After a long wait and tons of rumors and leaked images, it finally happened. On September 7, during a special event, Apple introduced its two new smartphone duo, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus. Even though at a first look, they don’t seem very different, compared with previous models, the two handsets are actually quite different.
In order to make things clear, we’ve made a list with 10 of the most important new features brought by the new handsets, so you can see exactly what Apple changed. Let’s begin, shall we?
Like every two years, everybody was looking forward to seeing a completely redesigned iPhone 7. However, leaked images revealed over the past weeks were pointing to a relatively similar handset, but we were still hoping to see something new. Unfortunately, it wasn’t like this.
At a first look, the two handsets are rocking pretty much the same design as last year, but analyzing them in details reveals a new placement of the antenna bands, which are now on the top and bottom edges. Also, say goodbye to Space Grey, as Apple introduced two new colors: Jet Black, with a glossy finish, and Black, with a matte finish. Way better looking than Space Grey, if you ask us.
Say goodbye to the home button as we knew it. No, Apple didn’t remove it, but it’s not a physical button anymore. Instead of clicking it, in order to get back to the Home screen, activate Siri, unlock the phone and so on, you just need to tap on it, as it’s a tactile button now, using the same technology as the Mac Book’s track pad.
Water & Dust Resistance
One of the most surprising announcements of the evening was the fact that the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus will be water and dust resistant, thanks to the IP68 certification. Both devices can be sunken in 1-meter deep water, for 30 minutes. It’s not that much, but you can answer a call while taking a shower.
Like every year, Apple also updated the cameras on the iPhone, especially the 7 Plus, but we’ll get to this a bit later. The iPhone 7 comes with a 12 MP snapper and f/1.8 aperture, as well as optical image stabilization, phase detection auto focus and a quad-LED flash.
Moving on to the iPhone 7 Plus, it has a new dual camera setup, each of the sensors having a 12 MP resolution. However, one of them has a f/1.8 aperture and a 28 mm lens, while the second has f/2.8 and a bigger, 56 mm lens, capable of impressive digital zoom. Otherwise, it shares the same features as its little brother.
Retina HD Display
Apple claims that the display used on the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus is the best ever used on a smartphone. Compared to the previous model, it’s 25% brighter, with a wider color gamut. Besides this, it has an improved 3D Touch layer under it, improving the way the haptic feedback works.
Finally, an iPhone with a dual-speaker system. One speaker is at the bottom and one on the top, being able to deliver twice the power of an iPhone 6S or 6S Plus. An excellent addition, being great for those moments when you want to enjoy a movie.
No Headphone Jack
The lack of a 3.5 mm jack was definitely the most rumored iPhone 7 and 7 Plus feature. Even some fans believed that it was just a joke, it turned out to be true. Starting with this generation, the EarPods will connect to the phone using the Lightning port. Still, Apple will also offer a free Lightning to 3.5 mm converter in the retail box, for those who want to use a different pair of wired headphones.
Speaking about headphones, Apple decided that if they ditched the headphone jack, they might as well say goodbye to wires. The new wireless headset goes by the name of AirPods and, at a first look, are the same thing as a classic Earpods set, but without the wires. However, they pack way more technology!
Thanks to the W1 chip hidden inside, the AirPods are constantly connected to your phone. Besides this, the sensors inside them are able to tell when you’re actually using these headphones, so they will start playing just when you have them in your ears. And this is not everything, as they’re packed with motion accelerometers, responding to your touch and allowing you to access Siri with a single tap.
The EarPods can provide up to 5 hours of continuous listening in a single charge.
Updated Apple Pay
Thanks to the improvements brought by iOS 10, it will be way easier to keep multiple credit cards stored on your iPhone. Also, the service will soon be available in more countries, including Japan, a country known for using a different type of NFC, called Felica.
Of course, a new iPhone without improved hardware doesn’t make sense. This year, Apple presented the new A10 Fusion chip, with four-cores. Two of them are high-performance, offering 40% faster processing than the previous A9 chip, while the other two are high-efficiency cores. An Apple-design performance controller is in charge with the four cores, deciding when to use each pair.
Moving on, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus also introduced an improved GPU, with 6 cores, 50% faster than the one used alongside the A9 chip. It’s also using less power, so expect improved battery life as well.
Also, regarding the battery life, Apple claims that the two new handsets are the best until now from this point of view. To be more specific, the iPhone 7 lasts 2 hours more than iPhone 6s, on average. As for the iPhone 7 Plus, it last one more hour than the iPhone 6s Plus, a handset which already had a great battery life.
To sum up, it’s obvious that these two handsets, despite the similarities with the previous generation, are totally new devices, starting with the design and the camera, and ending up with the internals. There’s one big reason Apple didn’t operate obvious changes in terms of looks: the form factor introduced last year sells very well, people are OK with the 4.7″ model, as well as the 5.5″ one. After all, the iPhone 6s is the best selling Apple handset!
With these new features, we won’t be surprised if the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus will perform even better on the market, compared to the previous models. Also, let’s not forget that they have the same starting price, another big plus!
What are your thoughts on Apple’s new smartphones? Are they what you were expecting or the manufacturer could have done better? Let us know, by dropping a few lines in the comments section below.