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a lot to love in Apple's new flagship

On the morning of September 7, my wife and I sat together to watch Apple unveil its 2016 flagship product: the iPhone 7 (starting at $ 649) and the iPhone 7 Plus. We broadcast the event live on my Macbook, and when Apple removed veil after veil from its latest and greatest iPhone, it was my wife, not a geek or gadget lover that I am, who was most excited for the iPhone of what it was. That's the type of device Apple revealed on September 7 – a device that would turn heads, and it surely did.

Despite the controversy surrounding the removal of the headphone jack and the apprehension toward the same design aesthetic for the third year in a row, Apple's latest flagship flew off the shelves, so much so that after the initial production batch ran out. The wait time to get a new iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus was about a month (unless you pay premium money through unofficial channels like eBay). What became clear, however, was that the iPhone 7 is here and here to stay, so we should also take a look at what this fuss is all about.

The idea behind this review is to look at the iPhone 7 from a general user perspective. Sure, there are several others out there that go much deeper, from benchmarking the device to reviewing just about every single component and then some, but for an average user, does that really matter? The answer, most of the time, is a resounding no, so our focus will be to make the demystification of the iPhone 7 as simple and straightforward as possible.

We would also clarify beforehand that this is a review of the iPhone 7 and not iOS 10, that the latest iPhone is delivered out of the box and that it also runs on the vast majority of older iPhones. Therefore, while we will talk about some characteristics of the iPhone 7 that are related to iOS 10, we will largely omit those parts that have to do with the iOS and not with the device itself. Oh, and this isn't really a review of the iPhone 7 Plus either, but we'll point out where these two share similarities.

In the frame

The iPhone retail package has been virtually a standard affair for many years, and this year is no exception. Inside the iPhone 7 case, you get the device itself, the Apple 1A charger along with the lightning cable, lightning EarPods, and a small lightning-to-analog audio adapter. The latter two are especially important as this is the first time that Apple has been shipped in an EarPods box that comes with a lightning connector instead of traditional 3.5mm headphones. And that naturally has to do with the fact that there is no analog audio jack on the iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus. Apple, in a display of "courage", got rid of this outdated feature, but we'll talk about it later.

The Lightning to Analog adapter is small and frankly easy to misplace, but if you want to continue using your existing headphones with the device, it will come in handy. The adapter itself is really small and well made, so the only concern I have is the fear of losing the dongle. However, it is good that Apple has decided to package it with the box and not force users to buy this adapter separately.

Build and design

The construction and design of the new iPhone is where the controversy begins immediately. First, the design is almost identical to last year's iPhone 6s, which was identical to the year before iPhone 6. And that's what consumers aren't really happy about. It is the third year in a row that Apple has carried the same design scheme, and that is not good for innovation enthusiasts.

However, there may be a good reason for this strange choice. Next year, the iPhone will see its tenth anniversary, and it wouldn't make sense if Apple didn't do something entirely new for its anniversary edition device. A new design this year would mean two radically new designs in two consecutive years, making it a difficult feat for the tech giant Apple is to match. Therefore, we are confident that we will be able to see a design update next year (as supported by a recent patent granted by Apple), and frankly, the current design was not bad from the start that it won't. Please us. Of course, this is all speculation, but with good credit.

Nor is it the case that the design has not changed; There are changes, but they are small . The antenna bands on the back of the device, for example, have been moved to the top and bottom of the device, resulting in a cleaner back with more discharge. This is especially evident with iPhones Black and Jet Black, but it shows in other color variants as well. So the bottom of the device now has a more symmetrical aesthetic thanks to the removal of the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack. A second "speaker" grille has been added, but don't worry, it's just for design symmetry, there's still only one speaker on the bottom of the device. The "stereo speaker" effect is achieved using the earphone as the secondary speaker.

The bottom of the device also houses the multi-purpose lighting port.

The top of iPhone 7 is absolutely free of buttons or ports. With the iPhone 6, Apple moved the power button to the right side of the device, and continues to stay there. On the left side, you get the volume buttons, as well as the mute switch, a signature of all iPhones. On the right side, there is the power button and the nano-SIM tray.

