“It’s the best iPhone we have ever created. This is iPhone 7”, Tim Cook boldly announced yesterday.

Is it, though?

As people who live and breathe mobile, naturally, we were very excited and looking forward to the Apple Event happened on 7th September 2016. The hype was backed by many rumors which were going around regarding a few radical changes Apple was planning to introduce with their newest iPhone. Our team consists of a good few mobile experts representing different aspects of mobile, and so the opinions on the introduced devices and features were varied, to say the least!

There were some features that everyone collectively liked, of course, but some of them were not very appealing from either the mobile expert’s perspective or the user’s. If you missed the event altogether, let me fill you up on all of their important announcements, while telling you about our take on them along the way.

Okay, before we go into the good bits, can we just talk about how cool it was that Tim Cook arrived at the event with James Corden and Pharrell in the “CarPool Karaoke” car??

 

The fun & musical entrance was seamlessly blended into the event when Cook detailed the progress and the new look of Apple Music with a staggering 17 million active users to-date. The aesthetics of the new interface were neat and bold, while the other changes included Discovery Mix, which is a personalized playlist generator that gives you that curated “Spotify” feeling. All in all, we like it!

Now for the most applauded announcement of the whole evening – Super Mario is coming to iOS!

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It will be a paid app with a fixed price – which means no annoying “in-app purchases”, which is cool.  Nintendo creator Shigeru Miyamoto enthusiastically spoke about the advanced one-handed play which allows you to “hold on in the subway, eat a cheeseburger, or an apple”, not bad, ey?

Then Tim Cook brought the attention to the education initiatives by Apple, which are pretty admirable. iWork also gets a new feature which allows you to collaborate real time with your colleagues (Well, not entirely new since it has already been offered by Google Drive for a good while now)

Moving to the Apple Watch, it has a better processor along with a much brighter display with a new waterproofed guarantee to it. The new watch has a solid GPS capability which doesn’t need to rely on the iPhone like it used to be. Oh, and Pokemon Go is coming to the Apple Watch. (Bye bye productivity!)

Then there was the announcement of Apple Watch’s partnership with Nike, a device which gives the main focus to fitness, connecting communities through the device to give a better experience to the user.

Maybe it will be the device which will finally get our lazy asses off the couch, fingers crossed!

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Then to the part which we actually sat down to watch the event – the all new iPhones – iPhone 7 and & 7 Plus.

Before we go further into the details, let us have a moment of silence to the features which left us forever – the 16GB version, Space Grey color, and the headphone jack. Some of us here in the team were heartbroken, some not so much.

“That port takes too much space. Now they can experiment with new designs. Maybe that is why they’ve done it this year; people will get used to it by next year, so they can come up with a brand new slim design”, says Pavithra, our UI/UX expert, on Apple’s decision to remove the headphone jack.

Not everyone shared his opinion, though, putting forth the profound argument that how exactly are they going to listen to songs now while the phone charges!

Well to ease your pain maybe even a little, you get a handful of new features and 5 dashing color options. (Two different shades of black (‘jet’ and ‘black’ — nice!), Rose Gold, Gold and Silver)

 

Water resistance of the new iPhone is probably one of the biggest news to the iPhone, but, there are several phones in the market which have been offering the feature for a while now, so – meh.

The Home button is changed to a completely flush “button” of sorts that offers haptic feedback while mimicking the clicking sensation – so you wouldn’t feel spooky!

“Their new home button is certainly a step towards digitizing analog parts. It will definitely take some getting used to but would be a good thing overall”, adds Pasindu, our CEO, on the cool new feature.

As for storage, the minimum storage option is now 32GB with options to upgrade to 128GB or the new 256GB option. The base model starts at the same price as the 6s/6s Plus — $649 for the 7 and $769 for the 7 Plus. Good enough!

Moving on to the camera – oh this is something we are collectively very excited about!

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The camera/s in iPhone 7 Plus utilizes ‘Lytro-like’ features that allow you to refocus a shot after the photo has been taken enabled by two separate 12-megapixel lenses. This gives the ability for the photographers to create the coveted “bokeh” effect, which has only been mimicked poorly by other smartphones in the market. 7 Plus also gets a four-LED array that provides better color accuracy when using flash.

iPhone 7, however, lacks these features but offers the still-amazing 12-megapixel camera from the 6s with increased aperture and a wider color capture. The differentiation between cameras will likely boost the sales of the 7 Plus in a considerable level. The front-facing camera gets a bump from 5MP to 7MP, better color capture, and auto-image stabilization.

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Apple sample shot showing the additional depth of field attainable in portrait shots using the iPhone 7 Plus. Image credit: Apple

While improving the video aspect considerably, Apple has done some major uplifts to the Audio aspect as well. The new iPhone will feature dual speakers that create stereo sound. The speakers are located at the top and bottom.

Both of the phones get a nice bump up in the spec department with the ‘A10 Fusion’ processor clocked at 2.4 and 2.45GHZ (iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, respectively) as well as an additional GB of RAM in the 7 Plus model (bringing it to 3GB). The processor also boasts four cores and adds a six-core graphics chip. The A10 is 120x faster than the original iPhone, while the graphics chip is 240x more powerful. Nice!

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If you are reading this on an iPhone and the battery is already low, don’t worry, iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus is said to offer the best battery life of any iPhone. You reportedly get two additional hours in iPhone 7 Plus, and one more additional hour in iPhone 7.

Now to the headphones!

“Airpods” or Apple’s newest invention will fit neatly in your ear, and it offers a completely wireless playback as well. They are tiny, handy and super high in quality.

©Verge

©Verge

However, “I don’t even own Apple’s Airpods yet and I’ve already lost them”, says my clumsy self.

The usual headphone plug is gone, replaced by the good old Lightening Port, which doubles as the port used to sync the phone to a desktop or charge it. They also offer an adaptor so you can still use your old headphones – no worries. The new method, however, takes away the ability of multitasking to a good extent. The new “Airpods” has a battery life up to 5 hours, and they retail for a whopping price of $159.

“I was all merry until I found out that the AirPods are 159 a piece”, says Pasindu.

Altogether, there were both “Aha” and “ugh” moments regarding the announcements. Speaking of the pros, the camera in iPhone 7 Plus is a huge PLUS, and the devices, in general, are faster, sleeker and more exciting. The new features show a lot of promise especially for the future devices to come. The cons would be that it felt so much like “same old” with the designs. “People were waiting to a see an all new design since Apple stuck with the same design for the last 2 years”.

For the final verdict, do we like the changes in the devices? Yes, we do. Can there be more improvements? Definitely. Are we going to buy the products? Maybe not the Aipods, but iPhone 7 Plus, most probably!

Is iPhone 7 the best iPhone yet? Yes, but it is not as good as it COULD be!

 

(We also loved Sia and Maddie Ziegler’s killer performance that wrapped up the event. That was next level!)

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