My SG3 review / experience.

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by asr10 user, Aug 8, 2012.

  1. macrumors regular

    Jul 4, 2010
    I have owned my SG3 for about 12 days now and previously have owned nothing but Blackberries and iPhones for the last 7 years. Like many I was worried about actually owning a phone made by Samsung and leaving the very comfortable world of iOS.

    I'll only slightly get into the pro's and con's of the SG3, but what everyone else says is pretty much how I feel. I will mostly talk about new things I have done on the SG3 that make my experience what it is.

    Cool stuff:
    Multitasking is great. I can actually do picture and picture video while still using the phone. Sounds cool and useless, until I started using this while the built in turn by turn navigation is running. Everyone who has seen this while in my car, simply cant lift their jaw off the floor. Imagine looking at a map while driving, while watching a small video and being able to click on either to maximize.

    Navigation runs in the background so I can be playing music, streaming netflix,
    doing whatever, and a voice will say 'turn left in .2 miles'. Using this thing in the car has changed everything for me.

    Of course apps for iOS are prettier. But almost every major app is the same, and lots are actually better on Android because they allow more sharing options, and great widget useablity. The Android exclusive apps which I use are just AMAZING. They allow me to do stuff that I could never ever imagine doing on a phone.

    Poweramp: Music player which automatically downloads artwork, lyrics (karaoke in the car???) allows left to right swiping of songs, up and down swiping of albums.

    Swiftkey: Alternate keyboard which has many cool features such as swipe left to delete word and learns your slang.

    Tasker: The mother of all Android Apps. Basically lets you program your phone to do whatever you want. Needs its own post.

    Car Home Ultra: Car dock app that allows you to set quick launch icons. Automatically starts when docked. Imagine XBMC or a 10 foot interface for your car.

    Android OS/Touchwiz
    I love touchwiz. I dont plan on rooting or doing a custom rom, I can do lots with touchwiz. I had an HP Touchpad running ICS so I was used to how Android works, so I didnt really have a learning curve like other new SG3 owners. At first the SG3 might be pretty clunky looking and confusing, but I had it down within an hour.

    Touchwiz features are very nice. The built in briefing alarm is impressive, you can set an alarm to wake you up with a gradual white noise that gets louder for 3 minutes before the real alarm starts. The real alarm will verbally say 'its now xx time, the weather is x, the weather for the day is x, your appointments are x, the top story of the day is x' then your alarm tone will play. Wow. I use my calendar religiously so to wake up and have my alarm actually tell me whats planned for the day is a savior. And its built in.

    I can go on lots more about touchwiz and features I like. But ill get to the stuff I dont like

    Battery: Its not as great as the iPhone 4, but not too bad either.
    Build quality: Yes it feels a bit cheap, it looks gorgeous from the front, but the back is horrendous. Its also very very light, which I personally dont like, but some do. Home button feels pretty crappy, I wish it was capacitive.
    Stock dialer/phonebook/text apps: Very very bad compared to iOS. It takes about 3 pushes to call someone, and the text app is also pretty crappy. Luckily you can change all of these with 3rd party apps.

    I sold my 32gb iphone 4 for $350, got the SG3 NIB for $400 (both on Craigslist), switched from paying monthly $110 on ATT to $30 on T-Mobile (!!!!) and all in all, I am very happy with my choice. I got tired of iOS, got tired of having the same phone as every hipster, female, and 8th grader. Was totally excited for the iPhone 5 until I saw iOS6.

    I feel like me switching from iOS to Android is the same thing that happened when I went from Blackberry to iOS. One was stuck in its ways and was not forward thinking enough, the other allowed me to see the future.

    I should end with I do love iOS and intend on buying an iPad for home. I have a few hundred $$ on iOS apps and have multiple Airplay setups at home. But now I love Android just as much.
  2. macrumors 603


    Feb 3, 2008
    Essex (UK)
    Great post but I must ask.....

