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Samsung Galaxy S3 shipping 9 million phones ahead of launch

With still more than a week to go before it even hits shops, the Samsung Galaxy S3 has been pre-ordered over 9 million times.

With still more than a week to go before its official release, over 9 million orders for Samsung Galaxy S3 phones have been made by retailers around the globe.

The Korea Economic Daily reports that those 9 million early-bird orders have piled in from 290 phone networks and retailers in 145 different countries, including all the major networks here in the UK. Phones destined for people all around the world who have already parted with their cash -- or at least promised to -- by pre-ordering the feverishly-anticipated 4.8-inch sequel to the Galaxy S2.

The S2 hit 10 million sales a couple of months after its release, and it seems the S3 will be even more popular.

Not all of those orders are for exactly the same type of the phone, however. In Japan, the quad-core S3 will be shipped as a dual-core model instead, and here in the UK a 32Gb model with a roomier memory is only available on Vodafone for the first month.

If you haven't yet got your order in yet and want to secure the best package for your money, let us help with our regularly-updated Samsung Galaxy S3 price comparison guide. Not only will it steer you towards the very best S3 deals from all the networks, you might be surprised to discover that buying the phone outright could be a better deal. And while you're here, you might as well hit play on the video below to see why we're so excited about the S3.

Now playing: Watch this: Samsung Galaxy S3 hands-on

I must emphasise at this point just how much the word "pre-order" gets my goat. If you're placing an order, you're ordering something. It's one of those awful words that infests the world of technology, like 'form factor' or 'roll-out' or phone networks using 'range' as a verb.

Ahem. Anyway, if you're one of the 9 million and you placed your order at the Samsung shop in Westfield, Stratford, you can get your mitts on your S3 on 29 May, a whole night before the rest. For everyone else, the S3 hits doormats and shop shelves on Wednesday 30 May.

Does one of the happy 9 million S3s have your name on it? Have you ordered, or are you heading out on launch day? Tell me your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.