Samsung I8190 Galaxy S III mini review: The Halfling

GSMArena team, 28 November 2012.

Introduction

Design and software experience coming straight from the most successful droid of all times, packed in a shell that's far easier to pocket. Now, who wouldn't want some of that? The Samsung Galaxy S III mini is the company's most premium compact Android smartphone and is here to prove that you don't need to come close to phablet territory to get the latest and greatest from the world's largest smartphone manufacturer.


Samsung Galaxy S III mini official photos

However, going through the shrink ray has had some not quite so pleasant side-effects. The Galaxy S III mini comes with half the number of CPU cores and just 41% of its resolution. Will those two balance out with the smaller screen and still get you the high-end experience? We'll only know for sure when we are done with the review, but here's the quick rundown of the Galaxy S III mini key strengths and weaknesses.

Key features

  • Quad-band GSM and dual-band 3G support
  • 14.4 Mbps HSDPA and 5.76 Mbps HSUPA support
  • 4.0" 16M-color Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen of WVGA (480 x 800 pixel) resolution
  • Android OS 4.1 Jelly Bean with Nature UX
  • 1 GHz dual-core Cortex-A9 CPU, Mali-400 MP GPU, 1GB of RAM
  • 5 MP autofocus camera with a powerful LED flash, face and smile detection
  • 720p HD video recording at 30fps
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n support; DLNA and Wi-Fi hotspot
  • GPS with A-GPS connectivity; digital compass
  • 8/16GB of inbuilt storage, microSD slot
  • Accelerometer, gyroscope and proximity sensor
  • Standard 3.5 mm audio jack
  • microUSB port
  • Stereo Bluetooth v3.0
  • FM radio with RDS
  • VGA secondary front-facing camera
  • Document editor
  • File manager comes preinstalled

Main disadvantages

  • Pricey
  • Pentile matrix display
  • No 1080p video recording
  • No dedicated camera key

Jelly Bean isn't the most common sight in the Android mid-range, and coupled with Samsung's home-brewed Nature UX and its cool software tricks goes some way towards justifying the higher price tag.

The camera might be an obvious downgrade over the full-sized Galaxy S III but, luckily for the mini, it doesn't have to compete with the same kind of top-notch sharpshooters as its bigger brother. We'll have to see how it performs in real life scenarios, before passing the judgment, but the Galaxy S III mini certainly isnít too badly prepared here.

Samsung I8190 Galaxy S III mini Samsung I8190 Galaxy S III mini Samsung I8190 Galaxy S III mini
Samsung Galaxy S III mini at ours

Now let's stop with the speculations and get down to testing. The unboxing, followed by the hardware inspection await you on the next page.

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Reviews > Samsung I8190 Galaxy S III mini review: The Halfling