Why Galaxy S3?It is well supported in Replicant, almost every driver is already open source. The hardware specs are acceptable, 1.4Ghz quad core, 1GB ram, microsd, and all the peripheral chips one expects for a phone. Galaxy S3 has sold insanely (50 million units supposedly), meaning I won't run out of accessories and aftermarket spare parts any time soon. The massive installed base also means a huge potential user community. S3 is still available as new, with two years of warranty.
Why notWhile the S3 is still available new, it is safe to assume production is ending already - 1.5 year old product is ancient history in mobile world! It remains to be seen how much the massive user base will defend against the obsolescence. Upstream kernel support for "old" cpu is open question, replicant is still basing kernel on vendor kernel. Bootloader is unlocked, but it can't be changed due to trusted^Wtreacherous computing, preventing things like boot from sd card. Finally, not everything is open source, the GPU (mali) driver while being reverse engineered, is taking it's time - and the GPS hasn't been reversed yet.
Installing replicantBefore install, from the original installation, you might want to take a copy of firmware files (since replicant won't provide them). enable developer mode on the S3 and:
sudo apt-get install android-tools mkdir firmware adb pull /system/vendor/firmware/ adb pull /system/etc/wifiAfter then, just follow official replicant install guide for S3. If you don't mind closed source firmwares, post-install you need to push the firmware files back:
adb shell mount -o remount,rw /system adb push . /system/vendor/firmwareHere was my first catch, the wifi firmwares from jelly bean based image were not compatible with older ICS based replicant.