[Review] Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge.

Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge is one of the most expensive Android smartphone in Malaysia. It carries a retail price tag of RM 3099 and is available in black (Black Onyx), silver (Silver Titanium) and gold (Gold Platinum). One of the reason this device is priced high is because of the ‘edge’ display where you get a display that curves to the right and left which you will not find from other makers.

Now, let’s take a quick look at the spec :

Key specs of Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge :
  • Exynos 8890 64-bit Octa-Core processor.
  • 32 GB internal storage and 4 GB RAM. Supports micro SD card up to 200 GB.
  • 5.5″ Quad HD Super AMOLED edge dislay (2560 x 1440 pixel resolution).
  • Android 6.0 Marshmallow out of box.
  • 12 Megapixel main camera with F1.7 Aperture & smart OIS.
  • 5 Megapixel selfie camera with F1.7 aperture.
  • Dual SIM with LTE support.
  • IP68 dust and water resistant.
  • 3600 mAh battery.
  • Colours – Black Onyx, Silver Titanium, Gold Platinum & Pink Gold.

 

UNBOXING

Inside the box :

  • Phone.
  • Charger.
  • USB cable.
  • handsfree.
  • USB OTG adapter.
  • Documents – quick start guide (in multiple languages), warranty information & warranty card.
  • SIM eject tool.
  • IMEI sticker.

 

EXTERIOR

The phone looks very nice. It is slim and sleek. The back panel is a fingerprint magnet which can be annoying at times. If you look at the top and bottom of the device, it has iPhone like design, with the white stripes and other minor similarities. The sides @ ‘edge’ can be just too thin for you to grip without tapping on the display.

 

 

Top – SIM tray and microphone.

Bottom – 3.5mm audio port, micro USB port, microphone, speaker.

Left – Volume rockers.

Right – Power button.

Front – notification light, sensors, earpiece, 5 MP selfie camera, touch keys and home button with fingerprint sensor.

Back – 13 MP camera and LED flash.

 

BASICS

The device allows you to use 2 SIM cards and both are nano SIM slots. As for the 2nd slot, you only have the option of using either a SIM card or a micro SD card at a time. Both SIM slots are LTE capable.

The notification light emits various colours (tested with WhatsApp). For some colours, it gives a mix of 2 different colours to produce the required colour but that works well too. Fingerprint sensor works as it should and the unlocking speed is fairly good.

As for the soft keys, somehow we are not able to find the setting to light them up as long as the screen is on (or totally turn them off). As such, the light behind the touch keys can turn off halfway while you are using your phone until you tap on them again.

It has been such a long time since we last used a Samsung phone and the current TouchWiz UI has changed a lot. Some things can be a little complicated at first e.g. finding a setting or let’s say moving contacts. So it is a matter of getting used to. Otherwise everything else is good.

 

MULTIMEDIA, SPEAKER & DISPLAY

The speaker is loud and sharp enough. It is not the loudest but loud enough for you to not miss any calls or messages. Watching movies probably may not be suitable without a headphone. Well, generally in any phones, the speakers are too small and you can’t expect much.

Listening to music via the headphones is ok. Somehow we didn’t feel the ‘umph’ in the music but they were fine. The handsfree given was good. If you need to adjust the bass, treble etc, there is a basic and advance equalizer in the music player.

The QHD AMOLED display is very good. Everything that you view on the display is clear and sharp. Videos were also good. All videos that we tried were smooth and nice. Viewing angles were fantastic. The only thing that we didn’t like about the display is the curved areas where we had a hard time holding it in any position. Somehow we tend to touch the edges and sometimes it is very annoying because we accidentally click on something while browsing the web or scroll elsewhere while reading something. Furthermore, the curved areas don’t really have any benefit in terms of performance. They are just there for some ‘cosmetic features’ which are not so important for us. Probably the S7 (without the Edge) suit us better.

 

CAMERA

Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge’s camera is definitely one of the best that we’ve seen. It takes awesome photos. If the photos don’t meet your expectation, you can also make use of the pro mode. The F1.7 aperture for both selfie camera and rear camera is really helpful in low light condition. There are still some digital noise when the environment is quite dark but but this can be solved by lowering the brightness level while taking photo. So if you are not lazy and can fiddle with the camera settings a bit, you can take beautiful photos even at night (depending on the situation).

The rear camera is capable of recording QHD and UHD videos. Well, it can even record 1080p videos up to 60fps. Even the selfie camera is capable of recording videos up to QHD. Although the rear camera supports continuous auto focus while recording video, the front camera doesn’t have that feature.

 

PERFORMANCE

The device performs extraordinarily well. We can’t find a fault. Even graphic intensive games are smooth and nice on this device. The details shown while playing some games e.g. Need for Speed No Limits is awesome where we can see the wet road effect, rain effect etc which we can’t see in other devices. 4 GB of RAM is more than enough to make sure the device is lag free.

The only thing that could have been better is the internal storage. The device comes with only 32 GB of storage. Although it was sufficient for us, we still think it’s not making sense for a device worth RM 3099 (one of the most expensive in Malaysia) to have just that much of internal storage. Furthermore, if you are using 2 SIM cards on this device, you can’t even use a micro SD card and you are stuck with the limited internal storage.

 

BATTERY LIFE

The battery life of Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge is not the best but it is definitely better than average. When we used the device only for browsing, social networking, chat, email (4 emails with immediate push notification) and some light photography, the device lasted for 2 days, 8 hours and 12 minutes. The screen on-time was 4 hours 16 minutes and 9 seconds.

When we did the above + 20 minutes of navigation (Waze), 10 minutes of music playback, less than 5 minutes of games and another 5 minutes of photography, the battery lasted for 1 day, 11 hours, 17 minutes and 2 seconds. The screen on-time was 5 hours, 25 minutes and 51 seconds.

Charging the device from zero to full took about 1 hour and 45 minutes (fast charging mode enabled).

 

CONCLUSION

Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge is one of the best device that we’ve ever used. It has so much to offer in terms of performance and camera. In fact, we even used it during events, to take photos and videos of products. It was so useful for us. Since we don’t like the Edge version, probably the normal S7 (without the edge display) will be suitable for us. However, the 32 GB of internal storage is a big turn-off for us, especially for the price that we need to pay.

Good :

  • Camera.
  • Overall performance.
  • Design.
  • Fingerprint, NFC etc.
  • Fast charging.
  • Decent battery life.
  • IP68 water and dust resistant.

Bad :

  • Unable to hold the phone properly due to curved display.
  • No real use of curved display except for ‘cosmetic features’.
  • Back panel is fingerprint magnet. Also possible to get scratched (we had 2 tiny scratches on our device).
  • Average music experience.
  • Only 32 GB of internal storage.
  • hybrid slot – unable to use micro SD card if 2 SIM cards are used.

 

Our score for Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge.

Summary

92.5%
  • Design / Outlook (95%)
  • Features (95%)
  • Camera (95%)
  • Hardware Performance (95%)
  • Software / UI (90%)
  • Battery Life / Charging Time (85%)

 

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