May 3rd has come and gone, spilling the beans on the latest and greatest from Samsung. If, for some reason, you've been underground all week then never fear, we've written up all the highlights on the latest phone right here.
One little tidbit from Thursday is that the Galaxy S3 will have an exclusive time window on Flipboard for Android. Now, Flipboard has been around for quite some time and has oft been pegged as one of the iPad's "killer" apps. It's essentially a better version of Google currents – this isn't to say that I have anything against Google currents in fact, I rather enjoy Currents on my tablet. I say better because it fits its purpose alot better than I feel Currents does. Currents gives you a more relaxing manner in which to ingest your favourite internet morsels – as does Flipboard – but, that's all that currents offers. There's no revolutionary interaction with the content, you interact with it just like you would anything else – it's just easier. Flipboard, on the other hand, presents the user with a much more fluid and interactive manner to deal with content, it acts like a digital magazine, quite literally you're flipping boards to get to the next page. Part of being able to consume content like this is the experience – I still read a fair few print magazines from time-to-time such as Linux Format and Edge, because its a good way to read, I'm not just staring at content laid out on a screen. Flipboard tries to find the happy medium with this and brings interactivity back to reading without being coy or cheesy – I'm looking at you, iBooks – it's a way for you to regain some of what makes reading in print so relaxing without scrimping on features. Zinio comes close to this for me but, it isn't quite there yet. Whilst I'm happy to read a magazine digitally, I'd be far happier to if it felt like I was reading a magazine instead of just staring at its pages. Something I hope that Flipboard for Android will fix.
What does it mean that the Galaxy S3 will ship with Flipboard before its wider release? Well, not a lot really and, here's why. For one thing, we don't even know how long their exclusive window on the app is and I wouldn't bet that it's an overly big window – I wouldn't be surprised if we saw Flipboard for Android launching near the beginning of June just weeks after the Galaxy S3's launch. Something else needed to take into account is that Samsung already have their 'Reading Hub' (seriously surprised they didn't go with S Books) so it stands to reason that any content – if any at all – that Sammy have exclusive rights to distribute would be in their Reading Hub and not piled into Flipboard. So, really, this time window means very little. Sure, we get to ooh and ahh at how pretty it looks on that lovely screen – which seems pretty nice – but all in all, it just means we'll have to wait a little longer than we were going to have to anyway.