OK Samsung, you got me. After years of resisting Galaxy phones because of TouchWiz, and because they were made of plastic, and because, well, they were ugly as sin, you've gone and made a phone that I really, really want. The S7 Edge and its counterpart the S7 are beautifully designed, expertly constructed, and sport the kind of features I've been clamouring for for years, but could never find in a single device. They're so good, in fact, that I might even be able to forgive TouchWiz. Almost.
At first glance you'd be hard pressed to tell whether you were looking at an S6 Edge or S7 Edge, such is the design language both phones share, but the difference is immediately noticeable when you pick the S7 Edge up. Gone are the awkward camera bulge and the uncomfortable flat back of the S6, replaced instead with an almost flush camera and metal back that gently curves out to fill your hand. Even the increased thickness over the S6 isn't a bad thing. The S7 is easier to pick up off a table, seems like it'll be more comfortable to hold over longer periods of time, and—most importantly for a phone that costs a hefty €799 (~$800)—it feels worthy of its premium price tag.
The improvements to the S7 Edge's design may be small on paper, but such subtle refinements make a world of difference. This is the first Galaxy phone I've used that I can truly say matches up to the premium feel of an iPhone, the sort of thing that I'd fondle all day out of pure joy, and not because of an ever growing (and worrying) Facebook addiction. Those curved edges may be a little superfluous, but they make swiping in from the sides of the phone delightfully smooth, while also having the added benefit of next to no screen bezel along the sides. With its 5.5-inch AMOLED screen, the S7 Edge isn't a small phone by any means, but compared to the likes of Apple's iPhone 6S Plus—which has the same screen size—it's much smaller and easier to use in one hand.
There are other small touches that make a big difference, too. The fingerprint sensor ridge around the home button has been lowered, making it easier to move to and from the touchscreen, while the volume buttons have a slightly clicky feel, making them easier to press. Best of all, these design features haven't come at the expense of practicalness this time around. SD card slot? Check. Waterproofing? Check (up to IP68, even). Decent battery life? Check. Well, at least in theory on that last one: the S7 sports a 3000mAh battery while the S7 Edge sports 3600mAh battery. Both are significantly larger than in the S6, hopefully promising far more run time under daily use.
No, the battery still isn't removable (you have to go to LG for that feature), but I'll take a bigger battery over a removable one any day. Helping things along is Qualcomm's new quad-core Snapdragon 820 SoC, which promises to put an end to the heat, throttling, and battery life issues that plagued 2015's flagship phones. Sure, it's probably faster too—a hard thing to test at an MWC hands-on—but really, when was the last time you used a phone that felt truly slow? Phones sold outside the US will use Samsung's octa-core Exynos 8890 SoC, which is said to have comparable performance.Samsung made some bold claims about the S7 and S7 Edge's new cameras in its press conference, taking more than one opportunity to try and one-up its rival Apple. While I can't say that the "Dual Pixel" 12-megapixel sensor's autofocus and low light performance was better than that of the 6S Plus—the phone was in a bright room, and I was warned not to take it too far away or face being tackled to the ground by a beefy bouncer—it did focus very quickly during some brief testing, and snapped some fine pictures, which are embedded in the gallery below.
Samsung said little about software during its press conference, because there's simply not much to tell. TouchWiz is still there, whether you like it or not, but it's gotten far less intrusive over the years. The S7 Edge features a larger edge panel—essentially a collection of shortcuts to apps and contacts—that you swipe in from the curved edge of the screen. It works fine, but really it's a case of Samsung trying to find a practical use for the curved screen when in reality it's little more than a flashy bit of bling. Which is fine. Sometimes it's OK to have things that just do a fine job of looking pretty.So that's a waterproof phone with a quad-HD AMOLED display, gorgeous design, solid metal construction, expandable storage, probably an excellent camera, and above average battery life. I even dig the mirror-like chrome finish in all its fingerprint-grabbing glory. If the S7 Edge also has a decent headphone amp—sadly, I don't yet know what audio hardware is inside—Samsung may have just made the phone I've been looking for. Those with who prefer the feel of a smaller phone will likely love the regular S7 too.
If there's catch—and let's face it, there's always a catch—it's the price. At €699 (~$700) for the S7 and €799 (~$800) for S7 Edge, these are expensive phones. That's a price tag that's becoming increasingly hard to swallow as phone makers like Huawei, Xiaomi, and OnePlus churn out premium phones at mid-range (or lower) prices. But I think Samsung's done enough to warrant a premium price tag. No other phone can boast this many thoughtful features in such a svelte and attractive package.http://toplivenews.net/