Hey guys. I know I am new to this forum but I have been going back and forth between the GS3 and Razr Maxx HD. My current phone is a Droid Incredible 2, but the microphone stopped working (even on speakerphone) so I had to ditch it. I have an old Droid Eris with a cracked screen (replaced it with DI2 back in june 2011) that I have been using for the last few days. However, that one has its own issues and I definitely need to get something new. So I have been doing some research and trying to compare these two phone. Everything you guys have said seems to be on par with what I have seen. GS camera is better, obviously Maxx HD has better battery, all the specs on par, etc. I've gone through many reviews and the comparisons that I could find. It really has come down to personal preference. Unfortunately, I am a very indecisive person so choosing based on personal preference makes it that much harder. I'll go into a little detail about what I am basing my decisions on and the main differences between the phones. I know this will be very long but it should be detailed enough to help anyone else in the same predicament that I am in. Hopefully more will chime in and maybe make some things stand out more to help me make a decision in the next day or two.
Obviously I love the battery life in the Maxx HD more than the S3. The one thing I'm still unsure of is whether or not I would like it removable. I'm not worried about needing to replace it for a second battery or anything like that. I work in an office and have chargers pretty much everywhere I am - all cars, at work, a couple at home, extras out the wazoo. They are super cheap from places like Monoprice.com so I have a bunch. I never once owned a second battery for that purpose. And if I do require more than a full charge with no recharge, I can always use a battery pack that plugs into it, instead of having to shutt down the phone and replace the battery. I do have a second battery for my DI2 because I've had two DI2s lol the charging port on the first one broke so I bought another through craigslist and have the second. My charging port went bad again on the the next one also. This leads me to why I would like a removable battery. In the event that a charging port breaks or becomes loose to where it doesn't charge, I would like to be able to pull out the battery, charge it on an external charger, and then pop it back in so that I can back everything up before going to get it fixed or going to get a new phone. However, after some thought, I did realize that chances are I am going to find out that the port is bad before my battery has completely died. I will at least probably notice that it has to sit in a certain spot and then charge it that way. Then I'd get it fixed before it doesn't charge at all. Also, if I plug it in and find out that it wont charge, chances are it is not completely dead yet so I can start backing up quickly. So the removable battery isn't too big of a deal. It wont only matter to me if the port breaks. And knowing that I have much more battery life means that I wont be plugging it in so much anyway so the port should last.
Many people have not mentioned the differences between these phones between removable storage. I didn't see a single post on here and only one review about it. Both phones have 32 GB internal storage (the GS3 has an option of 16 or 32 GB). But the real difference that would affect me is that the Maxx HD can support up a 32 GB microSDHC card, whereas the GS3 can support up to a 64 GB microSDXC card! Anyone nearing the limit of a 32 GB card should think about that. I have a 32 GB card in my DI2 that is 3 GB away from full. I do have a lot of stuff on there that could come off though. I have 16 GB of music on it (although about 3 GB of it isnt actually music files and can come off). I also have about 7 GB of pics that could be cleaned up a little and some other backed up stuff on there. So technically I could get it down to 20-22 GB and free up plenty of space. I could pretty much be fine with a 32 GB card but having that extra piece of mind to be able to go to 64 GB would be kind of nice.
Obviously, the GS3 is built with plastic and is much cheaper looking than the Razr. I love the razr's design. It looks much more professional than the GS3. Even the graphics look bold and more professional whereas the interface on the GS3 seems to be more soft and looks like a toy. I know that that part is just software so I wont use that as a factor, but I don't really care to change much like that on it. However, I plan to put the phone (either one) in an Otterbox Defender case so the look of the phone wont even be noticed, ever. Also, the strength and durability of the phone wont be much of a factor because it is in the case and I would expect it to be pretty well protected. Otterbox will replace the phone if it is damaged in their case anyway. That leads me to the next point.
Being that I want an Otterbox (I have one on my DI2 and LOVE it), I looked into them. They currently do not have a case available for the Razr Maxx HD yet. It is listed on their website but still not yet out. I called to find out when but they did not have an exact date, even though the rep told me they typically have them out within a couple weeks of it being listed online. So it should be soon. The GS3 cases are obviously out but I saw many reviews about them where the silicon's bottom edge was stretching and no longer attaching to the plastic enclosure. This concerns me. Otterbox will replace their cases no problem though. They are in the process of sending me a new DI2 case right now and I didn't even buy it from them. I got it from the person that sold me the second DI2. I just don't wanna have to replace it constantly if it's going to be an issue. The other problem I have heard with that case comes from the physical button. Apparently, it is very close to bottom lip of the case and some people have trouble pressing the button because of it. That's not really something I want to deal with. I already don't care for the physical button and needing it but having trouble pressing it would be annoying. If I get the Razr, I could be very careful with it until the cases are out or I may just get a cheap case somewhere and a screen protector until then, which is probably what I would do.
