I hate the vast majority of rumors. About the only time I give a them any real consideration is when they're coming from a source that's highly reliable and they strike me as reasonable. It's for this reason I've stayed clear of the relative boatload of Galaxy S III rumors that we've been hearing for about a week now - first a potential render leaked (though we didn't like the looks of it). Next, an alleged Samsung employee leaked a photo of the SGSIII, then we heard a rumor that the device may feature inductive charging, and finally, we debunked a "leaked image" of the phone yesterday. In a nutshell: SGSIII fever is running rampant, and that's probably not a good thing.

Now that we're all up to speed, let's look at today's leak: some blurrycam shots of the Samsung GT-i9300.

Samsung-GT-i9300_1 Samsung-GT-i9300-2

As you can see in the shots above, the model number is listed as GT-I9300, and it's running Android 4.0.3. Samsung's Netherlands support site actually lists the GT-I9300, and it's also found under the "Device" lists on the Samsung Russian and German Contact Us pages. Coupled with reports that Samsung was shooting for an international launch, these details lead me to suspect we're looking at a mid-range device rather than a flagship.

There are a few other details that make me doubt we're looking at the SGSIII. First, while the screen is large, we've heard (and believe) that the SGSIII will sport an uber-slim bezel; while the above shots don't show anything huge, it's also certainly not slimmer than we're used to seeing. It also just lacks a certain panache that previous Galaxy S devices have sported. While that may seem like a minor point, it's really not - you don't follow up to your best-selling smartphone ever with something that looks like a walkman/smartphone hybrid. Even the photo of the reported SGSIII from a few days ago showed a much sleeker device - while I still have doubts about that photo's legitimacy, it seems far more probable than this.

Oh, and we noticed that the i9300's on-screen buttons are in reverse order of what we're used to, though they do match the layout Samsung typically uses for capacitive buttons (which lends further legitimacy to the photos, not that it's needed). No real significance to that, just thought we'd point it out:

galnexus_apptray sgs3_photo_leak Samsung-GT-i9300_1 samsung_something

Left to right: Galaxy Nexus, last week's reported SGSIII photo, today's I9300 photo, Samsung SHV-E120L.

All that said, I doubt that the SGSIII will have a home button similar to the Galaxy Player 4.2 and the SGSII, given the company's lawsuits with Apple. Thus, it does strike me as likely that the SGSIII will sport on-screen keys. Then again, I don't really know much about patent law, so I could be wrong.

What do you think? SGSIII, or just a midrange device? Share your thoughts below.

[Source: Phone Arena]

Aaron Gingrich
Aaron is a geek who has always had a passion for technology. When not working or writing, he can be found spending time with his family, playing a game, or watching a movie.

  • Claudio

    midrange ugly device

  • http://twitter.com/richbugger Richie

    This may be a midrange device... If this is SGS3, then Samsung are going a step back in design.. Both the SGS1 and SGS2 were elegantly designed for their times and didn't disappoint.. This however, as you say, doesn't really impress the crowd..

    Hopefully this is some Galaxy Y or Z aiA or B or whatever... and certainly not SGS 3

  • Ishken

    i think you're right, it looks midrange. Also, we have seen falsified phone data before back before ICS was released. It wouldn't really take much to falsify the phone model info.

    Then again, this might be a case of "every other"; as in every other SGS is going to be fantastic. This would mean SGS4 will be the real contender.

    Still, that phone looks cheap and destined for US discount sales.

  • http://turbofool.com TurboFool

    Yeah, I'm thinking a Galaxy R or W at best, but maybe even an M.

  • Artur

    I think that this is a prototype, or in fact a midrange model. This isn't the final version of the most important launch of the semester. No way.

  • Jake

    Like turbofool, I think it's a new Galaxy W. They look sort of similar.

  • http://madteam.co/forum Rafd08

    This photo is wrong, actually this is not a fake but isn't Galaxy S III is the new Huawei.

    Search on the web and you will see that is the SAME.

    • Aaron Gingrich

      Do you have a link?

  • L boogie

    If this is suppose to be the gs3 then maybe I'll take chances and wait for the galaxy journal on verizon or even go off the deep end and wait for the 4.6 inch iphone 5 (nah, it's not that serious). It's either the galaxy s 2 advance or some other galaxy brand in the mid range dept meanwhile, still waiting for the official word on the 4.7/4.8 super beast.

  • Eric

    Whats interesting about the photo that people might not have seen is the battery indicator. It is green, which is typical of a gingerbread build, but is clearly an ICS build. Maybe this device is a mid class, and some of the other leaked photos previous could be their flagship GSIII with the same green battery icon.

    • Aaron Gingrich

      Actually, that's TouchWiz. The battery indicator is green on ICS running TouchWiz.

  • http://noonski.nl Noonski

    Another detail in the battery is the detailed percentage ;)

  • Dan

    Definitely a mid-range, or at least i hope so. If it does turn out to be the GSIII I certainly wont be making a purchase. The GSII looks better than this device.

  • https://plus.google.com/112562624243055818615 Sean

    Does this thing have a some kind of case/protector on it?

  • jooe

    I find the edges extremly ugly. The reason for it is that it is placed on a Galaxy Nexus, at least I think so:D

  • Kaunas

    To be quite frank, I wouldn't be entirely surprised if this turns out to be THE GSIII.

    Now...I hold huge respect for Samsung as a company and everything, but being a designer myself, I can not stress enough how much Samsung designers lack in creativity. Everything that Samsung has done in the GSII just kinda broke Android's identity and brought it as close to iOS as possible.

    The GSII externally was inspired by the iPhone 4, both in terms of the roundness of the corners as well as for the big home button that Samsung continues keeping on Android devices on and on again, even though, prior to ICS Android characteristically had 4 default buttons.

    Then comes TouchWiz, which screams out loud iOS philosophy. You have a docked panel of 4 icons at the bottom, and a grid of icons sliding left to right. Not to even mention what they did in the previous TouchWiz that came with the original Galaxy S. All the icons had frames with rounded corners which made the resemblance to iOS icons even more ridiculous. And to add even more to the flavor, despite Droid Sans being the default Android font prior to ICS, they went with Helvetica across the entire UI. And guess what, iOS's default font is Helvetica, Samsung just went with a thinner weight of the font.

    So, now that Apple has thrown a hell of a lot lawsuits, many of them being addressed to the design of GSII, it's no wonder that Samsung's designers had to come up with something theirs, maybe this is the maximum they can give on their own...

    And just for the record, I'm not a hardcore Apple fanboy of anything, I'm quite an avid Android user and I'm just being realistic, that's all.

  • Marcus

    I think the "GT-i9300" model number is in fact reserved for the GSIII. This would definitely make sense as it follows the numbering order of the previous two phones.

    However we may just be looking at a prototype chassis here. In all probability the software QA testers were given a run-of-the-mill looking device to bring out into the field so the chances of a leak would be lessened.

    • Alan Tucker

      I agree, given that my flatmate has a GSII with the model number GT-i9100-P, my Galaxy Nexus has the model number GT-i9250 then I would say that the GT-i9300 is the GSIII.

  • Xenonz

    Now packaging box in the wild http://twitpic.com/90lcwz

  • Semianonymous

     just noticed the design of the phone is spot on with the G2X/Optimus 2X. Wouldn't be surprised if someone put this together with a 2X on photoshop. Shrink the bezel, change some things, cut the home buttons...