I want to start this review out by focusing on what I like most then pointing out problems and things you may want to consider when buying them.
What’s Great about the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge?
First of all, both Galaxy S7 & S7 Edge feature IP68 water resistant rating which is probably the coolest feature. In fact, what’s amazing is that these phones can survive harshest conditions, even surviving a full wash cycle in my LG washer and actually being froze in my freezer, you can check out those videos on my channel. Okay, maybe this isn’t a feature you may be interested in but if it is, may be you live in Seattle where it rains often or you like to play with water often, this could potentially be the reason to buy a Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge. Think of all the possibilities, you can use your phone in the rain, record videos underwater, watch youtube videos in the shower, etc…etc…
Second, S7 and S7 Edge feature a design that’s seamlessly beautiful with classy curves on the back and front. For people who appreciate feel and design the most, the S7 and S7 Edge both look and feel sexy as the glass and metal back cools to your fingers like melting butter.
Third, S7 and S7 Edge feature the latest Qualcomm 820 processor for U.S. models and Exynos 8890 for international models. Performance is one of the best out there with its 4 gigs of RAM and it’s definitely on par with rest of the flagships on the market today. Samsung has always been leading the arms race with the fastest processors on their Galaxy series so you won’t have a problem with this beastly-spec phone. Now, there are sometimes problems but we will get into that later.
Fourth, Camera is probably the best on market this year featuring F1.7 12MP back camera with optical image stabilization and F1.7 5MP front camera. Photos taken in various different conditions come out fabulous and with OIS, you have an awesome stabilization of 4K videos. If you want a smartphone with a camera that simply works out of the box, you simply can’t go wrong with S7 or S7 Edge as if offers excellent auto mode for general everyday use along with the best low-light performance in its class.
Fifth, the software has really matured on the S7 and S7 Edge. TouchWiz UI has gotten much better over the years. You have a ton of themes to choose from if you don’t like the default TouchWiz theme. And for those of you new to Samsung Galaxy series, you find cool features not found elsewhere like multi-window and floating multi-window to help you get more things done by having multiple apps running at the same time. Of course, with the S7 Edge, you get extra Edge Screen features allowing you to customize different Edge panels to your liking. While this may not be useful to everyone, it can be very handy at times when you want to access Google Maps with one hand while driving or when you want to quickly see the stock ticker without interrupting your current app. While the amount of features are still not terribly big, there’s plenty of edge panels to make it very useful.
Sixth, battery life is amazing on both S7 and S7 Edge featuring 3000mAh battery capacity on the S7 and 3600mAh on the S7 Edge. Couple that with one of the most efficient displays in the world and you get longer battery life than any other smartphone in the world. In fact, based on our HighOnAndroid Screen-On-Time tests, both S7 & S7 Edge had longer screen-on-time than all other flagships on the market. And in my over a month of daily driving both, they have very long battery life, these definitely can outlast any other smartphone on earth right now on a single charge.
Seventh, both phones can easily charge 0 to 60% in 30 minutes using Quick Charge 2.0. Although not USB Type C, I actually prefer USB Type B since I already have a bunch of cables that I can use with it. I don’t think it’s a huge deal and personally prefer the older USB. These phones also support wireless charging. What’s really cool is that you can also use fast wireless charging, which I love using as I no longer need to use wires. (See Samsung Fast Wireless Charger)
Eighth, both S7 and S7 Edge feature the brightest, most energy-efficient screens in the world with its own AMOLED technology, which has proven to be vastly superior to LCDs. In terms of real world usage, AMOLED screens are far brighter with much better power consumption, one of the reasons why battery lasts forever on this phone.
What’s Wrong with the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge?
Now, that we’ve talked about all the good things about S7 & S7 Edge, let’s talk about why you wouldn’t want to buy this phone.
First, S7 & S7 Edge have low speaker sound. This is one of the drawbacks of its waterproof design and if you absolutely need larger speaker sound, this is not the phone you want. But personally, I don’t mind it that much, it’s not loud but still usable. If you like to use your phone speakers to listen to music and you absolutely need it loud, this is definitely not it and you may want to opt for something like Nexus 6P or Moto X Pure.Second, again due to the water-resistant design, the audio quality suffers when recording subject not close to the phone. In fact, some recordings sound awful as they sound like being recorded under water. Yes, it’s really a question about, do you want great sound vs waterproofing?
Third, all U.S. models of S7 and S7 Edge have locked bootloader, meaning you won’t be able ot root your phone and install custom software like all previous Galaxy models have been able to. This is simply an outrage for open source supporters and people who like to MOD their phones like myself. For AT&T or T-Mobile users, you can always pick up the international version as they come with unlocked bootloaders.
Fourth, sometimes YouTube 1440P playback freezes and it’s really annoying for those who like to watch YouTube at its highest quality. 1080P works fine but 1440P gets stuck many times over like a whore and I believe this is a software bug that Samsung should be able to fix in future updates. But for right now, having a 2K phone and having issues watching 2K videos make absolutely no sense. This seems to be issue only with Qualcomm-based U.S. models, doesn’t happen on Exynos-based international models.
Overall, I am pretty satisfied customer of both phones and although both S7 & S7 Edge have some problems it’s still better than 99% of what’s out there right now. So long as you don’t mind the problems that exists on this phone, it’s definitely a go. Still not perfect by any means but if you don’t like it, there’s LG G5 and HTC 10 as alternatives.
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