On the front, the iPhone 7 houses the screen 4.7 IPS LCD with a resolution of 750 x 1334 pixels, resulting in a PPI of 326, the same retina resolution that has been around for many years. At the bottom of the screen is the new and renewed Home button, which is not a physical button this time, but rather a capacitive button that houses the distinctive TouchID and is linked to the new Taptic motor for vibration feedback. We will discuss this in more detail later. The display is also 3D Touch compliant, meaning it is pressure sensitive at various levels and responds according to the force of your touch, a feature that was introduced with the iPhone 6s.

The device is made of the same series of 7000 aluminum with reinforced glass that protects the screen. The iPhone 7 comes in five colors: silver, gold, rose gold, matte black, and jet black. The Jet Black is particularly intriguing as it offers sparkle and shine unlike any previous iPhone and very similar to what a glass device would feel like. However, this high gloss makes the Jet Black variant extremely prone to scratches and fingerprints, and even Apple cautions against it on its product website.

The iPhone 7 measures 138.3 x 67.1 x 7.1mm and weighs only 138 grams. Apple increased storage this year with options for 32GB, 128GB and 256GB available. The Jet Black variant comes only in 128GB and 256GB options.

Monitor

One of the permanent criticisms against Apple is its adherence to IPS LCD panels for iPhone screens with the same pixel density for several years. While it's true that OLED has become the industry standard (Samsung should be thanked), the fact remains that Apple's retina panels have never lagged behind when it comes to getting the job done. This year's iPhone 7 display is again an LED-backlit unit that Apple claims is a 25% brighter than last year's iPhone 6s. The panel still offers excellent contrast ratio and readability in sunlight, and is one of the few panels to offer professional-grade color calibration. What this means is that the color reproduction of the iPhone 7 is the closest to real life that you can get on a smart phone.

In addition to the remarkable color calibration, the iPhone 7's display also adopts the wide range of colors . In layman's terms, this means that the screen is capable of differentiating and displaying many more colors than traditional smart phones and other displays. The ones that are most affected are the reds and blues, which actually look superior on the screens of the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus compared to ordinary laptops. However, we also point out that unless you have a truly trained eye, the difference will not be very noticeable unless you look at the images of very color-rich scenes.

What's new in iPhone 7?

For the iPhone 7, the user interface and features are something that is not easy to talk about. This is because the "features" of any iPhone are mainly due to the iOS version they are running, so the vast majority of things on iPhone 7 are the same on iPhone 6s and even 6. Our goal here is not to review iOS 10 but to talk about the latest and greatest in Apple, so skip what you already know and see some new stuff.

With the iPhone 7, Apple's flagship smart phone for the first time officially gains a waterproof status with a IP67 rating . We say officially because various real-world tests showed that the iPhone 6s are quite waterproof despite not being officially declared. The iPhone 7's water resistance extends to dive to a depth of 1 meter for up to 30 minutesWhich, while not as good as the Galaxy S7's IP68, is still good enough to prevent accidental damage. Actual tests of the iPhone 7's water resistance show the claims to be true, and the 7 performs slightly better than its older brother, the 7 Plus.

  • The new start button and TouchID

With iPhone 7, the start button no longer exists. Well, it's there, but it's no longer a pressable, plunging button. The Home button on iPhone 7 is that of a capacitive variety that incorporates the TouchID sensor inside. When the button is pressed, the new and improved is activated Apple Taptic engine For a click vibration response, it appears that instead of the button, it is the bottom of the screen that is pressed. This new type of information may be a bit surprising the first couple of times, but you'll get used to it in no time, and frankly, it's much more natural than the previous implementation of the Start button.

It is also worth noting that you can adjust the Taptic feedback of the Start button to your liking through three vibrating powers. They go from a very soft first to a rather strong third, similar to the press (which we favor). During initial setup, the phone will ask you to adjust it to your liking, but you can also change it later in Settings.

