Samsung Galaxy S7 to feature the best aspects of the S5 and S6

Igor Bonifacic

January 4, 2016 5:58pm

If the small trickle of smartphone-specific announcements coming out CES has you down, we have a fresh Galaxy S7 rumour to cheer you up. This one comes courtesy of VentureBeat, which claims it was briefed by someone from the company on the upcoming refresh of Samsung’s flagship lineup, expected to be announced next month at Mobile World Congress.

To start, most will be happy to learn that VentureBeat says expandable microSD storage is set to make a comeback with the S7 family, confirming earlier reports. Both the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge will include microSD slots, allowing users to add up to 200GB of extra storage to their smartphone.

Perhaps more interestingly, the S7 edge will be a bit different than its predecessor. Primarily, with a display that’s said to be 5.5-inches in size, the new edge will be somewhere between the original 5.1-inch S6 edge and more recently released 5.7-inch S6 edge+.

Removable battery packs, unfortunately, aren’t set to make a return. That said, to make up for the fact, both phones will feature significantly larger batteries. The S7 will include a 3,000mAh cell, while its curved sibling will come with a 3,600mAh power pack. Both phones will also be water and dust resistant.

In this way, Samsung seems intent to bring back some of the more well-received features of the Galaxy S5, though it will be interesting to see if the company manages to manufacture a metal chassis that is meaningfully waterproof. After all, it took Sony several years of iterating on its Xperia line to create a metal smartphone case that is both waterproof and well-designed. It’s unclear whether the Galaxy S7 family will feature a cover for the USB Type-C port that has been rumoured to make the jump to Samsung’s flagships.

Not mentioned in VentureBeat‘s report are some of the more unusual features we heard about initially in The Wall Street Journal‘s report that came out late last year. There’s no mention here of a pressure sensitive display or retinal scanner — though, to be fair, the WSJ did say there was a good chance some of the features it was told about, particularly the retinal scanner, wouldn’t make it into final release hardware. In a lot of ways, this seems to be an iterative release for Samsung.

Finally, Venturebeat proffers that the Galaxy S7’s camera will actually be reduced from a 16MP sensor to a more reasonable 12MP, which would allow for larger individual pixels, substantially improving the device’s low-light camera quality.

As in past years, the company plans to announce its new flagship lineup in late February at Mobile World Congress.

  • Techguru86

    Samsung need a bigger battery, QHD displays looks great but lack a powerful battery to make up for it. 6P and Priv are the standard for Android battery and screen performance.

    • I’d say the 6P’s battery performance is largely chalked up to Doze; otherwise its screen-on time is decidedly average, IMO. I’ve heard reports of people eking out up to 7 hrs of SOT on stock software, but I average ~3.5 hours with the similar usage.

      I’d say the Moto X Play probably sets the bar for battery life because it’s only powering a 1080p screen (which, IMO again, is all that you really need for any display smaller than 7″)

    • thereasoner

      Yeah, unless you are going to invest in a VR headset then 1080p is plenty , if anything I’m more concerned about screen brightness and seeing the display out doors on a sunny day.

    • it’s me tim-c**k.

      My note5 performs very admirable in the battery department.

    • Humbre

      Same here, but mine reboots randomly every 10 minutes or so for no reason.

    • southerndinner

      Priv is overpriced and will never see updates in acceptable time and has a dismal keyboard. Not the standard for anything.

    • Techguru86

      Priv is stock Android, which if you work in the mobile business you will know that bloatware filled devices are harder to get updates, even the Moto X play already has marshmallow before any Samsung , or LG Device.

    • southerndinner

      That means nothing. You think the carriers are going to put BlackBerry with its piddly 50k worldwide sales as a priority for testing over a company like Samsung or even LG? Laughable. Even if BlackBerry has it ready, carriers will put the least important OEM at the back end of their testing

    • TheTechSmith

      So far Blackberry has released the past two monthly Android security patches before Google managed to release them for the Nexus devices, and if you buy unlocked you don’t have to wait for the carrier. Timely updates have been a strong point for Blackberry, and this doesn’t look to be changing with Priv. It’s still to be seen how long carriers will take to roll out the updates if you bought your phone from the carrier.

