Apple iPhone 7 Review
Great Build Quality & Durability.Great Overall Performance.Doesn't Explode.Good Battery Life.Water & Dust Resistant.
Design is a lot similar to iPhone 6S. No 3.5mm Headphone Jack.No Wireless ChargingNo Expandable Storage No Quick Charging AbilityLow Resolution (750p) Display
7.5A Subtle Refresh.
Interface7.5
Performance8.5
Build Quality8
Camera7.5
Battery Life8
Audio8.5

After a long wait and a thunderstorm of rumors & leaks, the Apple iPhone 7 is finally here! With its new chip, revamped design, and a new camera, the iPhone 7 is better than its predecessors. The phone was announced at Apple’s Special Event on September 7th and it seemed quite promising. So, after waiting a lot, we finally got our hands on the Rose Gold iPhone 7.

Apple iPhone 7 Review: A Worthy Successor?

Apple iPhone 7 Review: Starting

Let’s start our Apple iPhone 7 review by getting the specs out of the way:

Processor: Apple A10 Fusion – Quad-Core
RAM: 2GB RAM
Graphics: Hexa-Core Graphics Processor
Display: 4.7” 750×1334 pixels IPS LCD
Rear Camera: 12MP f/1.8 – PDAF – OIS – Quad-LED Flash – 4K @ 30FPS
Front Camera: 7MP f/2.2 – 1080p @ 30FPS – 720p @ 240FPS
Battery: 1960mAh Non-removable battery
Other Features: Fingerprint sensor – Stereo Speakers – IP67 Certified

*Note: This phone has no 3.5mm headphone jack, no radio, and no microSD card slot. 

Unboxing:

Here’s an unboxing video of the Apple iPhone 7 by our partner and YouTuber XEETECHCARE.

Build Quality:

Apple iPhone 7 Hands-on: Build Quality

The Apple iPhone 7 is well-built with its blasted aluminum body and it feels great in the hand. The Rose Gold version that we have does attract a little bit of fingerprints on the back but it’s not that bad. The volume buttons are nice and clicky and they’re not concave anymore. This helps in the water-resistance capability of the phone and it is not a weak spot for bends now, as it was in the previous-gen iPhones.

Apple iPhone 7 Review: Build Quality

The iPhone 7 is 7.1mm thick, same as the iPhone 6S. But it is lighter, weighs 138g (6S weighs 143g).

The design looks much similar to the iPhone 6S. The only notable differences are the bigger camera sensor and the redesigned antenna bands. The 4.7-inch screen size is perfect for me and even for those people who have small hands. The iPhone 7 feels great in the hand and the build quality is pristine. It also fits great in pockets. The iPhone 7 also survived the drop test against the Note 7 too. It is durable and beautiful; no complaints here.

Display:

Apple iPhone 7 Hands-on: Display

Not much has changed in terms of the display from the iPhone 6S and the iPhone 7. Comparing it with the iPhone 6S, we noticed no big differences at all. However, the color production of the iPhone 7 is “slightly” better than the 6S, thanks to the “wide color gamut”. Except that, the displays of both phones are exactly the same. They have the same size, same resolution, same pixel density and same screen-to-body ratio. From the front, the iPhone 7 looks pretty much exactly the same as the iPhone 6S. So yeah, Apple is still behind Samsung in terms of the display.

The resolution of the display on the iPhone 7 is quite low by today’s standards. For example, iPhone 7’s competitor, the Samsung Galaxy S7, has a 1440p OLED display while the iPhone 7 has a measly 750p display. And talking about pixel density, new phones like the LG V20 have almost twice the pixel density than the iPhone 7. The iPhone 7 is heavily lacking in the display department.