The new start button also houses the improved TouchID sensor, and in fact it is very fast. Forget about percentage improvements, since you've used the iPhone 6 and 6s, this TouchID sensor eliminates them entirely. Fingerprint recognition is fast, and what we liked the most was the fact that you can simply press the Home button once to wake up and unlock the phone at the same time. It is one of those things that until you use, you will not realize what you were missing. The TouchID sensor is still compatible with Apple Pay and otherwise works the same as its previous versions, but better.

  • The missing headphone jack

Probably the biggest controversy surrounding the iPhone 7 is the removal of the 3.5mm headphone jack. Apple has been criticized by both users and tech gurus for this move, and perhaps not without reason. However, let's first take a look at what Apple has done here.

Since the beginning of mobile phones, and not just smartphones, the 3.5mm jack has been a necessity. The analog audio jack has been around for years and has been the primary source of digital audio consumption. When Apple removed it on iPhone 7, basically gives you some options to use . There are lightning EarPods in the box that you can use, and while they're not stellar anywhere, they're not that bad for most users. Then in the box, you also get the lightning-to-analog adapter that you can use to connect any traditional earphone or headphone to your iPhone 7. The disadvantage One of these two approaches, however, is that you cannot charge your device simultaneously. and listen to music / audio. That gives us the third option: go wireless.

Bluetooth audio peripherals have increased for a while, and Apple wants you to jump into that car. In fact, they want you to jump so much that the Cupertino giant introduced its own wireless headphones, AirPods, especially for the iPhone 7. With low-energy Bluetooth as the standard now, wireless headphones are a fairly viable solution.

Whether or not you support Apple's decision, that's a personal preference. Sure, removing this artifact is definitely a controversy, but does it really matter? I am inclined to a resounding no, but everyone is entitled to their opinion. However, Apple gave you options both on the box and on others, so accept the fact and find the one that suits you best.

We already talked about this when we talk about the iPhone 7 screen, but let's take a closer look at what this means.

Wide Color is Apple's terminology for DCI-P3 color space, which is the cinematographic standard for the production of digital films. Now what exactly is the color space? To facilitate understanding, colors are primarily represented as shades of red, green, and blue, or their combinations and other variations. Now how many shades of red are possible? If the standard color spectrum is 10 shades, the wide color would mean 40, which means that the color reproduction of the primary colors (and, by extension, their variants) has much more depth. The vast majority of displays, and especially smart phones, use the standard RGB color space (sRGB, for short). While they can display a variety of colors, they still cannot process the full spectrum of available colors just because the screen cannot handle it. The iPhone 7's display, however, adopts the DCI-P3 cinematic color space, which means it can differentiate between a much larger number of shades of reds, greens, and blues.

This difference, as we've noted previously, will be lost on most people, and actually, to fully experience it, you must see the same image on the screen of an old iPhone next to the iPhone 7 to fully appreciate it. The advantage, however, is setting the tone for the future. Apple's desktop products are already the industry standard for color reproduction, so by adopting it on your smartphones, Apple is not only consolidating its position in space, but also setting a trend for the future. .

It also helps that the iPhone 7 camera captures images in the same wide color. That is one of the reasons why it has been widely praised for its excellent color rendering. The simple fact is that the iPhone can see and display many more colors than its competitors, and that is a good thing both now and in the long term.

Haptics has slowly but surely become one of the forefront of the game and the ideology of Apple smartphones. With the iPhone 7, Apple brought several improvements to its Taptic engine . First introduced with iPhone 6s, this engine is responsible for the haptic feedback generated by current and previous generation iPhones for user interactions. This was especially important for 3D Touch to function properly, giving the user a physical touch experience for on-screen interactions. With the new Taptic engine, these haptics are not only more pronounced, but offer much more customization. It is also this engine that enables the Start button of the virtual press.

