The reviews are in: Apple gave tech reporters a few days time to test the new iPhone 7 before publishing their take on the new device. This Wednesday, the pundits weight in — and many of them expressed enthusiasm, with caveats.
Take Nilay Patel over at the Verge for example. Patel, whose detailed review is worth reading in full, thinks that the new iPhone 7 and 7 Plus are “terrific phones,” but he also calls them “incomplete.” That’s because the design is still largely the same as it was for previous models, and even some of the more advanced technologies used by Apple’s newest devices aren’t quite ready for prime time yet. The dual camera for example won’t be able to do much of its magic until Apple ships a software update, and most apps don’t take advantage of the new display yet. “The entire time I was using the iPhone 7, I felt like I had a prototype of next year’s rumored drastic iPhone redesign disguised as an iPhone 6,” Patel concludes.
New York Times reporter Brian X. Chen is a bit more forgiving, and advises readers to get ready to open their wallets. “Those who have been waiting years to buy a new phone are in store for a major upgrade with the iPhone 7,” he writes. But Chen agrees that the iPhone 7 isn’t a must have for everyone: “If you just bought the iPhone 6S last year, the improvements will be incremental, and you may want to save your money for the next iPhone.”
Ars Technica’s Andrew Cunningham on the other hand is a bit more skeptical of the new device, and still irked about Apple’s decision to ditch the headphone jack. “I can totally accept the premise that the future is wireless, but the present is still mostly wired,” he writes in his detailed review. “If you buy an iPhone 7 on launch day, you’ll be wading into the most painful part of the transition.” Even consumers who can live without the headphone jack may want to look at holding off, and instead just upgrade their existing iPhone’s battery, suggests Cunningham.
Nicole Nguyen over at BuzzFeed on the other hand clearly doesn’t think that the missing headphone jack is a big deal, writing: “Okay, everyone, calm down.” Instead, she focuses in her review on some of the other improvements that set the iPhone 7 apart from previous generations, including better photo quality and the fact that it is waterproof. “The 7 and 7 Plus are more life-proof, klutz-proof than any iPhone we’ve seen — and that’s a Big Deal for people who use the iPhone as their primary camera, messaging device, e-reader, etc. day in and day out,” she writes in her review that’s worth checking out for the many photo comparisons alone.