To preface this article, I feel that it’s necessary to say that this has nothing to do with the S7's performance or battery life. As far as I know, the S7 hasn’t had any updates that have noticeably made a difference either way in my 8 months of use. If anything, battery life isn’t quite as good as it was when I first got the device (as expected) but regardless of that, I do feel that the Galaxy S7 has exceeded my original expectations in regards to its features and functionality.
Initially, my experience wasn’t so great. The biggest hurdle was simply switching. I switch between iOS and Android frequently enough, and while I hardly ever have trouble getting used to iOS when I inevitably return, Android proves to be more difficult due to different manufacturers with different features and UIs. In this case, I switched from the iPhone 6 to the Samsung Galaxy S7, and if there’s one thing you can count on Samsung for it’s having tons of extra features and bloatware, much of which I have learned over the years to just turn off and ignore.
So naturally one of the first things I did was shut everything down. I disabled just about every Samsung service I could. No Smart Features, no Bluetooth, no NFC, no Location services, nothing. You might ask, “If you just turn everything off anyway, what’s the point in getting a Galaxy S7?” The answer (and perhaps not a very good one): the camera. I knew the camera was great and the battery life was “good”, but in shutting down services I didn’t necessarily care about I knew that my battery life would be better, and battery life and a good camera are the two most important aspects in a smartphone for me. Micro SD support is a close second, which the S7 also has.
The first couple of months I felt like a fish out of water. As much as people like to hate on Apple, I do enjoy the free time I get by not feeling like I have to customize my smartphone to make it look halfway decent. I grew comfortable with iOS and its ecoystem. I didn’t dislike the Galaxy S7, but after the first two weeks or so that “new phone euphoria” wore off and I began to miss what I didn’t have anymore. I decided to get over it and just enjoy the phone that I had.
For what it’s worth, the battery life is pretty darn good. With moderate use (social media, news, e-mails, notes, and music streaming) I don’t have a problem making it last from the time I wake up until the time I go back to bed, which is usually around 14 hours. With heavier usage, I’ll typically employ the Power Saver setting, and in truly dire situations I use Ultra power saving mode. Both have been handy to have. Additionally, the camera is awesome. I want a good camera, but I don’t really know much about cameras. The great thing about the Galaxy S7’s camera is you don’t really need to know a lot about cameras to take great shots. I recently created a scrapbook using photos mostly taken with the S7, and they turned out great. At the very least, I did get my “must haves” from the purchase.
But the reason I feel that my experience with the S7 has gotten better with time is that, slowly but surely, I’ve been activating all of those features I habitually turned off at the beginning, and I actually like a lot of them. I enabled “advanced features” like Smart Capture, Smart Alert, and Quick launch camera. I also downloaded some of Samsung’s apps from their Galaxy App store like Good Lock and SideSync, and not too long ago I started using Samsung Pay, which is pretty amazing considering that it works with or without NFC. I’ve even switched to using Samsung’s Internet browser and disabled Chrome, which has helped my battery life even more.
Normally after 8 months with a phone I would be itching for something different, but despite the phones that have come out since the S7 and the abundance of rumors regarding upcoming devices like the S8 or LG G6 (although they are only rumors) I don’t have any desire to switch. That makes me – and my bank account – very happy.
Readers, have you owned any phones that you felt only got better with age? Let us know in the comments below!