‘Galaxy S III’: Rumor roundup

Samsung has managed to keep a pretty good lid on rumors about what it’s unveiling at Thursday’s event, but most are expecting to see a follow-up to the company’s Galaxy S II smartphone. All Samsung has promised is that it will be unveiling its “next Galaxy” at the event, and that what it introduces today will fit in easily with customers’ lives.

And that’s an increasingly large segment of the smartphone-buying population. Most analytics firms found that Samsung beat Apple as the world’s top smartphone maker in the past quarter. That has set Samsung up as the first real Apple challenger to emerge from the Android pack.

As with any big launch, there’s been a steady stream of rumors about what to expect from the event today. Here’s a look at what people are expecting from Samsung’s next galaxy:

Quad-core processor- Let’s start with what we know. Samsung has said, explicitly, in a press release, that the “next Galaxy smartphone” will be packing an Exynos 4 Quad processor. This quad-core processor will enable 1080p video recording and playback, and is supposed to make multitasking a breeze and be more efficient with battery use than its predecessor.

LTE- Before you get too excited, however, it’s worth mentioning that the LTE chips in U.S. phones could be too big to work with the quad-core processor. So although the international versions of the phone might have the Exynos 4 Quad, there is a chance that it won’t make it into the U.S. phone.

That’s what happened with the HTC One X, after all, though HTC managed to keep speeds impressive even with a dual-core chip.

Screen- Samsung phones all have stunning screens — they should, given that Samsung is a top display maker — and the latest smartphone should be no exception. The phone is expected to have up to a 4.8-inch display, which puts it awfully close to the phablet category currently occupied by the Galaxy Note.

Cloud storage- The company is also expected to launch its own cloud competitor, to synchronize files across multiple devices. As CNET reported, the Korean news outlet Maeil Business has said that the service will be called S-Cloud.

Small update?- CNET has reported, however, that an unnamed source from the British telecom industry has said that the new phone could be a fairly small update, and may not be called the Galaxy S III at all.

That report went on to say that one new feature could be something called “Human Interaction,” which will lock the phone when you look away from the screen.

Related stories:

Samsung teases its ‘Next Galaxy’

Nokia files patent suits against HTC, RIM and ViewSonic

Apple loses top spot in computer shipments

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.
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