It’s the biggest handset launch of the year to date, but what will the Samsung Galaxy S3 do to put itself in pole position on the smartphone grid? An eyeball-searing hi-res screen? Three-week battery life? An octocore processor? An SLR-grade camera? All the Galaxy S3’s latest tricks will be revealed first here on Stuff.tv
This liveblog will be coming to you directly from Samsung’s Galaxy S3 launch in London. Bookmark this page and we’ll see you at the time below with all the stunning details…
Meanwhile check out the latest leaks in our Samsung Galaxy S3 rumour round-up
Oldest posts first – please scroll down for Samsung Galaxy S3 updates...
18:55 Well, we're here and minutes away from the start of Samsung's Unpacked event, where we're hoping to see the unveiling of Samsung's next Galaxy phone, the S3.
18:57 From our pole position (well, second row) seats, we've got a prime view of the stage. So far, all we're seeing is blue and white bubbles (a reference to the S3 coming out in blue and white, as per our earlier story?) projected onto a frankly ridiculously large screen... powered by no less than 12 projectors.
18:59 It is packed in here... 2000 people, give or take. Looks like folks really want to get in on Samsung's news. Questions whether Apple's spot as launch top dog is as safe as everyone thinks. Let's see what happens.
19:00 Okay. Something's happening. And when we say something, we mean the last folks hanging at the bar and munching the (delicious) canapés are getting shepherded in.
19:04 We're off. With a vid.
19:04 Cityscapes... Bigger screen and better battery life hinted.
19:05 "Better performance than most laptops"?
19:05 "Intuitive voice recognition" – all this still from the video.
19:06 Apparently dcotors, cyclists and guitarists like to use Galaxy S2. And rowers. Florists? These videos are always a bit weird.
19:07 "People don't want complexity from their technology."
19:07 "It sees what you see, it listens to what you say, it loves what you love."
19:08 Here comes Suzi Perry, from The Gadget Show. Nice suit, Suze.
19:09 London Metropolitan Orchestra were playing. We thought it was canned. Oops.
19:10 She's telling us the date. Well, it's a start.
19:10 It's got to be said, she looks pretty nervous. As would we if we had to stand in front of 2000 people. She's also pushing the more useful/less complicated angle.
19:11 Susie's promising us something extraordinary.
19:11 In comes JK Shin, Sammy's president.
19:11 He's not very big. But he's very excited to announce the Galaxy S3.
19:12 He's talking about the rumours. Some right, some wrong, he says. No kidding.
19:13 "The Samsung Galaxy S3 is the best phone in the world."
19:13 4.8in HD Super AMOLED.
19:14 Now he's bigging up those new cam skills - burst shot, best photo and Buddy Photo Share. We still reckon a 12MP sensor wouldn't blown the roof off this place. Even so, 8MP ain't bad.
19:14 Apparently it's inspried by wind, water, something and pebbles. O-kay...
19:15 "Effortlessly smart and intuitively simple. The phone sees you, listens to you and understands what you want."
19:15 It can recognise your voice and play your favourite song. It'll even jack up the volume.
19:15 Er, the robots are coming?
19:16 Launching in 145 countries with nearly 300 operators. Blimey. It's coming at the end of May.
19:16 4G version for the US.
19:16 Oooo... he's reached into his pocket. And there it is... the Samsung Galaxy S3.
19:17 Looks amazing... and we're - what? - 30 ft away.
19:17 More video time... with eyeballs! And dandelion seed. Samsung really likes its abstract vids.
19:18 They're calling it the Samsung Galaxy S III. Think we'll stick with S3. We hated Latin.
19:19 Here's Loesje De Vriese (marketing) and Jean-Daniel Ayme (European VP, ops).
19:20 It's product demo time. The white version looks like a pebble. Come to think of it, so does the black. Now we get that pebble thing.
19:20 "Inspired by nature, designed for humans."
19:21 Got to say, we're itching to see these new features. But also wondering if they'll be used. Can't remember the last time Siri was actually useful for us. Can you?
19:22 S Voice demo running on the video. Isn't Sammy brave enough to go with a live demo? We'd like to see it for real, to be honest. Pretty sure J-D and Loesje are coming to that.
19:23 "It'll predict our intentions." Should we be worried? Yes, we probably should.
19:23 They're running through the eye-recognition that keeps the screen active if you''re looking at it.
19:24 Won't sleep when you're looking at it. Wonder if it works for dogs?
