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Samsung Galaxy SIII: The Key New ‘S’ Features

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So Samsung’s Galaxy SIII is now official and all we have to do is wait for the May 29th launch. There are plenty of wordy tech features – NFC and a quad-core processor for starters – but what are the key features of Samsung’s new flagship?

S Voice

Much to the dismay of iPhone 4S users, Samsung announced impressive new voice assistant software that will come with the Galaxy SIII, called S Voice. It can do plenty more than Siri too, which is bound to have 4S owners tearing their hair out.

S Voice mixes natural voice processing with the standard voice control features of Android. You can shout “wake up!” at your phone and it’ll light up and come out of standby mode, say “Galaxy, photo” to open the camera app and take a photo, as well as turning your music up or down, answering and making calls and setting alarms. You can even tell your Galaxy to snooze that alarm for a few more minutes. We’re not sure of the full extent to which S Voice will work with all the apps on the phone just yet, but we’ll find out soon enough.

S Beam

Samsung has essentially taken the Android Beam feature from Ice Cream Sandwich, as seen on the Galaxy Nexus, and tweaked it to make it better. S Beam uses both the NFC chip inside the phone and Wi-Fi Direct to allow you to touch your Galaxy SIII with another one, or another NFC-equipped smartphone, and share files.

A simple touch of two phones can share a webpage, YouTube video, photo, song, documents, contacts and more.

Smart Alert

We know that smartphones can give us a bit of OCD when it comes to continually checking for messages, emails, tweets and the like. With a BlackBerry it’s easy to quickly look thanks to the flashing red light, and with the Galaxy SIII it’s as quick as picking up your phone. If you’ve missed something, the phone will vibrate when you pick it up to let you know. If there’s nothing waiting for you on your phone then there’s no vibrate and no need to unlock your phone and have a look. Simple!

Smart Stay

This might just be our favourite feature. If you’ve ever sat and read a long article or piece of text on your smartphone, you might have noticed that the backlight dims after a while, so you have to touch it to bring it back on. Smart Stay uses the 1.9-megapixel front camera to see when you’re looking at the screen, and while you’re having a read of the screen that backlight won’t ever dim. It’s just a small thing but we’re sure many of you will thank Samsung for thinking of it.

Social Tag

The camera app has seen a lot of work from Samsung and it contains some brilliant features. Social Tag will recognise people in your photo if they’re stored in your contacts list, and if it does it’ll add the contact details for that person on the screen. This allows you to simply tap their mobile number, Facebook or Twitter and share the photo with them as soon as you’ve taken it.


So there we have it, the key software features to match the Galaxy SIII’s impressive hardware. We’re big fans of Smart Stay and Social Tag and can’t wait to give S Voice a thorough testing. Which features appeal most to you?

Let us know your thoughts on our comments below or via our @Gadget_Helpline Twitter page or Official Facebook group.