Samsung Galaxy S7 Review
By: Peter Egan
Samsung Galaxy S7 Not Without Major Flaws
Overall Grade: C
Update: The auto-correct feature on the Samsung Galaxy 7 is so bad I had to revise this review and downgrade it from a B- to a C, and I still feel I’m being generous.
Seriously though, if you’re in the market for a new smartphone, do yourself a favor and get a Motorola (if you prefer Android) or an iPhone. Don’t let the commercials with the people blown away by the headsets fool you. If a phone can’t spell 9 (and this one can’t), what are the odds that it has other deficiencies? Here’s a suggestion for anyone thinking of getting a new phone: Shop Amazon Warehouse Deals – Deep Discounts on Open-box and Used Electronics.
Sometime towards the end of November 2016, my two year-old Motorola Android Maxx smartphone started to malfunction in ways that indicated to me that it was time to get a new phone.
Most importantly, it stopped charging altogether no matter the charger (although mysteriously started charging again once I brought home its replacement).
However, there were other flaws. The screen was cracked, it only occasionally picked up the WiFi at my house (although it never had a problem picking it up elsewhere), and the actual reception is relatively poor where my house is located. Maybe the metal roof has something to do with it, but the bottom line is that when it decided to detach from WiFi, I was missing important calls, texts, emails, etc.
So I decided it was time to get a new phone. After what seemed like an eternity at the Verizon store (this is a testament to their staff taking the time to explain to me in detail the ins and outs of every phone in-stock, not a complaint), I settled on the Samsung Galaxy S7. The deciding factor for me was that I can still plug headphones and speakers into the S7. I’m not ready to go wireless, I don’t like Bluetooth and I’m waiting to see what type of audio quality (and volume) these wireless speakers have to offer before I restrict myself to a very new technology about which I have plenty of reservations.
My take on the Galaxy S7 from Samsung
Don’t let the commercials with the kids (and old people) mesmerized by virtual reality headsets reminiscent of 1990’s Aerosmith music videos fool you into buying this phone. While the Galaxy S7 has some positive features going for it, there are also some major drawbacks. If I could go back in time two months, I’d really have to strongly consider paying an extra $150 and getting the Motorola phone, sucking it up and just deal with the Bluetooth audio being imposed on me.
Let’s recap some of the positives and negatives of the Galaxy S7.
- The camera is very high-quality: The photos I can take on this phone are indescribably better than those I had become accustomed to with my Motorola Android Maxx. The camera on this phone is incredible, and may be it’s best feature.
- There’s plenty of space: I like apps, and photos — lots of them. This phone lets me have them both.
- Call quality is about what I expected.
- Typing: Texting, Facebook, Messenger or anything else that involves typing. One of the things I loved about my old Motorola phone was it really was a “smart” phone. It’s auto-correct feature actually corrected typos, and it had a capacity to learn new words, acronyms and abbreviations that may not be standard English but which are part of my regular vernacular.
The Samsung Galaxy S7 is the dumbest “smart” phone I’ve ever seen in this regard. It takes the liberty of changing words I spelled correctly to misspelled versions of the same words, different words altogether or my (least) favorite of all, nonexistent words. And God-forbid if you ever have to hit the backspace button to fix a type, the Galaxy S7 lacks the capacity to recognize that you’re still typing the same word, and will treat any new typing you do as though you’re typing an entire new word as opposed to correcting a word you’ve misspelled. Then it will combine the new word it thinks you were trying to spell with the portion of the actual word you were typing that you typed (this applies even if you type the entire word, spelled correctly, but had to hit the backspace button to fix a letter).
This is a remarkable pain to deal with. The worst part is, after a month with this phone, it has shown no capacity at all to learn my typing tendencies, and still takes far too much liberty with regard to inserting auto-correct into places it has no business being. I’ll likely end up just having to turn the feature off entirely because it’s wrong more than it is right. Sure, it’s good for fixing “its” to “it’s”, and other common mistakes made involving apostrophes (especially the ones I deliberately make because auto-correct fixes it). However, I’m not sure that the auto-addition of an apostrophe here or there justifies the amount of having to delete entire words and slowly type the word I want typed, then click the “check mark” symbol to confirm with Galaxy that I indeed intended to type the word exactly as I did. With such a limited vocabulary (Galaxy S7 really doesn’t know many words compared with my 2 year-old Motorola), this gets very annoying.
I haven’t found any other significant flaws so far, but the auto-incorrect is a pretty major one. If I encounter any more I’ll update the review accordingly.
Overall, I give the Samsung Galaxy S7 a C grade. While the camera is fantastic, there’s plenty of space and there are lots of cool features I don’t care about but some people undoubtedly will (like the headset), the Galaxy S7 is the “Special Ed” of smart phones. Its ability to make typing more difficult than ever before on any device (phone, tablet or computer) is remarkable in itself, and would earn this phone a C- were it not for the camera and the quality of photos.
My advice to someone shopping for a new phone is to consider whether or not sounding like a complete idiot in typed conversations (or taking the time to fix Galaxy’s inexplicable errors) is important to that individual or not. If it is, I’d strongly consider looking into other options, because there are plenty of other phones on the market now with great cameras, and that seems to be the main thing the Galaxy S7 has going for it. An older model Motorola phone has all the positives associated with the Galaxy and is very intuitive and intelligent. Motorola phones made this decade have vocabularies that exceed that of your average six year old (the Galaxy really is that dumb — it has a VERY limited vocabulary and is incapable of grasping the concept of an apostrophe, as well as incapable of learning via user behavior).
Overall, the Samsung Galaxy 7 gets a C because of the camera and the plug-in, traditional external audio device port. If you plan to buy one, expect to turn auto-correct off because this phone is so incredibly stupid you’ll have to in order to come across as an incoherent idiot who uses words out-of-context, non-existent words and is unable to spell properly, much less deploy proper use of grammar.