Samsung Galaxy S7 vs S7 Edge: first look


The Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge are like to siblings: they look pretty much the same, but they have some important differences.

What are those? Let's find out.

Design and Display


If the Galaxy S7 Edge did not have that screen curving towards both edges, we'd say that Samsung just took a magic wand and enlarged the 5.1" Galaxy S7 to make the 5.5" S7 Edge. Yes, they really are that similar (as a matter of fact, both look akin last year's Galaxy S6 as well).

The size contrast is the key difference here: the S7 Edge is noticeably taller (150.9mm vs 142.4mm) and slightly wider (72.6mm vs 69.6mm) than the S7, but curiously enough it's a hair thinner (7.7mm vs 7.9mm).

The little details matter, Samsung claims, and it's the little details that are taken care of on both phones: both have similarly curved back glass towards the edge as it flows into the side and fits comfortably in the hand. Still, given that they are both made of glass they catch quite a bit of fingerprints as well.

The screens? They are gorgeous: both the 5.1" S7 and 5.5" S7 Edge are Super AMOLED with Quad HD (1440 x 2560) resolution.

Android 6 and new TouchWiz


With Android 6 Marshmallow comes a new edition of TouchWiz and... mostly, the interface retains the same in terms of looks.

Speaking of major features, both the S7 and S7 Edge have the same: Android 6 brings Doze for further battery improvements, new notifications interface and individual app permissions management.

Then, there are the details: both phones have always-on display that can be customized to look truly awesome and since this is an AMOLED display, only individual pixels light up to show it, so it's light on battery use.

The big feature the S7 Edge has that the S7 lacks is the Edge interface, of course. With two rows of icons and - most importantly - open access to it to third-party apps, it's become a much more useful space.

Performance and memory: Snapdragon 820 all the way


Since both the S7 and S7 Edge run on the Snapdragon 820 in the United States (there is an international version features the similarly powerful Eynos 8890 system chip), there are no differences between them in terms of performance.

Both are at a perfectly equal playing field: the Snapdragon 820 with 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM, and 32GB of internal storage. MicroSD cards are back on both and you can use the hybrid SIM card slot to augment the 32 gigs allowance. Keep in mind that in the US only the 32GB version for both will be on sale, while in other markets, a 64GB version will also be offered. Samsung has also moved to the much faster UFS 2.0 storage from the NAND chips it used in the Galaxy S6.

Camera


Camera, camera, camera: this was a major part of the hype around the S7 and S7 Edge. Both feature the same new, 12-megapixel camera with larger individual pixels and the widest ever lens on a Samsung phone at f/1.7. This together results in huge improvements in the amount of light that you get in pictures, and images do indeed turn out lighter in dim conditions for both phones. The two both support optical image stabilization (OIS) as well.

Of course, with absolutely identical cameras, image quality on the S7 and S7 Edge is identical.

The cool features that are worth mentioning are a new motion panorama that animates your static panoramas with movement, then there is motion picture, similar to Apple's live photo, and a cool new hyperlapse video recording mode built in the camera app. Video can be recorded at up to 4K resolution at 30fps on both.

Battery


Given that the two are different in screen size, the batteries included are also different: a 3,000mAh one on the S7 and a 3,600mAh on the S7 Edge.

Both phones have larger than typical batteries, and Samsung has really gone all out here. Yes, at close to 8mm both are a hair thicker than iPhones, but we would definitely not say they look thick.

Quick Charging is naturally on board and so is wireless charging, but the cool new reversible USB Type-C has not made it to the S7 and S7 Edge, and instead the pair features a microUSB port. Finally, we should also say that the batteries are not user-removable.

Other features: water protection


Samsung has really pulled some clever engineering on both the S7 and S7 Edge with IP68 water protection that guarantees your phone won't get damaged even if you put it in up to 3 feet deep fresh water for as long as an hour. Not that Samsung recommends you do it - it says the phone is protected against accidental spills.

In order to pull this off, the company has managed to isolate the microUSB port so that it is water-protected, but without the annoying protective flaps that were used in the Galaxy S5.

Expectations


All in all, the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge are two nearly identical siblings: the main difference between the two is the different battery size, Edge functionality and screen size. If you like the cool new Edge features and prefer a larger phone, the S7 Edge would be the way to go, for lovers of more compact phones, the Galaxy S7 will be a great fit.


Related phones

Galaxy S7 edge
  • Display 5.5" 1440 x 2560 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 5 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 820, Quad-core, 2200 MHz
  • Storage 32 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 3600 mAh(36h 3G talk time)
Galaxy S7
  • Display 5.1" 1440 x 2560 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 5 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 820, Quad-core, 2200 MHz
  • Storage 32 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 3000 mAh(28h 3G talk time)

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32 Comments

1. zeeBomb

Posts: 2318; Member since: Aug 14, 2014

First look foooor the third time

3. another1

Posts: 157; Member since: Dec 25, 2015

LOL..

10. xondk

Posts: 1904; Member since: Mar 25, 2014

Well happens at all releases, sites/journalists tend to get.....eager.

