The 2016: smartphones
Most delicate place of the modern smartphones is the battery. And it is logical that Samsung “ripped” in it. Talking about the new types of batteries coming in almost daily, and progressively I heard the word “graphene” – if companies manage to establish stable release graphene items, jerk can be very serious. Maybe it will be aluminium-ion batteries, although the anode will be made of silicon… Discoveries in this field — darkness, but for some reason no one is in no hurry to turn into a serial product. So manufacturers continue to increase capacity Li-polymer batteries.
The fate of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 shows the perversity of the way. Koreans, in fact, no luck – someone had to burn the excessive density of the elements, leading to overheating on a regular basis and do frequent fires. But the responsibility is with Samsung no one takes – the fee will be approximately $3 billion in operating losses in connection with the termination of production of the model and its opinion, and the reputational damage to count nobody.
Interestingly, left behind a “Laptop” Apple iPhone 7/7 Plus also started with reports of fires and explosions – but these were isolated cases, and the excitement quickly faded. Let’s hope that next year, smartphone makers will draw conclusions and will fight for improved autonomy in other ways: optimization of the shell and, for example, fast charging. We suspect that will again remember about wireless charging.
The long goodbye: mini-Jack
In our digital age through some analog things get special status – for example, sales of music on vinyl already (such a funny word to write, Yes) walked digital sales, at least in the UK. But progress does not stop, even the ghosts of analog technology away from gadgets – for example, through the efforts of Apple. Yes, technically the first to abandon the 3.5 mm Jack in their smartphones Lenovo/Moto and LeEco, but Apple brought this “innovation” to the masses.
And brought without proper breakthrough in wireless sound reproduction is the seventh iPhone doesn’t support Bluetooth AptX. Audiophiles can easily pass catching is nothing. Well, except that you really value the adapter and find in them a certain aesthetic. By the way, these adapters, it is not funny, can become symbols of 2017. After all, the iPhone and later added a MacBook Pro, devoid of different from the USB Type-C connectors. Who knows, maybe soon we will be in bow legs the guys from Cupertino’s unification. Maybe Jack will return… although unlikely.
The long goodbye: Nexus and Lumia
In the past this year took two high-profile brand. Yes, Nexus and Nexus 5X 6P are unable to repeat the success of predecessors, but the abrupt change name and concept most did not expect. Pixel came like replaced Nexus, plays a completely different role. It needs not to carry Android to the masses – time for it apparently went through, but to compete with the flagships of the traditional, so to speak, manufacturers. He will do so in different countries, but not in Russia – official supply of these devices, produced by HTC, on the sixth of the land is not planned.
Care Lumia from the stage it was still possible to predict – featured model 950/950 XL failed to overcome the resistance of its own OS with its lack of ecosystem, and the latest flagship in the brand’s history. Will be a Surface Phone or not even a look, but Lumia will appear somewhere hardly. Will Stephen Elop, the flower on the virtual grave?
Qualcomm strengthens its position
No struggle in the world of manufacturers of smartphone platforms failed. Intel capitulated in the mobile market – even the new ASUS Zenfone this year came on the basis of the decision of Qualcomm. You can believe in MediaTek, but the Chinese were finally pushed into the lower price segment. Flagship on MediaTek processors of the major companies decided to produce only Meizu and faced with stress.
Serious alternatives to offer only Samsung, sometimes even gave pretty interesting system-on-chip to the side, and Huawei, which is working for myself. But their top solutions just in no way lost the chief this year, the system Snapdragon 820. In the coming will be curious to see the competition Snapdragon processor 835 and the new Kirin with Exynos.
Another innovation 2016 – the mass arrival dual cameras in smartphones. Previously, it was isolated cases, as, for example, Honor 6 Plus – now with any new smartphone (especially the flagship) with a single camera will be perceived with suspicion. And what you will surprise us? With dual camera appeared immediately two types. On the one hand, Huawei is the conventional approach when using two modules with the same focal length lenses, but different sensors: one monochrome and the other RGB. The result is more quality work in the dark and wide dynamic range. On the other — LG-an approach involving the use of two lenses with different focal lengths. One of them gives the ability to shoot with wider angle. By this way marched and Apple, only the second camera of iPhone 7 Plus, unlike LG G5 has the same resolution and all kinds of portraits, not landscapes in ultra wide angle.
Qualcomm in their new platforms at once involves the use of both types of modules – collectors smartphones can not even worry about ordering them on the side. All inclusive.
