Is The iPhone 7 Worth the Upgrade?

By Cain Hernandez
Blog Content Contributor

I’ve found myself asking this question more and more since the release of the highly anticipated iPhone 7. If anyone is due for an upgrade it’s me. I’m still using the same iPhone 5 that I’ve had for nearly four years. My phone has been on a gradual decline for a few months now and I’ll be lucky if it lasts me till the end of this year. About a month ago, my phone’s battery died on my way home from work. This had been happening a lot lately, so I didn’t think anything of it. I put it on the charger when I got home and left it to do its thing; two hours later, my phone still hadn’t turned on. After an hour of scouring google for fixes, I finally found a solution that worked. All it took was a blow drier and 2 or 3 minutes of my time. That’s right, I literally jump started my phone with a blow drier. How’s that for ingenuity? Point of the story is, I need a new phone and I’m probably not the only one.

To be perfectly honest, iPhone 7 is not a substantial upgrade, in fact some people would consider it a downgrade, but it does have some redeeming qualities. If you are an iOS user, and you’re in the market for a new phone, then I’m here to provide you with some of the benefits and disadvantages that come with purchasing the new iPhone.

Reasons to Buy

New Colors

For me, the biggest reason to buy the new iPhone is the two new colors, jet black and matte black, or just black as Apple likes to call it. The new jet black iPhone looks absolutely stunning. Although, because of that beautiful high-gloss finish, it is extremely susceptible to micro abrasions and scratches. Apple addressed this, telling consumers to “use one of the many cases available to protect your iPhone,” which completely defeats the purpose of having such an attractive phone. It’s also more expensive, since you can only buy it in the 128gb model or higher.

The iPhone 7 will come in two new colors and will be water-resistant. Photo by Cain Hernandez.
The iPhone 7 will come in two new colors and will be water-resistant. Photo by Cain Hernandez.

With all that being said, it is truly a beautiful smart phone. My number one option, however, is the sleek and stealthy looking matte black finish. This finish has a very professional look to it and I can’t wait to pair it up with a nice matte screen protector. Not to mention, you won’t have to deal with the messy fingerprints you’ll attract on the jet black model.

Improved Camera

Another reason to buy the iPhone 7 would have to be the camera. The iPhone 7’s new camera has been reengineered again, this time with optical image stabilization and true tone flash, as well as a new f/1.8 aperture and a six element lens. In theory, Apple claims that your photos and videos will be sharper, more vibrant and look great in low light settings. The front facing camera has also been improved, being bumped up from 5 to 7 megapixels, which is sure to please the all the selfie fanatics of the world.

Water-resistance

The feature that people have been waiting for ever since the Galaxy s5 was released is finally here. The iPhone 7 is indeed water-resistant. Not waterproof. You won’t be deep sea diving with this phone. Despite that, it is IP67 rated. Not quite as good of a rating as the IP68 Galaxy s7, but you should be fine if you get caught in the rain, or if your friend pushes you into a swimming pool. Keep in mind, that this phone will only survive in 3.3 feet of water for 30 minutes, and Apple’s warranty does NOT cover water damage. So tread lightly.

Reasons Not to Buy

No Headphone Jack

The iPhone 7 will not have a headphone jack. Photo by Cain Hernandez.
The iPhone 7 will not have a headphone jack. Photo by Cain Hernandez.

This is a huge deal breaker for many people, not to mention the enormous inconvenience that not having a headphone jack will cause. During Apple’s keynote presentation, they said it took “courage” to remove the headphone jack. Is this the innovation we were expecting?

To be fair, they do include Lightning connector headphones and an adapter for your current headphones. Good luck trying to find a way to listen to music and charge at the same time though. I suppose you could always buy the ridiculously priced $160 wireless AirPods.

Recycled Design

I was pretty disappointed when I found out that the design for the new iPhone would remain relatively unchanged. Besides the new colors and the placement of the antenna bands, this new batch of iPhones look exactly like the ones that came before it. Many people speculate that for Apples 20th anniversary next year, that the iPhone 8 is going to be a true upgrade compared to the rehashed iPhone 7 we got this year. So you might just want to wait for next year’s iPhone.

Same Resolution

The iPhone 7 is still rocking the same 750 x 1334 display that was introduced with the iPhone 6 two years ago. With a resolution only slightly higher than a 720p, it truly is a shame that Apple refuses to get with the times on this issue. We live in a glorious high definition world of 1440p quad HD displays, and Apple, like usual, seems to be pretty behind the times at this point. Apple boasts a wider color gamut on the iPhone 7, but that doesn’t change the fact that the resolution still hasn’t changed.

iPhone 7 Plus

Here is a very quick rundown of the three major differences between the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

Dual-Lens camera with 2x optical zoom and 10x digital zoom, a 5.5-inch screen with a 1080p display and a slightly longer battery life. Everything else is virtually the same.

My aim here was not to persuade you to, or dissuade you from, buying the new iPhone. However, I do recommend that you get your hands on one and try it out for yourself before you buy. If you need a phone right this instant and you have the money to spend, then by all means, buy one. With that being said, you may want to wait and see what Apple has in store for us in 2017.

Holly Henrichsen

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