  • New storage levels

Apple finally accepted 2016 and increased storage on the basic iPhone model from 16GB to 32GB. In fact, storage has doubled at all levels, so what used to be 16/64/128 is now 32/128/256 gigs of storage space. This also makes the iPhone 7 one of the few smartphones that offer up to 256GB of built-in storage. There is no expandable storage option yet, and most likely never will be.

iPhone 7 is the first iPhone to feature stereo speakers. While it's not like the true stereo implementation of the iPad Pro, it's still a Massive upgrade to the tiny mono speaker on the iPhone 6s . Oh, and as we saw earlier, don't be fooled by the second grill at the bottom of the device; The second speaker is the earphone, which increases its volume to a pleasant level when watching videos, games or playing music, etc. The bottom speaker is also louder than before and the quality is exactly what you can expect from such small speakers (distorted bass, no bass etc.), it is something you will surely appreciate if you have been frustrated with the small solitary speakers of iPhones previous.

Acting

And now we come to the part that is one of the most interesting aspects of the iPhone 7; One that deserves its own full section: iPhone 7 performance. In short, it's the fastest phone out there now, period. There is nothing that comes close to it.

Fusion a10

Apple has maintained its own nomenclature for its SoCs, with A being the main character and the number progressing with each generation of iPhone. This time, it's Apple's A10 Fusion chip that powers the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. A10 is the first CPU of the iPhone that adapts to a four core design, with two high power cores operating at 2.34 GHz and two low power. While it looks like a great traditional LITTLE setup from the start, the interesting thing is that the A10 Fusion's low-power cores are virtually unidentifiable. They cannot be located in hardware or software. They do not appear at reference points. They are not available for any application except for the main operating system. And that makes A10 Fusion truly unique, because for all intents and purposes, it acts and behaves like a traditional dual-core setup.

Without going into the percentage increase that A10 Fusion offers over A9 or Snapdragon 820 / Exynos 8890, A10 is the Faster mobile CPU in single-core and multi-core performance . It overlooks the previous kings (Exynos 8890 from S7, SD820 from OnePlus 3 and Kirin 955 from Huawei P9) by a large margin. It is also much more efficient than any of its competitors.

In the real world, iPhone 7 is fast. I like it very fast . Whether it is games, video playback, processing RAW files on the phone, calls or any other activity, it will be difficult for you to slow down this beast. The phone doesn't suffer from thermal regulation either, and while it does get a little warm, it's nothing unpleasant or remotely troubling. Apple has created the king of mobile processing power 2016 in A10 Fusion.

Popular YouTube channel PhoneBuff ran a real-world speed test between the iPhone 7 and the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 (RIP). The iPhone beats Note 7 by more than a lap, and the video itself is worth watching.

The A10 Fusion SoC also includes a new hexacore GPU that promises performance improvements with less power consumption. In our tests, the GPU outperforms any other mobile GPU, including Adreno 530 from SD 820 and Mali-T880MP12 from Exynos 8890. At the launch of the iPhone 7, Apple demonstrated how the GPU allows them to process more than 400 flying monkeys on-screen effortlessly. in fact the case. We haven't seen a better GPU on a smart phone to date.

It is worth noting that the iPhone 7 offers only 2 GB of RAM for all of this, compared to Android's flagships with 4GB and even 6GB of RAM. The iPhone 7 Plus comes with 3GB of RAM.

Battery

The iPhone 7 comes with a lithium polymer battery from 1960mAh, which has a slightly larger capacity compared to last year's iPhone 6s. Apple also claims that the A10 Fusion chip is more energy efficient, which should translate into better battery life. And if you're in a hurry, there is a low-power mode that you can activate to get the most out of your phone's battery.

In practical use, I have mixed feelings for the iPhone 7 battery. Not bad, but when you face it against what the S7 or Huawei P9 can handle, it crashes. My usage is pretty intense with various social and email accounts synced with fully enabled background activity, adding some podcasts and casual games to the mix. At the end of a day, I've dropped to 20% most of the time.

Now, I fully disclaim, I have not enabled any kind of battery saving tips, so I have full location services in the background, auto brightness display and wake up elevation, Hey Siri etc. all enabled, by what could change things if I had to be more cautious in my use. However, both the S7 Edge and Huawei P9 gave better battery performance out of the box, but they also had larger batteries.

Camera

The snapper on Apple's iPhone 7 is one of the top enhancements Apple's flagship product received this year, and not just in the main rear snapper department. The iPhone 7 Plus camera is a completely separate matter, because that's where Apple really showed its innovation for this year, but the iPhone 7's main camera is impressive in its own right.

