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iPhone 7 reviews

iPhone 7 reviews are out:

John Gruber, Daring Fireball:

Even if you want to judge these new iPhones based solely on their industrial design, the new black finishes alone would make me want to buy one. But what matters is what happens when you turn them on and use them. And in every single regard, from performance to battery life to camera image quality to haptic feedback to water resistance to sound quality from the speakers,[3] the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus are impressive year-over-year improvements over the 6S/6S Plus, and stunning improvements over the two- and three-year old iPhone 6 and 5S — which are the models most people considering the new iPhones will be upgrading from.

Jim Dalrymple, The Loop:

What I want from Apple is to build devices that solve complex problems with simple solutions. I want them to make things more efficient for me as a user without going through any pain from using their products. That's exactly what they provided with the iPhone 7 and AirPods.

Matthew Panzarino, TechCrunch:

The iPhone 7 and 7 Plus are the best iPhones ever. And they are probably the best portable cameras ever made. The combination of wide gamut capture with wide gamut P3 display means that you have quite literally never seen images like this from a smartphone camera before. And that's not to mention the massive front camera upgrade. The phones are fast, capable and functional, with nice upgrades to speaker audio, water resistance and a more durable home button.But, they don't have a headphone jack, and that is going to trip some people up.

Nilay Patel, The Verge:

The entire time I was using the iPhone 7, I felt like I had a prototype of next year's rumored drastic iPhone redesign disguised as an iPhone 6. All those bold bets on the future are legitimately exciting, but here in the present using the iPhone 7 in a case feels a lot like using a iPhone 6S with a weirder home button and more adapters.

Chris Velazco, Engadget:

If you can get over the all-too-familiar design and the no-headphone-jack thing, then the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus are serious contenders for best smartphones, period. Note that I used the word "best," not "most innovative" -- neither of these devices is groundbreaking. We've seen many of these features (or features like them) pop up in rival phones already. That headphone jack thing aside, most of the choices made in the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus feel like safe ones. There's nothing wrong with that, but no matter how good the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus are (answer: very, very good), Apple already has us all wondering what next year's iPhone is going to be like.

Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica:

If you understand things best when they're phrased as tired idioms: the missing headphone jack is a fly in the iPhone 7's ointment. Plenty of people will be happy to scoop out the fly and use the rest of the probably-fine ointment. It's good ointment! There's just a fly in it. And the transition from wired to wireless is going to be more painful now than it will be a year or two down the line when more accessories and devices have adapted to follow Apple's lead. Waterproofing and better battery life have been common iPhone feature requests for years and the camera and speed improvements are nothing to sneeze at, but you'll need to buy into Apple's vision of the future if you want to get them.

Geoffrey Fowler, The Wall Street Journal

Is it worth upgrading your two-year-old (or older) iPhone? Yes. Will many of us want to sell the 7 next year when Apple introduces Mr. Ive's 10th-anniversary edition iPhone X Deluxe OLED in ceramic poppy red? For Apple's sake, I hope so.

David Pierce, Wired:

So, no, the iPhone 7 won't blow your mind with its design or features. It's still a fantastic phone. And philosophically, it feels like Apple is throwing open a door. The iPhone 7 might not be a revolution, but it might be the catalyst for lots of them. Your phone will be better in a few months, and even better a few months after that. And wouldn't that be exciting?

Ed Baig, USA Today (opens in new tab):

Whether a water-resistant phone coupled with an excellent camera will drive you to the store remains to be seen. This is a strong handset for sure. But if you can hold out, there's already talk that the truly dramatic leap forward for iPhone comes next year when this seminal smartphone celebrates its tenth anniversary.

Lisa Eadicicco, Time:

The iPhone 7 may be evidence that gone are the days when a new smartphone could truly wow the world. After all, there's only so much functionality you can pack in these devices before you enter the realm of the superfluous. Apple's rivals are experimenting features that represent brilliant feats of engineering, like eye scanners that let you unlock your phone by looking at it, curved screens, and virtual reality support.But perhaps what Apple realizes is that what most people want from their phones is simpler than all that: Long battery life, durability, and a great camera. There's certainly room for improvement — quick-charging would be nice — but the iPhone 7 delivers on these vital points. It doesn't "wow" like so many Apple products have. But then again, maybe it doesn't need to. It's not a huge upgrade, but it helps Apple's smartphone remain one of the best around.