    Why are you using GS whilst watching a video and driving? :eek: :p
  3. thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 4, 2010
    Only because I can. I'm sure the wow factor will wear off. But video helps when im in L.A. traffic or taking a road trip.
  4. macrumors regular


    Sep 11, 2011
    I cannot agree more with those two comments XD
    Seriously though, nice review :) It might not get appreciated much in an Apple-oriented forum, but it's good.
    I also have an S3 along with my iPhone, maybe I'll try touchwiz, it sounds pretty useful
  5. macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2009
    is there an itunes like app for the mac i can use to put stuff on my s3?
  6. Calidude, Aug 8, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2012

    macrumors 68000


    Jun 22, 2010
    T-Mobile has a 30 dollar plan?

    EDIT: Oh I see, prepaid one. Looks nice but the 100mins is pretty shabby. I have Straight Talk for $45 with only 2 gigs of data but unlimited talk and text.
  7. thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 4, 2010
    Yes, 100 min is pretty low. I have not been doing voip at home, but thats the plan. So hopefully using that helps a bunch.

    I will probably start paying either $40 or $50 a month for 200/300 minutes. Just need to get a feel of how the minutes go.
  8. macrumors 68000


    Jun 22, 2010
    Actually, I'm thinking of going on the 1 year prepaid plan on Straight Talk for $495 which figures out to $41.50 a month. I've been saving a ton since I finally bought my Nexus to replace my iPhone and cancelled my ATT service, which I was paying 80 bucks a month for and is still pretty much the same thing as what I'm paying currently 45 bucks a month for.

    Might wanna look into Straight Talk if you havent done so already.
  9. macrumors regular

    Apr 21, 2012
    I'm glad you're happy with your new phone. My work phone is an old Captivate that is going to be upgraded in the next month, and I very much considered giving the S3 a shot, but then they made the September announcement for the iPhone 5 and I can't say no.

    I don't know why people have to take phone (or any digital appliance) preference so personally. I'm invested in the Apple ecosystem, because I prefer its design language and its integration, but I certainly don't fault anyone for going with Android.
  10. Diiiiips, Aug 9, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2012

    macrumors regular

    Mar 2, 2011
    What is so jaw dropping about watching video and getting navigation at the same time? Tomtom does the same thing. It will even fade the music down so you can just hear it, speak, and then fade it back up.

    I have just Googled Tasker, however. That looks pretty awesome. I can believe there isn't something like that in Cydia.
  11. macrumors 65816

    Dec 4, 2009
    Hey, thanks for the review. Having switched over myself, I didn't even know about that alarm feature you mentioned LOL! THAT kind of thing (learning new things) is why I like reading these new opinions and assessments of new devices!
  12. thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 4, 2010
    Tomtom lets you do a split screen video and navigation at the same time? I didnt know that.

    Yes Tasker is pretty awesome, its something that you will never master because it can do almost anything. I have some awesome car dock settings (turn off screen lock and wifi, verbally read txts when start dock mode. lock screen, turn on vibrate, when removed) and you can set profiles and have them change automatically, like a work profile that puts the phone on silent, turns off wifi, turns off 4g, have sync only work for 30 seconds every 4 hours etc.

    Yes I found out about it from another forum as well. Its called briefing alarm. So you simply set alarm, then change type to briefing. Pretty awesome because it just pulls whatever the top stories are from yahoo, and I dont even have any yahoo apps installed.
  13. macrumors 601


    Jul 12, 2008
    Las Vegas, NV
    TomTom is also $50
  14. macrumors 6502a

    Jul 30, 2008
    there's an app called isyncr which sits on the phone and on the mac. Will sync your music and playlists from itunes to the music player on the phone.

  15. macrumors 68010

    Feb 28, 2011
    $30 periodically on sale. Plus you get to save the extra juice your cellular antenna is sucking and the data costs. Not to mention still working GPS after cellular service dies for whatever reason/no signal.

