After mesmerizing Android fans with its latest flagship smartphone, Galaxy S3, Samsung is now eyeing enterprise customers and has announced its first SAFE-branded Android smartphone in the U.S. - a secured version of the new Galaxy S3.

Besides the SAFE-branded Galaxy S3, which will be available at AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless and US Cellular by July, Samsung has also announced SAFE2SWITCH, a trade-in program that offers competitive pricing for qualifying smartphones for both individuals and enterprise customers.

According to Samsung, SAFE, which stands for Samsung Approved For Enterprise, helps defragment the Android OS across multiple versions from Gingerbread to Ice Cream Sandwich at US carriers.

The SAFE-branded Galaxy S3 supports a full suite of enterprise-ready features and capabilities with support for 338 IT Policies that includes on-device AES-256 bit encryption, enhanced support for Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync and support for industry-leading Virtual Private Network (VPN) and Mobile Device Management (MDM) solutions.

The company said that the goal behind the initiative is to cater to the BYOD (bring your own device) market, where users want their individual devices to play nicely with their corporate infrastructure, while businesses fear insecure devices being let loose filled with the firm's secrets, Slash Gear reported.

Samsung said that SAFE is a quality assurance program, developed in collaboration with enterprise customers and industry-leading solutions providers. The program began with MDM and VPN solutions providers using Samsung's software development kit to deeply integrate their solution on the SAFE device, before thorough testing and verification.

This collaboration, coupled with the testing process, creates solutions that are optimized for SAFE devices and enterprise use including adoption within regulated industries such as healthcare, financial services and government, Samsung said in a statement.

SAFE2SWITCH

Along with the announcement of the SAFE-branded Galaxy S3, Samsung has also announced SAFE2SWITCH, a new trade-up program that hopes to attract users of rival devices to trade in their phones for a Galaxy S3. According to the company, the program is open to both prosumers and corporate customers, offering competitive trade-in values for their existing smartphone or Internet-connected device.

Folks at Wireless And Mobile News said that they tried to trade-in a few devices through SAFE2SWITCH and were able to hit the jackpot of $300 for an iPhone 4S 64GB.

Below are some of the devices against their trade-in value, courtesy of Wireless And Mobile News:

  • AT&T Samsung Galaxy S2: $150
  • Samsung Captive: $40
  • AT&T BlackBerry Bold 9900: $150
  • 16GB iPhone 4S: $215 or $43 (if the screen is broken)
  • One year old Motorola Atrix: $75
  • Verizon HTC Rezound: $220
  • Verizon Droid: $65
  • Verizon Galaxy Nexus: $185
  • Verizon Droid RAZR MAXX: $275

Although Samsung referred to Galaxy S3 as its first SAFE-branded smartphone, there are apparently a few other smartphones in SAFE2SWITCH as well, including Galaxy S2, Galaxy Note and Galaxy Nexus. For more information, click here.

For more information on SAFE, click here.

Meanwhile, take a look at the key features and specs of the Samsung Galaxy S3 below.

Galaxy S3's other features include AllShare Play, Group Cast and Share Shot functions allowing users to share photos with others. Another feature, S-Beam, allows easy transfer of large files from Galaxy S3 to another device by touching the backs of the two devices.

The much talked about feature of Galaxy S3 is S Voice, a language recognition technology allowing customers to control applications and services with words instead of touch. The handset also includes camera features like Best Shot to choose the best image from a series when taking a photo.

OS: Android 4.0 (ICS)

Display: 4.8-inch (12.192cm) HD Super AMOLED display with 720 x 1280 resolutions.

Processor: Dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor clocked at 1.5GHz.

Camera: 8 megapixels Rear-facing camera; 1.9 megapixels Front-facing camera.

Dimension: 70.6X136.6X8.6 (HxWxD).

Network And Wireless Connectivity: EDGE/GPRS (850/900/1800/1900 MHZ); HSPA+; Bluetooth 4.0; NFC.

Battery: 2100 mAh battery.