The New Home Button:

Apple iPhone 7 Hands-on: The New Home Button

In case you didn’t know, the home button on the iPhone 7 is redesigned. Powered by Apple’s Taptic Engine, the home button on the iPhone 7 is static. This helps in increased water-resistance and versatility. The home button is programmable by third-party applications too. Through the settings menu, you can change the force required to press the home button, thanks to the new Taptic Engine. The home button on the iPhone 7 also features Apple’s 3D Touch technology and Touch ID. In simple words, the new home button is pressure-sensitive and it has a built-in fingerprint sensor too.

The vibrational feedback is configurable too and it is amazing. With this new home button, the iPhone 7 has increased functionality and reachability. The fingerprint sensor is fast and accurate. You can accidentally press the home button if you have it set on low sensitivity but that can easily be fixed by increasing the force sensitivity required to press the home button. The static home button is definitely a neat feature to have.

What it’s like to live without a 3.5mm headphone jack?

Apple iPhone 7 Hands-on: No Headphone Jack

As you may know, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus have no 3.5mm headphone jack. Thankfully, Apple does give a lightning-to-headphone jack adaptor with the box of the new iPhones. The included lightning headphones sound fine, but if you have better headphones than that, you’ll need to use the included adapter, which adds about 2-3 inches of extra length.

Using 3.5mm headphones/earphones is acceptable with the iPhone 7, but the adapter is easy to lose. If you do lose the adaptor, you can buy a new one for $9.0. I don’t use headphones while the phone is charging but you need to know that you cannot attach headphones/earphones to the iPhone 7 while it is charging. This is a dealbreaker for some people, but it is not that bad.

Now let’s talk about what you gain by losing the 3.5mm headphone jack:

All New Stereo Speakers:

Apple iPhone 7 Hands-on: Stereo Speakers

As Apple said in their event earlier this month, the 3.5mm headphone jack takes up space. So, by removing that, they were able to include a larger battery and stereo speakers. One speaker is located on the bottom of the phone next to the lightning connector and the other speaker is the earpiece of the phone.

One speaker throws sound towards the user and the other speaker which is on the bottom of the phone, throws sound towards the right side or left side (depends on how you holding the device). This is a weird configuration but it works. The bottom speaker’s sound bounces towards the user by hitting the hand of the user. This works like a charm and the new Apple iPhone 7 sounds great. It is by far the loudest iPhone ever, outputting about 104dB of sound during our testing.

Are the stereo speakers worth it? Well, that depends on the user. I’d personally like getting the headphone jack back and losing the stereo speakers as I mostly use headphones with the device.

Camera:

Apple iPhone 7 Hands-on: Camera

Note: Camera samples will be attached soon. 

One of the big changes in the iPhone 7 is the newly-designed camera with a bigger sensor. The phone features a 12MP rear camera with f/1.8 aperture which is great in low-light conditions too. The new iPhone 7 has a six-element lens with Apple’s new ISP and high-speed sensor. It also incorporates a quad-LED dual-tone flash with wide color gamut.

Apple iPhone 7 Review: Camera

The iPhone 7 has a Quad-LED flash and larger camera sensor.

Comparing the iPhone 7’s camera with the iPhone 6S, there’s not a big difference. It is better but not by a huge margin. The real deal is the iPhone 7 Plus with its dual cameras. The camera does protrude a little from the body of the phone but it is well-built.

Apple iPhone 7 Review: Camera

The camera on the iPhone 7 takes great shots in all lighting conditions. It also has OIS (Optical Image Stabilization), something which the iPhone 6S didn’t have. It does overexpose a little bit but that can be tuned with the conveniently placed slider to adjust the exposure in the default the screen to focus.

Apple iPhone 7 Review: Front Camera

As for the front camera, it did get a bump from 5MP in the iPhone 6S to 7MP in the iPhone 7. But still, the front cameras of both phones are pretty close to each other in picture quality. My biggest complaint would be the image mirror thingy. If you take a selfie, the phone automatically mirrors it after capturing and the final image is flipped. The video and picture quality of the front camera is good but for high-quality selfies, I’d go with something else. You can use a third-party application to fix the mirroring issue, though.

