Android Central

New TouchWiz features confirmed for U.S. Galaxy S3 update

If you were after a vague, unspecified timeframe for your Galaxy S3 Jelly Bean update, look no further than today's announcement from Samsung, which indicates that the update will be rolling out to U.S. S3 models "in the coming months." In a press release today, the manufacturer reveals that the eagerly-anticipated update will land at some point in the future between "the coming weeks" and "the coming years." In any case, at least it's on still its way to the U.S. (The update is, of course, rolling out right now in Europe.)

Also revealed is a list of new TouchWiz features in the U.S. S3 Jelly Bean update. We've already covered many of these on the international Galaxy S3 models, but these include new Android 4.1 features like Google Now and "Project Butter," in addition to new TouchWiz additions like blocking mode for added notification and contact control, resizeable Pop-up Play windows and an optional "easy mode" for the launcher. New AllShare functionality will be added too, including wireless mirroring through the AllShare Cast Wireless Hub, and one-touch NFC pairing on supported Bluetooth devices.

We've got the full breakdown of new TouchWiz features after the break.

More: Hands-on with new TouchWiz features in Jelly Bean Galaxy S3 update

Samsung Mobile to Begin Jelly Bean Update with TouchWiz® Enhancements for Galaxy S® III Smartphones in the U.S.

Available in the coming months, the Galaxy S III update offers the latest Android™ platform; new camera, video and customization enhancements; and access to ESPN’s ScoreCenter app with custom AllShare® integration

DALLAS — October 17, 2012 — Samsung Telecommunications America, LLC (Samsung Mobile) – the No.1 mobile phone provider in the United States and a subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., the No. 1 smartphone provider worldwide1 – continues its commitment to bringing the latest innovation to market with the rollout of Android 4.1, Jelly Bean, the latest version of the world’s most popular smartphone operating system, to all Galaxy S III smartphones in the U.S. in the coming months.

The update will be made available both over the air and as a download via Kies, Samsung’s content sync and software update solution. The specific timing and update method will be announced by each carrier partner, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless and U.S. Cellular.

Galaxy S III owners will receive the Jelly Bean update as well as a host of new and enhanced TouchWiz features, making it a faster, richer and more responsive device experience. Samsung’s best-selling flagship smartphone just got even better.

Samsung refined and enhanced the Galaxy S III experience by adding new capabilities to the camera, video and user interface, including:
·         Camera Enhancements:
o    New live camera and camcorder filters offer a range of new ways to spark your creativity. Warm vintage, cold vintage, black and white, sepia, color highlights (blue, green, red/yellow), and many more are selectable from the main camera screen.
o    Pause and resume while recording video allows users to string together multiple captured video clips from a party, birthday or sporting event into a single file with no post editing required.
o    Low light photo mode takes advantage of Galaxy S III’s best-in-class High Dynamic Range (HDR) capabilities and offers an optimized mode for low light and indoor photos.
·         Pop Up Play Update: Users can now easily resize or pause the Pop Up Play picture-in-picture video window, taking full advantage of the Galaxy S III’s powerful processor and large 4.8-inch screen.
·         Easy Mode: Easy Mode is a simplified user experience option for first-time smartphone owners, providing large home screen widgets that focus on the device essentials. The Easy widgets include both 4x2 and 4x4 arrangements of favorite contacts, favorite apps, favorite settings, clock and alarm.
·         Blocking Mode: Galaxy S III owners can disable incoming calls, notifications, alarms and LED indicators for a designated period of time.
·         Improved Usability: Users now have multiple keyboard options with the addition of the Swype® keyboard.

Android 4.1 Jelly Bean offers users a smoother, faster and more fluid experience with expanded feature functionality, including:

·         Google Now™: Google Now gives users the right information at the right time, like how much traffic to expect before leaving work, when the next train is scheduled to arrive at the subway station or the score of a favorite team’s current game – conveniently delivered as notifications. Additionally, Google Now provides powerful voice assistant functionality across a range of domains, including weather, maps, navigation, search, image search, flight status and more. Google Now can conveniently be launched from the lock screen shortcut or by a long press on the menu button from any screen.
·         Rich Notifications: Notifications can now expand and shrink with a pinch to show the right amount of information a user needs. Notifications have been enhanced so action can be taken without having to launch the app first – like sharing a screenshot directly from the notification.
·         Automatic Widget Adjustment: Customizing the home screen is easier than ever before. Users can simply place a new icon or widget on the screen, and existing icons will move out of the way to make space. When widgets are too big, they automatically resize to fit on the screen.

