iPhone 7: Is it worth it?

Holly Smith·27 September 2016·5 min read
iPhone 7: Is it worth it?

By Andrew Kendall.

Another year, another iPhone. The big question on everyone’s mind, though: is it worth it?

In a world overflowing with fancy gadgets, we’re used to hearing about the newer model of X product. If you’re hearing from an optimist, they will regale you with a long list of everything this new model does better than the old one. If you’re hearing from a pessimist you’re like to walk away thinking it’s the exact same gadget, with a higher price.

Where does the truth lie in the new model of the iPhone? Should you be considering staying in the tech loop to get it, even though you’re already close to your overdraft?

First, let’s see what’s new about the iPhone 7.

  • The removal of the headphone jack.

It’s the change that has been most vocally mentioned. In a move that has many users befuddled,  the iPhone has gone where no smartphone has gone before – exclusive Bluetooth headphones with no jack.

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The new pair of Bluetooth Earpods which the phone comes with connect via Lightning. However, because Apple are wise enough to understand the resistance to this, the phone is shipped with Lightning to mini adaptor so you can still use your old earphones with the adaptor.

It’s a move that only time will be able to judge. For now, I’m curious if anyone one will immediately opt to use the phone without the adaptor to use their old headphones.

  • The addition of a second speaker at the bottom of the phone.

This sees an improved sound quality that is easily enticing for persons who love their music. After all, which university student doesn’t love music?

  • The new phone features an A10 ‘Fusion’ processor.

This is a 64bit, quad-core, seen for the first time on an iPhone, and has 3.3 billion transistors.

According to Apple this makes it the most powerful chip ever in a smartphone and it’s the iPhone with the longest battery life-as much as two hours more than the iPhone 6s it claims.

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  • The new camera is 60 percent faster than the iPhone 6s.

(and 30 percent more energy-efficient with  optical image stabilisation)

  • Best of all, though – is its water-resistant quality.

According to Apple, the phone is resistant to liquid immersion up to 1m for up to 30 minutes. Perfect for when it accidently slips out of your back pocket into the toilet.

But do you really need it?

In some ways it’s easy to want improvements. It’s a part of life, where we yearn to improve our current station and with the way that gadgets ae constantly upgrading their models, it gives a (somewhat false) perspective of something greater on the horizon.

There’s also the added issue of feeling behind when you’re using an older model of something that everyone else has.

However, Fahred Manjoo was correct when he spoke about the innovation plateau in 2014. Phone technology is so vastly advanced the immediate new model of a phone you haven won’t be vastly superior to the one you have in your hand.

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So why rush out?

Even if your parents are incredibly rich, saving some money never hurt anyone. Apple, like every company, will keep trying to top itself and as each new model comes out the price of previous models will plummet. So why not wait?

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos called the phenomenon of constant new gadgets the “upgrade treadmill” in 2012, and he was right.

Sometimes we’re so used to running on the treadmill that we’re not sure how to get off. The improvements on the iPhone 7 may be good, but before we immediately start thinking of how we can afford it, we should examine our bias for things that are new and think of how your life would be damaged if we don’t get it. Chances are, it probably won’t.

This is not an anti-Apple attack. I’m the proud owner of an iPhone 6 Plus. I like the iPhone. It’s a good gadget, but we could all stand to be a bit more cautious when buying our gadgets; not just as students, but as adults too.

A new gadget is a good thing to have, but before we shell out money to upgrade, let’s make sure that our current phone is doing us a disservice. If it’s not, wait a few months or even a year. By then the next model might be out and you can get back on the upgrade treadmill.