  • h2oflyer

    A covered or uncovered usb port is only one of many challenges in making a waterproof phone. I guess it’s time to stop copying Apple and start copying Sony.

    SD and SIM card access will need securing along with a ventable port to allow pressure equalization in a sealed case. A must feature to keep the phone from expanding in low pressure. Good luck to them.

  • Mikie

    Going back to 12MP.. Sorry Samsung.. won’t be getting the latest every year like I normally do.

    • CheeseAvatar

      Whats wrong with 12mp.
      As long as the sensor is good you can acutally get a better picture with a 12mp sensor than a 16.

      MP Is not the end all and be all of picture quality

    • Mikie

      Different strokes for different folks – I don’t play many games anymore on my device its used for pictures during the day , videos, rooted mien and even have a bootable copy of Windows 10. I do a lot of file transfers as well.. it just puzzles me why samsung would take a step back . The only improvement I see is bringing back the SD card.. baby steps I guess

    • Mr Dog

      Do you plan on blowing your pictures up and framing them?

    • brent

      Sounds like he is the typical bigger is better kinda guy…. which is not always the case

    • Jesse

      Can you please tell that to my wife 🙁

    • Mikie

      I do like zooming into my pictures from time to time. I have mounted and printed one never know might wanna do it again.

    • thereasoner

      The article says the fewer pixel count allows for larger pixels that capture more light and produce better low light shots which is a known limitation for smartphone cameras indoors and/or at night.

    • Mikie

      Its true.. I had the Sony Z1 with its “20MP” camera… whch was absolutely aweful

    • blzd

      So even if the pictures look better and are easier to take on the 12MP you’re still disappointed?

      Megapixel is not the sole determining factor to how good your pictures look. Actually it means very little at this point, it’s just an easy metric that less informed users can latch onto.

    • Mikie

      Its true.. I had the Sony Z1 with its “20MP” camera… whch was absolutely aweful..

    • youretard

      m–m-muh megapixels!

  • southerndinner

    Hope it works on VR

    • KiwiBri

      It will.

    • southerndinner

      If the USB C rumor is true then it won’t work without a new one

  • Barry Harden

    Really? Will they finally include a freak’n MicroSD card slot?? Samsung had it on the S5 but made an idiotic decision to take it out for the S6.

    • thereasoner

      I’ve read on other sites that Marshmallow will allow for the inclusion of SD card storage and Samsungs new UFS 2.0 flash storage by having the device reformat the SD card as internal storage. It’s an either or proposition from my understanding as you can either choose to go sans SD card and keep the up to 3x faster and more efficient UFS 2.0 flash storage already on board or have the device reformat an SD card that is supported by eMMC 5.1 to take the place of your internal storage.

      It sounds like a good compromise and it allows Samsung to offer both types of storage options simultaneously now and presumably other OEMs who support SD card storage won’t get left behind now as they can also offer the newer, faster and more efficient UFS 2.0 flash storage for devices running MM.

    • h2oflyer

      You still need a waterproof door for the Sim card, might as well include the SDcard on the same tray, which is what Sony does.

    • Barry Harden

      I hope they offer a combination of both. I would like to keep important apps on the internal UFS 2.0 flash storage and also use the microSD card for secondary apps and media storage.

    • thereasoner

      I think that the core apps, the Android OS and Touchwiz etc would probably still run on UFS 2.0 but otherwise everything else is SD card bound should you choose to use one and format it to internal storage.

      I’m not really sure though, the actual details of how it will work were not well defined and as a result, left up to speculation. We should soon find out with rumours of a February release for the new S7.

  • Matt

    There’s a reason most manufactures are building phones without removable batteries. It’s cause lots of their funding comes from Government departments such as CIA, NSA etc and these Government departments do not want Consumers to be able to remove the batteries cause then Governments won’t be able to have control of your device and be able to listen to all your communications. Cause the old way to be able to stop them from listening to you was to remove the battery. Now you can’t. So their able to turn on your phones mic when ever they want and able to track you anytime they want cause the user has no way to remove the battery. Think about that for a while why almost all manufactures are building phones without removable batteries now.

