The Galaxy S3 is the best-in-class smartphone in the world?

Samsung pointed out that while the screen is 22 per cent larger than the previous S2, the ‘bezel’ around it has been slimmed down, so that the gadget is barely bigger than its predecessor.

The gadget will launch on May 29 in Europe, and in 10 other cities worldwide including Tokyo and Dubai.

The gadget also has some features clearly aimed at the business market once dominated by BlackBerry.

On-device encryption will allow secure emails working within business networks – catering for the new trend for businesses allowing employees to ‘bring their own’ smartphones rather than using company phones.

The NFC chip will also be used for tap-to-pay mobile payments, in partnership with Visa, with a ‘virtual wallet’ on the device making payment simple.

The phone is also armed with a battery claimed to last longer than other devices – despite a form factor which is 8.6mm thin and 130g in weight.

The phone has an eight megapixel camera – on a par with both iPhone 4S and the previous Galaxy S2.

The device was presented by Samsung president JK Shin, who said: ‘There were a lot of rumours and speculation – some were right, and some were wrong.

‘The Galaxy S3 is the best-in-class smartphone in the world.’

The phone was shown off by The Gadget Show’s Suzi Perry at a high-profile event at London’s Earls Court exhibition centre – a large, clearly expensive stage show that had a distinct resemblance to Apple’s well-choreographed showings for new iPhones and iPads.

‘This is the biggest launch event of the year,’ said Perry.

Samsung is also to launch a range of pop-up shops which will show off the handset around Europe – announcing this in a way reminiscent of Steve Job’s traditional, ‘One last thing,’ at their product launches.

A new feature called ‘Pop up Play’ enables multitasking – so that you can, for instance, put a video in a window on screen, then use other apps with the rest of the screen.

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