- Samsung unveiled latest flagship smartphone at Apple-style launch party in London
- Eye-tracking and voice-control revealed as key new features
- Owners get 4.8" screen, quad-core processor, NFC payments, voice control and face-recognition
- Wireless charging kit removes the clutter of wires
- Mail Online verdict: 'Samsung has raised the stakes here - and Apple will have to do something truly special to beat this'
Samsung last night unveiled its latest flagship device, the Galaxy S3, the follow-up to last year's best-selling phone in the world.
The smartphone market moves on once more, with the hi-tech voice-controlled Galaxy S3 likely to becomes a standard-bearer for Google’s Android operating system - and a device for the Apple refuseniks.
The phone’s most innovative feature is built-in face-tracking and voice control - allowing, Samsung claims, for a more 'natural' control system.
Other innovations include what Samsung claims is a 'more intelligent' lock system, that keeps the screen 'awake' when the phone’s camera senses eyes watching it, rather than turning it off.
Some of the apps pre-installed on the S3
The phone’s front camera can also shoot in HD - still rare in smartphones - and take still images at the same time.
Sharing photos with friends is also speeded up by face-recognition technology - which offers to 'share' photos with any friends detected in a photo using hi-tech face recognition, sharing either by text message or email, with a bubble popping up over each person's face with the option to send the photo to them.
The S2 is expected to cost around £35-£40 per month. Carphone Warehouse said their tariffs would start for £36 on a 24-month contract.
The S3 also contains voice controls - which brings it up to speed with the iPhone's Siri - but users may be wondering if it will be another damp squib.
Despite the fun of Apple's Siri, most users prefer traditional controls over speaking to their phone, and the feature which launched the iPhone 4s is not used by many users.
The Samsung Galaxy S3 will be heavily promoted with a worldwide advertising campaign starting this week.
Samsung is now the biggest phone manufacturer in the world, and for this launch they took a page out of Apple's marketing guide and kept everything hush-hush.
Even Samsung's invite to journalists and enthusiasts for the launch in Earl's Court, London, played it quiet - simply inviting people to 'come and meet the next Galaxy'.
The stylus-equipped Galaxy Note was a hit for Samsung, proving there is a market for devices with five-inch screens