Samsung Galaxy S III: 8 Key Features and Facts

Less than a year ago, in September 2011, Samsung launched its Galaxy S II smartphone. Then a few months later in January, it released the popular Galaxy Nexus handheld, followed by the half-phone, half-tablet Note device. In other words, Samsung has been busy.

Now the phone is launched in the United States on multiple carriers. Here are eight notable things about Samsung's Galaxy S III that set it apart from comparable handsets.

Samsung Galaxy S III is All About Sharing

During the Galaxy S III launch event, Samsung made it very clear that the new device is meant to ease and enhance the smartphone-based sharing process. Whether it is images, video, presentations or documents, the Galaxy S III is designed to remove the modern day "hiccups" associated with quickly and easily sharing digital files.

Specifically, Galaxy S III users can employ the device's S Beam and Android Beam technologies to tap two Galaxy S III devices together and instantly share photos, videos, documents and more using Wi-Fi Direct and Near Field Communications (NFC) technologies. You don't need a cellular or Wi-Fi network.

The feature only works with S Beam/Android Beam-compatible phones, though, so you can't just tap your device against any phone to share media. S Beam is certainly a valuable feature if you have friends or family with compatible devices. And it could help motivate people who want to quickly share content with their friends who already have Galaxy S III devices to buy the handheld.

The "Share Shot" feature lets you quickly create lists of people to whom you want to send a set of images; so you could, for example, take pictures during a camping trip and then easily distribute the entire set to everyone who camped out. The "Buddy Photo Share" feature makes it simple to tag people in photos. The feature recognizes faces, and then lets you add a tag that you can type manually or pull in from your device contacts and then share the image.

The Galaxy S III's "All Share Play" feature makes it easy to share and access files on other devices, such as your tablet or PC. And "All Share Group Cast" let you share files and collaborate with others on the same Wi-Fi networks.

Many mobile platforms offer similar sharing functionalities, but Samsung is taking a unique approach with the Galaxy S III.

Samsung Galaxy S III Runs Android 4.0, Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS)

Like its older sibling the Galaxy Nexus, the Galaxy S III runs Google's latest mobile OS software, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS). Many in-market Android devices are currently being upgraded to ICS, or they will be soon, but the Galaxy S III is one of the few that is already there. (Read more about Android 4.0 and the enterprise in "Android Ice Cream Sandwich: Best New Features for Business." And find out how to get ICS on your Android phone, even if your wireless carrier hasn't release a software update yet.)

[Read: Samsung Galaxy S III, the Android Phone to Beat, Say Reviewers]

Notable Galaxy S III Features and Specs

The Samsung Galaxy S III is expected to become available in the coming weeks on five U.S. wireless carriers, including AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, U.S. Cellular and Verizon Wireless.

The AT&T, Sprint, U.S. Cellular and Verizon devices all support LTE; the T-Mobile version supports HSPA+/HSPA/EDGE networks. Official pricing details are not yet available.

The device is quite large at 5.38 inches x 2.78 inches, but its 0.34-inch thinness helps make up for the big size. It also weighs only 4.7 ounces. The handheld has a 1280 x 720, 4.8-inch Super HD AMOLED display.

The Galaxy S III also has a 1.5GHz, dual-core Qualcomm processor. And it packs 16GB of built-in storage with support for microSD cards up to 64GB.

You can find more official details on the Galaxy S III on Samsung's website.

Next: Digital Camera, the Samsung Marketing Push, and Galaxy S III "TecTiles"

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