The iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus are now three years old. When these phones first released, they were praised for their camera performance, display, and battery life. Now that the iPhone 11 Pro is out, should you ditch your iPhone 7 and upgrade to it? Read our decision calculator to find out.
In many ways, the iPhone 11 Pro is very similar to the iPhone 7 in terms of the upgrades it brings over its predecessor. There are some design improvements, new colors, an improved camera setup, longer battery life, and more. So do all these changes mean you should upgrade from the iPhone 7 to the iPhone 11 Pro? Find out in our decision calculator.
iPhone 7 to iPhone 11 Pro – Upgrade or Not?
New Colors and Improved Durability
The iPhone 11 Pro comes with a more durable and premium design when compared to the iPhone 7 thanks to its glass and stainless steel design. While the design language is the same as the iPhone X/XS, Apple is now using the “most” durable glass on the iPhone 11 Pro. Similarly, while the phone continues to feature an IP68 water-resistance rating, it can now withstand being submerged in up to 4m of water.
The iPhone 7 series is made of aluminum and its design looks dated in this day and age, especially due to the massive bezels surrounding the display at the front. Apple managed to reduce the bezels on the iPhone 11 Pro by eliminating Touch ID and replacing it with Face ID. The latter is definitely more convenient to use than Touch ID but it does have a slightly higher failure rate as well.
The glass body of the iPhone 11 Pro also means that it supports wireless charging which the iPhone 7 lacks.
Super Retina XDR Display
The iPhone 11 Pro comes with a 5.8-inch OLED display in a body that’s no bigger than the iPhone 7 which packs a 4.7-inch display. Similarly, the iPhone 7 Plus has a 5.5-inch display while the iPhone 11 Pro packs a noticeably bigger 6.5-inch display in a body of around the same size.
The Super Retina XDR display on the iPhone 11 Pro is a major step up from the iPhone 7’s Retina LCD display. The higher peak brightness levels, HDR10 support, better contrast, viewing angles, and more means the jump in quality is massive. If you consume a lot of content and watch plenty of videos on your iPhone, you are going to love the display on the iPhone 11 Pro.
The design and display changes in the iPhone 11 Pro over the iPhone 7 are definitely worthy of an upgrade in my opinion.
The A10 Fusion chip inside the iPhone 7 was a monster when it first debuted. While it is still holding up pretty well, the A13 Bionic chip inside the iPhone 11 Pro is a different monster altogether. Not only is it substantially more powerful, but it is also more power-efficient. It is, in fact, the fastest CPU and GPU inside a smartphone right now.
For day to day use, the iPhone 7 might work just fine but it does tend to struggle when running heavy games like PUBG and Asphalt 9. The iPhone 11 Pro also comes with more RAM (4GB) which means it will be better than iPhone 7 in multitasking as well.
For power users, the jump from the iPhone 7 to the iPhone 11 Pro definitely makes a lot of sense from the performance viewpoint.
Just like the display and design, the iPhone 11 Pro is a major step up from the iPhone 7 in the camera department.
If you click a lot of photos or record videos, the iPhone 11 Pro’s triple-camera system offers a level of flexibility which the iPhone 7 simply cannot match. The smaller iPhone 7 only comes with a single 12MP rear camera and even lacks Portrait mode. The bigger iPhone 7 Plus does come with a dual-camera system and Portrait mode. However, the iPhone 11 Pro’s triple-camera system brings too many things to the table.
Apart from improved photo quality, the iPhone 11 Pro features a new 12MP ultra-wide angle camera that allows one to capture photos from an entirely different perspective. Even the telephoto sensor on the iPhone 11 Pro has a wider aperture that greatly improves its sharpness and the details it captures.
The iPhone 11 Pro also has cinematic video stabilization and wider dynamic range while recording videos.
The front camera on the iPhone 11 Pro is also a notable step up from the iPhone 7’s 7MP FaceTime HD camera. Not only does it have a higher 12MP resolution, but it also has a slightly wider field of view. The latter will allow you to fit a wee bit more people in your selfies. The iPhone 11 Pro’s front camera can also record 4K videos as well as ‘slofies’ a.k.a slow-mo videos. If you are a content creator or just use the camera on your iPhone 7 a lot, the improved camera system is going to be a key reason to upgrade to the iPhone 11 Pro.
The only common thing between the iPhone 7 and iPhone 11 Pro in terms of connectivity is that they lack a headphone jack. The iPhone 11 Pro brings a lot of new and improved connectivity features to the table: a 1.6Gbps Gigabit LTE modem, faster Wi-Fi 6 support, Bluetooth 5.0, and Apple’s new Ultra Wideband chip. The iPhone 7, in comparison, does not even have a Gigabit modem and lacks 4×4 MIMO which translates into poorer network reception in areas with spotty coverage.
The faster LTE modem makes a massive difference in daily use, though it might not seem like much on the spec sheet. Apple’s new Ultra Wideband chip is also going to be extremely handy once Apple unveils Apple Tags. Plus, the chip is also used on the iPhone 11 Pro series to offer a unique and enhanced AirDrop experience.
The iPhone 11 Pro absolutely trumps the iPhone 7 in the battery life department. Apple claims the iPhone 11 Pro offers up to four hours longer battery life than the iPhone XS while the iPhone 11 Pro Max lasts five hours longer than the iPhone XS Max. If you use an iPhone 7, you are really going to enjoy the improved battery life of the iPhone 11 Pro. The former struggles to make it through even an average day of use while the iPhone 11 Pro will easily last a day of heavy use. The iPhone 7 Plus offers respectable battery life but it simply cannot compete with the excellent battery life of the iPhone 11 Pro Max which is in another league altogether.
If you are always on the go or are just frustrated with always having to charge your iPhone 7, the upgrade to the iPhone 11 Pro will be worth it from the improved battery life viewpoint alone.
What’s even better is that Apple is also including an 18W USB-C charger with the iPhone 11 Pro. This means charging the phone from 0-50% in just minutes — an extremely handy feature to have if you are always traveling or rarely have time to charge your phone. The iPhone 11 Pro series also features wireless charging which the iPhone 7 lacks.
Sadly, the iPhone 11 Pro is also a major step up from the iPhone 7 in the price department. The iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus were priced at $649 and $769 respectively when they first launched. The iPhone 11 Pro starts from $999 and goes all the way up to $1,449.
These are very expensive smartphones, but given the power they pack, you can easily use them for three years. That helps justify their cost to a certain extent. You can also trade-in your existing iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus and take advantage of the 0% interest-free financing from Apple and other retailers to upgrade to the iPhone 11 Pro.
The jump from the iPhone 7 to the iPhone 11 Pro is definitely one that’s worth doing. There are some major improvements across the board that will greatly improve the way you use your iPhone.