Well it’s been about a week since we heard some juicy and unsubstantiated rumors about the Samsung Galaxy S III… which means we’re long overdue. MyBroadband reports that a spokesman from the South African branch of Virgin Mobile said that they plan to offer the phone some time in the third quarter, with local carrier Cell C replying that they’d have it some time in July. A third carrier, MTN, said that they’d offer the Galaxy S III instead of the Galaxy Nexus, but didn’t give a time frame for the former.

A late summer/early fall release makes sense, if the rumors that Samsung is delaying the Galaxy S III to better prepare for the iPhone 5 launch are true. And we stress, those are just rumors – Samsung won’t be bringing the next Galaxy flagship to Mobile World Congress this month, but that could just be because it needs more time in development. However, the fact that Samsung has decided to hold its own event, Apple-style, certainly lends credence to the idea that they want their own private limelight.

We’d talk about the Galaxy S III’s rumored specifications, but honestly, there’s been so much back and forth and the release is so far away that there isn’t much point. (The photo above is an optimistic fan render.) It’s safe to assume that the phone will have at least a 4.5-inch screen using Samsung’s 720p Super AMOLED display, and rock Ice Cream Sandwich with Touchwiz. Beyond that, it’s all speculation: 3D lenticular technology, waterproof casings, and a built-in bottle opener – take your pick. We won’t be seeing the GSIII at Mobile World Congress, but the smart money is on third-generation Samsung tablets showing up.

[via Phone Arena]