IPhone 7 rear camera

The iPhone 7's main camera retains the resolution of 12 megapixels from last year's iPhone 6s but with improved optics. It has a six-element lens with an aperture of f / 1.8, which should ensure that the camera allows much more light to enter than previous iterations would allow (50% more light, according to Apple numbers). The main camera employs a 1/3 "Sony Exmor RS sensor with 1.22m pixels.

The camera unit, which stands out like the previous two generations of the iPhone, is accompanied by a four LED true tone flash that shoots brighter. The camera assembly itself is protected by a layer of sapphire crystal which should suffice.

IPhone 7 also features optical image stabilization ( OIS ), a function that was previously reserved only for the Plus variant of the iPhone. That, and the larger f / 1.8 aperture should translate to better low-light performance.

Camera interface

The iOS camera interface is not a big deal, really. It is the same interface that we have seen and have become accustomed to over the years. You'll get a basic viewfinder with a variety of shooting modes to choose from on the right (or bottom, depending on how you're holding the device) and some quick settings on the side. There are some basic filters and deep integration with the native iOS photo app, but that's it. There is nothing new in the camera app that excites you.

iPhone 7 is the first iOS device to offer true RAW captureAnd that's great news for photography enthusiasts. However, one point to note here is that the native application does not support RAW. Instead, Apple opened the camera API to developers to implement this capture mode in third-party applications, and some of the most popular have already incorporated it. Camera, ProCam 4 and Adobe Lightroom all support and process RAW files directly on your iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

Still Image Quality

While the iPhone 7 offers an improved camera, the images produced by the device are comparable to last year's iPhone 6s . That doesn't mean it's a bad thing: the iPhone 6s was one of the best smart phone cameras out there, and the iPhone 7 only improves on that. What we mean here is that, at first glance, it will be difficult to find a noticeable difference between the images of the iPhone 7 or 6s.

The quality of the still image is really good, especially with good lighting. The determined detail is fantastic, the sharpness is kept in check and the color reproduction is simply incredible. IPhones have always had a remarkable dynamic range, and the iPhone 7 is no exception. To help make things even better, there is HDR, but my advice would be to leave it in Auto and let the camera decide when to use HDR or not.

1 of 8 A scene well exposed in good light. Colors reproduce very rich and accurate. The phone had trouble with exposure in this case. An HDR sample; Look how bright reds are. A scene rich in colors that the phone handled very well. This is one of the best green renders I have ever seen on a phone. Another good example of accurate color reproduction. Shot at dusk the noise is well controlled and the exposure is fantastic

A rarity in HDR photos is that they can sometimes appear destroyed, especially in color-rich scenes. In fact, if you look at my comparison of the same scene with and without HDR, you'll notice that although HDR extracts more detail from shadows, it does so at the expense of overall image aesthetics. Nothing a little post-processing can't fix, but it's weird to see this happen outside of the camera.

1 of 6 HDR off: watch the background disappear entirely, but reds are rich and blacks are deep HDR On: While HDR brings visibility to the overexposed background, it attenuated reds and blacks HDR off: the scene is more exposed HDR On: Here, HDR produced a better-looking image HDR off: image is well exposed with good dynamic range HDR On: While shadows are more detailed, the overall effect is removed

Low light performance It was slated to receive a major update with the larger aperture of the iPhone 7 and OIS, and in fact, it's better than the iPhone 6s or 6s Plus. Images are a little softer in low light, but overall, noise is kept in check and bright light sources are kept. It is not as nice as the images produced by Galaxy S7 Edge, but they are not bad in any way.

1 of 3 A moderately lit interior scene In low light conditions, noise is still kept under control at the expense of some sharpness Thanks to OIS, the shutter speed can drop to 1/4 sec. Hand.

The four LED flash is really powerful; Take a look at the samples below.