Rene Ritchie
Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

51 Comments
  • Well it sounds like it's as good as it looks then. I'm after great battery life, great camera and finally no fear of broken overworked home button. Sent from the iMore App
  • Yeah I'll probably wait another year for the NEW iPhone not just a revamped one from the last couple of years. Thought my 6s plus is doing fine would like a better camera but not just a better camera , 1 hour extra battery life... ok ,water proofing sure those will be on the will be on the iPhone 8 but better. So I'll just wait till then. And a better screen not the same recycled one from 2-3 years ago with the brightness turned up.... Sent from the iMore App
  • Some of them are pathetic sweet, rest of them are uhmmm, I can't say anything bad because Apple maniacs will eat me for breakfast so let's look on the bright side...as always about Apple.
    Anyway product is already on the market so nothing can be done (like anything ever could be done before). Sent from the iMore App
  • Somewhat balanced article but this link provides deeper insights into these same reviews. Not just cherry picked happy moments.
    https://9to5mac.com/2016/09/13/iphone-7-review-roundup/ Posted via the iMore App for Android
  • Thanks for pointing me to this.
  • This is the first article I saw. Then I came to iMore and it was definitely slanted lol. I've found that the articles on 9to5 are not nearly as biased yet they are also an Apple centric site.
  • I was planning on keeping my 6s because the rumors (that turned out to be true) were that it was barely an outright change. Then, like I've always done, the fever hit me that I would be missing out on all the little things that were welcome improvements to any phone. I've been using an SE for about two months now and I really miss the form factor and 3D Touch. The truth is, everyone brands Apple fans as sheep. They say they will drink whatever kool aid apple gives us blindly. For me I feel like that might be true, and I don't care. Every single iPhone I've ever upgraded to, I've never been disappointed and it was the best phone I ever had. The subtle changes are mostly all you need. The little things you notice here and there mixed in with one or two big ones is the best strategy in my opinion. I used to switch between iPhone and Android for a few months at a time and now those days are long gone. Apple doesn't try to reinvent the wheel just for wow factor's sake and that's perfect for me. So, every year I sell my high resale value iPhone and cop the new one and I'm literally ALWAYS stoked about it. I'll continue to do so until I don't anymore. But if for some reason Apple stops making phones, people will finally stop b*tching about every single thing Apple does and miss the great things they put out yearly that are full of thoughtfulness and forward-thinking for the user's sake. 3 more days.. Sent from the iMore App
  • "I'll continue to do so until I don't any more" That's deep, sheep deep.
  • Is that what you consider deep? That sick rhyme you made though, now that's deep. How about you get bent? Stop worrying about other people's choice of phones. Sent from the iMore App
  • But you just admitted you were a sheep...
    Embrace it. It seems you were embracing it in your comment at least.
  • I do embrace it. Just wondering why you felt the need to try and make me look stupid by quoting me and sarcastically writing how deep my wording was. Something missing in your life? Sent from the iMore App
  • The party is done. Why are you still here?
  • You were never invited to the party. Why did you show up? Sent from the iMore App
  • Nobody comes across as more of a blind Apple Homer than Dalrymple. He's almost pure Apple pr Sent from the iMore App
  • Yep
  • He sure does seem that way in this statement. I while I certainly don't agree that removing the headphone port was necessary, I can understand that some people really f'n hate wires, and having great wireless headphones could be a great feature. But you don't have to remove a port or get an iPhone 7 to solve this "problem", and those AirPods have more flaws than advantages, IMO. i.e. Same shape that falls out of everyone's ears only now no bungie cord to save them from smashing on the floor; no HEY SIRI; no volume buttons, you must raise your hand to double tap one pod then say volume up, I can't find if the voice control is controlling the headphones or the phone- point is, what you want to use them with a non-apple device and they can't control the volume? To contradict JD's statement, this is a more complex solution to a simple thing that didn't need replacing. Sent from the iMore App
