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Samsung Galaxy S3 features: top tips and tricks

Discover all the nifty things the Galaxy S3 can do

Samsung has launched its highly anticipated Galaxy S3 smartphone. It runs Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich but Samsung has added its own clever features, or ‘easter eggs’, which are scattered around the operating system. See alsoGroup test: What's the best smartphone?

We’ve put together this list of 10 neat tricks that the Galaxy S3 has up its sleeve which you might not know about.

See also: Samsung Galaxy S3 vs HTC One X comparison review.

Samsung Galaxy S3: S Voice

The voice recognition software that comes with the Galaxy S3 is called S Voice. To access it while using the phone simply double tap the Home button. You can also access it from the lock screen by saying "Hi Galaxy" or a customised command. Four additional voice commands can then be set each with its own task like opening the camera app for example.

Galaxy S3 S Voice

Samsung Galaxy S3: Smart Stay

Samsung has added a lot of extra software features to the Galaxy S3. One of the main ones is called Smart Stay. This uses eye-tracking technology to recognise when you are looking at the screen. If you are then it automatically disables the screen timeout. Smart Stay can be switched on and off from the Display settings menu.

Samsung Galaxy S3: Multi-tasking

The Samsung Galaxy S3 runs Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich which has a multi-tasking function called 'recent apps'. While most smartphones running this version have a dedicated key for this, the Galaxy S3 just has Home, Menu and Back.

You can still access the recent apps part of the operating system by holding down the Home button – for about 2 second. You can then switch between open apps or close them by swiping them off the screen to the left or right.

Samsung Galaxy S3: Direct Call

The Galaxy S3 has a number of features which are activated by motion. Direct Call will automatically call a contact if their log, contact, or message details are on the screen and you move the handset to your ear. Direct Call can be switched on and off in the Motion section of the settings menu.

Galaxy S3 Direct Call

Samsung Galaxy S3: Tap to top

Give the Galaxy S3 a double tap on the top, next to the headphone socket, with your finger to scroll to the top of your contact list, email list or email messages. Tap to top can be switched on and off in the Motion section of the settings menu.

See also: Samsung Galaxy S3 vs Apple iPhone 4S comparison review.

Samsung Galaxy S3: Smart alerts

The aim of Smart alerts is to notify you of any missed messages or calls you receives while your Galaxy S3 was not is use – sitting on a desk for example. The next time you pick it up it will vibrate to alert you to any missed calls of messages. Smart alerts can be switched on and off in the Motion section of the settings menu.

Galaxy S3 Smart alerts

Samsung Galaxy S3: Camera quick launch

You can also use the motion control to quickly open the camera app. From the lock screen you just have to tap and hold the screen with one finger, then rotate the handset into landscape mode and the camera app with open.

Samsung Galaxy S3: Take a screenshot

If you want to take a screenshot on the Galaxy S3 you have to turn on 'Palm swipe to capture' in the Motion settings menu. Swipe the screen from left to right or vice versa with the side of your hand to take a screen shot.

Samsung Galaxy S3: Palm touch to pause

If you're listening to music or watching a video and need to pause it then you can do this by simply covering the Galaxy S3 with the palm of your hand. This can be switched on and off in the Motion section of the settings menu.

Samsung Galaxy S3: Pop-out video player

If you feel the burning desire to do something on the Galaxy S3 while watching a video simultaneously, you can. When using the video player app there is an icon in the bottom right corner to make the video play in a pop-out window. You can move it around the screen by dragging it and carry on with other tasks. Just tap the video to go full screen again.

Galaxy S3 pop-out video player

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