In addition to the operating system update, Samsung and ESPN worked together to integrate AllShare® technology into ESPN’s popular ScoreCenter® application. This means Galaxy S III owners will now be able to wirelessly push on-demand ESPN global sports coverage and highlights from the ESPN ScoreCenter app to their Samsung SMART TV™. When on the same Wi-Fi network as a Samsung SMART TV, a sharing icon will appear within the ScoreCenter video player which allows users to seamlessly push what they are watching to the TV. The ScoreCenter app with AllShare integration is available today for download through S Suggest™ on all U.S. Galaxy S III devices.

With the Jelly Bean update, the Galaxy S III will also add support for some exciting new accessory experiences.
·         AllShare® Cast Wireless Hub: The AllShare Cast Wireless Hub accessory allows users to wirelessly mirror their phone screen to any HDTV or HDMI® display. Whether it’s sharing pictures, browsing the Web, playing games, streaming music, watching videos or projecting business presentations, users can control the action on the big screen wirelessly from their smartphone. AllShare Cast Wireless Hub even supports licensed content playback of premium TV and movies.
·         NFC One Touch Pairing Support: Galaxy S III can now pair with supporting NFC Bluetooth® accessories in a single touch. The Samsung Galaxy HM3300 Bluetooth headset will be the first Samsung portfolio accessory to support this functionality (available in the near future), allowing users to pair their headset by touching it to the back of their device.

 
There are 63 comments

eirrom says:

That seemd like FOREVER from now...OUCH!

GalaxyNole says:

What BS, this is the last time I buy any device that's not a Nexus.

uluaz says:

you sound like you are still bitter from losing to NC State (ROFL)

GalaxyNole says:

Lol, no I finally got over that yesterday. Now I can concentrate on being mad over the JB update:)

uluaz says:

haha yeah i feel you. ive got mad respect for fsu football, but you guys have got to get out of the vicous cycle of having EXTREME hype pre-season, then blowing it all against a mediocre opponent. i really wanted to see you guys in the BCS this year, especially with the way you played against clemson.

XChrisX says:

Agreed, this is ridiculous at best. "In the coming months" is about as vague as it gets. I hate,with a strong emphasis on the word hate that the carriers might be the ones holding this update back. If this update doesn't come until next year I'll consider going Nexus, or back to the iPhone. It's pathetic that Samsungs flagship phone would get updated everywhere but the US. /rant

Unibrow says:

Don't buy a cdma Nexus then.

Mobius360 says:

Even the CDMA Nexus's get updates faster than any other phone besides the GSM Nexus.

vawwyakr says:

I love my S3...of course the first thing I did was install CM10 and not look back. I get updated daily (if I want them). I can't imagine why someone wouldn't do the same.

The Firmware has been available (and stable) for a month over at SamFirmware.

The LI8 actually seems more stable than ICS was.

storino03 says:

i always wondered why you couldn't resize the popup-play window, since it's tiny on as is. but glad to hear it is in the update!

ilongbored says:

"some point in the future between 'the coming weeks' and 'the coming years.'"

Very clever Alex. I got a good chuckle out of that.

deltascrew says:

No mention of Cspire in there :(

caseyatbt says:

They could release it tomorrow but it would get tired up with the carriers and we still wouldn't see it for months.

moises1204 says:

the only thing i like about apple is the fact that they don't let these stupid carrier determined when to do updates.

jharazin says:

While Apple does roll out updates to all applicable devices at once, it's important to note that the older devices don't get all the same features. So, for instance, an iPhone4 running ios6 won't have the same features as an iPhone4S running ios6. The Apple fans always seem to leave that little detail out when they laugh at Android's troublesome update schedules.

