An early Samsung-made Jelly Bean firmware for the international Galaxy S3 has leaked, and we've taken it for a spin

Ladies and gentlemen, we have our first Android 4.1 leak for an existing phone. Following the appearance of a blurry-cam video of the ROM yesterday, a pre-release Jelly Bean firmware for the international Galaxy S III (Galaxy S3, GT-i9300) has leaked out online over at SamFirmware​. The ROM is based upon Android 4.1.1, carries the build name I9300XXDLG4, and was built a couple of weeks ago on July 31. It's a test ROM that's not of release quality, so expect crashes and bugs if you decide to install this one.

On the surface, the Galaxy S3 running this leaked firmware is still a Galaxy S3, and the TouchWiz Nature UX is still the UI you'll see most of the time. However, new Jelly Bean features like Google Now and the redesigned notification area are present in this build. The latter is a little janky in the leaked ROM -- location services don't seem to be working, but the voice-activated Google Search was fully functional, and fast as ever.

Performance-wise, the leaked Jelly Bean ROM doesn't offer huge performance boosts over ICS, but the S3 was a beast even on Android 4.0, so we'd argue there isn't much room for improvement in this area anyway. The Jelly Bean-specific launcher enhancements weren't shown in the this ROM -- for example, you're not able to make widgets resize to fit into a certain space, or nudge icons out of the way. We're not sure whether Samsung will include this in its final Jelly Bean firmware, as it likes to do its own thing in the TouchWiz launcher anyway.

Finally, NFC support was enabled in this build, though the phone became a bit confused when trying to transfer files to and from other Jelly Bean devices -- essentially, it would try to use S Beam even when the other device didn't support it. Again, not surprising for a leaked pre-release ROM, and something we full expect to be sorted before the final Jelly Bean update hits.

Check out our hands-on video above, or, if you're feeling brave, you can find instructions for flashing the ROM itself on your international (not U.S.) Galaxy S3 at the source link below. We've also got a couple more screenshots after the break.

Source: SamFirmware

Android Central

Android Central

 
There are 25 comments

21plays says:

it feels so good to know that Samsung is updating this phone. I guess just having the latest version feels good, But really, I'm happy with ics as it is. It was a big difference for the lower-spec Gnex but like Alex said, the gs3 is a beast in ics. it pays to not be carrier branded. ics to jelly bean is a minor update for phones like the gs2,gs3 and the gnote. project butter shows its power in lower spec phones(Gnex) for example. Seriously, other than google now, the difference on a skinned and super spec'd phone is minor. The reason im using the gnex as an example is because its the only phone that has official jb, its lower spec'd than the galaxy phones i mentioned above and because i highly doubt that any other phone that came out around the gnex will get jb to see how project butter speeds up phones like the rezound, etc. Love the Nexus phones, dont get me wrong!

mmark27 says:

The Google Now (although limited in what it does at the moment) AND the offline dictation/voice actions/search is a huge improvement over ICS -> its amazing how accurate it can be. I'm running stock TW SGS3 with Google Now mod and its awesome even though the Google Now is a bit janky. I keep flirting with CM10 simply because Google Now works far better, however the camera is not so great yet in CM10. We won't see much in the way of speed enhancements on the SGS3 due to already fast action. But the Google Now will be a not so minor welcomed enhancement.

Question for Alex, when you double hit the home button, are you launched into Google Now or is Samsung holding on to S-Voice. Just curious, I use Home2 Shortcut to set whatever I want for that double tap, but wanted to know if Samsung planned to keep up with their craptastic voice recognition.

Argh says:

CM9 and CM10 don't support HDMI out either, which is a very useful feature for me :(

21plays says:

agreed, i went back to stock because of the camera

randyw says:

True, The camera works much better on stock 4.1.1 than any other rom I have tried on the Gnex.

uansari1 says:

GS2 and GNex are comparable hardware platforms...how can one be "lower spec" and the other not? I would still argue that if you're not running pure Android, you're missing out on a lot and getting only bloat in return, coupled with delayed software updates. Hence why I've stuck only with Nexus devices since the G1, through to the N1, NS, and now the GNex. Android as Google intended it to be...love the hardware on the S3, don't get me wrong.

Shawheim says:

hey his google now search voice was a guys voice!

Argh says:

He's probably using Google TTS. I think that's only available as a male voice in UK English.

I couldn't say it more clearly no other device on the market is better than the current Samsung Galaxy S3. Even on ice cream sandwich there is no smoother device as far as ease of motion and fluidity. Without question the BEST SMARTPHONE ever made by any manufacturer. Jellybean does nothing actually to enhance the Galaxy S3 in anyway as far as I can see at this moment. Remaining on ice cream sandwich with my Galaxy S3 wouldn't be a problem what so ever in my book. I plan to purchase the Galaxy Note 2 when that makes it to my carrier and since we already have the original Galaxy Note it won't be to long to wait. The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 will be my jellybean device in the future. I have never been extremely happy with any smartphone i have ever had except my OG EVO 4G and the Galaxy S3 is 150% better than that device.

21plays says:

+1

chief113 says:

I disagree homeboy. It is butt ugly, as is touchwiz. It looks like a bad copy of apple. The HTC One X is the best phone ever made.

21plays says:

beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, as far as the spec sheet, specs dont lie. best phone is whatever you want it to be for you. by the way, how is that multitasking on sense? Getting enough space with that 16gb? Oh and how is Jelly bean on the HOX? On the other hand, we are all android, lets not bash. Choice, choice and choice. Love Android!

qdigga says:

+1

MrLadoodle says:

HOX has 32GB of storage doopy.

Multitasking is doing great on My One X with CM10:) And the screen is the deal breaker for me. My GS3 is collecting dust ATM.

Channan says:

I prefer the look of the One X and Sense 4 over the GS3 and TouchWiz, but I'd still take a GS3 over the One X.

ArgonNJ#CB says:

If you think anything made by Samsung is the best in the world then you are either clueless or work for Samsung.

21plays says:

riiight. been using Samsung phones since 2002. Awesome phones, awesome company, awesome hardware

Since I am now staring at my newly purchased International unlocked version of the S3 this is fantastic news and was actually something I predicted that the S3 would be the most supported Samsung phone.

sluma says:

Hi Alex, Do you know if they updated the folders? The current implementation of folders in touchwiz is ugly and doesn't seem intuitive from a design point of view.

FOLDUERS??????? Drag and Drop Folders?

21plays says:

im fine with touchwiz, just not the launcher. apex all the way

qdigga says:

I'm with you,I have Apex and Nova on my Transformer and IMMEDIATELY dropped Apex over TW minutes after I set the phone up. Best choice for me AND am maximizing the space wonderfully on that 4.8 beautiful screen. TW has such a long way to go...

ryan5609 says:

Ok, even though I have a rooted version of the Verizon Gnex running 4.1.1. I am still very disappointed with VZW. The JB update should have been out a while ago. But I have yet to even hear a whisper of it being updated anytime soon. The GS3 will get an official build before the Verizon Nexus and that is just BS. The Verizon version of the GS3 is another story. When will that get the JB update, next year? Good thing there is a hard working dev community out there, because we certainly rely on Verizon for any kind of timely updates.

misterfan says:

Really cool to see Samsung aggressively working on keeping its flagship updated.