The Galaxy S7 and S7 edge is revitalizing Samsung’s bottom line and is shaping up to be the best smartphone 2016. Well, fact is the competitors are all playing catch up. The HTC 10 might be an interesting option but thanks to the early lead and gargantuan marketing efforts, the S7 and S7 edge would easily sell more.
In fact, by offering the S7 and S7 edge concurrently, buyers might just choose between the two models, instead of comparing it versus other brand offerings. So what’s so good about the S7 or S7 edge? In fact, which is better?
This year models come in black, silver and gold. The black option is surprisingly the classiest of the lot. The darker metal frame and glass blends well with the darker tone, giving off a cool suave vibe. I like both the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge, and I picked the S7 edge originally but I’m having a little buyer remorse. The S7 seems to be the more practical choice. I actually prefer the S7 – here’s why.
One phone, two sizes – really?
The S7 edge is marketed as the bigger brethen, 5.5″ screen size compared to 5.1″. However, in actual use, the S7 Edge bigger real estate includes the curved portion as well, which distorts the the viewing experience somewhat. The extra screen real estate doesn’t add up to much and for that, I prefer the handiness and trimness of the S7.
Both phones are beautiful in their glass and metal body frame, but they are also very fragile. I had a hard time finding tempered glass protector for the S7 edge, and even so, the curved edge makes it more slippery. It’s nicer with the seamless glass edge, but is a challenge to protect.
The great thing about the S7 and S7 edge is the processor, waterproof, excellent camera and well, the premium finish (like it or not). There’s AOD, which I felt it was useful enough to leave it on. You can get information at a glance without waking up your phone. And it’s smart enough to be automatically disabled when the phone’s in your pocket or bag, when it’s face down or when the battery’s running low. It’s not the best implementation of AOD, I think Motorola and LG did it better, but it could catch up with a software upgrade.
Samsung’s decision to bring back external memory capability is sure to win back some fans.
Both phones offer water-resistance without the need for any charging flaps. Useful. Samsung had already adopted the micro USB port instead of the directionless USB-C port so minimizing annoyances to charging would be important. Both phones do come with wireless charging, which is also another feature that most other manufacturers are dropping.
The S7 packs loads. It’s cheaper too. A full $100 off on a contract price is quite significant.
I was really impressed with the quality of the camera shots. While there isn’t optical zoom, and only 12 MP, the shots snapped turn out good almost all of the time, in auto mode. There’s the double tap home button to launch the camera app, which is a convenient way to start shooting.
The edge isn’t all that useful
Samsung says that the edge accommodates up to 9 panels giving you access to everything you need right away, from calling a cab to getting sports updates. With Apps edge, for instance, you can create up to 10 app shortcuts and folders. But it isn’t that much more convenient as compared to launching from the app drawer. There’s also people edge, or the news edge, but I haven’t find a specific use case which would keep bringing me back.
Where the edge trumps
On the flip side, the S7 edge does offer a bigger battery and that gives it a 10-20% boost over the S7 screen-on time. The Galaxy S7 Edge battery life is stellar and as much as I like the Galaxy S7, the battery life alone is one reason to keep the Galaxy S7 Edge instead of its small sibling.