19:25 S Voice looks very much like Siri. We're not sure what's powering it, but it claims natural language recognition, which suggests Nuance is behind it. You can personalise your commands.
19:25 Live demo time. Looks a lot - A LOT - like Siri. He's asking about the weather here in London. S Voice confirms that, yes, it's raining.
19:26 As if we need a phone to tell us that.
19:26 Tell it you want to take a picture and it starts the camera up. Neat.
19:27 Languages supported: British, American English, Italian, German, French, Spanish and American Spanish and Korean.
19:27 Loesje's texting a mate.
19:28 But she's got bored of such a long message, so she lifts it to her her ear and – bang – it's dialling. She didn't even touch the phone. Very smart stuff.
19:28 This is like watching the future arrive. And that's just as scary as it sounds. Can't believe this is going to be on the shelves before the end of this month. Wow.
19:30 Galaxy S3 has Social Tag, too – it stalks your phone book and automatically tags your pictures. That really is scary. Interested to see how well that works in the flesh. Not like that.
19:31 Looks like the active wallpaper means you can create rings of water in a pond. Maybe it was just a special effect in that last video clip, but we like a nice gimmick.
19:32 Now we're on to S Beam. It's NFC sharing for Galaxy S3 owners. "The fastest and easiest way to share with your friends."
19:33 The AllShare Cast Dongle lets you punt pics and videos to a big screen. Or a PC.
19:34 Buddy Photo Share is next (all these features add up pretty quickly, don't they?). So, it recognises your mates from your contacts and sends them your pictures. We can see that going wrong...
19:34 Lucky there's a confirm button, eh?
19:35 AllShare Play gives remote access from anywhere. Does this mean our IT department gets to work from the pub now? They'll be chuffed...
19:36 They've licensed all the SDKs and APIs for this stuff freely to devs - and we're seeing a lot of potential for new apps. It could be like the new Kinect for sheer hacking fun.
19:36 Licensed hacking, natch.
19:37 Now we're into hardware specs. Sammy's bigging up the quad-core innards, in-screen video and screen, by the looks of this new video. Via the medium of wind turbines and baseball mitts, if you were wondering.
19:38 Belgian marketing head is out now.
19:38 8.6mm thick, weighs 133g.
19:39 Hyperglaze is the name of new surface on the back.
19:39 Oh, they are "marble" white and "pebble" blue. Not, as you might think at first glance, black.
19:40 Maybe they need to recalibrate those 12 projectors. More likely we need to get our eyes tested.
19:41 Wow – Sammys' giving the WWF US$100 for everyone here tonight. Stuff accounts for US$600 of that.
19:41 Right, back to the video stuff.
19:42 Videos while you're browsing. That's properly clever. You need a big screen for that. 4.8in should do.
19:43 Camera now. Zero shugger lag, 20 shot bursts, 3.3 shots per second.
19:44 And the best photo feature will then choose the best one for you. Live demo is jaw-dropping. We take back any reservations we had about keeping the 8MP sensor.
19:44 And the front camera now shoots 720p.
19:45 The screen is a Super HD AMOLED.
19:45 Wtih a 0.01ms response time.
19:46 Slim bezel means althought the screen is 22 per cent bigger, the actual footprint of the S3 is barely larger than the S II.
19:46 And there's a wireless charger.
19:47 "We're the first to make it work with a mobile phone." Er, no, that was Palm, we think you'll find.
19:49 Accessories - there's a flip cover, two docking stations (desk and car), the wireless charger is extra, as is the dongle.
19:51 Now we're chewing through a load of apps. they're bigging up enterprise stuff. That's business to you and us. We're off for a doze until something more interesting happens.
19:52 Samsung's using the London Olympics as a platform to promote NFC. Good idea, and another steal on Apple.
19:53 We've just been fed a screen full of specs. Not quite the lushly produced videos we've been watching all night.
19:54 The realease date is May 29. That's for Europe and 10 cities around the world.
19:55 No price yet. We don't care - we're already waving money at the stage.
19:55 The orchestra's off again.
19:56 Not sure who's more crowded, us or them.
19:57 Perry's back out. Hello Suzi, we guess this is the wrap up?
19:57 Yeah, she's thanking the London Met orchestra and the guys from Samsung.
19:58 One more thing!
19:58 Well, she said surprise, but even so...
19:58 dum, dum, dum, dum, dum.
19:59 WTF? The projector is lifting. There's a bunch of Samsung phone shops the other side. Pop-up shops.... ah, well. That's it – we're off to get hands-on.
New York 1400