Samsung S3 ’droid—first impressions

My Samsung Galaxy SIII arrived yesterday. Last night I took the SIM from my iPhone 4 and popped it into the S3 and fired ‘er up.

The good

  • Love the large screen!
  • It is sooo light! The iPhone feels heavy by comparison.
  • Widgets! I have only just discovered these, and I’ve never been a fan on desktops but I think I like them on the phone! Especially for social media snacking 🙂
  • Almost all my iPhone apps exist on google play store and most are free (on both stores)
  • A lot of my content carried over! Cloud syncing for the win! Google apps synced (Gmail, Reader, Calendar), books (Kobo, Kindle and Google) all synced, comics (Comixology) synced
  • Comics looks awesome on the larger screen
  • Integrated stores! Apps that opted-out of Apple’s fees and removed their stores are no longer hamstrung. Kobo and Kindle in particular!
  • Nice account integration: google, twitter, facebook, dropbox
  • Dropbox is a nice addition—with 50GB more space (for 2 years) for S3 owners

There’s a lot to like!

The bad

  • iPhone headset controls sorta don’t work—play/pause works, but volume control doesn’t
  • No hardware button for silent mode—I miss it
  • Different keyboard. Augh, re-learning how to type with thumbs. Actually, the predictive text is quite good (but a mental shift). Why no auto full-stop when I double space though?
  • Clueless about android. How do I learn it?
  • Can’t spend iTunes credit—are there gift cards for google play? Do they frequently go on special? Because I never pay full price on iTunes with a 20% off gift card! 🙂

After 4 years with iOS, it’s the little things I miss. But this was a good reason for switching to ’droid, to learn something different. After one day I just feel awkward but it’s not a fair comparison.

The ugly

  • In-ear headphones—not for me thanks!
  • Unregonised device on OS X Mountain Lion. C’mon—Apple, Google, Samsung—play nice!
  • There’s no music on my phone—because I can’t get the phone to show up as a drive on OSX (see above). I dislike this!
  • iBooks… gone! I only had one iBook though.
  • Can’t watch video bought on iTunes. Game of Thrones would look so good too! MacBook it is 🙂

I really need to sort out the music and headset asap.

Other than that, keeping content in the cloud is important. The real cloud—the web—not apple’s locked in DRM video and iBooks. I really wanted to make the switch before I invested in too much content and regretted it.

The verdict?

Play more!

I haven’t ported all my apps over yet. And haven’t explored all the new apps either. More to come…

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Published by

Ben Boyle

Web developer, Dad, gamer, mentor, animator, universal design advocate, fan of gadgets and sunshine!

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