Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge vs. Apple iPhone 7 Plus (Showdown)

This is going to be a painful one, Android Guys (hopefully just for me – I’d rather you enjoy it). In one corner, we have Samsung – money-grubbing, hardware-peddling, literally-trying-to-kill-us-with-IED-phones Samsung. In the other, we have Apple – price-hiking, non-standard-using, walled-and-locked-gardening Apple.

Now, I’m no fan of either company – if you couldn’t tell – but for the sake of comparing the baddest (read: good-est) phones from the two biggest heavyweights around, let’s see who walks away with the belt.

Build

Aluminum Body

5.54oz vs. 6.63oz

IP68 vs. IP67

I’m gonna be honest here, I did not expect Samsung to beat the iPhone’s IP rating. Apparently the Edge is very well protected against both dust and water – even to the extent that it can be submerged more than a meter underwater and suffer no ill effects. By comparison, the iPhone is only rated up to 1m. Both phones are completely and utterly dust proof, however, receiving the highest mark possible in that category. Edge comes in at more than an ounce lighter, as well as being narrower and shorter (with the same size screen), but the iPhone still manages to be thinner.

Screen

5.5” Curved AMOLED vs. 5.5” IPS LCD (3D Touch)

534PPI vs. 401PPI

Gorilla Glass vs. …iPhone Glass

In my opinion, Samsung has a pretty clear advantage here. That gorgeous AMOLED screen combined with the curved display and Edge functionality (I still think this is a gimmick, for the record) really put Apple’s LCD on blast (Fun Fact – Apple’s LCD is actually made by Samsung – so they could easily throw an AMOLED screen on an iPhone…But that might result in our first mainstream $1000 phone). Samsung’s Gorilla Glass also helps it stay shatter resistant, while Apple…well. that horse has been thoroughly beaten.

Internals

Exynos 8 (2.3GHz) vs. A10 Fusion (2.34GHz)

4GB vs. 3GB RAM

32GB vs. 256GB Internal

Micro-SD Slot vs. Non-Expandable

Samsung has exactly one advantage here – expandable memory. While the Edge only comes stock with 32GB internally, the ability to add more storage (or swap data easily) is a great benefit. Clock speed and RAM are basically a wash (remember, iPhones are notoriously RAM efficient), with iPhone having a slight edge in processing speed while Edge adds an extra gig of RAM.

Internal Features

Bluetooth 4.2

802.11AC WiFi Standard

Micro-USB vs. Lightning

Wireless Charging vs. Wired Charging

Just a couple points of note here, otherwise standard stuff. Lightning is a reversible, more efficient standard than is MicroUSB; it’s also more expensive. Edge is also wireless charging compatible, using the Qi standard. Sidenote: I can’t wait to see Bluetooth 5 show up on phones.

Battery

3600mAh vs. 2900mAh

27hrs vs. 21hrs Talk Time

Pretty straightforward – Edge’s battery is 700mAh larger, and so you get more talk time out of it. I’m surprised that it gets so much more, though – Edge’s screen is a bit more dense and it runs higher RAM, and I’d have expected it to be a bit closer – guess not. I feel it should be noted that Samsung, Google, LG and Moto have all gotten used to the idea that most people want a big battery over thin-ness, while Apple still resists putting a 3000mAh+ battery on its phones. That’s gonna need to change soon.

Camera

12mp Main Shooter

1.4 μm vs. 1.2μm

F1.7 vs F1.8/2.8

HDR Support

5mp vs. 7mp Selfie

iphone-camera
Note the dual lenses – this is gonna be a pattern in the coming days.

While the Edge has a respectable pair of cameras – complete with HDR Support on the back shooter – the iPhone simply outclasses it in every way. Its dual lenses (with aperture sizes of 1.8 and 2.8) are both stronger than the Edge’s single, and with smaller pixel size its images will be clearer even at zoom. If the Edge lags behind in any one area, it’s photography – to be fair, though, the Edge also came out more than six months earlier than did the 7 Plus.

Value

$590 vs. $919

Going into this, I fully expected to be recommending the iPhone 7 Plus over the Galaxy S7 Edge. After reviewing the facts for both, and seeing the current going prices, I’m going to have to reverse that recommendation – at nearly half the price and competitive specs in all major technical areas, the S7 Edge is a much, much better value than is the iPhone 7 Plus.

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