REVIEW: Apple’s latest version of the iPhone will fit into your business just fine, but you should think about whether you truly need to upgrade to this new device
The Jet Black iPhone 7 looked virtually seamless as I held it in my hand at the T-Mobile store in Manassas, Va. It really was hard to tell where the glass ended and where the gleaming black aluminum case began. But I knew that this version of the iPhone wasn’t for me.
“That one will scratch too easily,” I said to Jacqueline, the sales staffer who was saddled with the task of helping me buy an iPhone 7.
She told me that they had sold out of the sleek Jet Black version anyway, but that she could sell me a regular black phone with a matte finish. That would do. In a few minutes, the iPhone 7 was mine and I headed back to the office to try it out.
It turned out that not much trying was necessary. The latest iPhone is functionally very similar to the iPhone 6s that preceded it and the learning curve was slight. The biggest part of the iPhone 7 that took some getting used to was the new home button. Or perhaps I should call it a home button-like screen area.
iPhone 7 business review
Where there was once a physical button in the lower part of the screen that served as both the home button and the fingerprint reader, now the button is gone. There’s a recessed area on the glass that replaced the button, but it’s not a separate button.
Press it and it will act like the home button did on previous models, except that instead of hearing and feeling a click, you’ll feel a brief buzz that Apple calls Taptic feedback.
The idea behind the Taptic feedback is that when you press the button, it’s supposed to feel just like you’d pressed a real button, and thus confirm that you’ve actually pressed the button successfully. While it works, it doesn’t really feel as if you’ve pressed a button that clicked, but instead feels like a brief vibration of the entire phone.
When you set up the phone, Apple’s installation software gives you a choice of three different sensations for the Taptic feedback. None of the three actually feels like a solid click, but you can choose what you like best and then at least know what to expect when you press the home button.
The use of a simulated button actually has a good reason. The new iPhone 7 is water resistant, and having a large home button would be an obvious entry point for water. The new design avoids that, and eliminates the mad rush to get the phone under cover when it rains.
Originally published on eWeek