Am I doing it wrong/missing something?

Hi guys,

I was pretty stoked when I upgraded to the S3 coming from the 3GS, even while my girlfriend was right next to me getting the iPhone 5. I had watched countless reviews of the phone as well as coverage on YouTube, specifically from Androidizen (that guy is great). An aside, I also bout a Nexus 7 when it released, and it was my first foray into Android.

However, I feel my excitement with my S3 going down a little bit, and I feel as though I am not getting an experience that I didn't already have on iOS. I mean, I use widgets and whatnot, but other than that I feel like not much has changed in my overall usage. However, I DO NOT want to go back to iOS. I want to love Android, but I just feel like I'm missing the point.

I am too scared to root, but I did play around with Go/Tersus launchers and icons, and that was pretty neat, I must say. (On a side note, will new launchers affect the OS or usability of the phone? i.e., speed, battery, etc.?)

TL;DR I guess a feel a tad lost using my S3 and I want to love it, and would like some guidance on how fully optimize my experience, whether it be homescreen setups, notable apps and widgets, etc.

Thanks, all.