    • h2oflyer

      Do you think any government wants to tap into your phone and listen to you whine about your job and how your wife doesn’t understand you.

      If you feel that insecure, wrap you phone in aluminum foil when not using it. Better still, I can sell you a copper flip open anti government case.

    • Omar

      And it’s people like you that the reason Bill C-51 passed… I do envy the utopia you guys live in where government agencies like the CIA and NSA must not exist.

      Maybe this isn’t as much of a threat under Trudeau, and it might not happen to you or me but the fact its an option for the government to spy on you if down the road you do something they don’t like should be a cause for alarm. Especially if another Harper becomes elected.

      Would you want to live in the States with Donald Trump as president as a Mexican or Muslim, with organisations like the CIA, NSA, and FBI around?

    • h2oflyer

      My sales of copper flip open anti government cases will go up.
      Guaranteed no RF signal gets transmitted or received .

      Do you really believe they steamed open your grandparents mail. Must of been a lot of kettles sold.

    • marshallpower

      You probably believe also that the government is working hard for peace on earth…

    • h2oflyer

      They are trying…they can’t stop terrorists with their snooping, why would they want to spy on you.

    • marshallpower

      Some of the biggest terrorists are from the government itself you know. They don’t really want peace if they participate in funding wars one after another. Even Amazon and Facebook and Google are spying on us, it’s not a surprise.

    • h2oflyer

      I gotta start selling tinfoil hats. Let’s get back to what Samsung is going to do with the S7

    • marshallpower

      Yeah let’s get back to the tech world, things that will make us more blind while the governments are doing what they want with us. I’m sure Obama wants a country with no firearms, yeah right.

    • h2oflyer

      I’ll give you a 50% discount on my new improved anti spying tinfoil hat. Family discount available for true believers.

    • marshallpower

      Keep on dreaming of making money with that. You’re the one who needs help.

    • h2oflyer

      You probably think tonge’n’cheek is a Canadian delicacy.

    • Omar

      Gotta love that white privilege, eh? What are the odds you’d ever get randomly screened at an airport for your appearance or name?

      Why exactly do you think organisations like the CIA, NSA, CSIS, CSEC etc exist? What do you think they’re designed to do?

      Anyway, enjoy your utopia.

    • GPman

      Samaritan does it all the time!

    • Mr_Smoosh

      Had to upvote the POI reference!

    • KiwiBri

      Govt, be more worried about Farcebook and how they’re experimenting with their app on peoples phones

    • southerndinner

      Even MS has conspiracy quacks!

    • thereasoner

      Remove the Sim card and power off the device and no one can connect to your phone.

  • KiwiBri

    Please dont kill the IR blaster Samsung, And how about bringing back “Glove Mode”

    • h2oflyer

      With the smartphone market growth eventually slowing, Samsung will concentrate on real usable features, rather than bling.

    • trafsta

      Dang, no glove mode anymore on all the latest Samsung flagships eh? I still have a Note 4 with glove mode and an IR blaster. I use glove mode at least a few times a week in the winter and the IR blaster is used at least once a week year round (usually to control TVs and receivers, etc, when at friends/relatives houses, but also sometimes at home)… I’ll hate to lose either of those features… I’m hoping either the S7 or the Note 6 have both these features AND microSD card support… otherwise I may have to wait even longer (I skipped the Note 5 cause it lost microSD and IR blaster but I didn’t realize it also lost glove mode).

  • jay

    I don’t believe in Samsung. Love the note 3 that I had but with there latest glass phones are not for me anymore. They focus to much on the customer and not focus on the product. Note 4 everyone need a sd card and removable battery than the note 5 the design is now important.

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  • Dany Bouffard

    Peoples shoul be able to choose screen resolution for better battery life as lons as they are in the ratio.

  • Sean-Paul

    I’ve already put my Note 5 up for sale to be able to get the S7 Edge. Take my money!!!