Lost in the slew of new products that Samsung (005930) dumped onto the tech market Wednesday was the news that Samsung’s flagship smartphone may finally be getting its long-promised upgrade to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. As Engadget writes, Samsung announced during its IFA keynote address that the Galaxy S III and the new Galaxy Note 10.1 would both be upgraded to Jelly Bean “very soon.” While the company didn’t hand out any firm dates on when the upgrade would occur, it’s doubtful that Samsung would make such a pledge if the devices weren’t slated for an upgrade until late in the year as had been previously rumored. More →
T-Mobile subscribers who have been itching to get their Samsung (005930) Galaxy S III upgraded to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean can now do so using a leaked over-the-air update file posted on the XDA-Developers forum. Android Police says that the file is an official T-Mobile OTA file that the carrier planned to use for the Galaxy S III soon, though the blog adds that this particular build still has some bugs related to Wi-Fi calling, the stock Web browser and the video player, so it likely isn’t the final version. Users who want to install the pre-release upgrade will need to root their devices first, Android Police says. More →
Samsung (005930) loves to talk about its latest flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S III. The South Korean manufacturer previously revealed how the device was developed with Apple-like secrecy, and now it’s gushing about the handset’s design — and you know what, it should be. Samsung has clearly done something right because the Galaxy S III is not only the company’s most successful smartphone, it is also one of the most successful devices of all time. The handset has already sold more than 10 million units and it is estimated that Samsung could sell an additional 15 million in the third quarter. More →
From the looks of it, Samsung’s (005930) flagship Galaxy S III smartphone may be among the first non-Nexus Android devices to be updated to Jelly Bean. According to a YouTube video from AndroidMX, the South Korean manufacturer’s Jelly Bean update is rather far along and could be arriving sooner than we once thought. The video walk-through reveals that Samsung’s update will have almost no visual changes thanks to the TouchWiz user interface, but it will include enhanced notifications and Google Now. The company previously promised that a Jelly Bean update would be available by the end of August, although it did not indicate which markets would receive the update first. The video showing Jelly Bean running on A Galaxy S III can be seen below. More →
While the Galaxy S III is helping Samsung (005930) grow its presence on the mobile web, the company is still well behind Apple (AAPL) when it comes to usage. Mobile ad firm Chitika has released new numbers showing that the Galaxy S III’s share of overall Samsung ad impressions in North America has risen significantly since its initial release, jumping from less than 3% on June 18th to over 11% on August 6th. More →
The days of smartphone users having to pay for buckets of voice minutes each month may be approaching an end. The South Korea IT Times reports that South Korea Telecom will soon start upgrading its customers’ Samsung (005930) Galaxy S III smartphones so they can make voice calls over the carrier’s LTE network. This is significant because it means that voice calls on the SKT customers’ smartphones will become just another data application rather than a separate service requiring its own monthly plan. In the United States, major carriers Verizon (VZ), AT&T (T) and Sprint (S) all plan to deploy their own Voice over LTE services sometime in 2013. Of course, considering the direction data plans have been heading recently, we should all expect carriers to compensate for any potential lost voice plan revenue by raising prices elsewhere.
