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Samsung's gleaming Galaxy S7 is all win (pictures)

Pocket size and pretty much perfect, the smaller of Samsung's two headliner phones for 2016 brings up two features we love.

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jessicadolcourt.jpg

Jessica Dolcourt

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Awesome camera, sculpted design, waterproof coating. This Samsung Galaxy S7 has got it going on.

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With a 5.1-inch screen, the S7 (left) is more pocket size than the 5.5-inch S7 Edge.

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Don't be jealous of the S7 Edge's curving screen. The S7 carries its curving shoulders on the back.

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The always-on display tells you how much battery life you have, and the time, calendar or a favorite image of yours without you having to constantly turn on the phone.

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All hail the return of the microSD card slot!

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The 12-megapixel camera may sound like it should be worse than last year's 16-megapixel version, but it takes way better photos.

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Metal and glass take the S7 upscale.

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The phone tops Android 6.0 Marshmallow with a more restrained version of its custom software than we've seen in years past.

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Wireless charging is a nice touch.

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Battery life went on and on and on...let's hope it stays that way as the months pass.

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Samsung Pay isn't new, but it's the only mobile payment system you can use at any register even if NFC payments don't work.

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The built-in fingerprint reader in the home button: It authorizes payments! It unlocks the phone!

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The S7 uses a Micro-USB charger rather than the next-generation USB Type-C plug.

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From little to big: Samsung Galaxy S7, S7 Edge, iPhone 6S Plus, Google Nexus 6P.

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When traveling in London and Berlin, I kept two time zones on the S7 to see what time it was at home.

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The camera is the strongest Samsung has ever made.

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Low light shots were brighter and more colorful than on other phones, including the iPhone.

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Autofocus was bonkers-fast.

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Hyperlapse is a new video mode that's a lot of fun.

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There are selfie filters galore, but images seemed a tad off -- easy enough for Samsung to fix with a software tweak.

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In dark scenes, the screen will turn white before taking the photo, a makeshift flash.

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New gaming tools float a tiny orange button (bottom left) on the screen.

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Tap it to pull up controls that let you record your game or take a screengrab, or minimize the game so you can do something else for a minute.

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Upside: Pretty. Downside: Too many fingerprints!

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This is what you'll be doing all the time if smudges gross you out.

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The microSD card slot and SIM card share a tray.

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You can get the S7 in platinum gold or black onyx shades.

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The Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge both take home CNET Editor's Choice awards. Find out all the reasons here.

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