Okay, well I've had my GS3 for a few weeks now and am really enjoying it over my previous flip-phone (this is my 1st smart phone). Have a few rookie questions that I'm hoping this board can help me with. I've tried searching and read many threads but some of the informations seems scattered for me.

SMS/MMS apps - I don't necessarily hate the stock messaging app, but would like it more if it were able to group messages from the many iPhone friends I have. There is a select group (motorcycle club I'm part of) that use this feature ALOT and I can't stand seeing all the replies coming in as separate threads from each person. I'm trying the Verizon App (I read this corrects the group messaging matter), seems okay but appears to lag compared to stock. Also, I'm not a fan of not being able to see the # of unread text messages I have. Additionally, I HATE having to use the notification bar - take off the notification and then I don't get the LED light or the ringtone alert. Stock messenger allowed the ringtone & LED withouth use of the notification message. So - is there an app that can accomplish all that I"m after without heavy ads or bloatware??

Launchers - being new to this world, I have no issues with TouchWiz but am now going to start experimenting with others. I've read that Nova is one of the top but to get all the extra features, you must pay for it. Is there really any true difference in how each of these react?

Camera / Gallery - are there better 3rd party apps compared to stock?


I love being able to tweak things up and personalize it, but there is so much out there that it's hard to grasp and figure out what works well.

Thanks all!