Google turned its Project Ara smartphone, is going to pieces, which could replace both the battery and the camera, the process and the RAM. But it lives out two important smartphone with the prospect of additions and upgrades: LG G5 (G5 SE) and Moto Z (Z Force, Z Play). It certainly can not judge about the prospects of such a path, but you have a Lenovo/Motorola plans seem to be more serious is referred to dozens of modules that will prepare in the near future. We, frankly, and a dozen is not enough. After all, in the number of available, in addition to more or less logical speakers, camera and battery, there is a projector. It is a pity that the Union of Chinese and Americans – the Japanese probably would have done something with tentacles.
Last year we predicted a senseless competition that one of the display points will be more – and made a mistake. The path of Sony with its Xperia Z5 Premium did not go one – its 4K display and remains the only mass market smartphones. But even with Quad HD extra times companies prefer not to flirt – doing so gently and only for flagships.
Again, all because of the batteries and the need to strike a balance between power consumption, performance and price. And this trend is very pleasing, by the way – instead of racing figures of the company focus on consumer quality. By the way, the displays responsive to the pressing force remains the prerogative of the elite to the masses, Force Touch-screens are not yet gone.
And now – a small subjective list of the most notable smartphones of the year. Korotkimi completely and is mainly dedicated to the flagships – more deployed in different market segments we have already spoken, and thrice: up to 10 thousand rubles to 20 thousand rubles and 35 thousand rubles.
The best smartphones of the year – Samsung Galaxy S7/S7 edge
Main Samsung smartphone passed a bowl to his big brother – no scandals, a solid peace, grace and title of, if not unequivocally the best smartphone on Android, then one for sure. Finally getting rid of bad habits is to dress their flagship in plastic, Samsung has added in S7, slot for memory card and moisture protection, depriving even ill reasons for criticism. Also missing was an unpleasant feature of the shell TouchWiz to eat energy in idle mode. To display the same platform and have not had a claim. Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 edge, may lack charm, but it is quite a subtle matter. The Koreans did an excellent equipment.
Overview Of Samsung Galaxy S7
The best smartphone of the year – Apple iPhone 7/7 Plus
Never, probably around the iPhone wasn’t so much controversy – although it would seem, as usual: new camera, more powerful processor. Well, Yes, it is a mini Jack, but who, if not the Apple, to move progress – even when it seems obvious not to all. But added moisture protection (IP67), dual camera in the Plus version and returned into fashion gloss (Jet Black) – as it turned out, all and missed. But the weak battery and old design has led to the fact that the sum of the changes all seem positive. However, this still iPhone is the most trendy smartphone in the world. And the most powerful fresh device on iOS. Alternatives to it a lot – but they are either inferior in freshness, or work on Android.
Overview of Apple iPhone 7
The best smartphones of the year Honor 8/Huawei P9
Yes, these are two quite different smartphones. One – big Huawei flagship. Other – it is light and slightly simplified version of under the brand involving exclusively to online distribution. But they both represent the final consolidation of the Chinese company in the elite. It is now not just pushing sales and not bad, but not outstanding smartphone, and do something ahead of the competition. And not only in the traditional Chinese competition in the combination of price and quality. This year Huawei had probably the best mobile camera – she can argue is that the above mentioned Samsung Galaxy S7. And, most curious, she went to the top of the line P9, and not too expensive Honor 8. In the latter case, however, unaccompanied by Leica.
Review Huawei P9
Review Honor 8
The best smartphone of the year – Moto Z/Moto Z Play
It’s more an emotional choice, but first, I want to somehow mark the return of Motorola on the Russian market. Still, when mastodon one by one pass the posts, it’s nice that someone still holds, even with backup in the form of Lenovo. Second, modular smartphones series Moto Z turned out really interesting. Arguably, not very attractive in terms of price and features compare with Xiaomi, Huawei or LeEco – but with its own identity and without unnecessary bells and whistles in the form of a custom shell. Moto Z is not, perhaps, claims to be the fastest in terms of OS of the smartphones on Android, except Google Pixel. The modular design here is secondary.
Review Of Moto Z
The best smartphone of the year – Xiaomi Mi5
Home “grey” cardinal years. Xiaomi phones are even sold now officially in Russia – but not at such attractive prices when you choose shipping from China. However, the first of the two flagships of the company for the year today, you can find less than 20 thousand, and this despite the fact that the characteristics he competes with, for example, LG G5 or HTC 10, which cost at least twice as expensive. Classic Chinese sentences. Of course, on the heels of OnePlus and LeEco, but Mi5 keeps the brand.
A Review Of The Xiaomi Mi5