Samsung today announced that a 4G version of its flagship Galaxy S III smartphone, the Galaxy S III 4G, is about to officially hit the shelves in Australia. Just how fast is this smartphone? We found out first hand today at the Optus store in George Street, Sydney.
Both Optus and Telstra will launch the Galaxy S III 4G in Australia but the big news is that the Samsung Galaxy S III 4G will be the first smartphone to launch on the new Optus 4G network. The network was officially launched today in Sydney, Perth and Newcastle, while 4G services in Melbourne will start from Saturday 15 September.
According to the telco, Optus 4G coverage stretches up to 10km from Sydney's CBD to cover suburbs like Port Botany and Chifley in Sydney's south, Brookvale and Dee Why north of Sydney, Vaucluse and Bondi Beach in the east and Silverwater and Homebush in western Sydney. The 4G network will also service Newcastle, including areas like Maryland, Edgeworth and Cessnock, and will stretch up to 15-20km from the Perth CBD in Western Australia.
The new Optus 4G network promises download speeds of up to 50Mbps, which is around seven times faster than what you can achieve on a 3G networks. To put these speed claims to the test, we managed to get our hands on one of the first Samsung Galaxy S III 4G smartphones in the country at the Optus store on George Street, Sydney.
The fastest download speed we managed to achieve in a brief hands-on with the Galaxy S III 4G on the Optus network was around 35 megabits per second (Mbps). In general, 4G data download speeds ranged from just under 20Mbps to just over 26Mbps, while upload speeds ranged from just under 6Mbps up to almost 9Mbps.
As you can see, the Galaxy S III 4G had between two and four bars of 4G reception during our test. Also keep in mind that with the Optus 4G network only launching today, network congestion is minimal. As more people use the network, you can expect speeds to vary.
The Samsung Galaxy S III will be available through both the Optus and Telstra 4G networks in Australia. Optus will get first dibs — it will sell the titanium grey model of the Samsung Galaxy S III 4G and promises customers who pre-order the device by Mon 17 September should receive the phone on Thursday 20 September. Telstra will follow with a launch sometime in October, but there's been no word on pricing or specific availability.
Are you impressed with the 4G network speeds of the Samsung Galaxy S III 4G on Optus? Are you planning to upgrade? Let us know in the comments below!
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• Optus 4G network goes live (+ maps, plans, images)
• No 4G Galaxy S III, no problem, says Samsung
• Telstra: 4G will serve 66 per cent of Australia by mid-2013