I have completed my first week with an iPhone 7 and the phone itself is pretty kick ass. I don’t know why so many people complain about the home button, I like the new one that uses the taptic feedback engine at the bottom of the phone. It feels just like pressing down on the old home button on the iPhone 6 or 6s. I haven’t tried all of the new bells and whistles like the 4K video or splashing the thing with water (still probably not going to do it even though they say its splash proof) but the experience is what you would expect from an iPhone.
If you’re running any variation of an iPhone 6, its not going to feel all that different and thats a good thing in my view since its all familiar. Size and shape are the same for me since I only buy the smaller iPhones, I have small hands so I don’t need the one that looks like an iPad Mini because it gets tough to type on it. I think the thing I notice the most is the speed, this thing is speedy compared to an iPhone 6, and when I compare it to my daughters iPhone 4S, it makes the iPhone 4S seem like a flip phone.
I think I spent the most time trying to do a back up and restore from my iPhone 6 to the iPhone 7. There was some weird voodoo dance that I had to do so that all my data and apps would transfer over correctly (actually I had to delete all the backups of my iPhone 6, do a complete backup that took about 6 hours to complete overnight, and then do a restore to the iPhone 7 which took another 6 hours or so). The backup and restore process for iPhones is pretty terrible as an experience. I see a lot of bloggers say “just set it up as new” which is horse crap. I have over 200 apps on my phone (kinda excessive but I actually do use all of them) and re-downloading all of them and organizing them into folders is a PAIN! I have gotten the organization down so that everything fits on one screen. There are tons of apps nested in folders but the point of the exercise was to make it so I don’t have to swipe away from the main screen, just tap into a folder. Although my new preferred method is to just search or use Siri to launch the app of my choice.
Anyway, as iPhone storage gets larger and larger (this time I opted to stay at 128GB rather than move up to 256GB), the speed in which things backup and restore from iTunes drastically needs to improve. For someone like me that travels a lot and doesn’t have their home computer with them, this is one of the pet peeves I have that I have to almost give up my phone and run my computer all night or even all day and watch it slowly back up. Forget about it when I actually have to sync something, I just skip the backup and sync the new content since I don’t want to just sit there waiting.
The only gripe I think I have is the headphone jack being gone. I have lots of EarPods from the iPhone 6×2, iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus, plus extras that I purchased since I had a tendency to wash them in the laundry. I have bluetooth headphones but they kind of hurt my ears and don’t feel as comfortable as the EarPods do. I also might want to spring for the Bose QC35’s. I just know I’m going to lose the dongle that came with the 7 so I might as well get the best noise cancelling headphones that I can. The QC25’s are awesome, they totally shielded me from a crying baby that sat directly behind me recently and I hear the QC35’s are just as good but with bluetooth! The AirPods look nice as well and I could see myself maybe springing for those, but they aren’t out yet so I’ll have to do some more waiting and will probably watch a few reviews first too.
As for cases, my Otterbox and my wallet case fit the 7 just fine. I’ve opted to use the wallet case for the 7 like I did for my 6. There is a cut out for the headphone jack but that doesn’t mean anything really since sound only comes out of one speaker on the bottom on the right side like the 6 did. The other holes are just for decoration and aesthetics. This will also be the first personal phone that doesn’t have a screen protector on it! I know I’m getting brave! I experimented with not having one on the 6s that I use for work and so far (knock on wood) that screen has been just fine and its been through as much abuse as my personal phone.
Overall, the iPhone 7 is much of the same thing I’ve always experienced with iPhones. They pretty much work as advertised and have a nice smooth experience. Sure there are limitations here and there but as I get older I just don’t want to tinker with my tech. I will still get a an iPhone 8, and upgrade the Mrs. to the 8 as well since I’m sure the cameras and stuff are going to be stellar and make our SLR look like a sick dog in terms of picture quality and speed. The only area that it will still lack is optical zoom capability. Thats it! Done for the evening!