  • The removal of the headphone port was necessary because, while it's still possible to use Bluetooth headphones or take advantage of the extra features that the Lightning port provides for headphones, if the headphone jack is still there people will continue to use the jack just because "it works". Unfortunately this is a situation of "you have to be cruel to be kind", and removing the headphone jack gives the needed push to move people to wireless or to the Lightning port and not only people, but manufacturers too. This has happened with other technology in the past and it's worked, this is just history repeating itself in order to move technology forwards
  • Good snapshot of reviews (although slightly edited to make them seem more positive than they truly are). For me the 7 remains a let down, but only because of the existence of the 7Plus and and the 6S. Aside from neat colours it has fewer features than the latter, and doesn't have the improved resolution or extremely promising camera of the former. Hopefully next year will see the removal of the home button (rear buttons work well in the Android sphere) and a true full screen iPhone would mean the chassis of the 7 would be the perfect size for me.
  • I didnt expected more from this guy if you read the whole the verge's review for example ppl will know what i mean.
  • Do you know what's the worst part of these iPhone 7 reviews? It is the next year iPhone. People are putting a lot of expectations for next year iPhone. I am afraid that it will come to a point where expectation exceed reality. An expectation that is beyond the abilities of Apple or any company for that matter. That's the worst part!!
  • Agreed. I see few options other than a new name and some incremental changes unless they have a revolutionary new battery or screen technology up their sleeves. (Or a killer software update perhaps with a new feature). Sent from the iMore App
  • You're perfectly right here. People expect the same type of upgrades as they got when the iPhone 4 came out, but we're reaching a point now where it's difficult for Apple to think of how to upgrade the phone. Hardware improvements are always there but people glaze over this now because unless you're playing games you don't really notice the difference. Apart from that, what can be added? Apple wants to keep the phone thin so unless new battery technology comes out the battery improvements aren't going to be significant. Some people believe that Apple could start using Wireless Charging but to me it's more of a gimmick as it's not really "wireless" as you can't pick your phone up and use it, again I believe Apple is waiting for this particular technology to come into play but there's nothing they can do until it's physically possible to put it in. An OLED screen would be nice and will hopefully come with the next iPhone, but again when it does, people will probably say "The only thing it has new is hardware upgrades and an OLED screen". People will never be happy because their expectations exceed reality
  • I had a JUMP upgrade sitting out there so I decided to get the flat black 7. I honestly have no problem with the minor changes in the design. I could care less. What I'm more interested in are the technology upgrades inside the phone. They seemed enough this time around to make the switch. What I'm frankly most disappointed in is the continuation of the way outdated on and off switch on the left side of the phone. That should have been gone with the first iPhone 6. It's ugly and has only one purpose that can easily be handled electronically. I suspect it will go away with the iPhone 8. Or at least I hope so....
  • Do u mean the mute switch i hope the physical mute switch never goes away to be able to mute ur phone without looking at it is important
  • Flip to silence, or waving ones hand over the screen used to work well on old Nokias.
  • Yes... sorry... the mute switch. I just think it's so outdated. I personally think their are better ways of turn the volume or ringer on and off. A lot of Android phones did away with a physical switch long ago. I would think Apple could do the same. But as they say.. you can't please all the people all the time.. so I may just have to live with it!
  • You're probably the only one in the world who hates the mute switch. Unless they find a way that has that Apple simplicity then pop perhaps Apple can do away with the mute switch eventually but right now the mute switch is to important and convient. Sent from the iMore App
  • So, the gist of it; Good:
    Better camera, faster performance, wider color gamut, Apple finally gave the dark color options some attention again, less revolting antenna lines, water resistance (water damage not covered by warranty though), miniscule improvement in battery life, 32GB minimum storage, doesn't blow up. Bad:
    Non-click Home button feels weird, Bluetooth audio is still crap and not enough lightning alternatives yet for the regular joe (audiophiles have been strapping fat lightning DACs to the back of their iPhones for years, so they aren't too bothered), same resolution screens, only the Plus model gets better camera and extra RAM, price of Plus models. Conclusion:
    I'll wait to see how iOS 10 performs on my iPhone 6 before making a decision.
