Pre-orders have begun for Samsung’s latest flagship devices. The Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge will be shipping out in early March, and available in stores soon thereafter. Where major phone releases are concerned, whether by Samsung, Apple, or someone else, we’ve gradually come to expect relatively small changes that upgrade performance and capability without drastically altering the look or feel of the phone. The new Galaxy devices look to be continuing that trend, but let’s take a look at some of the specifics that have been revealed.
For starters, we’ll address the actual look of the phones, because this is still what a lot of consumers will notice first. Judging by photos at GSM Arena, we can confirm three safe but beautiful colors for the phones. Both the S7 and S7 Edge will be available in grey (a slightly more silvery take on Apple’s “space grey” tone), gold, and perhaps most excitingly, a true black (as opposed to the sapphire option we saw with the S6). Aside from these color options, both phones look virtually identical to their predecessors, with the same casing and layout for buttons, speakers, receptacles, etc.
As for the specs, there have been a lot of rumors over the last several months regarding camera performance, display size, battery capability, and even water resistance. And following Verizon Wireless’ announcement, we can now confirm the following four specs as primary features of the new devices:
12 MP Rear Camera – The rear camera on the S7 and S7 Edge will drop to 12 MP (from 16 MP on the S6). This has been done in part to improve photography in low light. Additionally, the new phones’ cameras will be the first smartphone cameras equipped with dual-pixel technology, which is meant to make autofocus more effective.
1”/5.5” Displays – The S7 will feature a 5.1” display identical to that of the S6. The new Edge will be slightly larger at 5.5”, which sounds subtle but should make for a nice, heftier option for those who prefer it.
3,000/3,600 mAh Batteries – The S6’s 2,550 mAh battery wasn’t really seen as a major problem for most consumers who used the phone on a regular basis. However, with the S7 and S7 Edge coming out with 3,000 and 3,600 mAh batteries, there’s a clear improvement in this area.
IP68 Rating – The IP68 rating means that these new phones will indeed be waterproof, at least within reason. Splashes, drips, and possibly brief submersions can be withstood by the devices. However, you’ll still want to avoid getting them wet if possible.
That about does it as far as meaningful specs are concerned. And as mentioned before, it looks as if Samsung is opting for relatively small changes that will make noticeable but not groundbreaking improvements on performance. There is, however, one more interesting thing to consider with regard to the release of the S7 and S7 Edge.
According to the International Business Times, Samsung is relying on its virtual reality headset—the Samsung Gear VR—as part of the competitive strategy behind the release of the S7. With Apple rumored to be debuting an iPhone 7 later this year, Samsung is hoping that the S7’s compatibility with the Gear VR will set it apart. And for those who are interested in the coming virtual reality phenomenon, that makes the S7 a little bit more than just “a new phone.”
Considering all of this, it certainly looks like Samsung has another very strong release on its hands. The S7 and S7 Edge appear poised to satisfy existing Samsung fans and potentially win over a few new ones.