Apple iPhone 7 Plus Review

By Shawn Knight · 75 replies
Oct 12, 2016
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  1. Much like Intel, Apple has been following a “tick-tock” cadence of releasing a newly designed iPhone and following it up a year later with an optimized “s” variant. That’s been the formula since the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS in 2008 and 2009, respectively.

    This year, however, Apple broke precedent by launching a third model on the same design as its two-year-old iPhone 6. Add in the controversial decision to remove the venerable 3.5mm headphone jack as well as a major change in the new solid state Home button and you have the making of a familiar iPhone that feels somewhat foreign.

    The iPhone 7 Plus packs a 5.5-inch LED-backlit, multi-touch IPS display with a resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 (401 PPI) and a contrast ratio of 1,300:1. Apple has been criticized for using dated LED technology when competitors have moved to OLED panels with higher resolutions but that doesn’t mean the iPhone 7 Plus’ display is rubbish – quite the contrary, actually.

    Yes, the iPhone 7 Plus looks a lot like the two iPhones before it. However, upon closer inspection, there are some unmistakable differences between new and old.

    Read the complete review.

  2. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 2,105   +1,282

    '"Apple has demonstrated its ability to influence industries and consumer behavior multiple times in the past and given its massive install base of iOS devices, I think we’ll all be looking back in a few years and wondering how we got along with wired headphones for so long."

    The only problem is Apple devices only drive the sales of low-end headphones. There is literally zero reason for everyone else to accept a reduction in sound quality because "Apple said so".
    Reehahs and BSim500 like this.
  3. yRaz

    yRaz Nigerian Prince Posts: 2,319   +1,405

    Clam down, calm down, it's a Shawn article so this kind of thing is to be expected.
  4. Reehahs

    Reehahs TS Guru Posts: 574   +316

    The new iPhone 7+ is so efficient that it broke the standard battery testing procedures by outlasting the review period, hence why the lack of battery chart.
  5. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    I wonder how many TS followers actually give a rats *** about Apples stuff, but I guess it has to be done. As per usual, I just skimmed through the article and I learned all I wanted to know about the latest iPhone in a 7 minute review/overview of it in a YouTube video I watched a day or so ago.
    I'd rather take my chances with a pre "new and improved battery" Note 7, not that a phablet is the type of device I'd rush out and buy either.
    For dyed in the wool Apple fans I guess this gadget is perfect for them.
  6. wastedkill

    wastedkill TS Evangelist Posts: 1,423   +350

    I know man as you can see the Iphone 7 Plus is terrible compared to other phones and it ranks the lowest in sales, overall performance plus theres no 64GB memory or 32 cores or heck even a up-to-date 24k screen! Like what in the hell we need those useless features and massive cores & memory and a huge resolution screen to see life like images on a 7" screen
    Reehahs and Skidmarksdeluxe like this.
  7. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    And it must cost no more than $75. I like it.
    wastedkill and Reehahs like this.
  8. andrewdoyle88

    andrewdoyle88 TS Booster Posts: 114   +95

    I've always had apple products, my first iPhone was the 3GS. I wanted to upgrade this Fall but like the article said, the 7 feels like the foundation for the 8. After getting over the anxiety of switch to Android I purchased a Galaxy S7 and couldn't be happier. It's going to take a lot from Apple to get me back to an iPhone.
  9. Kenrick

    Kenrick TS Evangelist Posts: 570   +372

    LOL at the bandwagon haters. the same usual users who trolls at apple articles and will go ballistic when the note 7 is exploding. This is a review done by professional writer, people dont need you personal amateur biased sentiment.

    btw from anandtech's technical review:

    ScubaRhys, Agnomen and wastedkill like this.
  10. thoughtsimple

    thoughtsimple TS Rookie

    "ndependent testing, however, takes issue with this claim.

    Upon further analysis, it appears as though Apple is using sapphire crystal for the lens but it isn’t pure. An Apple patent for its sapphire references thin “sapphire laminates” that could be used to coat regular glass for added durability."

    Yeah, none of that is true. If you are using JerryRigsEverything as your source, you should know that the guy has no training as an materials engineer or any other kind of engineer/scientist. He is just a random youtube "expert". This was shown when he tried to claim that the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 didn't use Gorilla Glass. His picks were dirty and didn't actually test what he thought they did (I will give him a slight kudos for admitting this eventually.) For the scratch test on the sapphire camera cover, he is simply applying too much pressure and cracking the cover. This is not a real world test. He literally has no idea how much pressure it takes to crack the cover because he has no scientific training doesn't use a repeatable test.
  11. Squid Surprise

    Squid Surprise TS Evangelist Posts: 1,572   +714

    So if you want high-end headphones... BUY them! They still work on the new iPhone - just use the FREE adapter included with the phone...
    ScubaRhys and Squuiid like this.
  12. Bigtruckseries

    Bigtruckseries TS Evangelist Posts: 583   +318


    Samsung loves to see big numbers on paper. Faster CPU on paper. MORE RAM on paper. More Megapixels on paper...

