A friend of mine asked for my opinion. Galaxy S7 or Google Pixel. Keep in mind that I wrote this with my friend in mind so if it sounds like a personal letter, it is.
The primary thing I look for in a phone is software. The Google Pixel does software well.
With the Google Pixel:
You are guaranteed the latest versions of Android as soon as they are available.
You have a phone that will always run Android like a champ.
You have NO bloatware. ( a huge plus for me.)
Every new feature added to Android will work seamlessly with the hardware.
With the Galaxy S7
You are still high up on the wait list for new versions of Android.
Your Phone will run TouchWiz (or whatever Samsung calls their skinned version of Android these days).
You’ll have a good bit of bloatware (“Try Peel smart remote even though you’ve never opened the app and dismiss all notifications!”)
Some features may be a bit clunky (“Ok Google” works fine but would be much more seamless on the Pixel)
You may have noticed that I’m leaning toward the Pixel already. This is true. The Pixel would be the best choice for ME and I’m just letting you know why.
The second thing I look for in a phone is design.
Again, this is highly subjective but here we go!
The Pixel is bland. Nothing special. The back even is a bit off-putting with that glass upper half that’s just kinda there. This is why I like it.
It’s minimal. No obsessive logos or markings. No textured back. The glass upper half actually allows your Bluetooth, wifi, and phone signals to pass more easily through the housing to their respective receivers. It’s a functional design choice.
With the S7 your getting a standard design that has been proven to work. While there may be more to its design, it’s the same design that everyone and their mom is sporting.
Alright, by now I’m realizing that I’m just spewing praise about the Pixel. Carry on.
On to hardware.
It doesn’t take much to run Android these days. Any flagship phone is going to be just fine and higher specs can actually end up eating your battery life for more than its worth. Both phones are in the same ballpark for RAM and processor.
The S7 has a micro SD card slot (huge plus) while the Pixel does not. The Pixel comes in 32GB and 128GB options and if I were buying one today I would have to go with the 128GB to hold my downloaded podcasts, Spotify playlists and all the junk that I would normally offload to my microSD card.
The Pixel has a great camera. Or rather, great photo processing software that puts its photos on par with the iPhone 7. I’m increasingly more concerned with the quality of my phone’s camera as I’ve been stuck with the HTC One M8 and its shitty camera for a few years.
So the Pixel isn’t all perfect.
It’s not water resistant and it has sub-par built in speaker placement. Again, these are not deal breakers for me because I rarely use my phone’s built-in speakers and I have never had a problem keeping my phone safe and dry. But these could easily be deal breakers for others.
Also, back to design choices, the puzzle on the Pixel is a bit thick when compared to the recent industry trend of super thin bezels or no bezels.
So if it were me buying a phone tomorrow, I would get the Pixel XL (maybe. I’d actually have to hold it first and see how it feels in my pocket) with 128GB storage in Black and slap a rad skin on the back to hide some of those logos.
So yeah, this turned out to be a circlejerk around the Pixel. What can I say? The S7 is a Samsung phone. When they aren’t exploding, they’re pretty much the same as the previous generation but with extra bells and whistles. The Pixel is a welcome change to the smartphone market boasting function over form and a pure Android experience.