Ford: "Hey, we're gonna update your 2008 Fusion to a 2013 model"
You: "Sweet! I hear it's roomier and more efficient, and... "
Ford: "... But we're only going to give you new headlights and door handles"
You: "..."

pappy53 says:

At least they GET the updates. Most older Android devices don't even see an update.

jontalk says:

Don't get me started on Apple OS updates. I had an iP3G which turned into a brick when Apple released iOS4. The phone was never that fast to begin with but what a sham to release an OS that's designed for phones with better hardware.. This coupled with having to exchange the phone FIVE times for battery issues, not to mention the constant restoring drove me nuts. On the other hand Apple does do a good job with design and features, but I'm REALLY looking forward to getting JB on my ATT GS3. Other than less than perfect low light photos, the phone totally rocks. So bring on JB whenever you want Sammy.. I'm ready!

That happened to you not everyone. And with regards to the previous poster, the GS3 is not a previous gen hence the argument is useless. The iPhone 4s promptly got all the features of IOS6. The 4 a 2010 phone got shafted a bit, but it got system wide updates expect Siri and flyover. The 3gs a 2009 phone got some love, albeit only a little but it is old and it still got something, which is always better than nothing.

That happened to you not everyone. And with regards to the previous poster, the GS3 is not a previous gen hence the argument is useless. The iPhone 4s promptly got all the features of IOS6. The 4 a 2010 phone got shafted a bit, but it got system wide updates expect Siri and flyover. The 3gs a 2009 phone got some love, albeit only a little but it is old and it still got something, which is always better than nothing.

Djhidro609 says:

I agree that this isn't the case for everyone but it just proves that apple devices aren't perfect which most fanboys would have you believe and to make matters worse apple straight up lies to their loyal customers to produce more sales like when they stated the the ip4 could not handle siri and then the devs who jailbreak iphones had it running on a ip4 in about a weeks time. I'll be a happy camper when my GS3 has both S-voice ans google now, add a little project butter to that and the GS3 is truly the best phone on the market even though the quad core beasts are coming quickly. That's why 2 gigs of ram had me sold on the phone. I'm a verizon owner so a locked bootloader is another hurdle for me but I'm planning on rooting and rocking some CM10 action on my GS3 in the next few days. I'm not waiting on Verizon for JB unless a solid date is released before I can root which will never happen. I will say that I'm happy that the phone has received 2 maintenance updates from verizon so far which shows a lot more support then I had with the Gnex which went 6 months before any kind of bug fix or update was even pushed. My GS3 has been amazing and pairing it with nova launcher and the Jb theme has given me the nexus style experience that I wanted from day 1 with all of the nice sammy motion features as a nice bonus.

Djhidro609 says:

I agree that this isn't the case for everyone but it just proves that apple devices aren't perfect which most fanboys would have you believe and to make matters worse apple straight up lies to their loyal customers to produce more sales like when they stated the the ip4 could not handle siri and then the devs who jailbreak iphones had it running on a ip4 in about a weeks time. I'll be a happy camper when my GS3 has both S-voice ans google now, add a little project butter to that and the GS3 is truly the best phone on the market even though the quad core beasts are coming quickly. That's why 2 gigs of ram had me sold on the phone. I'm a verizon owner so a locked bootloader is another hurdle for me but I'm planning on rooting and rocking some CM10 action on my GS3 in the next few days. I'm not waiting on Verizon for JB unless a solid date is released before I can root which will never happen. I will say that I'm happy that the phone has received 2 maintenance updates from verizon so far which shows a lot more support then I had with the Gnex which went 6 months before any kind of bug fix or update was even pushed. My GS3 has been amazing and pairing it with nova launcher and the Jb theme has given me the nexus style experience that I wanted from day 1 with all of the nice sammy motion features as a nice bonus.