Not really too concerned with this, even knowing that the GS3 has a better camera, front and back. I have a GoPro video camera as well as a 14 MP Samsung digital camera so the phone is definitely not my primary (or even secondary) camera. I will definitely use it though but the camera in my DI2 takes excellent shots so if the Razr has a better camera than that, there will be no complaints. Many have said that it is just fine unless you want a professional camera, which I don't.
The GS3 definitely has more software features pre-loaded but many of them are really not any better or any more useful than something I can use on the Razr. Apparently, S-Voice is just horrible and doesn't work much of the time. S Beam is supposedly nice but I'm not sure how different it is from using Android Beam on other phones. I guess it combines Android Beam and WiFi Direct into one seamless action to transfer larger files. I'm not sure how you transfer larger files through NFC with others like the Razr or if you use WiFi Direct to do that. I tried at the store between two different Razrs but without looking at directions on how to do it, I really had no clue. I couldn't even find a simple thing like maybe "share with NFC" through the picture sharing menu, much like the share with bluetooth or send as text stuff. I'll have to see if I can read up on it. Anyone that has experience with it, please let me know how to do it. I may ask at the store about it. Samsung's AllShare stuff would be nice to have but after thinking about it, I had never used any AllShare features on my other Samsung devices or ever even wanted to plug in my phone to a TV. I have many Samsung TVs and Blu-ray players. It's really the only brand I ever buy due to amazing quality, but I mean it when I say STEER CLEAR of their appliances. Went with all new Samsung appliances (oven, microwave, dishwasher, fridge) and every single one has some issue with it, even after just 30 days. Back to the phones, I never really plan on sharing wirelessly to TVs. Come to thing of it, I'm not sure why but maybe its because I never had a Samsung device to transfer from (never had any Samsung computers) so I'm used to just plugging in HDMI. That also leads me to not like the GS3 in that it does not have a microHDMI port. You have to buy a special adapter to get it. The Razr has it right there on the side. As for the home screens and interface, I have no real preference. I never used Touchwiz so until I do, I won't know if I like it. I do prefer to keep my main home screen in the middle and others to the side like HTC Sense was on the DI2, instead of the Razr where the main one is all the way to the left (with a settings screen left of it which is nice). I do like the SmartTag NFC thing. It may be pretty useful but apparently you can still buy the tags from Samsung and use them with any NFC phone since the app for it is not just specific to the GS3. SmartStay is also pretty cool in that it sees your eyes and knows that you are still looking at the phone so it does not dim or shut the display. Smart Alert vibrates the phone when you have a missed call or notification and you haven't used the phone lately. Direct Call allows you to just put the phone to your ear while you are texting someone and it will start calling them. I have done that before so it is a pretty neat feature. I use Handcent SMS on my DI2 and that has a call button right at the top so it's easy enough already to start calling them while texting. So the Direct Call isnt much of a benefit for me. Just something they threw in I guess. All of those are features on the GS3, which is obviously packed full of them. There may very well be apps out there though that can do a lot of that stuff. It just depends on if the hardware is capable of it. The Razr doesn't have too many features worth noting like the GS3. It does, however, have SmartActions which is supposedly really nice and sounds like it would be very useful for me. I haven't really included it as much of a factor though because there are other apps available that do those things. I hear Tasker is really nice but it $6.49. I'm not gonna let six bucks influence my $200 decision though lol
I have heard that the radios (antennae) in the Razr are better than those on the GS3. Many people have said (I think some in this thread) that they experienced more dropped calls on the GS3 than the Razr. That is definitely something worth noting if true. However, I have heard that the signal is better GS3. So who knows. I would be interested to know if the speakers and volume are better/louder on the Razr or GS3 though. I have heard the Razr has a pretty loud external speaker so that's something to note also. The GS3 does have twice the RAM that the Razr has but I'm not sure if it helps. I have heard benchmarks that put the Razr right up there with the GS3. I have heard that Touchwiz is more memory intensive so it would need that extra GB of RAM but does it just balance it out or give it even more of a boost than needed? I am not going to sit on my phone and use like five apps at one time and I also do use Advanced Task Manager so I'm sure the extra RAM probably wouldn't be needed in my case.
The prices of comparable models are the same from what I have seen. I'm not sure if I can post information on here about retailers and their prices so I'll let other do the comparison shopping. I can say that I saw no difference in prices of the two phones when at the same retailer and comparing 32 GB to 32 GB internal memory and 16 GB to 16 GB (Razr HD, not Razr Maxx HD).
I think that wraps up everything I had to say about it. I am leaning toward the Razr Maxx HD right now because the software features don't matter to me much, the camera doesn't matter, the RAM not so much, the removable battery not so much. My main considerations are the removable SD card and the battery life. But I think I would be fine with the 32 GB card. I also liek the more professional look of the Razr. Even though it will be in a case, there is still that more professional, bold look to the software on the Razr. If anyone else has any comments or questions, please let me know. You can tell I've done the research. I just need to make the decision now lol