Samsung Galaxy S7 Review

No Edge, No Problem

Samsung is doing great this year with their smartphone game. They released two great phones with great features. Should you look into buying at least one of them? We’ve already reviewed the Galaxy S7 Edge, and loved it, mostly, but is the standard Galaxy S7 worth your time and money? Let’s find out.

Specs

  • 5.1” 2560×1440 AMOLED Display
  • Snapdragon 820 Processor
  • 4 GB RAM
  • 32/64 GB Storage (with microSD)
  • 12 MP Rear Camera, f/1.7, OIS
  • 5 MP Rear Camera, f/1.7
  • 3,000 mAh Battery
  • microUSB, Quick Charge 2.0, Wireless Charging
  • IP68 Water Resistance

Hardware

Starting with hardware, the S7 feels extremely comfortable in the hands except for the fact that its glass on the back, making it a bit slippery. The curved back does help with ergonomics, though. As with the last generation of Galaxy phones, this thing is a fingerprint magnet, so if you do end up purchasing one, get a case, and you’ll be happy. The volume rockers, power button, and home button are super clicky, giving a little satisfaction every time I picked it up. They respond well and have a good feel to them. But on the bottom is a micro USB port, not Type-C, like some people were expecting and wanting. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case just yet. The speakers are also on the bottom and sound decent, nothing substantially impressive. One thing to note it that where the SIM tray is, also lies a microSD card slot for up to 200 Gigs of expandable storage, which is a nice touch.

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I do like the glass body and metal frame when it comes to design, in my opinion, it looks pretty awesome, and I wouldn’t mind having one as my daily driver if looks were all that mattered.



Water Resistance

Phones are going everywhere with us, and even though we haven’t gotten to the point where we swim with them, we still want water resistance. The S7 is IP68 certified, meaning it’s going to be okay at around 1.5 meters for about 30 minutes. This is a great thing because accidents happen. Plus, any phone that has water resistance is a good thing.

Display

It’s worth noting, the 5.1” screen felt a little small to me, only because my daily driver is the nexus 6P, but after a bit of time getting used to it, it felt pretty good to use. Other than that, the display is beautiful. Colors are bright, and they pop with everything. Now screen brightness can be an issue at some points, but normally auto brightness does the trick well.

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The Galaxy S7 doesn’t have an edge, which is fine with me because it’s more comfortable that way. With the edge on the back instead of the front (which is the better place to put it) the phone is easier to hold.

Fingerprint Sensor

Now I asked Ben how many times his S7 Edge reliably read his fingerprint out of his pocket. After he had told me 6 out of ten times, I tried it on the Galaxy S7, taking the phone out of pocket and hitting the sensor with the same thumb. Lo and behold; it only worked 6 out of 10 times. That means it’s accurate, but only most of the time.

Software

The software is a whole other story. Touchwiz has most definitely improved over the past generations, though not perfect, it’s tolerable. Only tolerable with a theme, at least for me. Adding a nice Google based icon theme makes the experience a lot better I find. Changing a theme can change the whole appearance of the phone for the better. At least that’s the case with touch wiz.

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Now, There’s an interesting feature on the S7 that i have mixed feelings about, the Always-on display. I like it and how it works because you can display the calendar and time at all times, so you don’t have to touch your phone to get the information. But on the other hand, it takes up significantly more battery than say if Google did it on a Nexus device, or if Motorola did it on one of their devices. Both of those versions add a bit more functionality as well. But all in all, It’s up to the user to decide if they want to use the battery power to keep it on all the time, personally, for now, it’ll be on.

Performance

With 4 GBs of ram, it’s going to be pretty fast at anything you need it to do. I didn’t have much stuttering on the S7 and was overall impressed at the speed it put off. Especially packing a Snapdragon 820, you won’t have a speed issue for a good while after owning this phone. Games are a breeze, and the phone stays reasonably cool for a good while after use.

Battery Life & Charging

Battery life is pretty good, considering its 3000mAh, it should keep you going the whole day. I used it some during the morning and then I used google maps for an hour, did some shooting with it, and then did another hour of navigating and ended the day at 25%. When you do need to charge up, wireless charging is an option and is another plus for me about this phone.

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Camera

The camera does it’s job well, to top it off. Taking pictures was a lot of fun with this because 98% of the time, the results were awesome. You do get a pro mode to mess around with if you’re dedicated to your mobile shots, but I mainly stuck in auto. Colors are vibrant, and the HDR mode is on point only when it absolutely needs to be. Focus is fast and clear and makes almost every shot look pretty amazing. Video mode is also pretty stunning as well.

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Final Thoughts

Yes. Yes you should get the S7 in my own opinion. It’s a fast, sleek phone that packs features on top of each other. The camera is amazing and definitely gets a 9 out of 10. The fact that it’s water resistant makes it a winner in my book. Your decision is your own, but my decision is the S7.