The waiting is done, I’ve been the happy user of the Pebble Blue Samsung Galaxy S3 with 32GB of memory for three days now. Verizon is my service provider. I don’t have much to gripe about with this phone so far but I’m still getting to know what it can do.
Size/Display: The display seems to be the largest size a display can be while allowing me to use it one-handed, I’m glad I didn’t get a galaxy Note. The display gorgeous, I can only see the pixels with the phone an inch from my face. The auto-brightness acts weird sometimes, randomly dimming then brightening back up, but I don’t really mind it that much. I can comfortably read text on my phone for an extended time, so that’s good. Also, it looks pretty good with Victor Hugo’s depiction of Iron Man on the background. Since discovering desktop folders I only use one icon screen.
Battery Life: This was a biggy for me so I’m pleased to see that at eleven hours since being on a charger the battery displays at 69%. This is with moderate use: I read during lunch, flung some Angry Birds through space a couple times, and used the phone to look things up when my work proxy blocked me. I’m not sure how it will hold up on the road with GPS or relying on LTE 4G, I’ve been on wifi almost constantly because I’m paranoid of going over the 2GB on the family data plan.
Update 20120720: Since writing this I’ve payed more attention to the battery indicator before plugging it in at night and even with heavy-moderate use I’ve only seen it go down to 25% at night. That was with 2-3 hours of games, an hour or so of reading PDFs and articles online, and off and on checking of social media. This battery is pretty solid in my book.
Durability/Style/Build Quality: The build doesn’t feel very robust to me so I’ve handled it pretty carefully so far. Luckily the shape of the phone is easy keep a hold of. The phone does hold steady when flexing the corners so what I feel could be deceiving. The plastic back panel is surprisingly flexible almost to the point of being alarmingly rubbery so that probably offers back protection. The front screen, I know from reading, is Gorilla Glass 2 which protrudes from the body of the case which is pretty bold. Front and back are extremely easy to wipe clean of fingerprints or other hand-goop. Also I like the blue finish, which looks nearly purple in some lights. The home button is a dark purple, not blue. I like that the coloring is dark enough to not stand out, but colored enough for it to not just be another black brick either.
Application/Speed: I haven’t noticed any slow downs that can be attributed to the phone itself. Applications have had their hangups, I managed to crash Facebook yesterday. The Samsung Keyboard is nearly useless with the dictionary turned on. As I typed letters it would fill in the word for me even if I typed the exact letters I needed in their right order. When I turned the T9 off I am my normal useless self when it comes to spelling. I got a third party keyboard based on ICS, it seems to be doing much better.
S Voice/Google Voice: Other than fooling with S Voice just to laugh at it, adding alarms is only way I’ve seriously tried to interact with the feature. That is way easier and faster than doing it by hand so I’ll probably keep it around. Google Voice, activated from the keyboard, is pretty fantastic for dictation. It’s guaranteed to get something wrong, but it can be easier than manually typing notes or ideas into mind map programs or whatnot.
I haven’t really used the camera yet. I have not tried to conference call yet. I haven’t really played any music on it, but the ringtones I set up sound fantastic. And… that’s all I can think of at the moment.
I still look forward to seeing the Razr HD come to market, but I don’t expect it to be much better than the S3. I do kind of feel like I’ve sold out in a way since their advertisements are so narcissistic and Apple-esk. But the only actual constricting elements of this phone seems to be Verizon bloat, locked boot loader, and lack of root access. Since I never enter my apps menu I haven’t really noticed to be honest. It’s an Android phone, and I like it.