UPDATE: MetroPCS announced a VoLTE service of its own on Tuesday. More →
Samsung (005930) wants consumers to buy its Galaxy S III so badly that it’s willing to pay them for their old smartphones. Any new customers buying the Samsung Galaxy S III, the Galaxy S II or the Galaxy Note can get up to $300 back in cash if they sell Samsung their old smartphones. Of course, most smartphones won’t net customers anywhere near $300 — Samsung is only willing to pay that amount for the 64GB iPhone 4S. As for other devices, trading in the HTC (2498) One X will get customers $175 back, the Galaxy S II will yield $145 and trading in the 8GB iPhone 4 will let buyers recoup $115. A full list of buyback prices can be found on Samsung’s Facebook page. More →
Samsung (005930) on Tuesday announced the immediate availability of Music Hub, the company’s new streaming music service for the United States market that wraps iTunes, Spotify and Pandora into one great package. Initially available on the wildly popular Galaxy S III, Samsung’s mSpot-powered Music Hub brings a massive catalog of more than 19 million songs to users’ Samsung smartphones and to desktop Web browsers thanks to an HTML5-based companion site. Like iTunes, Music Hub allows users to purchase tracks and download them or store them in the cloud for streaming; like Spotify, Music Hub can stream an unlimited amount of on-demand music to smartphones or computers; and like Pandora, Samsung’s new service offers custom radio stations that provide endless streaming and help users discover new music. More →
You won’t find Google Wallet, officially, on any of the smartphones offered by Verizon Wireless (VZ), not even the Galaxy Nexus. In fact, you won’t find Google Wallet on any smartphone offered by T-Mobile (DTE) or AT&T (T) either — the only carrier that supports Google’s (GOOG) mobile payment platform is Sprint (S). Other wireless service providers have backed a mobile payment competitor known as ISIS, and have blocked Google Wallet from devices that run on their networks. Despite this speed bump, hackers have found a way to enable the service on select handsets such as the Galaxy Nexus and Samsung’s (005930) latest flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S III. The device will of course have to be rooted, and after a slight tweak to the build.prop and the installation of a zip file, users will be able to make purchases using Google Wallet. A video demonstration follows below. More →
A recent ChangeWave survey caused a bit of a stir earlier this week. On the same day Samsung (005930) executive Shin Jong-kyun confirmed that the company met its goal and sold more than 10 million Galaxy S III smartphones since the handset’s launch, ChangeWave issued the results of a survey that found “iPhone 5″ demand to be almost 3.5 times greater than demand for the Galaxy S III. The record demand for Apple’s (AAPL) sixth iPhone before the device is even announced left some perplexed, but the flurry of rumors seemingly paints a tantalizing picture that Apple fans can’t resist. We want to know what you think — are you planning to buy Samsung’s Galaxy S III or Apple’s next iPhone this year? Vote in our poll above and let us know which flagship smartphone you plan to pick up.
Samsung’s (005930) Galaxy S III is a hot ticket. In the increasingly crowded smartphone market, Samsung has reportedly managed to sell more than 10 million Galaxy S III smartphones in under two months, according to a recent report from Yonhap News Agency that cited Samsung executive Shin Jong-kyun. A new survey suggests that Samsung’s impressive feat may soon be overshadowed, however, as demand for Apple’s (AAPL) next-generation iPhone reaches impressive heights. More →
Samsung’s lead over Apple in the smartphone market continues to increase, as does its lead over Nokia in the global cellphone market, according a Reuters poll. While the South Korean manufacturer has been neck-and-neck with the iPhone-maker for several quarters, the launch of the Galaxy S III may have helped Samsung gain a more commanding lead. The company is believed to have sold 50 million smartphones this past quarter, compared to an estimated 30.5 million iPhones. “Samsung is expected to be the smartphone hero in the second quarter,” said IDC analyst Francisco Jeronimo. “We are also expecting to see the biggest smartphone volumes ever shipped from one single vendor in one quarter, driven by strong demand of the Galaxy portfolio, particularly the Galaxy S II and S III.” Samsung is also estimated to have sold 15.7 million more mobile phones than Nokia in the second quarter of this year, an increase from its 3.4 million unit lead in the first quarter of 2012. More →
Following criticism regarding Samsung and Verizon Wireless’s policy for the bootloaders of its devices, Samsung announced that it will offer an unsubsidized Galaxy S III smartphone compatible with Verizon’s network that includes an unlockable bootloader. The handset will be offered directly through the South Korean company’s website and will feature the same specs as the locked Galaxy S III — a Snapdragon S4 processor clocked at 1.5GHz, 2GB of RAM and 4G LTE connectivity. The Galaxy S III Developer Edition will be available in the coming months for $599. Additional information follows below. More →