

      Assuming that the font is 24 on both devices, the Galaxy S3’s font will *appear* to be bigger. Here’s why: a common standard of measure for font is pixels. The Galaxy S3 has a 4.8″ display and a resolution of 1280 x 720 while the S4 has a 4.9″ display and a resolution of 1920 x 1080. Since the display is almost exactly the same on both models and the resolution is much higher on the S4, there are far more “pixels per inch” (or PPI) on the S4. To be exact, the S3 has a PPI of 36 while the S4 has a ppi of 441. That’s the important part. For the sake of simplicity, we can put all the other tech “mumbo jumo” aside, but let’s take a look at the PPI.

      For a font that is 24 pixels, on the phone that has 306 PPI, the font takes up 24/306 of an inch, which is equal to roughly 7.8% of an inch. On a phone with a PPI of 441, it takes up 24/441 of an inch, which is only 5.4% of an inch. I’m sure I’ve over complicated this terribly, but the end result is that text of the same pixel size will take up 2.4% less space on the Galaxy S4 because it has a much higher resolution, and thus the text will look smaller.

      Moving on, there are things you can do that may help. It is possible to download font packs for Android, though I haven’t used any so I can’t tell you if they support a higher font size. There is also an app called “Your Magnifying Glass” that looks like it may work for you. I won’t link it here because I don’t know if links are allowed, but from the Google Play Store app just search for it by name. Finally, there are apps that will allow you to scale the size of elements on your screen to simulate lower resolutions (and remember, the lower the resolution the bigger the text), however most of these probably require root access and if you are new to technology as you said that is probably something you don’t want to go messing with. If you are feeling particularly adventurous, check out XDA for guides on how to root the S4 (I’m using a rooted S4 on Verizon myself so I know it can be done). If you follow all of the steps *thoroughly and precisely” the likelyhood of damaging your phone is not too high, but if you don’t understand it 100% before starting it’s probably not a good idea. And you have to understand that even if you do follow the instructions it’s not 100% risk free.

      Hope that gives you some ideas to think about. Good luck.

      • Sam N says

        I can’t edit it, but where I said the S3 had 36 PPI there was supposed to be a 0 in there… *306

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