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We are what we think & my blog entries reflect how I think. Have a sip of the poison of my mind.. It's not always lethal.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Thoughts On The Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge

Is the S7 series resultant of consumer common sense demand snatching the reins back from counter-productive manufacturer deviations gone wayward? This blog post reflects my thoughts on the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge Samsung just officially unveiled to the world.

The atrocity that was the S6 series

The latest S7 Edge is sure as heck damn fine looking with those sexy curved edges that make screen content seem to pop out visually, while the normal S7 with its normal flat screen looks just.. well, normal.

The sales figures of the previous S6 series had been a costly flop. My sympathy goes out to the rank-and-file Samsung employees who lost their jobs but I can't say the same for the top suits who had direct control over the decision to nerf the S6 series to its atrociously underwhelming state. It served them right for having removed useful features all in one fell swoop which the Galaxies had all along been famous for: the removal of expandable storage and removable battery; which in its place, substituting it with a pathetically small in mAH capacity inbuilt one. Talk about adding salt to the wound.

If they wanted to take away removable batteries, then they should have made up for it by giving us inbuilt ones with capacious mAH capacities. But the S6 came with only 2550 mAH, which is fucking pathetic. The S6 Edge packs a 2600 mAH and that's fucking lame too. The big kick in the balls here is the fact that the S5's removable battery is 2800mAH. Sigh.

Look, I can understand the rationale for an inbuilt battery given all the new glass chassis material and all, but a sexy looking phone becomes a brick quickly if it doesn't have the stamina to last long enough for the daily mile. Wireless-charging and fast-charging are well and good, but wouldn't a battery that could last longer and thus, having to charge it less frequently be more ideally practical instead? Not everyone is a cubicle warrior with chargers within arm's reach any time of the day, and even cubicle warriors will go outdoors away from the wall plugs during their off-work hours and days.

Power banks, you say? I don't know about you, but I hate having to tether my phone via a cable to a charging brick when I'm moving about; It restricts arm movement - forget your phone is tethered via a cable, swing your arm too wide in the wrong place and angle and watch your power bank and/or expensive phone do somersaults in the air. Ka-plunk. Either that or a weakened charging port. Smart folks go for charging cases instead. Smarter folks go for capacious batteries. Cubicle warriors and folks who spend the majority of their lives next to a wall plug can enjoy munching on their popcorn while shrugging off the whole battery soap opera drama here.

Lithium ion batteries deteriorate with charging cycles over time and you are screwed when it does and you can't replace the battery DIY-style easily and cheaply like before with the previous Galaxy phones. The wall-hugging irony is strong with this one, Luke. Now go hug a wall and try not to trip on the cable on your way to said wall.

If I were a mobile phone, I'd hate to be a storage space-deprived and battery-handicapped member of the S6 range now: like a failed experiment. That's right, I've just used the words 'failed experiment' to describe the S6 series unapologetically and unabashedly. I'll morbidly admit to the fact that it made me glad Samsung's mobile earnings for the S6 series sucked hard, which was the wake-up call slap that Samsung needed for having pulled an Apple on the market. Dismal sales is indicative of the fact that the general market doesn't like your product or/and the direction you're going.

If changes bring about handicapped inconveniences that weren't there before, then not all changes are for the betterment of the status quo. Suckers soak up everything thrown at them without resistance and with complying, unquestioning acceptance, even if it makes things worse for them. Well, that's why we call them 'suckers'. And people won't have to go through the misfortune of losing their jobs if their higher-ups don't try to shortchange the market. Blind worshipping fanboys take note.

If you've bought the S6 or the S6 Edge and are experiencing buyer's remorse already because of storage and battery woes, my condolences. But I admit I'm trying to contain my laughter at the same time, though. Cubicle warriors, you can continue to enjoy this fiasco and your popcorn right next to your wall charger. Lucky you. But try not to stay outdoors for too long when you go out with a dimunitive battery, unless you enjoy playing some mobile tie-me-up BDSM with your power bank and its cable and your phone at the receiving end of all that tethered sadomasochism.

Saving Grace: Enter the S7 series

So it's good to see that Samsung finally wised up by putting a decent capacity sized battery in the S7 Edge, albeit a non-removable one. We are looking at 3600mAh here. A decent compensation. My Note 4's 3220 mAH battery gets me just past 6 hours of screen on time on a typical day (unless I happen to game heavily) and I'm using that as a yardstick here, which I think is decent enough.

All in all, I guess I'll be able to accomodate myself with an inbuilt non-removable battery if it comes with at least a 3500 mAH battery to be on the safer and reassuring side; which is a condition that the S7 Edge meets, and which is the reason why I don't care about the normal S7 because it doesn't. That being said, I'd certainly need to get over the best conveniences that removable batteries (which are going the way of the Dodo) provide me if I should make the switch over to an inbuilt one. All that wireless and fast-charging, while good, can't compare to getting back to 100% capacity in just a minute or two.

Inbuilt batteries are actually not that bad if they can last the distance throughout the day and you babysit and time your charging rituals properly before heading out.. until they start to deteriorate in stamina over time, that is. However, if you change your phone every 2 years or earlier, then chances are, you might escape bad battery deterioration before it starts to happen, or just when it has just started happening and you don't have to put up with it for too long before you start going over the edge over it. Seriously, being stuck with a croaking battery is a major pain in the butt.

For the smaller vanilla S7, another reason why I don't care about it is because its 5.2 inches screen is not big enough for my taste when it comes to smartphones. I'm a phablet guy, so my minimum requirement for mobile multimedia enjoyment is a screen display that's at least 5.5 inches. You see, my previous Galaxy Note 2, which was my first 5.5 incher, spoiled me and I absolutely love the 5.7 inches screen of my Note 4. It also helps that the 2K screen display resolution on my Note 4 is still stunning and gorgeous. The eye candy is still very much kicking butt in 2016.

Now that expandable storage is back on the Galaxy phones, which I think will make the S7 series well-received by the market, I can hear my gigabytes worth of on-the-go movies and videos (including the space-hungry self-taken 4K ones), eBooks, photos, APK files collection, my Playstation and PSP games BIOs (long live emulators), music collection, etc, all saying in unison: "Welcome back, SD card. It's finally getting roomy and capacious again." You can have your breathing space again, beloved data.

And Samsung can go suck on the nerfed Galaxy Note 5, which for all intent and purposes as far as I'm concerned, is on the same level as the S6 series in terms of the degree of getting nerfed. Pulling a closed garden Apple stunt on the Note series renders not a Note a true Note. Oops, I forgot for a moment there that this blog post is about the S7 series rather than the Note. #AttackOfOpportunity

On the surface of things, the S7 Edge is looking really really good, very handsome and very promising; and I don't mean just its physical looks but also, its capacious enough battery and the expandable storage making a comeback on it. We shall see how it performs in real life usage once it gets released for sale in the market, shall we? I'm looking forward to the reviews as well as having a first-hand hands-on with it in the store. I think the S7 Edge especially ought to do well in the market.

As it should always be the case, continue to speak with your wallet as a discerning consumer and reward the manufacturer that gives you more, instead of the manufacturer that takes away from you. Manufacturers should pay attention to what their customers demand, not the other way around.

It looks like you and me are back on talking terms again, Uncle Sammy. I'm relieved this time around and can once again, look forward to the next Galaxy Note - given how the S7 series indicate your corrected course in direction for the Galaxy flagships. Gosh, this is like the palpable relief you feel after getting rid of a bad taste in the mouth.

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