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Galaxy S3 Design: Why Did Samsung Go the Plastic Route AGAIN?

Steven Blum
8

According to those who've played around with the Galaxy S3, the phone feels light as a feather and is slim, sleek and sexy. A reviewer for the Verge even described the Galaxy S3 as "too light," writing that he wished the phone "had more heft." Talk about a first world problem! But there is one design element that almost everyone seems to agree was a bad decision on Samsung's part: the decision to go, yet again, with plastic.

Now I know there are plenty of other things to be diappointed about with the Galaxy S3 launch – like the physical home button – and I really don't want to beat a dead horse here, but Samsung clearly hasn't realized that design, and design materials, matters to consumers. The Galaxy S3 could end up being quite a fast and capable phone (a recent Verge article said that it trounced the HTC One X on GLBenchmark) but it just doesn't look like a high quality device. Instead of actually incorporating brushed aluminum, the phone attempts to simulate the look of this material using...plastic.

Now, Eric and I are arguing about this, but I think at least some folks are going to go with the HTC One X or HTC One S over this device, partially because of the design. Maybe they'll even choose an HTC One S or One X over this phone because they appreciate Sense 4.0 over Touchwiz 4.0. But whatever the case, Samsung's loss is HTC's gain. Eric, of course, diagrees. He thinks the majority of consumers won't care about these design elements and will choose the Galaxy S3 because it's the successor to the insanely popular Galaxy S2. But whatever the case, I still think Samsung is going to miss out on some potential customers with this boring, plasticky design. Especially when compared to HTC's casings, it just looks plain ugly.

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    Christopher Silva May 4, 2012 Link

    Steve, the plastic Samsung uses is extremely robust. I have dropped my SII and it survives each accident. Also, the platic is very light and moldable.

    Apple use of glass and aluminun ended in drop-damage.. You see it all the time. Drop an iPhone and it will almost always crack the screen, front or back.

    I think it is their design and I actually like it. It's light and feels good.

    The design is far from boring. (by the way)

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  • PatPion May 4, 2012 Link

    To each his own, I guess. @Steven, both you and Eric make valid points, but what I've heard generally from the 'techy' public over here is that people prefer a lighter design with proper, good quality plastics, i.e. The Galaxy Nexus.

    It seems that as long as it is good quality, they prefer a lighter casing to a more iPhone like build.

    But as I said, to each his own. I also fall on the 'The Fighter should be Lighter' side of the argument. :-)

    And to me it is actually a very sleek and sexy phone. I really like the design.

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  • Ti Mo May 4, 2012 Link

    Ouh wow I completely gotta disagree. I love the blue one, especially the back. The Design is awesome!
    And the Home Butto is cool too, Doesnt matter too me

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  • Eric McBride May 4, 2012 Link

    I also personally like the good quality plastic feel of the Galaxy Nexus. Only phone I could ever say that for when it comes to Samsung phones.

    But I can tell you now that this phone does NOT feel like a Galaxy Nexus...AT ALL. Actually pretty unfortunate :-(

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  • Brody D. May 4, 2012 Link

    I like plasticy phones better, they don't get dirty as easy and I feel much more secure when the half a grand in my hand is non-slip (unlike slippery aluminium phones).

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  • Stan Jez May 4, 2012 Link

    I have a galaxy S. The plastic has never bothered me.. It's robust... And light. I held an iphone yesterday and was reminded of the weight difference. In any case, virtually all the phones I see these days are personalised with protective covers..... So, hey, who sees the design? So... For me, the S III plastic is fine.

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  • Joe Asomth May 8, 2012 Link

    Reviewers say that the plastic on S3 is lower quality than that on S2 which i find disturbing and hopefully not true

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  • Patricia Mendez Nov 16, 2012 Link

    .....

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