Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Samsung Galaxy S7 Preview - Rachel goes Tech!

Rachel in the Cities here!

I recently had the opportunity to preview both the Samsung Galaxy S7 and the Gear VR headset, thanks to Verizon being an overall awesome company. 

To begin this story, I should mention that I am not a "tech" person; I own technology such as a flat-screen tv but generally only when I am forced to. Case in point, I used my huge big-box tube television until last year when it finally broke and I didn't have any other options than purchasing a flat-screen smart tv. 

So, I was a little nervous but also excited to try out the Samsung Galaxy S7 and the Gear VR headset. 
In full disclosure, I did enlist the help of a friend that is much more tech savvy than I am to assist with this adventure. 

But before I start the full review.......this is what I look like with the Gear VR headset on. 

Sidenote: After wearing the headset long enough to take a photo, I then read the instructions which explicitly not to wear the headset without the phone attached so I guess I'm living dangerously. 

And no, I did not use this photo for my Tinder profile, but now that I think about it, maybe I should!  

Moving on to the actual review....

I have been an iPhone owner for many years so I wasn't expecting much from the Samsung Galaxy S7 but I was immediately corrected. The phone itself is easy to handle and close to the same size as my iPhone 6c. I found it incredibly easy to navigate and loved the huge screen and that it was so lightweight. 

One of the things that I was most impressed with was the photo capabilities - one of my favorite social media apps is Instagram and I use my iPhone to take photos in lieu of a camera. I was thrilled with the quality of the photos, especially in low light settings. Of course I had to try out the selfie quality and was surprised to find that the Samsung Galaxy S7 has a selfie flash! Better quality selfies, I'm sold! 

Verizon had provided some information on product features which includes that the Samsung Galaxy S7 is water resistant. I was too tempted not to try dunking the phone in a sink filled with water for a couple minutes just to test it out, and what I found was that the Samsung Galaxy S7 passed that test with flying colors. To say I was surprised was an understatement, especially as I recalled an incident where my iPhone managed to take a dip in the Saint Croix river last summer and the results were definitely not the same. 

Overall, I would highly recommend the Samsung Galaxy S7 - even to the diehard iPhone users like me. Its got great features and a camera that produces better quality photos than the iPhone. 

Onto the Gear VR headset guys, this is really really cool. 
Admittedly, I am not a gamer but I might become one if I owned one of these. 

I was a little skeptical of how "real" the virtual reality would actually feel but I found that it really does feel like you are in the virtual world. You can actually turn a full 360 degrees and see the virtual world in all directions. The headset is not heavy and was very comfortable to wear. 

I tried out a couple different virtual apps including Jurassic World: Apatosaurus, Streetview VR, Woofbert VR, and Bait. One of my favorites was the Woofbert VR which allowed you to tour a museum and learn about the different pieces of art. 
My only criticism or challenge was that it took a bit of time with the different virtual apps to figure out how to maneuver or play using headset. 

Overall, both the Samsung Galaxy S7 and the Gear VR headset exceeded my expectations. I would definitely recommend both products and I want to thank Verizon again for giving me the opportunity to test these out. 

Now, everyone run over to the Verizon store and grab yourself one of these today!