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7 things to love about the Galaxy S7 and GS7 edge (and 3 to hate)

Al Sacco | Feb. 22, 2016
CIO.com's Al Sacco goes hands-on with Samsung's new Galaxy S7 smartphones and spotlights the most notable new features, along with a few of the GS7 phones' potential shortcomings.

5) Galaxy S7 edge's enhanced 'edge screen'

The curved displays on Samsung's edge phones are designed to provide quick access to information, apps and contacts. Not surprisingly, the GS7 edge has some new edge screen features.

The edge panel now takes up more of the display when opened; it is 550 pixels instead of 256 pixels, or more than double the width of the edge panel on past Samsung edge phones. The larger size lets you view two side-by-side columns of apps or contacts instead of just one. And the new GS7s also shows certain information horizontally down the column so you don't need to hold the phone in landscape orientation to see it. 

You can also now place 1x1 app widgets from third-parties on the apps edge to trigger certain functions. For example, you could place a 1x1 widget from a Twitter app on the edge screen and use it to go directly to the new tweet function, instead of using the app's icon to open it and then navigate to the appropriate page. 

6) Galaxy S7, GS7 edge have big ol' batteries

Both of the new GS7s have significantly larger batteries than their GS6 counterparts. Poor battery life is the GS6 edge's Achilles heel, and these larger power packs should address that issue.

The GS7 has a 3,000mAh battery (which is about 18 percent larger than the GS6's 2,550mAh battery) and the GS7 edge has a whopping 3,600mAh battery (20 percent larger than the 3,000mAh GS6 edge+ battery). There is a downside to packing such large battery packs into phones, and I'll get to that in the next section, but they should also mean longer battery life.

 
Samsung's Qi wireless charge pad. Credit: Brian Sacco

7) Galaxy S7, GS7 edge and faster wireless charging

Like the GS6 and GS6 edge phones, the new GS7s support both Qi and PMA wireless charging standards. However, the new phones power up faster wirelessly — you can charge a dead phone to about half capacity in 30 minutes, according to Samsung … if you use an appropriate wireless "fast charge" accessory, such as the company's new wireless charge pad, which props the GS7 up at about a 40-degree angle, so you can see the Always On Display features. The Galaxy S6 edge+ fully charges wirelessly in about 120 minutes, according to Samsung, so the new phones should wirelessly power up about twice as quickly.

There's a lot to like about these two new phones, but they're not perfect. Here are a few reasons why Samsung might have missed its mark with the GS7s.

 

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