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Samsung Galaxy S3 or S4

Helpful Neighbour

I am getting a new cell phone and have decided on a Samsung Galaxy.  I'm torn though between getting the S3 for $0 or the S4 for $199.  The only reason I am considering the S4 is for the camera features.  I'm trying to decide whether it's worth the money or whether I should forget about it and just go with the S3.


If you own or have even used both, what one do you recommend?



From a typical consumer standpoint, yes the $0 price of the S3 is much more appealing than a $200 S4, but with that said, keep in mind that since you are paying $0 for a phone, you start with a higher device balance. That means that if you decide to buy a new phone in the future, the "early upgrade fee" is much more than that of a $200 S4. All in all, the device balance is amortized with a 36 month term, and if your planning to keep the phone for more than 2 years, the S3 is a very good choice.


As far as the differences goes between both phones, and not taking the price into consideration, the S4 camera has been upgraded and the physical dimensions of the phone are smaller, but able to give you a bigger screen size. Many other features have been packed into the S4 as well such as, hovering your hand over the phone to answer a call (I'm sure you've seen that advertised somewhere!) If you are new to smartphones, the S3 is a lot of phone already. Personally, I don't use all the features the S4 comes with, but since I am a tech enthusiast, I need the latest and greatest!


Hope that helps you making your final decision! Both phones are great, the one thing you should ask yourself is, "Am I going to take advantage of the new features on the S4, and will I plan to get a new phone before my contract fully finishes?"



Helpful Neighbour

Thanks!   We were planning on having the phone (whichever one we choose) for 2 years and then buying out the last year.  I honestly didn't even think about the higher device balance.  So basically even if we go with the S3 we're going to pay more when we want to buy out that last year anyway.


The air gesture features etc aren't a draw for me as I know I won't be using them.  I just really like the camera and the new features it has.  Any phone will be an improvement over my Blackberry 8530


S4, definitely, although the S3 isn't so bad itself. Just a few differences in terms of camera and OS. I'm a proud S4 user myself.

Just Moved In

Hi, I don't know if you already got your phone, but look at it this way, the S3 (I have one) is an excellent phone. When it gets updated to Android 4.2.2 it will have all of the same features that the S4 has, except for the hardware features.


When buying the phone, the starting price of the S3 is $650 with $0 down. For 36 months, you pay $18/month out of your plan price for the phone so at the end of the 36 month contract, the phone is paid for.

The S4 is $700 with $229 (as of today) down, that leaves $471 or $13/month. If you plan on getting a new phone in 2 years, you will have to pay $159 to pay out the contract. With the S3,

you will have to pay $217 to buy out the contract.


That's $217 for the S3 and $159 plus the original $229 you paid at the beginning of the contract for a total of $388 for the S4.


The S3 seems like a better choice to me considering the S3 still can compete with any phone out there for the everyday user and at a savings of $171 (Plus tax).




After years of Blackberrys and iPhones, I finally got an S3 when I was with Rogers and I must say, after years in the telecommunications field and being given all the best devices when released, the S3 is the best communications device / Smartphone I have ever had the privilege of owning! When I look at my unlocked iPhone 5, I actually get depressed for a moment thinking "how could I have waited for so long and have settled for so LESS"??


Remember, just because you have a top of the line device, doesn't mean you will have a top of the line experience.  The carrier you choose is EQUALLY important from my experience!!

Thank You Samsung & Telus for changing my life 🙂



All the previous posts are great and informative!  You can also read up on the specification differences (if they matter to you) on Samsung's site.  This link might not work, but give it a go

It's a good idea to try them both out as well!  Aside from the cost differences & specs, it really does come down to personal preferences. IMO the Samsung s3 can still hold its own in the current smartphone ecosystem! Robot Happy


For me what it comes down to on this is absolutely the device balance. From what you have said, you only want the phone for 2 years and then will be upgrading so with that being said, my question becomes, do you want to pay now or later? the handset values are a difference of $50 currently.


If you do the S4, you pay $200 up front.  That reduces your device balance to roughly $500 done over 3 years.  If you want to do a new phone at exactly 2 years in you'll still have to pay the remaining $166.67.  Net outlay for you is then $366.67


If you do the S3, you pay $0 up front but the phone still costs $650.  Spread that over 3 years and you are looking at a device balance of $216.67.  In this your net outlay is then just the $216.67.


S4 is a quad core, S3 a dual core so processing will be slower but for what most people do, the speed difference would be negligible.  


Basically what you are left with is do you want to pay the $200 now and still have to pay another roughly $200 after taxes later or do you want to forego the initial outlay for the device and pay marginally more in 2 years.


If you're a hard core gamer or planning on doing any processer intensive applications like video editing etc, go for the S4.  Otherwise, save your money and do the S3.