7 Old Features that are New to the iPhone 7
Apple announced the new iPhone 7 and along with it is a long list of new features for their device. As expected, Apple received a mixed bag of reactions. While the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 7 Plus came with a new design, it wasn’t really that new considering the fact that the size, dimensions and form factors were the same as the iPhone 6S. Even the display sizes and screen resolutions were the same.
Yet, Apple is proud to introduce a lot of new features on the iPhone 7. So, we list them down below and talk a little bit more about them. While it’s true that these features are new to the iPhone, it’s not really something new that we haven’t seen in other smartphones as far back as 4 years ago.
No 3.5mm audio port
In order to make way for the additional features, Apple had to remove the 3.5mm analog audio port and swicth to the lightning port as the alternative. Apple owns up to the “courage” of breaking this norm.
Well, it’s not really a feature, but as far as we can remember the Alcatel OneTouch Idol Ultra did not have an audio jack too. It was so thin (6.45mm) at that time, they could not fit an audio jack along the sides. Instead, they included a micro-USB to 3.5mm audio jack adaptor. This was way back in 2013. Many others followed, inclduing the 4.95mm OPPO R5, the Moto Z and the Moto Z Force.
Dual rear camera
The iPhone 7 only has a single rear camera module that’s been improved to 12-megapixels with optical image stabilization and a large f1.8 aperture. On the other hand, the iPhone 7 Plus camera with a dual rear camera.
That approach isn’t new either. The HTC One M8 had a dual camera setup that allows users to get that nice, shallow depth-of-field (bokeh) as early as 2014. Huawei also had it with the Honor 6 Plus with the latest the Huawei P9 and P9 Plus taking a bit of attention with its Leica co-engineered branding.
Perhaps, it’s the LG G5 where Apple got its inspiration for the camera setup. Just like the G5, the iPhone 7 Plus uses a combination of a wide-angle lens and telephoto lens for the pair of rear cameras.
IP67 Certified for Water and Dust Resistance
Sony made water-resistance a hugely significant feature with smartphones when they introduced the Xperia Z back in 2013. This was continued in all Xperia Z series until today with the Z5 family and the Xperia X Performance.
Samsung countered the water-resistance features of the Xperia Z series with their own Galaxy Active series, starting with Galaxy S4 Active and followed by a Galaxy S5 which was natively water-resistant. The Galaxy S6 series was not so they made an S6 Active. This year, Samsung’s Galaxy S7, S7 Edge and the Note7 all have the same water-resistant ratings.
Apple took a lot of time and attention to the audio capabilities of the iPhone 7. Among them is the shift from the analog to digital output, thus shedidng the 3.5mm port in favor of the lightning port.
Second is the stereo speakers – one at the bottom where it’s usually found and another front-facing one. That too, isn’t new.
The HTC Desire 826 and the Desire EYE both sport two front-facing speakers. Before that, the HTC One series also had them (M7, M8, M9, M9+ and the E9+). Even mid-range phones like the Lenovo Vibe K4 Note and the Lenovo A6000 featured a similar stereo speakers. The Google Nexus 6 and the Moto G (2nd gen) got them as well. There’s more actually but we don’t have enough space to fit all of them.
Faster quad-core processor
Apple also announced a more powerful processor called the A10 Fusion chip. This is a quad-core chip with 2 pairs of dual-core processors running separately on any given the task. The high-performance pair takes over when the task requires a lot of processing power while the power-efficient pair takes over during off-peak use, like sending SMS, calls, emails or chat. This gives the iPhone 7 the much improved performance over the previous iPhones while saving more battery at the same time.
Well, as early as 2012, many phone manufacturers have been using quad-core processors. The LG Optimus G and the Nexus 4 ran on a Snapdragon S4 Pro, the HTC One X and the LG Optimus 4X used an NVidia Tegra 3 chip with a quad-core processor and a 5th core for battery saving features, and the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 used an Exynos 4 Quad chip.
Of course, the A10 Fusion chip will be optimized for iOS and should perform very well, the idea of using 4 cores and splitting them into pairs depending on usage isn’t really new.
32GB Starting Storage Options
Finally! Apple is catching up to the times. People complained that the starting storage of 16GB was useless since there’s no option for expandable storage on the iPhone. Many smartphone vendors have long since moved on to much higher storage options while Apple continued to sell its fans a 16GB variant. This year, all that has changed with the introduction of a 32GB base storage.
There’s even much bigger storage options that goes all the way up to 256GB (that’s gonna be very expensive). Last year, Asus also made news when it introduced a 256GB Zenfone.
Better-looking antenna bands
When the iPhone 6 came, everyone agreed those antenna bands looked ugly but Apple continued to put them on the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus. This year, they admit those band-aids are unsightly so they’re hiding them. Sort of.
Of course, despite the billions of dollars in research and development, Apple’s innovation factory could not still solve the cosmetic problems of the antenna bands. Sony, Samsung and even Asus already solved that so we’ll have to wait ’til the iPhone 8 (because the 7s will look the same) before Apple can introduce that innovation.
That’s not to say that Apple didn’t really introduce anything new. The physical Home button now uses the same Force Touch technology as the trackpads on the Macbooks.
There are new colors as well. Gone is space gray color in favor of the matte black and the jet black colors. Those new colors alone have made many people drooling for the new iPhone.
Those new features might not be much but for a lot of people waiting for the new iPhone, those are more than enough for an upgrade.
The iPhone 7 is expected to arrive in the Philippines sometime in October with prices starting at $649 though we know it’s going to be slightly higher that the converted amount.