Djhidro609 says:

I agree that this isn't the case for everyone but it just proves that apple devices aren't perfect which most fanboys would have you believe and to make matters worse apple straight up lies to their loyal customers to produce more sales like when they stated the the ip4 could not handle siri and then the devs who jailbreak iphones had it running on a ip4 in about a weeks time. I'll be a happy camper when my GS3 has both S-voice ans google now, add a little project butter to that and the GS3 is truly the best phone on the market even though the quad core beasts are coming quickly. That's why 2 gigs of ram had me sold on the phone. I'm a verizon owner so a locked bootloader is another hurdle for me but I'm planning on rooting and rocking some CM10 action on my GS3 in the next few days. I'm not waiting on Verizon for JB unless a solid date is released before I can root which will never happen. I will say that I'm happy that the phone has received 2 maintenance updates from verizon so far which shows a lot more support then I had with the Gnex which went 6 months before any kind of bug fix or update was even pushed. My GS3 has been amazing and pairing it with nova launcher and the Jb theme has given me the nexus style experience that I wanted from day 1 with all of the nice sammy motion features as a nice bonus.

Skyeclad says:

As a former Samsung Fascinate owner, I knew what I was getting into when I bought the GS3 when it comes to updates. It still sucks.

I've been holding off on rooting and modding my Verizon GS3 like I did with my Fascinate because it just seemed like a hassle with limited payback. Will have to see if I still feel that way in 2014 when we still don't have JB.

mdmitchell13 says:

Umm I think Samsung is the quickest brand to advertise and be actively updating to jb.

mdmitchell13 says:

Also, jb came out 3 months ago and people still getting ics from last year.... It has previously taken almost a year to get new updates on phones yet Samsung and other carriers plan on it less than 6 months after release of jb. Heck nexus just got it on Verizon and Samsung has already rolled it out internationally

morechoff says:

Samsung is saying it has done its part. JB is now (and maybe has been) in the hands of the carriers. Yes, it is very frustrating that the carriers cannot give any feedback on the release of JB. After all, they have to have a project plan in place with dates of completion for testing. I would not be surprised if its the manufacturer that is paying for testing at the carriers as well.

RonShosti says:

This news might be the final straw that gets me on Cyanogenmod for my S3. I never knew what I was missing with Touchwiz until I installed Cyanogenmod on my Touchpad.

vawwyakr says:

What is holding you back even now? CM is awesome and the S3 is pretty easy to get it installed on (as least for mine it was compared to the pain it took to get my Transformer setup with CM10).

Targon says:

For many, if an official update is due within a month or two, that isn't a big deal to wait and see what the official update provides. The problem is when that month or two SUDDENLY becomes "who knows when, we can't say". It gets more annoying when the update starts to be released in other regions, and it is the extra crapware the carriers FORCE on users that causes a delay in getting the update.

Timelessblur says:

that is not a good reason. Samsung should strong arm the carriers. This is complete and utter bs.

moosc says:

And you all tar and feather moto over slow updates. Guess what all us carriers and there android manufactured branded phones suck at updates. It slow and pain full. Buy a Nexus phone even CDMA stop waiting for carriers justget the update from gGoogle or a rom chef.

whipstitch says:

touchwiz + butter = congealed

alkthree87 says:

My s3 is in the mail. After messing around with touchwiz for about fifteen minutes, Then, I'll immediately root and put cm10 on it.

srkmagnus says:

Will wee see an official JellyBean Update for the Epic 4G Touch before one is made available for the S3? http://www.androidpolice.com/2012/10/16/official-touchwiz-jelly-bean-lea...

I don't think we will see a JB S2 ROM before the S3, but its good to see older devices getting some love from Samsung with the JB update.

major payne says:

LOL

Now SGIII owners will know what it's like to be a HTC Rezound owner lol

Rob White says:

You sir have won the internets for the day!

I really thought I was leavng the nightmare of the Samsung Fascinate behind me when I got a Droid X2. Then the Rezound tempted my fancy due to all the love of HTC here & elsewhere. Turns out they all suck at updates. The carriers get in the way too but how about the manufactuers quit shipping phones with old software to begin with? Now there is a novel idea huh?

eksoccer99 says:

This is all weird and crazy, haha... unless a buddy of mine is yanking my chain. Told him about the roll-outs a week ago or so. So, he checked "Software update" and he had the update JB 4.1.1 (VZW/US, SGSIII). Chick at work just got one, no go on the update - AT&T... haha

KSmithInNY says:

Your chain = yanked.

