The iPhone 7 Plus, a stretched-out version of the iPhone 7, is now available for pre-order. Is it, however, worth your money? I’m updating my long-running buying guide.

Two cameras

The dual-camera setup on the iPhone 7 Plus isn’t revolutionary; LG and HTC have all done it before. However, for long-time iPhone users, the new functionality will be a significant departure from what they’re used to.

The iPhone 7 has two 12MP cameras. One standard 28mm lens improves on the 6S with a wider, f/1.8 aperture (50% brighter than the iPhone 6S), faster shutter speed, and optical image stabilisation. In short, the iPhone 7 Plus has brighter and better-exposed images than the iPhone 6S Plus. Overall improvements include improved colour reproduction and, intriguingly, some AI (dubbed the “image signal processor”) that automatically sets exposure, tone mapping, focus, and white balance while reducing noise.

The second is a telephoto lens, as defined by Apple (a claim that has been questioned). The secondary 56mm lens, when combined with the 28mm lens, allows you to switch between the two at the touch of a button, creating the effect of a 2x optical zoom (zooming in with less quality loss than digital zoom).

Live photo editing

Live Photos (introduced in iOS 9) allows you to capture a few frames of video around your still images, creating amazing “moving photos” that look like they’re straight out of Harry Potter. The ability to edit live shots like any other photo is new in iOS 10 – crop, resize, adjust brightness, and change the timing of the live motion.

Secure your camera’s lens.

One of the main reasons to buy the iPhone 7 Plus is the dual lens camera, but there may be times when you want to turn one of them off. Pro users may want to force a shot through the telephoto lens, while videographers may want to avoid the slight flicker caused by switching. Toggle the “Lock Camera Lens” option on in your Photos & Camera settings.

Press the reset button.

If you need to reset your iPhone 7, you may be wondering how to do so now that the Home button has vanished. It’s just as simple – and unadvertised by Apple – to hold down the power and volume buttons simultaneously until you see the Apple logo.

Better sleep

Most of us use our phone alarm clock to wake up in the morning, but thanks to the new Bedtime feature, iPhone 7 users can get a better night’s sleep than most. Rather than simply setting a wake-up call, Bedtime allows you to select the number of hours you want to sleep, as well as an alert to notify you when it’s time to sleep. The feature can also track your sleep pattern through Apple Health and tell you if you need more or less sleep. To begin, launch the Clock app and select Bedtime at the bottom of the screen.

Option for more basic storage space

The standard storage option has been doubled to 32GB. I’m not sure why Apple stuck with the meagre 16GB storage option for so long, especially when OS updates were consuming up to half of your storage. However, in response to public pressure, the new, increased storage option better reflects the size of media in 2016. The improved camera, as well as some of the games that take full advantage of the iPhone 7’s new graphics capabilities, will almost certainly result in larger file sizes.


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