Nov 4, 2012

Posted by in Android, Phones | 4 Comments

Galaxy SIII Singapore Telco Price Comparison: SingTel vs Starhub vs M1

In recent days, a headline that has been hitting the blog sphere is a claim from Samsung that it has officially 30 millions (30,000,000) units of its Galaxy SIII. This news comes only 2 months after Samsung came out saying that they’ve sold 20 millions of the device. This means that for the month of September and October, they have sold 5 million Galaxy SIII each month. If this claim proves to be true, this would make S3 one of the best selling smartphone. But my check with Samsung Poland’s Twitter and Facebook page could not find the original tweet or post. Therefore, I’m not able to guarantee this latest claim. For now, let’s take it with a pinch of salt until we’ve more official updates from Samsung.

Samsung 30 millions SIII Sold

In Singapore, Samsung’s Galaxy S3 is one of the most popular Android phone. If you are thinking to get one for yourself, here is a check on the Galaxy SIII Singapore pricing across the three telcos – SingTel vs Starhub vs M1. Based on the numbers shown in the table below, it is straightforward to see which of the 3 telcos offer the lowest price if you have just finished your contract and probably looking around for the best options out there. But the sad truth is Samsung has so far made the 16GB version of Galaxy SIII available in Singapore. While the 32GB and 64GB version of the S3 has been made available in few countries such as Australia, there is no official word of confirmation yet from Samsung as to whether they will or will not release the 32GB and 64GB in Singapore.

Another thing to note when checking the price of the Galaxy S3 (whether it is from telco with contract or resale market without contract) is to check if the phone is LTE-enabled. It might be confusing to many and you have to know what you need to decide which one is right for you. Of course LTE is the hype currently. With all the 3 local operators having recently deployed their LTE networks, there is every reason for them to tout the benefit of LTE.

But before you jumped into the LTE hype, let’s take a step back. Did you know that Google’s recently released Nexus 4 phone is not equipped with LTE? (See: LG Nexus 4: Why No LTE?) There must be compelling reasons for Google to do away with LTE. One of the reason that bloggers have articulated is the non-uniform LTE standards that exist in different countries. I’m not saying that LTE will be a failure, just that I think it’s too early to say that you can get much benefit out of it. There has been many complaints of non-stable switching between 3G and 4G networks here in Singapore and globally.

The way I see it is the Galaxy SIII LTE would be great if you know what you get by paying the extra amount. Otherwise, I would rather stick to the non-LTE version of it. If you opt for Starhub’s SmartSurf Lite’s $38 monthly plan, doing away with the LTE option will save you $150 over two years. This could jolly well afford you a decent casing, screen protector and a bunch of other S3 accessories. But if you have to stick with SingTel and your plan choice is Flexi Value, then it does not make a difference if you opt for LTE or Non-LTE version. Over the course of two-years, the difference is only $20.

Telco price comparison for Samsung Galaxy SIII LTE 16GB:

SingTel
Flexi Lite
Starhub
SmartSurf Lite
M1
Value Surf+
Outgoing 100 mins 100 mins 100 mins
SMS/MMS 800 800 600
Local Data 2GB 2GB 2GB
Monthly Plan $39.90 $38.00 $39.00
Handset Price $468 $498 $598
24-months Total $1425.60 $1410.00 $1534.00
SingTel
Flexi Value
Starhub
SmartSurf Value
M1
Lite Surf+
Outgoing 200 mins 300 mins 300 mins
SMS/MMS 900 900 800
Local Data 3GB 4GB 3GB
Monthly Plan $59.90 $58.00 $59.00
Handset Price $198 $238 $498
24-months Total $1635.60 $1630.00 $1914.00

Telco price comparison for Samsung Galaxy SIII (Non-LTE) 16GB:

SingTel
Flexi Lite
Starhub
SmartSurf Lite
M1
Value Surf+
Outgoing 100 mins 100 mins 100 mins
SMS/MMS 800 800 600
Local Data 2GB 2GB 2GB
Monthly Plan $39.90 $38.00 $39.00
Handset Price $398 $348 N.A.
24-months Total $1355.60 $1260.00 N.A.
SingTel
Flexi Value
Starhub
SmartSurf Value
M1
Lite Surf+
Outgoing 200 mins 300 mins 300 mins
SMS/MMS 900 900 800
Local Data 3GB 4GB 3GB
Monthly Plan $59.90 $58.00 $59.00
Handset Price $178 $178 N.A.
24-months Total $1615.60 $1570.00 N.A.

M1 SIII Price

Note: Based on my last check with M1 site, they do not seem to offer 16GB version of the Galaxy SIII Non-LTE.

  1. Nicholas Stefanus says:

    Nice Comparison Thanks :D

  2. Nice article. Very useful, Thank you so much.

  3. Shirley says:

    May I consult you, would it be a better choice if we sign up for
    Singtel Flexi Value over Flexi Lite as the Handset price differed by S$270 and the total difference between these 2 plans are S$210.00. Total saving of S$60.00.
    Thank you for your time.
    Rgds/Shirley

    • Jon Cheng says:

      Hi Shirley,

      That’s a very good question. Before I try to answer your question, I think there is a slight miscalculation on your part? At the end of 2 years period, the difference between the two plans adds up to S$210. The total value shown above already includes the handset price. So, the difference is S$210 and not $60.

      Whether you go for the Flexi Value over Flexi Lite, it depends on your usage. In my opinion, the only additional thing you get from the extra $$$ you paid for the Flexi Value is the talktime. Other than the talktime, everything is worthless. Check your monthly data consumption. With Singtel’s crawling network, I bet you could use up the entire 2GB. So, the additional 1GB you get is virtually useless. But this is assuming that you turn to WiFi when you’re at home or in the office. Then with WhatsApp making SMS/MMS almost irrelevant these days, I’ll leave it to you to judge if the additional SMS/MMS is of any worth at all.

      Hope that helps answer your question.

      -jc

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