12. combatmedic870

Posts: 984; Member since: Sep 02, 2015

Now make the S7 into a nexus and give it USB-C and we would have a perfect phone. The S7 is just....crazy. It has everything!

31. NonFanBoy

Posts: 180; Member since: May 28, 2015

Rather, improve touch wiz performance (stock android is featureless and boring), include an IR port and USB-C. There we have it, the device that is closest to perfect.

2. Derekjeter

Posts: 1466; Member since: Oct 27, 2011

Will the SIM card tray allow for Dual sim or will it only allow the SD card and one Sim? And does anyone know if I buy a unlocked version will it get full LTE signal from ATT? I can't stand the carrier branding that's what I love my Nexus 6p but I hate the USB type c issues I keep coming across. The S7 Edge in silver is looking really good.

4. GreekGeek

Posts: 1276; Member since: Mar 22, 2014

ALL Hybrid slots are Dual sim capable or 1 sim + MicroSD

6. Derekjeter

Posts: 1466; Member since: Oct 27, 2011

So can I use a ATT sim and a Verizon Sim on a unlocked version?

8. joeytaylor

Posts: 957; Member since: Feb 28, 2015

I think you need to look and see what frequency the phone is utilizing ...i think you would want the AT&T sim

16. Derekjeter

Posts: 1466; Member since: Oct 27, 2011

I have ATT but I was just wondering if you could use two different carrier SIMS or does it have to be the same carrier?

18. joeytaylor

Posts: 957; Member since: Feb 28, 2015

Again...from my understanding Verizon uses a different frequency for LTE....i think Verizon and AT&T only cross on one and its few and far between...so tou need to make sure the phone is compatible and i think AT&T.....if anyone else knows more let me know

19. joeytaylor

Posts: 957; Member since: Feb 28, 2015

There was a article a few weeks ago on here that went into detail about all carriers

5. darkkjedii

Posts: 30966; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Good job on what are basically S updates Samsung. The looks are pretty much the same, but the software features/refinements, sd card (for those who like em, I don't), and battery are great. Why no ir blaster and only 32 gigs internal though?

9. Derekjeter

Posts: 1466; Member since: Oct 27, 2011

You replacing your Note 5 with any of these new phones?

20. darkkjedii

Posts: 30966; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

No sir. Not only could either of these replace my Note 5, I've decided to skip new phones this year. Gotta goal I'm super focused on.

24. bigsimpd

Posts: 163; Member since: Jan 13, 2012

I'm waiting on the IPhone 7 plain and simple want nothing else the design is going to be absolutely gorgeous bro

32. PhoneCritic

Posts: 1354; Member since: Oct 05, 2011

I hear ya Dark. I too am skipping on all phones this year as I am purchasing my first home and the wife and I have said no to all new items this year.

11. combatmedic870

Posts: 984; Member since: Sep 02, 2015

Beside the IR and USB-C , I don't think you can shove any more into them! They have....everything with out removing anything(besides IR).

13. xondk

Posts: 1904; Member since: Mar 25, 2014

IR blaster is still present according to other sites, and you can see it on top, on some of the images on this site.

14. combatmedic870

Posts: 984; Member since: Sep 02, 2015

Then it literally has everything. This is as close to a perfect phone as it gets! It's like a 2016 version of LG G2! 3000mah and everything! Just awesome. I'm going to pre-order. I just don't know which to get and black S7 or a silver S7 edge. Ugh....one to many choices.

15. fyah_king unregistered

I am getting that s7 edge in silver. How's your jeep?

27. Fellwalker

Posts: 535; Member since: Apr 04, 2014

Battery is OK but far from great. Great would be 4150 like new HP Elite x3.

7. fyah_king unregistered

Damn, the camera looks better than last year

17. zeeBomb

Posts: 2318; Member since: Aug 14, 2014

I think I can see the pattern now. Its like the "S" line for Samsung (odd numbers) in even years, and vice versa for Apple. It's like they take and give specific features for a reason...

21. theo14461 unregistered

I figured Samsung would drop the gimmicky edge design by now.

22. NoToFanboys

Posts: 3231; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

"gimmicky", "design" (facepalm)

29. Fellwalker

Posts: 535; Member since: Apr 04, 2014

But people buy it! I cannot understand why you'd want to get a bigger screen only to lose bits of it round the side. Anything full screen must look really naff. And I really really don't understand how the edges are actually wide enough for what they claim as edge notifications. Whenever I looked in my local store, they wrapped round on the front.

23. hanabi

Posts: 177; Member since: Oct 08, 2015

camera bump gone, better battery, water resistance well enuf

25. Tarox

Posts: 114; Member since: Feb 17, 2015

Damnnnnnn.... Thats problably as close to the perfect phone as it can get in year 2016... Will be interesting to see the salesnumbers of that beast.

26. XaErO

Posts: 353; Member since: Sep 25, 2012

S7 and S7 Edge appears to be near perfect phones .. Good Job Samsung !! However, the 4:3 ratio ?? I would anytime prefer to be as 16:9 !!

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