Samsung introduces compact Galaxy smartphone

Samsung Electronics on Friday unveiled a compact version of its flagship Galaxy S III smartphone, with a touch screen sized to match that of arch-rival Apple's new iPhone 5.

The Galaxy S III Mini has a four inch high-definition touch screen, compared to the 4.8 inch version on it's larger Samsung sibling, but the size reduction is offered at a technical price.

The display has a lower resolution of 800x480 pixels compared to 1,280x720 pixels, the camera is five rather than eight megapixels and the S III's dual-core 1.5GHz processor has been downgraded to 1GHz.

"It can be an optimal choice for consumers who are looking for more practical smartphones," Samsung said in statement.

The company gave no details on pricing or an eventual sales date.

The Mini's screen is the same size as the iPhone 5 launched last month by Apple, but its reduced feature set makes it more of a corner man in the heavyweight clash between the iPhone 5 and the S III.

Samsung and Apple are currently embroiled in a bitter legal battle spread over 10 countries over alleged patent infringements.

Initial reactions to the new Samsung product were underwhelming.

"The only iPhone it may be capable of beating is the 3GS from 2009," said a review in the Los Angeles Times, which said the Mini's inability to connect with 4G networks was "unacceptable for any phone trying to be a major player".

Wired magazine bemoaned the lower resolution on the touch screen and said the final product was a "big compromise in a small package".

But some industry analysts said comparisons with the features boasted by top-end smartphones were missing the point.

"This is a lower-end product and it is not really a competitor for iPhone 5," said James Song, a tech analyst at Daewoo Securities.

The Mini does boast many of the same software features as the S III.

It is powered by the latest Android 4.1 Jelly Bean operating system, packed with S Voice, a language recognition software, and Smart Stay which keeps the screen lit as long as you are looking at it.

Other features include direct call, which enables you to automatically dial a call simply by lifting the phone to your ear when reading a text message from your friend.

S Beam allows the user to share music files between Galaxy S III series and Galaxy Note II devices simply by tapping the phones together.

Shin Jong-Kyun, who leads Samsung's IT and Mobile Communications Division, told reporters earlier this week that the Mini was aimed at meeting strong demand in Europe for smartphones with four inch screens.

"Some people call the new model a lower-end version of the Galaxy S III but we prefer the mini tag," Shin said.

-- Dow Jones Newswires contributed to this report --

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Philips Gold finally shines

    Philips Gold made 11 service aces on its way to beating Mane ‘N Tail, 25-19, 27-25, 25-16, for its first victory in the Philippine Super Liga (PSL) All-Filipino Coinference Monday night at The Arena in San Juan.Former College of St. Benilde standout Rossan Fajardo had six aces as part of her 10-point output as the Lady Slammers finally barged into the win column after losing their first two matches.Ex-National University star Myla Pablo led Philips Gold with 14 points highlighted by 12 kills, …

  • Turkish Airlines starts direct Manila-Istanbul flights 3 times a week

    Turkish Airlines, Turkey’s flag carrier, launched on March 30 its thrice weekly direct, non-stop flights between Istanbul and Manila at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 1 and plans to operate a daily service between the two cities, eventually, announced Chief Marketing Officer Ahmet Olmustur. Last November 2014, the Philippines and Turkey signed an expanded air services agreement granting Turkish carriers three frequencies per week to Manila and Clark. In accordance with …

  • Azkals bow to Bahrain

    The Philippine Azkals fell short in their bid to salvage a draw and fell 2-1 to Bahrain Monday night in an international friendly match at the Bahrain National Stadium in Manama. Faouzi Mubarak struck the opening goal for the home side in the 29th minute before Abdulla Yaser doubled the lead two minutes later with a booming shot from 25 yards out. Fil-German midfielder Manny Ott gave the Azkals a ray of hope when he scored from just outside the box in the 61st. National team Coach Thomas …

  • Alcalas dominate rivals

    In a brilliant show of power and speed, Mark Alcala downed fierce rival and Philippine team member Ross Leonard Pedroza, 21-16, 23-21, to win the men’s singles open title. Alcala lost her No. 1 ranking after focusing on her studies at the University of the Philippines, but she’s willing to sacrifice once again in order to represent the country in future international tournaments. …

  • Girl, grandma hurt in land mine blast

    A 12-year-old girl, who was on her way to her graduation, was wounded together with her grandmother after they were hit by a landmine blast planted near their family’s residence at Sitio Totoy, Barangay San Jose, Monkayo town, Compostela Valley (ComVal) province. Lt. Vergel U. Lacambra, chief of the Public Affairs Office (PAO) of the Army’s 10th Infantry (Agila) Division (10th ID), reported that Marcelyn Domicillo and her 58-year-old grandmother Rosallia Andaya were taken to a hospital in …

  • Army paddlers outlast Navy

    Army began where it left off the previous year, turning back arch rival Navy to rule the men’s 300-meter standard race in the opening leg of the 2015 Cobra Energy Drink-PDBF Dragon Boat Regatta held over the weekend at the Manila Bay.Overall champions the past season, the Army paddlers made their move in the last 100 meters to emerge clear winners in one minute and 7.67 seconds of the event sponsored by the country’s leading energy drink, Cobra, and organized by the Philippine Dragon Boat …

  • Awareness: April Fool’s Day

    On April 1, be wary of people who may borrow money or play practical jokes on you. It’s April Fool’s Day! While believed to be of Western origin, April Fool’s Day is observed in many countries of the world, including the Philippines. April Fool’s Day is that day of the year when people take the opportunity to fool around a bit by playing practical jokes on the gullible. …

  • All-out peace, says PNoy

    President Aquino reiterates that the best option for the government is all-out peace, not all-out war. *** Likewise, the Philippine National Police (PNP) calls for a peaceful and orderly observance of the Holy Week nationwide, as hundreds of thousands of people go on an exodus to major tourist spots and the provinces. A blessed Holy Week! *** The President dismisses calls for an all-out war against the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) for the Masasapano tragedy and instead will …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options