  • Bear with me here:
    I signed up for the public beta on my iPhone 6; it was not a pleasant experience. I'm on the pre-release GM now, and it still isn't great. HOWEVER, I did have to swap my iP6 at apple due to bloated battery, I had to setup the replacement phone as new with no creds to install the beta before doing an iTunes restore from encrypted back up. The few minutes that I played with it before the restore were MUCH better! Everything was faster, especially TouchID & unlocking, which takes literally 3-10 seconds since iOS10pb3 through today. (Count 10 mississippis in your head, imagine that every time you want to unlock your phone; torturous) Once the GM is actually release today I plan on starting all over from scratch as there is obviously some app or setting that is slowing me down. I have 24GB available, btw.
    .
    Point is- I recommend starting from scratch with a fresh install of iOS 10.
    Do an encrypted iTunes backup first & archive it, just in case. Take screen shots of your home screen & folders so you know which apps you had and where they were; transfer these off your phone however you choose for later review. You'll have to enter all your creds again for everything which sucks, but you'll have a better experience.
    Good luck! Sent from the iMore App
  • Thank you, sincerely. Nothing you stated requires any "bearing with", whatsoever. Plus, there's never a bad time to remind people to backup their data, regardless of OS/platform. Fwiw, I make encrypted backups before each major version change - the only time I willingly fire up the clunky desktop iTunes. Also a good idea to go a bit further with a secondary backup for the stuff you deem really important, either via regular network transfer to Mac/PC/NAS or a secure cloud service, depending on importance/sensitivity level. Best of luck with your upgrade process as well.
  • The home button isn't a bad point. I recently upgraded from a Mid-2012 MacBook Pro to a Mid-2015 MacBook Pro. Using the new Trackpad which uses the same technology as the new Home button was weird, don't get me wrong. But after a day of usage I quickly adapted to it, the same will happen with the iPhone 7 and it nows means that you won't end up with broken Home buttons in the future, so it's a "Good" not a "Bad". Bluetooth audio will get there, the removal of the headphone jack will push headphone manufacturers to release higher quality Bluetooth headphones as more desire of them becomes available. There might not be enough Lightning alternatives yet, but this is again something that will happen eventually, another thing that will get pushed faster by the removal of the jack
  • I'll wait until all the courageously long lines and pre order craziness dies down.... Sent from the iMore App
  • "What I want from Apple is to build devices that solve complex problems with simple solutions" In this instance the complex problem is completely of Apple's own creation, however nifty the solution is.
  • I think it's a complex solution to a simple feature that wasn't a problem to begin with. Very much the opposite of this Apple-yte's misconception. They have now created a problem for many by removing the headphone port and their solution is hardly exemplary. Sent from the iMore App
  • Agreed, especially when wireless charging could have negated the need for adaptors and suchlike.
  • There wasn't a problem before, there isn't a problem now as Apple provided a very simple solution which is 1 single small adapter. If you're saying "Why does there need to be a solution in the first place?", then you should know as technology moves on the old has to go for the new to come in. Of course your current headphones aren't going to work with the Lightning port, which is why the adapter exists. It's only a solution to a short-term transition as headphone manufacturers start making Lightning/USB-C headphones, that doesn't mean you have to upgrade yours when this happens though, but for people buying new headphones in the future they won't need an adapter
  • I'm canceling my Jet black order after seeing how bad it scratches so fast. I was already doubting it but now I'm convinced I want the matte black. Sent from the iMore App
  • I did that this past weekend. I initially waited up late for the Jet Black. Then started reading more about possible scratches and finger prints (which I assumed but I tried to trick myself into thinking I'd be fine). Then I got real with myself and cancelled my order and went with the matte black. After seeing these reviews, I'm glad I did. And I'll even be getting my matte black sooner than I was going to get the jet black. Overall it's a win lol.
  • The consensus is simple. If you like the iPhone, Apple played it safe and gave you something you'll continue to like. Reviews are kind of pointless at this time. They can be summed up in one sentence. "This years iPhone is better than last years iPhone. Everything you liked about last year is probably better this year". I went with the 7 Plus. I'm looking forward to the battery life and the camera personally.