February 1 Flash fired in black tone scene Low light scenario with a light source

iPhone 7 offers panoramas that are unique in two ways . First of all, they use the full resolution of the sensor, so the resulting images can reach up to 60 megapixels, which is great news if you intend to print them. Secondly, iPhone panoramas are recorded in HDR, so the image signal processor constantly adjusts the dynamic range to ensure even exposure throughout the scene. This feature is exclusive to the iPhone and it is sad that no other smart phone manufacturer has considered implementing this, because the output is really fantastic.

Simply put, the iPhone 7 is one of the best smart phone cameras out there, with images comparable to, if not better than, the previous champions, S7 Edge and iPhone 6s. The device has a score of 86 on DxOMark, which places it next to the best in photography for smartphones.

iPhone 7 video recording

Of course, no modern smart phone camera is complete without a capable camcorder function. IPhone 7 can record 4K videos (2160p) at 30fps, with options ranging from 1080p to 30fps or 60fps cinematic. Slow motion video recording is available for 120fps at 1080p or 240fps at 720p.

Videos from iPhone 7 come out at a decent bitrate, with 4K at 47Mbps. However, and this is one of my biggest complaints with the device, the audio is still recorded in mono at about 85 kbps in AAC format. When Apple finally learns to move to at least stereo audio, it surpasses me, but surely it is time for them to do so.

Low light performance in video recording is one where there is noticeable improvement, thanks to its larger aperture and OIS. By comparing the low-light images of the iPhone 6 with the side of the iPhone 7, it is clear that Apple has learned its lessons in this area. However, the overall performance, even in 4K, is still smoother than our previous favorite, the S7 Edge, which easily separates the iPhone 7 in video recording thanks to its f / 1.7 lens and better bitrate.

iPhone 7 front camera

The front shutter release on any device, often called the "selfie camera," has become an undeniably important component of any modern smart phone. This year, the iPhone 7's front camera also received a major update, increasing the resolution to 7 megapixels from the 5MP of the iPhone 6s. It is now also capable of recording 1080p videos.

The front camera is compatible with what Apple calls the "retina flash", which basically illuminates the entire screen when you take a photo with the front camera to better illuminate your face. It actually works better than you think, and it's a feature you'd appreciate having in a pinch, especially if you're a selfie lover.

February 1 Selfie without Retina Flash Selfie with retina flash fired

Connectivity

Being the flagship of Apple 2016, the iPhone 7 is not far behind when it comes to wireless connectivity options. It has the Wider LTE band coverage, and supports virtually all networks in the world. LTE itself is from the cat. 9 variety, which means theoretical downlinks of up to 450 Mbps (yes, good luck finding a network that offers that). Then there are VoLTE, HD Voice and WiFi calls, and of course FaceTime audio and video.

The iPhone 7 has a Bluetooth 4.2 low-energy protocol and the WiFi radio is of the 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac variety. Dado que Apple usa el puerto Lightning propietario, el soporte del host USB es limitado, y mientras NFC est a bordo, est restringido a Apple Pay.

No hace falta decir que el iPhone 7 maneja muy bien el propsito principal de un telfono, es decir, llamadas / mensajera. The cancelacin de ruido es excelente, el auricular es fuerte y la intensidad de la seal fue mayormente slida en la mayora de las reas en las que lo prob. Por supuesto, esta ltima parte variar de portadora a portadora, por lo que esto es puramente subjetivo. Sin embargo, iPhone 7 tiene todas las caractersticas de conectividad que puede solicitar (al menos de Apple).

Mira ms all del conector de 3, 5 mm y te encantar el iPhone 7

Apple dijo que con el iPhone 7, han producido el mejor iPhone hasta la fecha. Despus de haber jugado con el dispositivo durante dos semanas, no tengo ninguna razn para dudar de eso. Es un hermoso dispositivo que es el rey del rendimiento en 2016, cuenta con una cmara potente y capaz, est respaldado por un sistema operativo probado y comprobado que a la mayora le encanta, y es un dispositivo que marcar la tendencia de los fabricantes de telfonos inteligentes con Android del prximo ao. . Es posible que lo odies por dejar caer el conector para auriculares de 3, 5 mm y que tenga un diseo antiguo, pero supera eso y hay mucho que amar en el iPhone 7.

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