Samsung Galaxy S7 vs Galaxy S7 Edge

The war that will divide a Galaxy

Galaxy S7 vs Galaxy S7 Edge

Samsung's flagship smartphone has arrived and it once again comes in two distinct flavors, forever complicating your Android upgrade decision-making process.

Okay, maybe not forever complicating it. But it's not easy to pick between the Samsung Galaxy S7 and its curvier cousin, the Galaxy S7 Edge. They rank one and two on our best phones list.

The good news is that there are notable differences between the pair, unlike the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge a year ago. It's more than just a gentle curve on one and not the other this time.

Display size, battery capacity and software really contrast in 2016. You can't go wrong with either due to their best-in-class cameras, always-on displays, microSD card slot and waterproof features. But there's only one fit for your hand.

Design

Both the Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge are made of metal and glass welded together, and it makes for a beautiful smartphone design. The big difference is that the Edge screen wraps around the sides.

Samsung Galaxy S7 vs S7 Edge

The bolder-looking S7 Edge is also a lot bigger this year due to its 5.5-inch display. The entire phone now measures 150.9 x 72.6 x 7.7mm and weighs in at 157g.

It's not as big or as heavy as last year's 5.7-inch Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge+, and I found that I could hold and operate it more easily in one hand, albeit still with a lot of finger stretching.

The Samsung Galaxy S7, meanwhile, retains the classic 5.1-inch display and requires very little finger strain to reach the furthest corners. It measures 142.4 x 69.6 x 7.9mm and weighs 152g.

The backs of both phones take cues from the Samsung Galaxy Note 5, which features a slightly curved back around the right and left sides. This made the new Galaxy phones easier to hold in my palm.

Samsung Galaxy S7 vs S7 Edge

Everything else is the same between the two. There's a fingerprint sensor embedded in the home button, a microSD card slot coupled with the nanoSIM card tray (now at the top), and a waterproof rating of IP68. That means it can soak in water for 30 minutes at a depth of 1.5 meters before taking damage.

The new S7 Edge is extremely attractive and tempting, but at 5.5 inches, it's not for everyone. People with small hands will want to opt for the more practical S7.

Screen

The S7 and S7 Edge screen sizes differ by 0.4 inches, and that's enough to make small-handed humans running away from Samsung's bigger and curvier smartphone.

Anyone who can handle the roomier display size will be treated to one of the best in a phone, right up there with the 5.7-inch Galaxy Note 5. Its larger size maximizes your enjoyment.

Samsung Galaxy S7 vs S7 Edge

Of course, both the 5.1-inch and 5.5-inch phones have excellent screen technology backing up their crisp-looking panels. Samsung uses a Super AMOLED display that's a pixel-dense quad HD.

That means the S7 and S7 Edge resolution is once again 2,560x1,440, but the vibrant colors seem punchier this year and the brightness has been kicked up a notch. The sun is hardly a match the duo.

Samsung Galaxy S7 vs S7 Edge
Both have a handy always-on display

There's also an always-on display, which means the phone never actually goes to sleep. It leaves a few pixels to show the time, date, battery percentage and a few notification icons.

That's extremely convenient since the screen consistently presents this dimly lit glanceable information at all times, and turns off almost every other pixel on the display, essentially sipping battery life.