  • Faster processor, more memory, better camera, higher quality display, better audio all around, the list goes on for reasons to upgrade.
  • The reviews are in indeed, and they are a resounding "meh".
  • Why so?
  • If you’re in the former camp and own an iPhone that is at least two years old, the decision is obvious: The iPhone 7 and 7 Plus are great upgrades. But if you just bought the iPhone 6S last year, the improvements will be incremental, and you may want to save your money for the next iPhone. If you’re in the latter group, it’s a tougher question. If you have, say, the four-year-old iPhone 5, you will see a great improvement with an iPhone 6S or a 7. Your decision may come down to how much the lack of a headphone jack and physical home button bothers you. Audiophiles with lots of wired accessories, for example, may find using a converter too inconvenient. new york times
  • The headphone jack isn't an issue because Apple provides an adapter. The new home button means that people won't have to suffer with broken home buttons anymore, this is something everyone should've wanted, but I guess some people will never be happy…
  • Mossberg: Choosing the iPhone 7 is tougher today Mossberg: Choosing the iPhone 7 is tougher today
    6 Hours Ago | 03:51
    Apple's iPhone 7, scheduled to hit stores in many countries on Friday, has already gotten high marks from reviewers on its state-of-the art camera, faster processing speeds, and noticeable improvements to water resistance, battery life and memory. Indeed, preorders for the new model are four times higher than last year, carrier Sprint said, while T-Mobile said preorders were the highest in history. Still, Apple's new wireless AirPods and headphone-jack-free design is a trade-off at best and "irritating," annoying and bothersome at worst, reviews said. Plus, the jury's still out on a new jet black finish that's praised as beautiful but panned as easy to blemish. Here are some of the highlights: The New York Times Times technology writer Brian X. Chen has hopped on the iPhone 7 train, despite the "irritating" lack of a 3.5- millimeter headphone jack. While it's not perfect, Chen notes that those who have had their old phone for years are in store for a major upgrade with the iPhone 7, especially when it comes to the speed, camera and waterproof exterior. While the new iPhone ships with a Lightning dongle and a pair of Lightning wired earbuds, Chen concludes that wireless earphones — like Apple's new AirPods — are the easiest workaround for the iPhone 7. Still, the AirPods "look odd" and had occasional glitches, like rewinding short sections of audio and crackling interference, Chen wrote. If you're still not convinced, Chen reveals new information about next year's model. Citing two sources at Apple, he said it will have "a full-screen face with the virtual button built directly into the screen." (Apple declined to comment.) Apple iPhone 7
    Mark Neuling | CNBC
    Apple iPhone 7
    The Wall Street Journal
    The Journal takes a bold stance, urging consumers to "get over" the missing headphone jack in favor of better low-light photos, longer battery life and water resistance. The practical stuff — like not constantly needing to charge — is probably more precious than a "holographic, teleporting" futuristic feature, the Journal's Geoffrey Fowler writes. But it may still be behind Samsung's 6-month-old models. "I found Apple has fixed some of what's long-ailed the iPhone, and that's reason enough to get over the headphone thing and upgrade. Let me be clear, the iPhone 7 not the most advanced smartphone money can buy. I'd say it's the best smartphone of 2015 — that's when Apple should have put it on sale."
  • not always look for the good review look also for the real once and they will come but is not so important for the big marketing
  • i just found out that apple telling the media when post a review and you better be a good one otherwise next year there wont be a review unit.
  • Last time I checked all of these reviews of iPhone 7 are REAL, you're just interested in negative finding any negative reviews when the iPhone 7 is actually released. Sent from the iMore App
  • Some people want to find negative points with the iPhone just because it's such a popular phone. People are sad…
  • I'll tell you what, as a LONG time Android confident, I'm moving to the iPhone 7+. I've grown weary of unexplainable terrible battery lives, jank/choppiness in top-end hardware, and software that's behind the curve. I moved from the OG iPhone to the 3G, then to the OG Droid when I started working for VZW. Been Android ever since, but I'm ready to go back.
  • It looks amazing. The matte black one especially. But the 6s is still amazing and I'm going to keep it until it's unusable. I always buy my phone outright and I try to keep it for at least 3 years.