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Archive for December 26th, 2016

A few weeks ago, I replaced my daily smartphone with a new model. Not because the Galaxy J5 is a bad phone, far from it. But the J5 I was using put only 8GB of memory at my disposal, and that is definitively insufficient: I have a “heavy” portfolio of apps that I can’t miss (Here Maps being one of them), and at the same time I am always trying out new apps. So a replacement was necessary, and it had to be a replacement with more memory.

I have been eying the OnePlus smartphones for a long time. The only reason I did not go for a 3T is the (screen) size: I already own (and use!) several tablets, so I don’t need to have a phone with a tablet-like size. But if you need/want a big phone now, OnePlus is the way to go. My choice, in the end, fell on the Samsung Galaxy S7 – its price notwithstanding but compensated in part by a cashback and a trade-in of my trusted S3. After using it for a couple of weeks, I can only confirm that I like my choice!

Moving from the J5 to the S7 was not exactly simple. Somehow, the Samsung Smart Switch app – which is the official way – was not sufficient. After a first attempt, the Smart Switch app managed to transfer only a single Google account and my apps collection. But it did not bring the data from those apps along… I reset the S7 to factory settings and tried again. This time all the Google accounts came along with the apps, but still no data.

I then turned to the ClockworkMod backup solution: Helium. Let me spare you the details of the hours I spent trying to make this work, and just present you wth the good news: it worked. The bad news is that the Helium solution is not a workable way to go from one machine to another for people who have no knowledge of OS command lines – it would not have worked without a lot of trial and experimentation and multiple tries!

These tribulations aside, I’m quite happy with the S7. The battery holds much longer than what I was used to, and I am really impressed with the quality of the camera. I know: in the past I have never attached much importance to smartphone cameras. My argument was that I always have a (better) camera with me, so what use could a smartphone camera be? I know better now, and the Fuji X20 is no longer a daily companion . The Galaxy S7 and its camera has taken over that role, and the only thing I miss from time to time is the optical zoom of the X20.

(Click the image to see the full picture - and more - on Flickr)

(Click the image to see the full picture – and more – on Flickr)

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