Samsung introduces the Galaxy S III mini, a 4-inch dual-core device that won’t be coming to Canada

Daniel Bader

October 11, 2012 1:47pm

Samsung unveiled the heavily-leaked Galaxy S III mini today, in a move that is sure to ruffle some feathers among small phone loyalists. Touted as a mid-range device, the mini has a 4-inch Super AMOLED display with a WVGA (800×480) resolution. While there are likely improvements made to the screen technology since 2011’s Galaxy S II, the mini is no clear upgrade in the display department. The original Galaxy S i9000 utilized a similar-sounding Super AMOLED display at 800×480 but incorporated a PenTile matrix, while its 4.3-inch sequel did not. It will be interesting to see whether Samsung was able to overcome the PenTile stigma with this device.

Other specs include a 1Ghz dual-core processor, likely a variant of last year’s Exynos 4410 chip. Like the Galaxy S II family, the mini comes with 1GB of RAM as well as 8 or 16GB of internal storage. On the back is a 5MP camera capable of shooting 720p video. Inside is a 1500mAh removable battery, a NFC chip, WiFi b/g/n, A-GPS, Bluetooth 4.0 and a FM radio.

The device comes with Android 4.1.1 out of the box, as well as Samsung’s new TouchWIZ suite. That includes S Voice, S Beam, Smart Stay, Direct Call and Smart Alerts, all meant to improve the quality of your phone interaction. As we told you in our Galaxy S III review, some of these features work better than others, though we can appreciate Samsung’s desire for consistency through its product line.

Speaking of consistency, despite the phone’s trifling dimensions and weight — 121.55 x 63 x 9.85 mm, 111.5g — it resembles to the note a diminutive Galaxy S III. For a size comparison, the iPhone 5 measures 123.8 x 58.6 x 7.6 mm, making it slightly taller, but thinner and narrower, than the GS3 mini.

Let me take a minute to appeal to the narrow segment of the market that yearns for the glorious days of the 4-inch flagship. The Galaxy S III mini is being touted as a mid-range device, and judging from its specs, this could have easily slotted into Samsung’s mid-range lineup from last year. In fact, Samsung’s Galaxy R, which was released last August and never made it to Canada, shares many of the same numbers as this device, including a dual-core chip, 1GB RAM, 5MP camera and a WVGA screen.

What Samsung appears to be doing differentiating the quality of its devices based on size. The 4-inch iPhone 5 is Apple’s flagship device; to Samsung, that screen size is relegated to the mid-range. While we can’t imagine next year’s Galaxy S IV to exceed 4.8-inches, there’s no question that Android OEMs have adopted the “bigger is better” mantra. I firmly believe that a four-inch device is the sweet spot; this was true of the Galaxy S and Nexus S, and it’s true of the iPhone 5. With a larger screen size, it becomes more difficult to operate with one hand, and reaching one’s thumb from one corner to the other without readjusting the device in the hand is nearly impossible.

This is to say that despite the Galaxy S III mini being a nice-looking and decently-spec’d device, I wish it had more. I wish it pushed some boundaries, or at least didn’t feel rehashed. Samsung is clearly employing a strategy that is working unbelievably well. It sold more than 50 million smartphones in Q3, more than any other company in history. And maybe one day there will be a push-back and users will demand their pockets back. Until then, we have devices like this taking up space in the middle of the market, dashing our hopes of another flagship device under 4.8-inches.

Samsung Canada told us that “it doesn’t look like this device will be making it’s way to Canada,” but that may change down the road.

Via: Samsung Press

  • Andy

    the android bias on this website is amazing.

    /waits for android fanboys to rape the thread praising samsung for being amazing when in reality they just flood the market with every kind of garbage

    • Ron Mexico

      Maybe move over to iMore.com or wp7central.com if you don’t like the bias here, douche.

    • Zeeb

      The sheer number of Android devices that are released forces the mobile syrup site to post stories on them. What would you expect them to do, run 15 stories a day on the iPhone which won’t see a new release until next October?

    • Terran juice

      @Andy your very right

    • Eric

      Talk about Hive mind.

    • Bri

      You’re right about many people being biased in this website.
      But Android devices are not garbage lol.
      These people hate Apple products, they thumbs down for people liking apple products…
      I really think all of them have different advantages and disadvantages but people don’t want to agree with that lol.

    • NFCforDummies

      This is a BRILLIANT MOVE from Samsung!
      its a smaller and cheaper version of the S3 aimed at EMERGING markets where the $600 of the S3 make it too expensive.

      This way you get the looks and the feel of the S3 at a lower price point. This phone will sell by the millions if they place it around $300.

      For Canada this is not wroth it, since the S2 retails for $300 at Koodo Virgin.

