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article imageSamsung refines the Galaxy with the waterproof S7 and S7 edge

By James Walker     Feb 21, 2016 in Technology
Samsung has officially launched the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge, its next generation flagship smartphones for 2016. The phones feature improved cameras, increased performance, water resistance and expandable storage.
The only major difference between the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge is their displays. The former has a 5.1-inch screen of glass while the latter has Samsung's 5.5-inch "Edge" panel with curved sides.
Samsung has returned to offering two different processors in this year's line-up. After an absence last year, the company's flagship handsets will now be available with a Qualcomm chip again, the Snapdragon 820. This will only be available in the U.S. with Samsung's own Exynos 8890 used elsewhere.
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge announced 21/02/2016
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge announced 21/02/2016
Samsung
The rest of the hardware is a fairly standard arrangement of specifications for 2016. The display on both models has a Quad HD 2560 x 1440 resolution, there's 4GB of RAM and up to 128GB of internal storage, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, fast and wireless charging and a fingerprint sensor.
Samsung has also included a heartrate monitor and support for its Samsung Pay mobile payments platform. The company has boosted battery size to 3,000mAh on the S7 and 3,600mAh on the S7 edge, making them true all-day smartphones.
One common feature this year is missing though as early rumours of the handsets including a USB Type-C port have proved to be unfounded. The S7 series continues to use micro USB, making it less futureproof than some of its rivals in 2016.
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge announced 21/02/2016
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge announced 21/02/2016
Samsung
The design of the phones is largely unchanged from last year, using a curved metal body formed from cool aluminium. Colour options this year are Black Onyx, Gold Platinum or Silver Titanium with the latter is only available on the S7 edge.
Things remain largely the same on the rear, except for the notable absence of a camera bump. The new camera sensor for 2016 is small enough to fit flush with the body, using a new setup that Samsung claims will produce superior low light photos.
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge announced 21/02/2016
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge announced 21/02/2016
Samsung
In an unusual move, Samsung has actually reduced the megapixel count from 16MP to 12MP. Megapixels aren't everything though and the change has resulted in increased picture quality, according to the company.
Decreasing the number of pixels has facilitated an increase in the size of each one, letting more light onto the sensor. Samsung calls this "Dual Pixel" and says it will deliver bright and sharp photos even when in low light.
It is combined with a wide aperture lens, faster shutter speed and improved autofocus which is now more accurate at night. These things will need some testing to be verified but Samsung seems to be confident in the capabilities of the new camera.
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge announced 21/02/2016
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge announced 21/02/2016
Samsung
The company has brought back one of the most requested user features, a micro SD card slot for expandable storage. Both phones also feature IP68 water and dust resistance without sacrificing on looks or design, making them a more rugged companion.
As usual, Samsung has rolled its own TouchWiz UI over the top of Android 6.0 Marshmallow. This year, the changes it has made are relatively slight though, the most prominent being a redesigned version of the Edge screen functionality on the Galaxy S7 edge. It now provides shortcuts to common apps and functions including email, selfie mode, the new panorama capability and other apps of the user's choosing.
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge announced 21/02/2016
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge announced 21/02/2016
Samsung
Samsung has high hopes for the S7 family. The S6 was heralded as the best phone Samsung has built last year and the S7 is essentially a refinement of that device, adding in even more features and bringing back favourites like the micro SD slot.
"We believe in a world that is brighter, sharper, more convenient, and more fun. We strive to deliver on that vision with the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge by marrying elegant design with functionality and providing a seamless mobile experience," said DJ Koh, President of Samsung's Mobile Communications Business. "We empower consumers with technology to help them get more out of life and will continue to push the frontier of what’s possible."
The Galaxy S7 and S7 edge will be available to pre-order from Tuesday, February 23 and will go on sale in mid-March. Samsung has confirmed that all U.S. and U.K. pre-orders will include a free Samsung Gear VR virtual reality headset to open the door to new immersive experiences and opportunities. The company intends to use its presence in the smartphone space to introduce more people to virtual reality content.
More about Samsung, Galaxy, galaxy s7, galaxy s7 edge, Android
 
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