Apple's iPhone 7, scheduled to hit stores in many countries on Friday, has already gotten high marks from reviewers on its state-of-the art camera, faster processing speeds, and noticeable improvements to water resistance, battery life and memory.
Still, Apple's new wireless AirPods and headphone-jack-free design is a trade-off at best and "irritating," annoying and bothersome at worst, reviews said. Plus, the jury's still out on a new jet black finish that's praised as beautiful but panned as easy to blemish.
Here are some of the highlights:
Times technology writer Brian X. Chen has hopped on the iPhone 7 train, despite the "irritating" lack of a 3.5- millimeter headphone jack. While it's not perfect, Chen notes that those who have had their old phone for years are in store for a major upgrade with the iPhone 7, especially when it comes to the speed, camera and waterproof exterior.
While the new iPhone ships with a Lightning dongle and a pair of Lightning wired earbuds, Chen concludes that wireless earphones — like Apple's new AirPods — are the easiest workaround for the iPhone 7. Still, the AirPods "look odd" and had occasional glitches, like rewinding short sections of audio and crackling interference, Chen wrote.
If you're still not convinced, Chen reveals new information about next year's model. Citing two sources at Apple, he said it will have "a full-screen face with the virtual button built directly into the screen." (Apple declined to comment.)