iPhone 7 and 7 Plus not a major leap in smartphone camera: Consumer Reports

Apple iPhone 7 Plus' 12MP telephoto lens (equivalent to 56mm) offers sharper images than the wide-angle lens

By: Tech Desk | Updated: September 21, 2016 6:33 pm
Apple, iPhone 7 camera comparison, Apple iPhone 7 vs 6s camera, iPhone 7 camera review, iPhone 7 Plus camera review, iPhone 7 camera improvements, smartphones, tech news, technology Apple iPhone 7 Plus features a dual rear camera setup with one telephoto lens for 2x optical zoom (Source: iFixit)

Apple iPhone 7 and 7 Plus have finally started hitting the store shelves. Like every year, the smartphones are not that easy to get from stores considering huge demand. Apple has already confirmed that initial quantities of iPhone 7 Plus have been sold out and the company is running out of stock on Jet Black and Black colour variants.

With iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, Apple has decided against refreshing the design but the company has improved the camera significantly. Apple has made OIS standard with both iPhone models this time along with six element lens and wide f/1.8 aperture. Apple is promising great results in low light with the new iPhone 7 cameras but Consumer report is not really convinced.

According to Consumer Reports, Apple’s iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus don’t bring any major leap in terms of camera performance. While the team at Consumer Reports is yet to test the video abilities, the team didn’t find significant improvements in still photography, at least compared to the iPhone 6s Plus. However, it also adds the telephoto lens on iPhone 7 Plus delivered a much better result.

Some of the key observations from Consumer Reports analysis include:

1. The 12MP wide-angle camera (equivalent to a 28mm lens) on the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus captures admirable images, but they don’t outperform in comparison with iPhone 6s and 6s Plus.

2. iPhone 7 Plus’ telephoto lens (equivalent to 56mm) offers sharper images than the wide-angle lens.

3. In low-light, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus perform almost same as the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus.

4. The Quad-LED True Tone flash has also failed to win appreciation from Consumer Reports team

However, Apple did have a saving grace in the form of the front 7MP iSight camera. The Consumer Reports team found the front camera on the 7 Plus considerably better than iPhone 7’s front camera. It is unclear why Consumer Reports has come to such a conclusion considering both phones possess the same front camera.

Also read: Apple iPhone 7 review blog: Let’s not cry over the 3.5mm jack

With Apple’s iPhone 7 Plus, the dual-rear camera has become the highlight and the most interesting feature is the portrait mode that can deliver Bokeh style shots which are only seen with the professional level DSLRs. However Apple will roll out Portrait mode for iPhone 7 Plus later on, as an added software update, something that never happens with a new product launch from the company.

Both the iPhone 7, and iPhone 7 Plus are being pitched as a big leap for smartphone photography, but not everyone seems convinced. Of course, with the iPhone camera has been one of the stand out features, even the 8 megapixel camera on the iPhone 6 series was much ahead of its rivals and with the iPhone 6s, Apple improved on that significantly. We’ll have to wait and see how the iPhone 7 Plus performs once we get the device. For now, read our iPhone 7 review blog here.