CNET First Look
The Samsung Galaxy S7 is how a phone should beKiller camera, brawny battery and waterproofing we put to the ultimate test. Samsung's headliner phone has it all.
[MUSIC] I live and work in San Francisco reviewing phones, so when I was here in London and Samsung sent me the Galaxy S7 to review, I did the only thing I could. I took it for a test around the city as a tourist. The S7's 5.1 inch screen makes it small enough to stash when I need both hands And even though it pretty much closed last year's [UNKNOWN] it has new curves on the back that make it look and feel great. The major downside, all those gross distracting smudges. What's up with that [UNKNOWN]? Anyway,at least the lock screen's always on display and it's easy to lock. Other phones have this too and it's a winner. [MUSIC] I could immediately see when it was too early to call home, and that I still had plenty of power left. Now, when I travel, I take a lot of photos. Like, seriously a lot, guys. So I'm thrilled that the S7's camera delivers. Even in hair whipping wind, all of my pictures of springtime daffodils came out sharp and focused. And those low light shots. They just keep getting brighter and better. [MUSIC] Selfies did look a little plasticy from the front facing camera, but I seriously dig the makeshift flash that you get from the screen lighting up. Autofocus is incredibly fast too, and a few new camera modes are fun to play with. [MUSIC] The S7's new gaming tools can record and minimize the game so I can jump into something else for a second. I love that Samsung brought back the micro SD card slot so I can store videos to watch during my down time. The same for the splash resistant coating which is also back. It took the worry out of accidental splashes and dunks. Android 6.0 software means that the S7 has tools like built-in battery saving features. And this time Samsung has really cut down on the bloatware. The quick camera launch returns too along with the fingerprint reader and Samsung Pay credit card capabilities that were great for when I ran out of local cash. You'll also see advanced features like split-screen mode, wireless charging support, and new tweaks here and there. [MUSIC] A disappointment. I did notice that the phone turns on in my purse when it smashes up against other things, and that drains battery faster. But other than that, battery life is monster-big and carried me through long days. But I still have to charge the phone each night. I've got to say I'm impressed with the S7 as a portable camera, as a communication tool and as a hub of my digital life. It is the top all around phone to beat this year. [BLANK_AUDIO]