    Unfortunately, it's the REFINEMENT that they don't have down packed - which is why the waterproof Galaxy S5 was a FAILURE and the NOTE 7 is recalled and discontinued due to explosions and poor quality control.

    #1 Apple iPhone 6 Plus' camera with optical image stabilizer and 1080p 60FPS is the best digital camcorder I've ever used. The iPhone 6s Plus 4K camera didn't really impress me much more because my Youtube audience and most home viewers don't have 4K equipment. My Youtube channel's videos are BEAUTIFUL on a standard 1080p TV. I'm only happy to upload those videos in 4K since someday, more people will have 4K equipment and any advantage will someday be noticed. For the time being, 1080p, 60FPS with HDR is the absolute best standard.

    My iPhone 7 Plus has a 256GB drive and can store over 6 Hours of video in 4K - so I can make more travel logs when I go to Montevideo/ Buenos Aires. My 1080p videos from Dubai and Seychelles already look fantastic.

    I bought iPhone 7 specifically for the camcorder and storage space.

    I have 30GB of personal files/documents leaving me with am incredible 226GB+ of storage space. My 128GB 6s Plus could only hold 3 hours of 4K video. I feel ready to take on any video project now. Someday we'll have 512GB.

    For sharing videos and pictures on the internet and Youtube, there is a limit to the file sizes and resolutions you can actually reproduce so to be perfectly honest, 1080p 60FP to 2160p is all that we really need for the next few years. There's no reason to have "30 megapixel cameras" when we are simply posting on social media.


    Samsung sits at the top of the "Android Market". Android and iOS are like apples and oranges. You can compare the taste: liking one over the other, but ultimately, they aren't the same. Some farmers offer better oranges, but there's only one apple to choose from :)

    iOS is simpler to use, looks better, less confusing and although it is tightly controlled, you'll appreciate it when you purchase apps that actually work across all your iOS platforms.

    #3 Battery Life is FANTASTIC. I've never had any disappointment with iPhone 6 Plus, 6s Plus or 7 Plus battery life. Video camera use does cut into battery life tremendously, but I carry a Mophie Powerbank 8X when I want to make videos - like the North American International Auto Show or Travel Logs.

    #4 Day-to-Day use is superior to Android. It's simpler and just *easier*.

    #5 The devices are far more elegant.

    I don't think I'd ever leave iOS.
    ScubaRhys likes this.
  13. Bigtruckseries

    Bigtruckseries TS Evangelist Posts: 583   +318

    Things I really want to see in iOS:

    #1. Considering how powerful the processor in this device is why can't this phone use the phone application while finalizing a video in iMovie ?

    if you are finalizing a video of the iMovie and a phone call comes in the movie project is scrapped and you have to start from the very beginning after the phone call us tomorrow. If the device can't handle finalizing a video and using the phone then why is there no toggle switch to turn the phone app off while a video is being finalized ?

    #2. Why is it that I can't back up my photos to iCloud without also backing up photos that are in the "recently deleted" bin?

    I have 50 GB of storage on iCloud for my iPad at my iPhones yet I get messages that tell me there isn't enough storage space because the phone is trying to back up 100+GB from the recycle bin.

    #3. It is difficult to know what apps have 3-D force touch and what apps don't . Why is there no shadow behind the icon to let you know upfront which ones have it and which ones don't ?

    #4. Neither of the YouTube app nor the camera app once to upload in 4K. Why is that?

    Why is it that I must plug my phone to my computer in order to take the raw file and upload from my computer to get it to YouTube or social media in 4K?
    Reehahs likes this.
  14. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 2,105   +1,282

    I've seen people with the adapter and read reviews on them. It's an extra dongle that hangs off your phone. Not only is it an extra step to get something nearly every other device and do natively, it's not exactly good looking and introduces more problems.

    Also, use high-end headphones with the bottom of the barrel DAC they have to include in the cable is a joke. The Iphone 7 no longer has a built in DAC so now any headphones either need the DAC integrated into them or the cable. Even for mid-tier headphones the cost of integrating a decent DAC into every unit is significant. It's 100% easier just to have a DAC built into the smartphone.

