My first thoughts on the iPhone 7 being a courageous phone is Apple’s removal of the 3.5mm headphone jack. Well I guess it might seem a premature move but Apple seems to know their target market. They know that Lightning accessories or what do they refer to as “DONGLES” are pretty expensive at most cases and they know that their “hopefully satisfied” customers are buying those because they need it to access some features like midi, camera connection kit, lightning docks and so much more. It also seems to help them achieve the IP67 rating of water-resistance (not waterproof) that makes the phone stand atleast 30 minutes in a meter of submerging it into water. (IP ratings explained here)
And pretty sure that lightning port makes a good data transmitter between the earpod and the phone itself, making it more audible than usual.
But it seems that this move has its pros and cons, as always, I’ll go with the cons first. The main problem, you cannot listen to music and charge the phone at the same time, which I mostly do as I sleep at night because wireless charging is still not present on the iPhone 7. This might be resolved by a freaking DONGLE that might cost atleast 700 pesos or $15. And, the tendency of losing these DONGLES are really high, so you might opt in on buying multiple dongles at the same time, to avoid inconvinience. Other thing, if you use your iPhone for filming interviews and videosthen you are thinking of using an external microphone. In this case, you cannot connect a bare 3.5mm mic on the lightning port without using a dongle again.
Let’s go with the pros. The removal of that jack like what I’ve said before helped the device to achieve water-resistant enclosure, an upgraded Taptic engine that is bigger than the one in 6S and in place of the jack itself, is the barometer. I don’t really mind now the removal of the headphone jack since I went on wireless earphones already. But, why do the Galaxy S7 achieved an IP68 rating tho the headphone jack is still there? Well Apple is ’bout money anyway, I know that.
(iPhone 7’s Upgraded Taptic Engine)
Now, the iPhone 7 boasts a 4.7″ Retina HD display, with the additional of (P3) Wide Color Gamut which looks pretty good, yet to be honest I still prefer the Samsung’s AMOLED displays because, you already know it, never mind. And unfortunately, it is still stucked in 750p (750 x 1334) rather than making it a Full HD one that you will get only on the iPhone 7 Plus.
It also comes on new color variants, the Blackand Jet Black* finish (*128-256GB MODELS ONLY). Jet Black is very glossy that it might became a fingerprint magnet after all. To prevent scratching on the Jet Black variant, Apple heavily advised the users of Jet Black to buy a protective case for their phone.
It runs on Apple’s new A10 Fusion chip, which is a 4-core processor featuring 2 high-performing and 2 low-performing cores. With it is the M10 motion chip co-processor and a 2GB of RAM, (3GB if you got the Plus variant) and fortunately, 16GB models are axed out to give way on being the 32GB as the entry-level storage, with options of 128 and now, a whopping 256GB of unfortunately, NON-EXPANDABLE STORAGE.
Software wise, I really loved the iOS 10. It’s revamped UI makes it feel lighter than the iOS 9 when it comes to resources and memory usage, and the app launch times are pretty good. Siri improves a lot and the widgets are getting more cooler than the previous ones. I know that there are still some flaws on this release but I know that they might not affect my usage of this device as my daily driver so that I might not cover them here.
The camera, is an all-new 12MP six-element with an improved Optical Image Stabilization which has an F-stop of f/1.8, making it good for low-light shots and on normal shots. Impressive right? It is also capable of shooting 4K videos @ 30fps, slow motion videos of up to 240fps and time-lapse of the same rate.
And these are some camera sample photos from the iPhone 7:
(credits to the owners of these photos)
It is also good on shooting underwater but I do recommend buying yourself a waterproof case in order to protect your iPhone from unexpected damage of water since Apple’s warranty doesn’t cover water damage after all.
And come to the other stuff. The buttons are pretty good and tactile and I really loved this new solid-state home button powered by the Taptic engine. The idea here is the button is not physically clickable anymore. When you laid your hands on it, the taptic engine will react through vibration that will make you know you pressed the home button. Just like the ones you see on some Android phones. That lessens the problems of broken home buttons unless the taptic engine dies.
(Photos of the new solid-state home button)
On networks and connections it has almost everything the world has to offer, like Wi-Fi, LTE including LTE advanced which caters speeds of up to 450mbps, NFC or Near-Field Communication for Apple Pay and the like, Bluetooth 4.2 and so much more. Refer to their website for more specifications. It only has single nano-sim card slot.
And yes! The iPhone 7 speakers are revamped and the earpiece now doubles as a second speaker making it a stereo speaker system. The audio is now louder than usual, making the hand-covering the bottom to get a loud audio on the previous times retire.
So, do I recommend the iPhone 7 as a daily driver? Well, if you still have your kidneys on your body, then keep it right there, don’t sell it for this. I don’t recommend it at all, because this is not an innovative one nor revolutionary. But, if you don’t mind spending grands on a phone requiring you to bring tons of dongles to connect everything and don’t minding spending time and money just to reach the apps that you care about, then you go for it. Lastly, it is still a pretty good phone and the build quality seems sturdy enough to last until the new device is unveiled. (Well just kidding, I still have a friend who has a fully-functional iPhone 4S as of this moment.) And if you are looking forward to ease of placing files and huge storage, go for anAndroid phone instead, because you will badly regret if you find out that this phone is not capable of expanding storage when you make it full.
So there you have it, my thoughts and review of the Apple’s courageous phone is now done and I hope you enjoyed it. Stay tuned for more tech stuffs and thanks for reading.
And wait for the video review on YouTube soon!
– Bryan Snow
PS. Credits to the owners for some of the images used in this post.