Skyeclad says:

He's yanking your chain. There was a small update this morning but we're talking 4.0.4 still. I wouldn't expect to see JB until January, maybe February with Verizon and that's wishful thinking. The Fascinate came out with Froyo and received Gingerbread about a year later. ICS never came officially.

xgman says:

What a load of BS. Funny, Apple doesn't seem to have these problems.

delta7 says:

That's exactly were I went.... boring phone personally but nice apps and well built, miss android but love the fact that it's gonna hold up for two years with updates, waiting on the jailbreak.

xgman says:

Got a verizon update today, but still is v4.0.4 :(

rcook55 says:

Huh, my S3 says it's running Android 4.2.1... oh yeah cause I rooted and put CM10 on it ;)

bearballz72 says:

Yeah but you shouldn't have to mod or install ROMS just to get JB or any other update. That's the problem.

It's a great option to have but it's just a bandaid.

bearballz72 says:

I'm really getting sick of this. I hate to say this but carriers would not pull this with Apple. This is Samsunsg's flagship device and I cannot believe I have to wait almost 6 months in order to receive the update.

I can understand Samsung having to manipulate JB in order for it to work with Touchwiz, but why the hell do carriers need all this time to "test".

Seriously the SIII mini and the Galaxy Note 2 will have JB before the SIII, you kidding me?

I love my SIII but I'm with a lot of other posters here and have to agree. Next time around I'm going with a Nexus. Enough is enough with this fragmentation crap.

Taz89 says:

Looks like it's not going to be this year otherwise they would have at least said by the end of the year.

Archienj7 says:

No doubt. I'm never getting another Samsung or Android phone again. I'd rather have a dumbphone I don't have to have expectations of timely or as promised by x date updates for. Ridiculous.

sURFNmADNESS says:

They might as well have announced it will come out eventually. Maybe a few months or years from now. We don't have a clue how our product cycle release dates ever get picked. But we are hopeful someone in our company can pick a good date in the future.

AJC1973 says:

I he problem isn't Samsung... Its our carriers... Look at how long vzw and sprint took to update the nexus... Though I do believe Sammy now has the clout to push the carriers harder... But still the carriers take way too much time on updates... It really doesn't matter to them they already have you roped in...

phillysdon04 says:

I'm running CM10 and I love it but I would like all the Samsung tweaks without TouchWiz.

treyrey86 says:

Seriously people....is there anything really wrong with you GSIII running ICS? NO!
It's still a pretty slick device with a lot more features than most of us actually use/need. Keep calm and be patient for the update! These people complaining about the update not coming soon enough are the same people first in line to complain about an error or bug with the updates when they are released!

Archienj7 says:

People wouldn't complain if they're weren't updates supposedly coming for one month, then changed to a few months later, then "whenever". It's pretty friggin sad a flagship phone will likely be just getting JB when the next version is released and the other versions of the same phone will have had it for months. People have every right to complain when they spend their money on a product and they get told things are coming. You shouldn't have to root just to get timely updates because manufacturers and carriers can't get their mess together. Period. Apple can do it but Android can't? I don't know if are you a Samsung shill or what but complaining about people complaining = complaining. It's extremely counter-productive to any point you were attempting.

Rob White says:

The larger point is that at some point Google has to step in & mandate certain things as well. And Android Central can quit with this 'Android was designed this way so it is what it is" nonsense too. We all know that Androids market share is directly a result of cheap or free hardware & big pushes by the carriers. The actual user experience can be downright miserable if you aren't careful what you buy. Poor signal reception & retention, apps crashing or compatibility, battery drain faster than a stockcar at Daytona with no brakes (looking at you HTC), custom skins that can & routinely do crash the phone etc etc etc. All of those issues, or most anyway, can be fixed with a damn software update if only the manufactuerers & carriers would get off their collective asses & do it.

