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So long S7 Edge, so long Samsung

K Leo

Jul 11, 2017
Early last month, the phone went to the familiar black screen and wouldn't start. Based on past experiences, I let it run over night until the battery finished and then went to recovery and wiped cache. But the operation lasted close to one hour without any progress, so I restarted it. Still it wouldn't start, and I tried again to get to recovery mode, but this time there was no recovery mode. So it needed to be re-flashed, I thus thought, just as it did twice during the past year.

I was/am a long-term world traveller, and luckily I was in a city then. So I spent some efforts and found a repair shop and had the guy flash it. He seemed to have completed the flash but before I could fully login I got the black screen again on the spot. There was nothing we could do to get out of the black screen but to let the battery drain. So I paid him for the flash and went back to my apartment, and again let it run over night to drain the battery. The next morning when the battery was finished and I charged it up to about 30%, then I tried to start. But it only went to the Samsung logo without going forward. The recovery mode was back though, so I could switch it off. I was going to another city that day so I didn't have any chance to go back to the repair shop.

So about 10 days later when I reached another big city, I found another repair shop to get it flashed again. When I got there he did a couple normal starts, but when he was trying to go to recovery, the screen went to black again. So I had to take it back to my apartment waiting for the next morning.

The next morning I found an official Samsung repair centre in the city. So I went and left the phone there to get checked/fixed. The day after, I called and was told that it had problems in the main board. To replace it would cost about the same as buying a new phone.

Well that was very upsetting. I was/am not in the country where I bought the phone, so no warranty could I rely on.

The only thing I could try was to see if someone would buy it. So I went to a couple shops with the phone under black screen. One place offered me about $200 just for the screen. Well the phone costed me $600 just one year ago and it had been given excellent care throughout. Now just $200? But for a dead phone that sounded fine for me.

I bought it new. I never tempered it, nor had I given it heavy tasks. It was just to aide my travel: photos, maps, hotel booking, browsing the internet, and so on.

Had it been a good phone for me? I would say that the only thing I liked was the camera. Very good under low light.

But the GPS had been very slow. At times I had to wait for a minute to get my location under open sky.

The compass on the map was also very indecisive. Often times I got the opposite direction. So often I had to do the famous swing dance on the street to get it correctly.

The first big problem I had was the dark bands on the screen in about three months I got it. Samsung said the screen had to be replaced. But I was travelling in another country so no warranty would cover the replacement. I had to live with it. But luckily, after about a week, the screen came back normal.

Then after I got the long-awaited firmware upgrade it refused to start twice. I had to get it flashed. Imagine how much trouble that was for a world traveler. I couldn't flash it myself because I don't have a Windows computer!

Did I like the edge, or rather the no-edge? I probably would if I were an asura. But you see I need to hold a phone by hands. It just gave endless mistouches, and worries that it would slip off. A joke indeed for me.

Then the finger prints! All over the screen and the back. It just looked so dirty! Just as you would believe the phone is good at finger prints, the sensor was simply not very effective. Many times, enough failures required me to wait for a minute before retry.

The battery life was just so-so. It hardly lasted a day without me having to refrain from ordinary usage. So some would argue that it's got fast charging. But what can you do when you are outing for the whole day and relying on the GPS to go back? Ye, battery banks?

The WiFi reception was very poor. Often times when other phones worked well with WiFi, this phone complained about it. What was going on?

And the speed? Well it was not too slow, but for a top-of-the-line phone, it was just crawling. I never used it to play any games, but the response of launching and handling any app was simply not fast enough. Blame it on the multitudes of bloatware? I don't know.

And the random freeze and reboots? Although it did not happen as often as on a crappy phone, it happened quite a few times in the year.

And the renowned black screen of death, with or without the blue light on. Very scary. It happened also quite a few times. Initially it was worry and sleepless research. But then it made me an expert on how to deal with it.

And the long time or never for system or security updates?

So all in all, for my need of a reliable phone for serious use, I am happy it passed away.
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