When Samsung announced the Galaxy S7 and the Galaxy S7 Edge the devices might have felt a little familiar to some, largely due to the massive number of leaked documents and images that have emerged recently and highlighting most aspects of the phones. That’s not to say there are not improvements compared to their respective predecessors though. The hardware for both phones is now rated IP68 making them resistant to water damage. The microSD card slot to expand the 32 GB of internal storage is also a welcome addition and while the batteries in both phones are still non-removable, they are now batteries which come with larger capacities, so battery life should be better.
Besides those hardware changes, the new TouchWiz version on top of Android 6.0 Marshmallow got some nice new features as well, while still looking like the version that was seen in last year’s flagship devices. There’s a new always-on feature to take advantage of the AMOLED technology on the display of each device. The Galaxy S7 Edge received new functionality for the edges of the display, making them more useful. The interface introduced along the Galaxy S6 Edge+ and the Galaxy Note 5 got a new shape for the icons of Samsung’s proprietary apps. The new shape is called “squircle” as they are not quite squares nor circles.
This new version of TouchWiz for the new phones features the same kind of iconography but also, third-party apps will be made a little smaller to fit into a semi-transparent squircle, thus providing a more coherent look for the whole interface. This is called icon masking and a good thing is that it is an optional feature, so those who like how their phone looks right now with the app icons in all sorts of shapes can keep that look. Some users even find it a little harder to differentiate the apps with similarly-shaped icons, so they will certainly opt to turn this icon customization off. Of course, users can further customize their Samsung phones by choosing one of the many themes that are available, which may also change how the icons look.