I have been so tempted to go with Windows phone or back to iPhone many times just so I won't be so dependant on the carriers or manufacturer to actually do something like, oh I don't know, customer service? It's a radical concept I know but to be frank & honest about it between the poor updating process & lackluster support when there are problems one's frustration can easily reach the boiling point.

I love Google & the many services I use by them. My user name even reflects my long standing admiration & usage of products & services from this company. But quite frankly, now that we see Google so readily supporting iPhone with their services as well, it's mighty temtping to jump ship & call it a day just so these problems & bullshit excuses from the Android apologists don't have to be reasoned with or debated anymore.

fzammetti says:

This announcement almost certainly indicates that Samsung has (or VERY SOON) will deliver the "final" build to the U.S. carriers. That's all. What they're basically saying is "hey, we did our job, customers will have it 'in the coming weeks' if the carriers do their work quickly and efficiently". It's all on the carriers now, as most of us well know.

Now, for us Sprint customers... if you've been following along on XDA you know that JB RDF's have been getting posted fairly regularly for roughly the past month or so... there's been something like 6 JB RDFs posted since I think mid-September, and the latest one was just posted in the past 2-3 days... this indicates that Sprint has probably been keeping pace with Samsung's code drops pretty well. That bodes well for us.

Based on there having been, I think, 9 RDFs posted before ICS was released, and assuming it's not TOO much different for JB, I actually suspect we're pretty close to a Sprint rollout here. Rumor has been that Sprint will see JB starting by the end of October, so that looks pretty reasonable at the moment, especially given that the one or two leaked "official" JB ROMs that people have been "testing" appear to be quite polished by all accounts (but not perfect, hence you'll likely see one or two more RDFs before release just to finish it up).

Hey, my last three phones have been Android Samsung devices so I know all too well the pain of updates with them... plus I've been on Sprint for years and I suspect that's where most of the holdup always is (and to a degree I understand it- they DO have some due diligence to ensure the update doesn't harm the network, and the S3 is relatively free of carrier bloat so it's not so much that anymore)... but, I think right now signs are good for a Sprint rollout in the next, let's say month, just to be safe. That's still longer since JB was released than I'd like, but not ridiculously so in my mind.

My sympathies to you Verizon-ites though... unless Samsung has more clout than any of us realize I think you're into 2013 before you see it :(

treyrey86 says:

very well put

birchasr says:

I would bet that Sprint already has the Jelly Bean build and is testing it. I have been running the leaked Samsung LIH build for two weeks and have have almost no issues with it. The bottleneck here has always largely been the carriers. I haven't always been able to say this in the past but it appears that Samsung is trying hard to get JB on our S3's as quick as it can.

Cubfan says:

Easy translation is that it's the coming weeks if you're on Sprint or T-Mobile... coming months if you're on Verizon.

In my case, I have it now. I'm rocking the leak and it's working flawlessly.

197Decibels says:

Not thrilled about this. I just got an S3 and love the phone, but this is not cool. The whole "You're gonna get JB soon, later, even later is what really is irking me, not the fact that it's delayed. I can understand delays especially with it coming out on so many platforms, but they need to stop toying with us.

drewC says:

It's the same BS pulled by the US carriers. I'm on T-mobile, and I think we will not see an official update before the Note II launch. So, we "may" get it some time in November. AT&T GSIII will probably get theirs around the same time.

I can't say the same for the CDMA versions though, especially Verizon. After all, they do have a reputation to keep. -_-

Mikest says:

I would be thrilled if Samsung gave up on S-Voice and made a double home key tap Google Now

molanjames says:

I never understand why people freak out about not having Jelly Bean. The SGS3 is a great phone with ICS. Its more about people being concerned about what their "About Phone" section says than about actual functionality.One of the most interesting features I was able to find in my new Galaxy S III was the ability to create your own custom vibration notification.Check the step by step tutorial about How To Create your own custom vibration notifications on your Samsung Galaxy S III here http://www.careace.net/2012/10/02/how-to-create-your-own-custom-vibratio....

Archienj7 says:

That's something you find day one of getting it. A custom vibe function is better than more features and increased performance? Guess we've all got our priorities mixed up then.......