Samsung Galaxy S7 was released in March following its announcement the previous month at the MWC 2016 event.
The phone was coming in to succeed last year’s Samsung Galaxy S6 – a device that begun the company’s revolutionary design changes to its line of flagship devices. While many of those using the Galaxy S6 were very happy to see the release of Galaxy S7 and have been quick to make the switch, the same could not be seen when owners of Samsung Galaxy S5 saw the release of Galaxy S6. This is true because the latter came in with design changes that meant quite a number of essential features of the flagship were dropped, something Samsung Galaxy S5 users were not very happy with.
But what else is there between these three gadgets? Well, here is a look at what difference two years can make.
Design and display
Samsung Galaxy S5 remains to be one of the most sold flagships the company has ever made. The phone sits in the middle of the pack when it comes to weight thanks to its 145g compared to the 138g of the Galaxy S6 and 152g of the Galaxy S7. Despite coming in with the change in material build and design, Galaxy S6 remains to be the slimmest of the three phones with a thickness of just 6.8mm compared to the 7.9mm on the S7 and 8.1mm of the S5. Samsung Galaxy S6 is the tallest thanks to its 143.4mm of height compared to the 142.4mm of Samsung Galaxy S7 and 142mm of the Galaxy S5.
When it comes to looks, everyone will fall for either Samsung Galaxy S7 or if worse, Galaxy S6. This is due to the great combination of glass and metal the phones use for the material build. As for the Galaxy S5, it is made of a silver frame and plastic with perforated dots. This is nowhere near the premium feel the S6 and S7 offer.
As far as the display quality is concerned, all three units have a 5.1-inch Super AMOLED panel, but the 2014 flagship features Full HD resolution of 1080p that translates to 432ppi of pixel density. On the other hand, Samsung Galaxy S7 and S6 are equipped with QHD resolutions of 2560 by 1440 pixels, translating to 577ppi of pixel density.
Apart from the evident difference in display quality, Samsung has also been ringing incremental upgrades to its Galaxy S series. Samsung Galaxy S5 packs a 4-core Snapdragon 801 SoC with an Adreno 330 GPU and a RAM of 2GB. These are 2014 flagship hardware specs, but things have changed since then, with 2015 seeing Samsung drop the partnership with Qualcomm and stick to using its in-house 8-core Exynos 7420 SoC and an improved RAM of 3GB. This means that the S6 doesn’t have an Adreno GPU, instead, it features a Mali-T760MP8 unit, which is more powerful than the Adreno 330 used on the S5.
Samsung Galaxy S7 takes things to the next level with this year’s 4-core Snapdragon 820 SoC on board. This is supported by an even more powerful Adreno 530 GPU and a massive RAM of 4GB. But this is just for the American version. As for the international variant, Samsung went for an 8-core Exynos 8890 SoC and a Mali-T880MP12 GPU, but the RAM is still the same.
It has taken some users more than a year for them to upgrade to a new version of Samsung Galaxy S7 thanks to the fact that the device shares some basic features with the 2-year old Samsung Galaxy S5. Even though both handsets are water and dust resistant, the S7 has newer standards than the S5, coming in with IP68 certification as opposed to the IP67 available on the latter.
Another thing that these two share is expandable storage, however, those using the older Samsung Galaxy S5 can only add a microSD card of up to 128GB to their 16GB or 32GB of onboard storage. As for those using Samsung Galaxy S7, the 32GB or 64GB of onboard storage can be upped using a microSD card of up to 200GB.
Expandable storage is something Samsung Galaxy S6 users can only dream of. However, this device has more storage options, adding a 128GB variant to 32GB and 64GB options.
Camera and battery capacity
With Samsung Galaxy S5 now over two years old, there is no doubt that it lags behind when it comes to photography. The handset has a 16MP snapper on the rear that supports HDR, phase detection autofocus, face detection and LED flash. The front camera is a mere 2MP. These specs were slightly upped with the release of Samsung Galaxy S6. The phone has a rear snapper of 16MP with OIS, panorama, LED flash, auto HDR and other features on board. The front has a better 5MP selfie camera. This is the same front camera you get on Samsung Galaxy S7, but the rear has an even better snapper of 12MP featuring DualPixel technology. You will get phase detection autofocus, LED flash, OIS, auto HDR and many other features on board this camera.
As for the battery units, Samsung Galaxy S7 has a larger non-removable unit of 3000mAh, but the older Galaxy S5 holds the greater advantage of having a removable battery of 2800mAh. This is way better than the 2550mAh non-removable unit used on Samsung Galaxy S6.