    Far far far too many disadvantages to even remotely call it a good idea.
  15. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 2,105   +1,282

    If you purchased a 256 GB iphone 7 plus just for use as a camcorder then you got ripped off. You paid out the butt for an amount of storage that can be easily surpassed with an SD card. For the same $849 you could have purchased an actual camcorder with more space and a phone to go along with it or a high-end phone with an SD card slot and could double or triple your space.

    The battery life is fantastic? It get's about 7 1/2 hours of video on a single charge. That's below average.
    Reehahs likes this.
  16. Reehahs

    Reehahs TS Guru Posts: 574   +316

    Not to mention that the actual Camcorder will have a proper optical zoom!
    Evernessince likes this.
  17. Bigtruckseries

    Bigtruckseries TS Evangelist Posts: 583   +318

    It's obvious neither of you know what you're talking about.

    iPhone is a more efficient 4K camera than the actual POS cameras and most heavy, large 4K camcorders.

    We don't need so much to upload videos to Youtube and Facebook. Quality is degraded on Facebook - which only supports up to 720p and on Youtube which only supports 2160p on their proprietary coding.

    I can video record something, edit it in iMovie and upload it in minutes.
  18. Squid Surprise

    Squid Surprise TS Evangelist Posts: 1,572   +714

    The adapter is perfectly fine - and you don't need it to "hang off your phone" - you attach it TO YOUR HEADPHONES and it simply adds a few inches to your existing headphone cable.

    As for the "built in DAC vs external DAC"... we are talking about HIGH END headphones!! Hopefully they already have a good quality DAC built in... if you want high-quality sound from your smartphone though, you're already in a realm of foolishness... For the sound quality you CAN get from a smartphone, 99.9% of users won't notice any difference....
    ScubaRhys likes this.
  19. MonsterZero

    MonsterZero TS Evangelist Posts: 440   +223

    Biggest Meh of the year right here.
  20. MonsterZero

    MonsterZero TS Evangelist Posts: 440   +223

    Spec's are important, and the iPhone has been trailing the in spec market for years compared to Asus, Huawei, Google, Sony, and Samsung. Camera, RAM, NFC, Wireless Charging, etc.

    Camera's in the market are purely opinion based.

    The Note 7 and Galaxy s7 have an expandable SD card slot, I currently have 274GB of space without paying Apple and additional $100

    Opinions.... all opinions.

    s7 and note 7 have larger batteries.

    Android is too complicated for some people.

    iPhone 7 is another recycle of the iPhone 6, the Note7 currently has the best display of any device on the market, even being discontinued. The Note 7 again was regarded well above the iPhone this year in initial reviews.

    Guess we'll just wait to see how much better the Note 8 will outperform and outspec next years iPhone.
  21. GyratingIndy

    GyratingIndy TS Rookie

    I was really hoping you guys would do a sustained performance benchmark to see how its throttling fares against other phones.

    I loved that in the OnePlus 3 review. Any chance you folks could update it with that? I would really appreciate it.
  22. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 2,105   +1,282

    Just bring up a picture of someone using the dongle, it's easy to see why it would be a problem.

    The DAC built-in is trash. This isn't even about high-end headphones, pretty much any decent pair of cans is going to suffer. For a company like Apple that used to represent music on the go, it's pretty shameful.

    If you think good audio on a smartphone is impossible then you've never seen any portable DAC, like any of Fiio's products.

    "For the sound quality you CAN get from a smartphone, 99.9% of users won't notice any difference....'

    Over the course of a decade we've heard this how many times? I guess the average person has lead ears.
  23. Bigtruckseries

    Bigtruckseries TS Evangelist Posts: 583   +318

    [QUOTE="Opinions.... all opinions.[/QUOTE]

    All that stuff you typed was cute.

    My iPhone 7 Plus 256GB is doing perfectly - while Galaxy Notes have been pulled from shelves by bomb squads and EOD teams.

    Opinions of the FREE MARKET mean a whole lot don't they?
  24. Squid Surprise

    Squid Surprise TS Evangelist Posts: 1,572   +714

    I believe I posted a picture of it awhile back... it's basically just a few inches on the end of the cable... really nothing to be bothered about... and again... if you have high quality headphones, the DAC is on their end and this shouldn't matter....
    ScubaRhys likes this.
  25. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 2,105   +1,282

    More efficient for people who are fine with losing allot of features and having battery and space issues. Yeah, recording on the iphone is dead simple and works for you but don't sit here and hail it as the messiah. You are uploading videos of little importance and aren't looking for anything anywhere near professional or even amature. If you were either it would be well worth it to invest in a separate system, one that doesn't rely on a smartphone that already has limited battery life.

    FYI, most people record in a higher resolution and scale it down for YouTube. You get better quality that way.

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