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The first concern comes courtesy of popular YouTube channel JerryRigEverything. The famously diligent test site ran the iPhone 7 through the durability tests and claims Apple has ditched its premium sapphire glass from both the new home button and the camera lens:
Note: As JerryRigEverything has not tested the iPhone 7 Plus we cannot make assumptions here. Being the more expensive model, it’s possible sapphire is still used there.
This means the button will not react should you be wearing standard gloves since there is no response anymore to physical movement. As he points out, if you want to test this for yourself then put some material (such as your shirt/t-shirt) over the button and try pressing.
The controversies around the new home button continue as well following a discovery by Myke Hurley, eagle eyed founder of RelayFM, who spotted the button only responds to capacitive touch not pressure.
Then there are little cost cutting omissions. If sapphire has indeed been dropped from the iPhone 7 then that is a notable one (sapphire is 5-10x more expensive than toughened glass). Meanwhile there are little packaging shortcuts such as the removal of the earphone case. Instead earphones with the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus are just wrapped around a piece of card.
All of which leaves me in two minds about the iPhone 7’s biggest external changes and who they really help the most.
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That’s right, you get nothing. Hardly ideal when winter and you need to wear gloves.
This despite the fact iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus prices were increased compared to the iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus in every country.
(Definition of “nasty” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
nasty c.1400, "foul, filthy, dirty, unclean," perhaps from O.Fr. nastre "bad, strange," shortened form of villenastre "infamous, bad," from vilein "villain" + -astre, pejorative suffix, from L. -aster. Alternative etymology is from Du. nestig "dirty," lit. "like a bird's nest." Likely reinforced by a Scand. source (cf. Swed. dial. naskug "dirty, nasty"). Of weather, from 1634; of things generally, "unpleasant, offensive," from 1705. Of people, "ill-tempered," from 1825.
‘Great Features’ and ‘Nasty Surprises’ are my regular columns investigating the latest software and hardware for the best features / biggest problems hidden behind the headlines.
For example, the new home button kills a weak spot in iPhone design for Apple as the old physical button was notorious for going wrong – it saves on warranty claims. But the taptic engine required to simulate physical movement uses all the space vacated by the headphone jack (as the photo from iFixit illustrates below).
And here’s where it gets interesting, because Apple still advertises that both the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus as using sapphire (which is considerably more expensive than toughened glass) on the home button and camera lens. Given the new iPhones are marketed as more durable than ever this would be a major let down. I have put these claims to Apple and will update when/if the company responds.
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Secondly you can setup AssistiveTouch, though that’s primarily used for when an old physical home button is broken outside warranty. Feel free to insert your joke of choice here.
He concludes: “we know for sure that it is regular glass and not sapphire.”
There are a couple of ways around this. Firstly you can invest in ‘touchscreen gloves’ which use conductive thread to transfer the mild electrical charge in your skin to which capacitive touchscreens respond (note that’s a bogus claim that these don’t work, but I’ve tried two pairs and they do).
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I’m not convinced many users would consider this the best way to utilise the additional space the headphone jack used. Personally a far bigger battery would’ve been top of my list.
(Definition of “nasty” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
It will come in five different colors. (Credit: AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
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Questions over supply remain and there is no doubt ’s new iPhones are already proving immensely popular. But two nasty surprises have been discovered which may cause owners of the iPhone 7 to regret their purchase…
Yes there are good surprises in the new iPhones as well (most notably in the iPhone 7 Plus) but if you didn’t buy an iPhone 7 just yet, waiting a little longer for some answers is probably a good idea…
a kick in football or a hit in golf, in which the ball goes high into the air for a short time
The revelation comes after JerryRigEverything used hardness picks to determine the makeup of both surfaces on the Mohs’ scale of mineral hardness. Previously his tests on the iPhone 6S confirmed the presence of sapphire, but this time both the new home button and larger camera of the iPhone 7 scratched easily using picks that do not damage sapphire.