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Samsung Galaxy S3 hands-on (generic)

Samsung has made Android 4.3, aka Jelly Bean, available for UK editions of the Galaxy S3, bringing some swell new features to the smartphone as well as support for the Galaxy Gear smartwatch.

The software is available to download over the air now for Galaxy S3 owners who bought their handsets off-contract. To get it, just head to 'Settings' and select ‘More’. Done that? Good. Then go to ‘About device’ and choose ‘Software update’ to start the download.

If you got your phone via a monthly contract, you’ll have to wait until your carrier approves the update. That's having first ensured it plays nice with whatever bloatware and services they’ve stealthily dumped on your Galaxy S3.

Features Android 4.3 adds include a new keyboard and Samsung Knox - a security boost that enables you to firmly separate the work and leisure sections of your smartphone. You’ll also get better RAM management, Samsung Wallet and a new proprietary browser.

Android Jelly Bean colourful

Perhaps the most important thing from Samsung’s point of view, though, is that the arrival of 4.3 means that the Galaxy S3 can now be paired with the Galaxy Gear.

This brings the number of Samsung smartphones that support Samsung’s first foray into wearable technology to a grand total of three. The other two are the Galaxy Note 3 and the Galaxy S4, which received 4.3 earlier this month.

Samsung smartphones' widespread lack of compatibility with the Gear is thought to be one of the key reasons that the smartwatch is reportedly being returned in high numbers to Best Buy retail outlets in the US.

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