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12:17 PM

Samsung Galaxy S III Mini Details Leak

New version of Samsung's flagship smartphone will have a smaller screen, smaller footprint, and fewer high-end specs, too.

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Looking to wring every possible cent of value from its "Galaxy" branded smartphones and tablets, Samsung is prepared to bring yet another to market. The Galaxy S III Mini, confirmed by Samsung, is a smaller version of the best-selling GS3. This could be a case where less is actually less, however.

The original GS3 was the first from Samsung to use a new, nature-inspired design language. It is smooth, where its predecessors where blocky; it has clean lines and a simple look, where earlier generations were more contrived in their design. The GS3 has a 4.8-inch display. It's a pretty big phone.

Whether it's Samsung's more appealing design or the amazing capabilities of the device itself, the GS3 is a bona fide hit. Samsung has sold more than 20 million of them since it went on sale in May.

Clearly Samsung is confident in this design language and its appeal, because in August it announced the Galaxy Note II. The Note II, a successor to Samsung's 2011 phablet, looks nearly identical to the GS3. It's just bigger in every dimension and boasts a massive 5.3-inch display. It has the same clean look, colors, and feel. The Note II hits U.S. carriers late this month or early next month.

Both the GS3 and Note II are sizable devices. The GS3 itself is pushing into the phablet category, where the Note II defines it. The dimensions of these two phones are more than some care to carry around day in and day out, however. Samsung knows this, and that's why it's introducing the Galaxy S III Mini.

[ "Mini" is the new black. See Apple Orders 10 Million iPad Mini Displays. ]

The Mini will have the same look, materials, and feel of the GS3 and Note II, only it will have a 4.0-inch display and dramatically smaller footprint.

But it won't have the same power.

According to specifications of the device, published by, the screen will drop in resolution from 1280 x 720 down to a pedestrian 800 x 480. The camera will drop from 8 megapixels to 5 megapixels. The processor will drop from dual-core 1.5 GHz to dual-core 1 GHz. RAM will drop from 2 GB to 1 GB. The battery, too, will be smaller than that of the GS3.

I don't know about you, but I'd rather stick with the original.

Of the device, Samsung mobile president JK Shin said, "We'll be launching a 4-inch Galaxy S III on the 11th in Germany. There's a lot of demand for a 4-inch screen device in Europe. Some call it an entry-level device, but we call it 'Mini.'"

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User Rank: Ninja
10/16/2012 | 6:41:46 PM
re: Samsung Galaxy S III Mini Details Leak
Maybe they've finally realized the screen is a bit too big for a phone. (I certainly think it is.) But, since they couldn't admit that, they had to decrease a few other features as well so this could be a lower end model (so as not to compete with the SIII).

And, I think it does make sense to have an iPad mini. It's a lower cost model for some who will mainly browse or use it as a e-reader. It's more kid-friendly (a huge market there). It will more likely fit in women's purses (huge market there). When Job's initially said a 7" tablet is too small, he was mostly talking about optimal usability. He was right, on the whole, but many will trade some of the optimum UI nature for the smaller size and weight, and Apple has realized this.
User Rank: Apprentice
10/15/2012 | 7:50:48 AM
re: Samsung Galaxy S III Mini Details Leak
This is like de je vue with the ipad mini... It doesn't make sense to make a smaller Galaxy SIII, Samsung will be targeting the exact same market that it already does with the regular SIII. I have the SIII along with the Galaxy 10in tablet, I find I do more on my phone then with tablet. It has many of the same features capabilities, much like the SIII mini will have a s the regular SIII. Someone correct me but wasn't the larger screen one of the reasons that the SIII was designed to begin with.

Paul Sprague
InformationWeek Contributor
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