Should you buy the new iPhone7?

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Should you buy the new iPhone7?

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The iPhone 7 has landed, so if you’re in the market for a shiny new iPhone… STOP! Steady on there, hold your horses – Until you’ve read this and considered all your options, at least.

Just because Apple has a fancy new phone on its shelves doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the right one for you. Yes, it might be more than a year old, but the iPhone 6S has been handed a considerable price cut, and with more than R12 500 of your own cash at stake, you’d feel a bit foolish jumping the gun, and dropping the dosh only to be left regretting your new pocket blower purchase, right?

So, with the iPhone 7 now on sale, it’s time to don a snorkel and dive into the murky waters of iPhone nitty gritty. Together we can emerge on the right side of the iPhone 7 vs iPhone 6S ocean, smelling like roses.

Those holding out for a radical redesign have been left a little disappointed. The iPhone 7, which hit retailers back in September, boasts only minor design updates on last year’s model, at least visually. While this is sure to disappoint many – after all, why buy a new phone when your mates won’t notice? – it’s not actually that big a hardship really, especially when you consider its now waterproof enough to be dropped down the toilet without worry.

Yes, the iPhone 6S might have already replicated the design of the 2014-released iPhone 6, but so what? It’s still one of the best looking smartphones available today. By building on this, the iPhone 7 has taken a design classic and made it just that little bit more enticing.

First the good: those slightly unsightly antenna lines on the rear of the 6S have been given the shove. What’s more, while the existing gold, silver and rose gold (pink) colour schemes have been retained, the Space Grey option has made one for not one, but two black models, a matt and a stunning new gloss option.

Now the bad: for some reason, Apple has killed off the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack. This means unless you’ve got a pair of Bluetooth cans (already an audio trade-off), or are happy to make do with the Lightning EarPods or 3.5mm to Lightning adaptor the big-A is packaging in with the handset, you’re going to have to invest in a costly new pair audio enablers.

Why would Apple do this? Well according to the company itself, it’s all about courage, and better sound options, hmm. While the lack of a headphone port gives the iPhone 6S the edge, the iPhone 7 isn’t without its own sound skills. Part of the redesign has made space for a second, top-mounted speaker. This means the 7 is the first iPhone to offer stereo sound.

While we’re happy to jump on board with a safe handset design, screen quality is an area where Apple really needed to improve and, sadly, it’s not done much on this front.

The iPhone 6S features a 4.7-inch Retina display with a 1334 x 750 pixel resolution and, well, so does the iPhone 7. While this might sound quite high, it’s fairly low compared with the 2560 x 1440 pixel QHD panels found on the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S7 and HTC 10.

Although resolution hasn’t improved, the screen has, sort of anyway. It doesn’t go toe-to-toe with the likes of the S7, not even close, but with a wider colour gamut making the cut and a 25% increase in brightness, it’s a little more easy on the eye. Apple has once again proved that there’s more to good image quality that just pixel count, and when it comes to contrast levels, accurate colour representation and speedy refresh rates, the iPhone is typically without rival.

Screen’s aren’t just about image quality though. Toughness is a big deal too, as anyone who’s spent the last nine months of their contract with a shattered smartphone screen will tell you. Here, the iPhone 7 looks set to move things one, reportedly with the adoption of the newly announced, extra tough Gorilla Glass 5 which will make case-free drops less of a death sentence.

Although resolution hasn’t improved, the screen has, sort of anyway. It doesn’t go toe-to-toe with the likes of the S7, not even close, but with a wider colour gamut making the cut and a 25% increase in brightness, it’s a little more easy on the eye. Apple has once again proved that there’s more to good image quality that just pixel count, and when it comes to contrast levels, accurate colour representation and speedy refresh rates, the iPhone is typically without rival.

Screen’s aren’t just about image quality though. Toughness is a big deal too, as anyone who’s spent the last nine months of their contract with a shattered smartphone screen will tell you. Here, the iPhone 7 looks set to move things one, reportedly with the adoption of the newly announced, extra tough Gorilla Glass 5 which will make case-free drops less of a death sentence.

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