The Samsung Galaxy S III is shaping up to be the most uniform non-iPhone launch across U.S. carriers in recent memory and certainly in Android history with all four major carriers releasing identical hardware (AT&T’s odd Verizon-red option notwithstanding) within just weeks of one another.
In keeping with this lock step launch plan we had three of the four put their versions of the Galaxy S III up for pre-order in the last 24 hours with Sprint, AT&T and Verizon all ready to take your money. While the hardware is virtually identical there are a couple minor differences depending on the carrier that you may want to pay attention to if you are shopping for a carrier as well as the phone. It’s also worth noting that the price on contract is the same across all three, but if you want to pick the Galaxy S III up off contract it’ll cost you extra on Verizon as their retail price for the 16GB is $599 versus the $549 that Sprint and AT&T are asking.
Sprint was the first to throw their hat in the ring with pre-orders going live yesterday afternoon. Sprint’s claim to fame with their Galaxy S III will be having Google Wallet installed and operational when you receive it. It does of course also support Sprint’s LTE network, so if you are in one of the six locations that will have it soon or if you just want to future proof yourself that’s a nice touch. Sprint is vowing to do their “best to get it to you before others get a glimpse on Thursday, June 21.”
AT&T got into the act this morning and you can pre-order the white or blue models at the moment, but if you have your sights on that exclusive red version you’ll just need to wait as apparently it’s still fermenting. The AT&T model does support their whole host of network options so you can enjoy whatever is fastest in your area be it “4G” or 4G. If you are a crazed digital hoarder you may be a little upset by AT&T’s lack of a 32GB Galaxy S III, but with the microSD slot it shouldn’t be a problem for 99% of you. AT&T is going to try to just edge out Sprint by shipping on June 18th.
Bringing up the rear is the Verizon pre-order. Why do I put it that way you ask? Well yesterday’s rumor proved true and they are planning to ship “by July 9th” which for those keeping track at home puts them over two weeks behind everyone else. Does that wording leave a flicker of hope that it will ship earlier? Sure it does, but I wouldn’t hold your breath.
Moving on there is some positive news for potential Galaxy S III owners on Big Red and that is that global roaming will be enabled on the phone in the future with a software update. Verizon’s incredibly dominant LTE coverage map isn’t of course unique to the Galaxy S III, but it seemed worth mentioning when comparing the three.
That’s all the current Galaxy S III pre-order news that’s fit to
Have you already gotten your pre-order in and what carrier did you go with if you did?