    • NFCforDummies

      All I want is the S2 HD LTE in 4.3″ or 4.5″ inches and I will buy it the next day!

      The Moto-RAZR its too expensive…waiting for the final specs and price of the new Nexus. Otherwise the current nexus at $350 is a great option (camera not so good and price shoul drop any day now)

    • Alex

      @Andy I couldn’t have said it any better. Trolls like RonMexico calling names makes your point!!!

  • Jesse

    It’s a shame this isn’t coming to Canada. I’d take this over the regular SIII anyday.

  • Nick

    Why the s**t screen. Some people would like top specs in a smaller device. It would immediately compete and best the iphone5 with a better display and maybe a better battery and cam.

  • Tomatoes

    Xperia V is pretty high end. Doesn’t lack anything actually, so the WP8 and Isheep can’t say the One S screen sucks and the Xperia S had a crappy processor(that is actually on par with the A4 in the iphone 4) anymore.

    No excuses, the Xperia V is flat out a high end smaller Android phone.

    • barry

      The Xperia V’s not really a smaller phone. It’s bigger than the Galaxy S2.

      Nice looking phone but its not a small phone.

  • Pat

    if this was coming to Canada, i was just hoping they would also come to carriers that sell low-end phones like Fido

  • JV

    If you dont Like the the people who read this Thread or this website, then move on to an apple friendly forum. Its not a big surprise that a great deal of folks who are into other choices outside of Apple read Mobilesyrup if you dont like it LEAVE. Yes Samsung likes to make and Market many types of phones. Its a different market stagey from Apples One a year. I Personally enjoy it a lot better because i enjoy choices, and enjoy seeing companies like Samsung, lg, Motorola, Microsoft, Nokia, and Even RIM come up with there own types of Phones. If it were not for those companies “flood[ing] the market with every kind of Garbage” as you put it you would not have seen the innovation in Cell phone we have seen in the last 3 years. All that “innovation” (so called) that apple has put on the phone, has first been seen on other phones that have been placed in the market long before you got it on your iphone 5. so you have them to thank for it. Grow up and look at the big picture.

    Once again, if you dont like it here LEAVE. If you dont like All these phones being Flooded in the Market then don’t buy them, and feel free to buy a iphone 3G. Good by and be Well!!

  • TKG26

    Bang on zeeb…

  • mjolnir

    This being a news article, I would appreciate less of your personal opinions and report the device as it is; save your opinions on review articles, thanks.

    • jellmoo

      To be fair, MobileSyrup is hardly a hard news site, it is a tech blog run by enthusiasts. There are plenty of sites that will run nothing but the base facts. I actually enjoy this site because they do add in their two cents and add commentary.

  • Wilbour

    But would it look as impresive in my pocket as my trusty Motorola Flip Phone? Oh well, at least we have Red Rose Tea

  • Frie

    AMAZING INNOVATION!

  • skinnypig

    If it’s not coming to Canada, why is it reported here?

    But on the other hand, I wholeheartedly agree with your sentiments about phone sizes. I really want to see a flagship in the 4 – 4.3″ range and this ain’t it.

  • mjolnir

    @jellmoo Perhaps I am nitpicking, and I actually would be inclined to agree with you if it weren’t for the fact that it advertises itself as a news site as opposed to a blog site. I understand however that different people have different expectations. My 2c

  • crunch204

    “Samsung introduces the Galaxy S III mini, a 4-inch dual-core device that won’t be coming to Canada”

    MobileSyrup: News and Reviews for CANADIANS

    ???

  • justfox87

    as far as i am concerned this does nothing bu hurt the galaxy s brand.

  • ihitmyheadalot

    I have used both android and apple products. i find it funny that anytime an android post is made the android folks find no fault in it and go on a harsh rampaging defense anytime anyone in favor of apple says something and provokes and instant repsonse of hate… But the second theres an apple post without anyone from the apple campe even saying a word the android folks are on with the hate and generally the apple camp just sits back for the most part and leaves well enough alone. I’m not taking up a side with the fandroids or the isheep but i think posters like JV need to really look in mirror before hitting the submit button.. maybe consider a little what they are posting. At the end of the day i come to mobile syrup to get phone news about the industry and its products overall and as funny as the bickering can sometimes… its not like its changing anyones mind and mostly its just making you look like a douche.

  • hmmmm

    lol….since the leaks of the phone, ppl were expecting to actually buy it or see it in stores….so MS has to tell you that you won’t be able to get it here to not waste everybody’s time…simple enough?

  • Lee

    @iSheeps: I don’t understand why would you wanna pay more for less????

  • coop3422

    If only this had high end specs like 720p screen, 2gb of RAM and quad core, hell even dual core 1.5. This is the size of phone I want, but this isn’t enough spec wise for me to let got of my s2 i9100