    I use Navigon on my GS3 and prefer it to google maps because i am not too fond of using my data plan to feed the maps.
  16. macrumors regular

    Mar 2, 2011
    Oh ok, it works as split screen. I didn't pay much attention to you saying "picture in picture". Fair enough that is pretty awesome too.

    I've been leaning towards getting an S3 anyway, unless the 5 is a big step up. Tasker may just push it over the edge.

    Hope the value of the S3 falls in the next month or so. Looking at just below £450 for a new one right now.
  17. macrumors 6502a


    Aug 12, 2011
    Philadelphia, PA
    One of my buddies went over to the S3, and he does nothing but moan and complain about how he needed to reset his S3 and Android would not save ALL of his settings & apps unless he "rooted" it, which he didn't want to do. In iPhone-land, this is simple as pie to backup & restore your phone, should you really ever need to, with no loss of any settings or apps.

    He complains that the stock Google apps should "be better".

    He complains about the Bluetooth quality of calls sucking and is even to the point of unusable with his Toyota car.

    He complains that his precious Galaxy S3 hangs on some apps and needs a reboot every so often.

    He complains that TouchWiz causes an error and needs to restart every so often.

    The grass is not always greener, and in the S3's case is DEFINITELY not greener. The 4S (and coming 5) are indeed the gold standard of communication devices.

    Apple has spoiled us for all other phones, at least Android ones.

    People should just appreciate & reward what we do have, and not reward other manufacturers for bad phones with Android being a cheap, imitation knock-off operating system that people need to tweak and fiddle with and reboot all the time!
  18. macrumors 604


    Mar 29, 2011
    Where are you located? Is the service reliable?

    I know Straight Talk uses ATT's towers, so as a previous ATT user, would you say the service has been the same, better, worse?
  19. macrumors 6502a

    Jul 30, 2008
    Yep. You're right and everyone else is wrong. Must sell my cheap knockoff S3 and get me something small, less powerful, more restricted. Must remember never to take any more calls on my bluetooth etc.


  20. macrumors 6502

    May 23, 2011
    Oh no! It's another "my friend, brother, sister, mother, father, uncle, cousin, dog, cat, hamster...etc" story.
  21. macrumors 6502

    Aug 27, 2010
    Sounds like my experience, save for the Bluetooth.
  22. macrumors 68000


    Aug 6, 2010
    North Yorkshire

    I must admit that my experience differs greatly from your friends, I have not had any of the problems that he has, sounds like a faulty phone IMHO. I was open minded when I had the S3 and my iPhone 4S. I sold the 4S after using the Galaxy S3 for a month. I had the 4S for a year, a 4 before that and a 3GS before that. I regard the Samsung GS3 as the best phone I have owned so far.

    I am hoping that the new iPhone will be even better than the S3 as I still have an upgrade pending, it will need to be really good for me to change though.
  23. macrumors 65816

    Dec 4, 2009
    My experience isn't the same either EXCEPT for Bluetooth. My family says that the interaction between iPhone4 and my Mazda3 was MUCH clearer.
  24. macrumors demi-god


    Oct 20, 2011
    Austin, TX
    I had the S3 for 29 days, and on the last day I could replace it, I did. The S3 is absolutely fantastic and I enjoyed most of the experience, including 4G LTE. However, the one thing I was concerned about turned out to be a lot bigger than I had thought it would be. The problem for me was really the integration across devices. Everything got more annoying for me. My mac, my Apple TV, and my iPad either wouldn't talk to my iPhone or else I would have to trick the device.

    What I can conclude is that android is, without a doubt, iOS's equal in every way, shape and form, and future android phones will continue to rival (and in many ways be better) than the iPhone. For the time being, I will take a lesser device in favor of cross product integration.
  25. macrumors 68000


    Aug 6, 2010
    North Yorkshire
    I would have just pressed on the up button but thought that the above post was excellent and deserved a mention, I really agree, although I have all Apple products, the integration with them isn't great with my S3, it is something that I can live with though. Must admit, it is frustrating not having the very useful apple TV app.

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