Samsung Galaxy S3 launch falls short of iPhone buzz

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The long-awaited store release of the Samsung Galaxy S3 was branded a damp squib by some attendees, as Tuesday's launch event failed to pull in the kind of crowds seen at for the iPhone 4S's arrival back in October.

Observers at the event, which took place at Samsung's flagship store in Westfield shopping centre, Stratford, estimated around 300 to 400 people were queuing outside the shop beforehand - a fraction of the thousands that flocked to Covent Garden last year to greet the Apple smartphone.

After weeks and months of anticipation, and a high-budget unveiling that packed out Earls Court earlier in May, Samsung bosses will have hoped the online hype that surrounded the phone's release was more apparent in footfall at Westfield on Tuesday. Grandeur, ceremony and fan fervour have become all important by-products of new gadgets from the tech-giants.

The shop was also seen turning away customers who had pre-ordered the pebble-blue model of the S3. Many such buyers are now forced to play the waiting game after a manufacturing error left a major shortfall of the blue phones.

But a low-key launch and a few unhappy customers won't detract from the fact that pre-orders for the S3 were double that of Apple's 4S. It's the sales that count for Sammy.

Stay tuned for a comprehensive review of the Galaxy S3 from our mobile expert, Rob Kerr.