I’ve read some reviews of the new Samsung Galaxy S7/S7 Edge that claim it’s not a significant upgrade from the S6/S6 Edge, but I beg to differ.
When the S6 was released last year I was disappointed by the lack of features and the removal of excellent features. This phone was a complete no-go for me though I wasn’t in the market for a new one anyway. The biggest drawback to the S6 was the removal of support for expandable storage/microSD cards. Another disappointment was that the battery wasn’t replaceable. And the water resistant feature of the S5 had been left out. The S6 looked more like a product regression than evolution.
The S7 has brought back two of these features – support for microSD cards (up to 2 TB!) and the water/dust resistance (but now without the charging port cover since the seal is completely internal. Also, the camera is an upgrade, with what sounds like a massive improvement for low light pictures.
Perhaps the most significant change this year comes in the S7’s new 12-megapixel camera. It’s lower resolution than last year’s 16-megapixel shooter, but Samsung says its larger pixels let in 56 percent more light than before for better low-light images. The camera’s lens is a brighter f/1.7 aperture, allowing in 25 percent more light. Combined, the new sensor and lens let in 95 percent more light than last year’s already impressive camera, which is promising for low-light photography. The sensor’s shape has also changed from a wide-format 16:9 to a more traditional 4:3 ratio.
Samsung says the new camera can focus up to three times faster thanks to its dual-pixel system that allows every single one of the 12 million pixels to act as focus pixels, similar to the system Canon uses in some of its DSLR cameras. The camera is also very quick to launch — in brief demos it handily beat out a Nexus 6P and iPhone 6S Plus in getting ready to take a shot.
I’ve been planning for my device upgrade for a few months now and the Android market is surprisingly unimpressive to me right now. It’s tough to find some of my favorite features anywhere. I was hoping that the S7 would fullfill my desires, and I’m so thankful it didn’t disappoint. Now I just hope it lives up to its promise. I guess I’ll find out when it arrives next month.