Overall, I think the cameras on the iPhone 7 are great but there is still a lot of room left for improvement.

Performance:

Apple iPhone 7 Review: Performance

Note: Benchmark results will be attached soon.

The iPhone 7 is really fast. With Apple’s new A10 Fusion chip and 6-core GPU, the iPhone 7 can handle any task with ease. The 2GB RAM is enough for multi-tasking. We experienced no lags or slowdowns during our testing. As for gaming, you can easily max out any mobile game out there with more than playable frame rates.

The phone does get a bit hot while playing games and doing other hardware-intensive tasks, but it is still usable; nothing to worry about. I really recommend getting the iPhone 7 Plus if you want to do gaming and other hardware-intensive tasks because it has 3GB RAM, a bigger battery, and a bigger display.

As for the benchmarks, the iPhone 7 demolishes Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 {Read more here}. It is really fast. No complaints in terms of performance.

Interface:

Apple iPhone 7 Review: iOS 10

The iPhone 7 runs Apple’s latest iOS 10 out of the box. The UI is exactly the same as other iPhones running iOS 10. There are some neat features in the UI too, by the way! You can hold down the home button near a terminal to pay using iPay. You can double-tap on the home button to get all the icons in reach of one hand for one-handed use; this feature is really convenient. Moreover, you can hold down the home button to access Siri.

iOS 10 some other new things too, like additional security patches, updated app store with a new design, etc. But you can get most of this in the older iPhones too. Software-wise, the iPhone 7 is a lot similar to its predecessors. Apart from that, we didn’t experience any bugs in the software so far.

Battery Life:

Apple iPhone 7 Review: Battery Life

The Apple iPhone 7 packs a 1960mAh battery, which is 245mAh higher than iPhone 6S’ 1715mAh battery. In terms of battery life, the iPhone 7 is awesome. During our testing, it gave about 1 hour more screen-on time than the iPhone 6S. The Apple iPhone 7 can get you through the day easily with mixed use.

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Conclusion & FAQs:

Apple iPhone 7 Review: Conclusion

For $649, the iPhone 7 is a good all-round device. But to be honest, there are better options out there. People will still buy this phone because “it’s Apple”, but in my opinion, there are phones that are cheaper than this and they’re much better in many aspects (e.g. Samsung Galaxy S7). The Apple iPhone 7 is not a major leap from the previous generation iPhones too. In my opinion, Apple is a little late with the iPhone 7.

The iPhone 7 Plus may be a different story. We will check that out soon as it is not available currently. But as for the iPhone 7, it is just not a major leap forward. Now you might want to ask some questions about this, so here they are.

Is the iPhone 7 Worth it? 

If you don’t have an iPhone 6/6S, yes, it is worth it. But if you already have an iPhone 6S, upgrading to the iPhone 7 is not worth it, IMO. If you’re hunting for features like better water & dust resistance, slightly better camera and a better-performing processor, you can upgrade to the iPhone 7. And yeah, if you’re looking for that matte black sexiness, you can just slap on a DBrand skin on top of your 6S. If you still want to upgrade to a better iPhone from the 6S, I suggest getting the iPhone 7 Plus.

iPhone 7 or Galaxy S7? 

I’d choose the Galaxy S7 as it is cheaper, has a better display, better features and a way better camera.

Is removal of 3.5mm headphone jack a good move from Apple?

No. But in exchange, we do get better speakers and other features like the Taptic Engine. So yeah, it may be a good move. But in my opinion, no.

Is it durable?

Yes! The Apple iPhone 7 is highly durable with its blasted aluminum chassis. This is a great advantage of the iPhone 7 over Samsung’s Note 7 & S7, as both of them have glass backs which easily break.


So there you have it, guys. That’s it for our Apple iPhone 7 review. For more speed tests, camera tests and other great content about the iPhone 7, stay tuned to GeeksULTD.